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Ben Lawers - great view or so I'm told

Ben Lawers - great view or so I'm told


Postby Briqual » Sat Apr 29, 2017 7:13 pm

Route description: Ben Lawers and Beinn Ghlas

Munros included on this walk: Beinn Ghlas, Ben Lawers

Date walked: 29/04/2017

Time taken: 5.45 hours

Distance: 13.06 km

Ascent: 1304m

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Right, so the newbie thought he'd try Beinn Ghlas and Ben Lawers this week after his escapade last week on Mayar and Dreish. The drive up was good enough although there were several slow downs for deer and sheep on the way - the car park was very easy to find being signposted from the unnamed road along Loch Tay - I say very easy to find but I managed to go straight past it and had to turn back :roll: - checked on the way back out and it's very clearly signposted :lol:

The day started well enough, arrived at car park around 8.15, got the dogs ready and headed off following the directions that I'd printed and lovingly laminated from the Walkhighlands website. Used the instructions to get as far as a little marker that differentiates between the Ben Lawers path and the nature reserve.

1A.jpg


Unfortunately I must have missed my pocket and couldn't find the sheet, detour back now to where I'd last seen it - no sign. Oh well, horse on regardless. Looked ahead and noticed there was no sign of Beinn Ghlas which was supposed to be ahead, cloud completely obscured it - never mind that won't put me off so onward and upward. Did manage to get a couple of shots of Loch Tay as I ascended - genuinely beautiful sight from here.

2.jpg


This was to prove pretty near the limit of my photographing exploits for the day as I had forgotten my SLR and was restricted to my IPhone, which of course was running my GPS, so I needed to preserve battery.

Headed through the gate and uphill toward the cloud - that was pretty much all I could see :lol: and when I arrived at the cloud base decided I needed a change of outer layer from my walking top to a waterproof / windproof jacket. I stopped and got changed, had a drink of water and gave the dogs a biscuit each. Got myself ready again, looked around - where are the dogs? Usually if I just walk on they come back but a couple of shouts, a few whistles then the familiar yelp that suggests 'Dad, we haven't got a clue where you are'. Detour now across the hill following the yelps, 15 minutes later stumbled across them, clearly lost. Dogs on lead now and 10 minutes back to the path - obviously now below where I'd originally stopped for a rest. Had to keep them on the lead for the next twenty minutes as punishment - they hated it.

The rest of the walk was less stressful and despite the visibility being almost zero with a biting wind at and near the summit we got to Beinn Ghlas in one piece and still all together. The views are stunning - or so I'm told.

3.jpg


4.jpg


The walk over to and up Ben Lawers was fairly uneventful although as is said in the description the last bit of climb is steep and definitely hard work especially after the climb that's gone before.

5.jpg


Return was by the lower path round Beinn Ghlas which was actually quite a pleasant walk. I realised that I was now hungry, I hadn't had anything to eat having missed out breakfast and having forgotten about the sandwiches I had in my bag. I found a bit of shelter, sat down and poured a cup of tea. I opened the sandwiches and gave the dogs one each, went to eat mine and felt it being tugged slowly and gently out of my hand. Younger of the dogs must have assumed it was his. I was hungry so despite the fact that the dog had mouthed it I ate it anyway.

Despite the weather I really enjoyed this walk and learned loads. I learned the value of a good jacket and a good pair of gloves for starters. I also learned that although I don't take anything in my tea normally I really missed sugar in it when I sat and drank it in the cold and isolation - definitely could have used a carb input at that point and in future my tea will be very strong and very sweet.

I'll need to put this walk into the 'do again when the weather's better' file.
Briqual
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Re: Ben Lawers - great view or so I'm told

Postby Coop » Sat Apr 29, 2017 8:07 pm

I think with Lawers is - if youre driving past and it's free of cloud; stop wherever you're going and do Lawers instead; you may never again get the chance to see it cloud free again :)
Coop
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Re: Ben Lawers - great view or so I'm told

Postby paul2254 » Mon May 01, 2017 8:22 am

Had the very same experience, started at 6.30 hoping it would burn off. It didn't but still a brilliant feeling reaching the top. Additional warmer gloves going in the backpack for the future. Every day is a school day.
paul2254
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Joined: Mar 26, 2017

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