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Ben Chonzie, the purple mountain

Ben Chonzie, the purple mountain


Postby Chris Mac » Fri Aug 25, 2017 1:39 pm

Route description: Ben Chonzie via Glen Lednock

Munros included on this walk: Ben Chonzie

Date walked: 20/08/2017

Time taken: 4.07 hours

Distance: 12.5 km

Ascent: 747m

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Time for another walk and with conditions looking decent I decided it was time to visit Ben Chonzie, just under an hour and a half to get to, figuring it would be a nice easy entrance into the world of Munros for Y since it met her requirements, runway to the top (almost), not too steep or craggy - so no scrambling, minimal bog, a big rounded lump, good position for views, what could go wrong....?

Well it turns out Y would compleat the set by the end of this walk, making it a Sub2000 hill, Graham, Corbett and Munro that she had given up on this year! :lol:

To be fair, she's still building up hill fitness and wasn't feeling 100% for this walk. After an initial confusion when the car sat nav took me to a Ben Chonzie car park that was at Kingarth and we had got 30 seconds along the road before I realised what had happened, we quickly popped back to the car all kitted up to make the short drive further north to Invergeldie.

The car park was fairly busy but we found a spot then set off up the track:
ImageDSC_2795 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

ImageDSC_2805 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Ben Chonzie came into view as we continued along, the surrounding land a lovely mix of green and purple heather:
ImageDSC_2810 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

We followed the path past the dam as it gets a little bit steeper:
ImageDSC_2839 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

ImageDSC_2840 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

ImageDSC_2845 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Purple:
ImageDSC_2848 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Dam below:
ImageDSC_2852 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

More purple, the colours were brilliant as we continued up the track next to the burn:
ImageDSC_2871 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

ImageDSC_2877 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Directly west behind us, two of my favourite hills Stob Binnein and Ben More come into view:
ImageDSC_2886 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Twin giants:
ImageDSC_2887 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

ImageDSC_2892 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

ImageDSC_2893 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

To the west and slightly south Ben Vorlich dominates the view back as you ascend. When I climbed this in March I couldn't have picked out Ben Chonzie from the summit, in fact despite being on several of the surrounding Munros it was completely off my radar due to being a big round lump! :D
ImageDSC_2894 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

You can make out the path up on the right:
ImageDSC_2898 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

At this point, just where the cairn marks the turn left to go up the grassy path towards the summit, Y decided that was enough for her and made her way back to the car. After the last few times this happened I hadn't really enjoyed racing to the summit, taking a few quick photos then racing back down again so we agreed on a time-scale for me to return by, a standard e.t.a. of 2 hours (back by half 5) and an "if i'm not back by this time, send help" of 6pm. I made it back before half 5 so it only took another hour and a half for me to summit and return to the car which was decent going as I wasn't rushing which was nice.

Yet again the purple and green landscape was outstanding:
ImageDSC_2906 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

The path up towards the summit is indeed a little boggy but still comparing bogs to Ben Lui, it was nothing!
ImageDSC_2907 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

As you ascend the Ochils are in view to the south:
ImageDSC_2917 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

At the top of the rise the summit comes into view, not long to go now, Y was only about half an hour away from the summit, at least not as bad as Stu when he gave up about 15 minutes away from the summit of Beinn Ime earlier in the year! (what is it with folk quitting on me before reaching the summit? :crazy: :lol: ):
ImageDSC_2936 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

The view east into Perthshire and East/West Lomond:
ImageDSC_2937 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

High altitude grazing:
ImageDSC_2942 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

I followed the fence posts along towards the summit:
ImageDSC_2946 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

To the north the views now open up and are spectacular, starting with Meall nan Tarmachan and it's superb ridge which I thoroughly enjoyed last year:
ImageDSC_2958 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Beinn Ghlas, Ben Lawers, An Stuc and Meall Garbh:
ImageDSC_2959 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

ImageDSC_2961 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Schiehallion, not quite as pointy from the south...
ImageDSC_2965 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Final stretch to the top:
ImageDSC_2968 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

The wee Lomond twins:
ImageDSC_2973 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Lawers group, i've a feeling i'll be heading back that way sometime soon... the more I see certain hills from different angles while climbing surrounding peaks, the more it makes me want to conquer them:
ImageDSC_2985 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Distant Crianlarich hills:
ImageDSC_2987 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

I reach the cairn/wind shelter and chat briefly to a couple and their hungry dog that is eyeing up my sandwich!
ImageDSC_2997 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

