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Share your personal walking route experiences in Scotland, and comment on other peoples' reports.
Warning Please note that hillwalking when there is snow lying requires an ice-axe, crampons and the knowledge, experience and skill to use them correctly. Summer routes may not be viable or appropriate in winter. See winter information on our skills and safety pages for more information.

Ben Venue in the Snow

Ben Venue in the Snow


Postby stevend1 » Tue Jan 26, 2016 2:23 am

Route description: Ben Venue from Loch Achray

Grahams included on this walk: Ben Venue

Date walked: 17/01/2016

Time taken: 5 hours

Distance: 14.69 km

Ascent: 725m

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Arrived at the car park at Loch Achray around 10am. On doing so we disturbed some neds who appeared to have slept in their cars overnight and had parked in a circle and lit a fire in the middle where the remains of burnt beer cans still smoldered in the cold snow. They had made a lot of mess and were sitting in their Vauxhall Corsas with the heating on looking worse for wear.

This was my first walk in deep snow. For my walking partner it was her second in three days having conquered a Munro two days earlier. It was cold but there was no wind at all which made the going much easier.
Left the car and headed off up the signposted hill path. The first few miles were fairly easy going with the snow only around ankle deep at its deepest points. The track was also easy to follow.

After a few miles we passed a couple who were just getting out their tent having camped the night before. I could hear them arguing with each other which made me laugh.

The path continued with amazing views over the loch and back towards Ben A'an. The summit of Venue was cloud covered and the clouds were moving quite fast. Still no wind at our level.

The path crossed a fence and it became a lot harder to follow. There were a few footprints in the snow that seemed quite recent but it soon became apparent they weren't following the path as they went over heather and grassy parts that didn't appear to be well trodden. We decided that whoever it was must have been heading up so it seemed a good idea to follow the tracks. The climb soon became more difficult as the previous walkers had decided to take a 'straight up' approach. The snow was much deeper now and the wind was picking up a bit. The views however were spectacular. After a quick nav check we were still on track. The couple we passed earlier were also following the same tracks and we could see them behind us in the distance.

As we gained height the wind was increasingly stronger and the snow got progressively deeper. We continued to follow the tracks set by the previous walkers and sure enough they passed us on their way down.

Visibility was very poor as we scrambled up to the summit in knee deep snow. We didn't hang around for long and got off the top into some cover to enjoy a sandwich. We passed a fairly odd looking guy on the way down who was himself and wearing jeans and trainers with no bag. Not the best equipped for such a walk.

We retraced our steps back to the car taking in the amazing views as the cloud cleared up. The neds were gone when we got back. Their mess wasn't, much to our annoyance.

Overall an excellent walk with great views. Will be back in the summer.

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stevend1
Mountaineer
 
Posts: 1
Munros:31   Corbetts:12
Grahams:7   Donalds:3
Sub 2000:13   
Joined: Jun 4, 2015

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