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It's grand up north - part 4, Windy Ben Wyvis

It's grand up north - part 4, Windy Ben Wyvis


Postby mrssanta » Sat May 05, 2018 5:34 pm

Route description: Ben Wyvis, near Garve

Munros included on this walk: Ben Wyvis

Date walked: 02/05/2018

Time taken: 19 hours

Distance: 15.5 km

Ascent: 1000m

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This was the last day of our four camping adventures in the north and we were so full with food from the Seaforth Bar in Ullapool that we could barely move! So no need for any supper. On the way to Garbat we took a wee detour via Corrieshellach Gorge which was well worth it. We got ourselves ready and left the car park at Garbat at about 8pm to walk up through the forest and camp at the foot of An Cabar by the Allt a' Bhealaich Mhoir. The footpath up through the forest is well made and maintained but off the path in the glen it was very rough underfoot with heathery tussocks and bog. We found a lovely spot on a flat grassy bit near to the burn just upstream of where the path heads up the mountain. It was nearly dark by the time we got the tent up and this time there was no clear sky or frost, and only a few drops of rain in the night. The forecast was for a windy day with low cloud so our expectations were not great, but we had decided that Ben Wyvis would likely pose no navigational difficulties and any good weather would be a bonus.
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Emerging from the forest, with Ben Wyvis in cloud

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zoomed to the Deargs from our camp site

As it turned out, it was much better than forecast. In the morning the cloud was high and it was quite pleasant if cold. It's a steep climb up An Cabar but there is a good path all the way with bits of staircase in the upper half which are an impressive bit of engineering by the amazing people who build paths. About halfway up at the 650m point there is a natural picnic area with some nicely placed rocks where we had a brief geobar stop on the way up.
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a small bit of snow covering the path which although steep was easily negotiated using the steps that other people had made

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Getting close to the plateau now

Once onto the plateau the path is not so good and there are signs up asking us not to spread out over the moor to allow the regeneration of rare mosses. It was bitterly cold and windy on the top and the weather closed in with cloud and we thought we were not going to be able to see anything from the top.
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Jute fabric placed over some of the barest parts of the ground to allow regeneration of rare mosses

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Looking back over Little Wyvis with some precipitation coming in

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Cairn on An Cabar with a sign asking us to walk in the middle of the path

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The eroded path on the top which is pretty horrid but hopefully in a few years' time will be looking a lot better

About 50m from the summit trig point we were in cloud between us and the trig point, and we could see nothing to the East, but we still had a view of the Deargs to the West and the sun was shining. Very strange.
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Heavy frost on the ground and some icy snow and a nice bit of cornice

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are we nearly there yet?

It was too cold and windy to stay at the top for longer than a couple of minutes and we headed back into the wind back to An Cabar.
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Rudolph on the top, looking out towards the Fannichs, with An Teallach barely visible in the distance

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me on the summit, looking the other way, with nothing much visible at all!

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from the summit shelter looking back the way we came

As we proceeded the cloud lifted again and the views were spectacular, we could even make out Slioch and the Torridon giants although these have not come out in a photograph.
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Fionn Bheinn on the left, the Fannichs on the right and at the other end of Loch Fannich we could make out Slioch, Beinn Eighe and a wee bit of Liathach behind, tho it is not clear in the photo. Fantastic!

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Looking back to the summit


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Southeast ridge which we didn't see on the way up

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Another picture of the Fannichs

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Deargs

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back to the cairn on An Cabar with its decoration of rime

Dropping off the ridge it soon became less windy and the sun came out again, so we stopped at the "picnic area" for lunch. By this time we were in our shirtsleeves.
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Looking over Little Wyvis to the Strathfarrar hills

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and a little to the west of the previous picture, this should be the Monar hills with Mullardoch and Affric behind, can I see Carn Eighe?

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steep descent, we could just jump off here and be back at the tent in no time...???

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Happy mugs at lunch time

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From the picnic spot, looking across Loch Glascarnoch to An Teallach.

From there it was just a matter of going back to the tent, packing up and walking back through the forest to the car. We were lucky to be able to put the tent away dry. This was the end of our camp/walk trip but we still have the rest of the week to spend with Rudolph's parents on Deeside, so we will get home with clean dry gear. :D
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we woz ere - from the car park

I have to admit to being not particularly excited about Ben Wyvis as a hill (from no experience whatsoever) but I take it all back. We had fantastic views from the top. It was a lovely hill to climb and next time I want to go up on a day when I get the views North and East as well!
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mrssanta
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Re: It's grand up north - part 4, Windy Ben Wyvis

Postby mrssanta » Mon May 07, 2018 7:15 pm

just adding the gpx track but I already had 25 attachments

Wyvis.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts

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mrssanta
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Re: It's grand up north - part 4, Windy Ben Wyvis

Postby malky_c » Tue May 08, 2018 10:16 pm

Wyvis is bound not to seem too exciting after Assynt, Torridon, Fisherfield or wherever most people have been before it (certainly seems like a popular quickie on the way home), but as you say, it's still worth the effort. I see it every day (when I'm at home at least) from the house and from my office, as well as most places in between, so it's part of the furniture really, and a handy indication of snow and cloud level :) . In fact I'm looking at it right now in the last light and wondering why the hell I have to go back to Mackem land again in the morning :lol: .
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Re: It's grand up north - part 4, Windy Ben Wyvis

Postby Mal Grey » Wed May 09, 2018 10:21 am

What a great series of walks, parts 1 to 4. Thought the high camps looked particularly special. :clap:
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Re: It's grand up north - part 4, Windy Ben Wyvis

Postby BlackPanther » Wed May 09, 2018 12:17 pm

Wyvis is underrated :( Yes, I know it's a simple walk up a well-made path and then a flat stroll to the summit, but there is something about this mountain that makes me want to go there again and again... Maybe because it's my local Munro :lol:

The eroded path has been there for ages. I had a look at my husband's photos from early 2000-s and even back then it was already a nasty scar. This hill is extremely popular and every time we climb it we see dozens of other walkers... Hopefully the regeneration project will do some good :D
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Re: It's grand up north - part 4, Windy Ben Wyvis

Postby mrssanta » Mon May 14, 2018 10:26 pm

malky_c wrote:Wyvis is bound not to seem too exciting after Assynt, Torridon, Fisherfield or wherever most people have been before it (certainly seems like a popular quickie on the way home), but as you say, it's still worth the effort. I see it every day (when I'm at home at least) from the house and from my office, as well as most places in between, so it's part of the furniture really, and a handy indication of snow and cloud level :) . In fact I'm looking at it right now in the last light and wondering why the hell I have to go back to Mackem land again in the morning :lol: .

Mackem land must have its consolations but you can't beat a view of a good mountain from your house.
BlackPanther wrote:Wyvis is underrated :( Yes, I know it's a simple walk up a well-made path and then a flat stroll to the summit, but there is something about this mountain that makes me want to go there again and again... Maybe because it's my local Munro :lol:

The eroded path has been there for ages. I had a look at my husband's photos from early 2000-s and even back then it was already a nasty scar. This hill is extremely popular and every time we climb it we see dozens of other walkers... Hopefully the regeneration project will do some good :D

I'd like to go back in a few years and see how it has done. Definitely one to climb again.
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mrssanta
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Re: It's grand up north - part 4, Windy Ben Wyvis

Postby mrssanta » Mon May 14, 2018 10:49 pm

Mal Grey wrote:What a great series of walks, parts 1 to 4. Thought the high camps looked particularly special. :clap:

thanks we do love a good high camp, especially when the sun shines in the morning.
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mrssanta
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