A quick 360 from the top:
ImageDSC_2998 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

To the north east the view is brilliant over to Beinn a' Ghlo, Ben Vrackie and the Cairngorms:
ImageDSC_3000 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

This hill stood out while I was trying to find Carn a'Chlamain and Beinn Dearg, in the shot below Carn a'Chlamain is just below the summit but less visible. Turns out it was only our second highest mountain Ben Macdui I was looking at! Impressive, especially as it's 45 miles/71km to the north!
ImageDSC_3011 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

I sat and munched on my sandwich while soaking in the view... Crieff down below with background Ochils:
ImageDSC_3027 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Ben Lawers:
ImageDSC_3036 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Summit panorama:
ImageDSC_3037.12 20170820_154810 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Loch Turret:
ImageDSC_3038 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

The couple at the summit were staying with parents in Crieff and had just nipped up their local Munro for a walk, before they set off for Auchnafree Hill on the way back.... I want a Munro or 5 on my doorstep too... :(

The twins again:
ImageDSC_3039 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Ben Vorlich:
ImageDSC_3040 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

The Lawers group looks amazing from the south, it was hard to take my eyes off it, but I tried:
ImageDSC_3043 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

An Stuc, looks steep on the east side, going to be fun scrambling when it comes round to climbing it:
ImageDSC_3044 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

To the east, Benn a'Ghlo again:
ImageDSC_3045 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Schiehallion:
ImageDSC_3050 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Loch Turret with Auchnafree Hill on the left:
ImageDSC_3056 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Cairn/wind shelter:
ImageDSC_3061 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Satisfied, I head back the way I came and enjoy the great views on the descent:
ImageDSC_3076 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

ImageDSC_3080 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

ImageDSC_3082 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

The "boggy" bit, maybe it was a good thing that Y stopped where she did! :wink:
ImageDSC_3089 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Burn on the return:
ImageDSC_3094 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Cairn marking the track/path junction:
ImageDSC_3095 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

I make fast progress down the track, stopping to take more pics and chatting to a few people, first a guy who had spent a week up north climbing bigger hills in the rain who was heading back to Edinburgh and decided to stop off for Ben Chonzie. He was so glad it was dry and he could enjoy the views! :D

After that I met a retired gentleman from Hampshire who had also been up north walking for about a week. We chatted about hills and walking and he asked how many Munros I had climbed, this is number 12 I said, it was number 162 for him! Impressive. I don't think he was that keen on heading back south to the flatlands with nae hills!! :D

Ben Vorlich vanishing from view:
ImageDSC_3116 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Balnacoul Castle and it's impressive crags:
ImageDSC_3118 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Dam path and purple heather:
ImageDSC_3119 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

For some reason a lot of my recent walks have a close up flower shot towards the end...
ImageDSC_3133 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Balnacoul Castle, Creag Bhuidhe and Creag Ghorm:
ImageDSC_3135 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Final stretch:
ImageDSC_3146 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Done and in good time, taking about an hour and a half from when I left Y, ahead of the 2 hour window I had and way before any rescue was required for being overdue. To be honest, I think if I had to call out Mountain rescue to Ben Chonzie i'd never live it down, it's a fairly easy hill to climb!
ImageDSC_3154 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

A sea of green with a faint splash of purple to finish:
ImageDSC_3158 by Chris Mac, on Flickr

Y was snoozing when I returned and was doing good, she had enjoyed the walk regardless and I said it wasn't a lost cause as she is always building up fitness with every walk plus hopefully the trapped nerve will be gone for the next walk.

I really enjoyed Ben Chonzie, it was very easy going but sometimes you need a non-epic walk and the views were brilliant from the top, although i'll probably still struggle to find Fonzie from surrounding peaks! Eeeeyyyy!! :wink: :roll:
User avatar
Chris Mac
 
Posts: 821
Munros:36   Corbetts:21
Grahams:9   Donalds:10
Sub 2000:49   Hewitts:3
Wainwrights:10   
Joined: Sep 11, 2014

Re: Ben Chonzie, the purple mountain

Postby LoveWalking » Sat Aug 26, 2017 11:07 pm

I enjoyed reading that, thanks for sharing. I'm heading up there again next week.
LoveWalking
Wanderer
 
Posts: 94
Munros:40   Corbetts:12
Grahams:5   Donalds:8
Sub 2000:11   Hewitts:14
Wainwrights:11   
Joined: Jan 19, 2016
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