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70 Not Out - the "Old Man" and the Ben

70 Not Out - the "Old Man" and the Ben


Postby Jaxter » Sat Dec 08, 2018 10:20 pm

Route description: Ben Nevis by the Carn Mor Dearg Arete

Munros included on this walk: Ben Nevis, Carn Mor Dearg

Date walked: 15/10/2018

Time taken: 10 hours

Distance: 21.93 km

Ascent: 1662m

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Day before - Beinn Resipol

It was an early start from my camp spot on Lochailort – I packed up in the dark and headed down the road arriving at Caol to pick up my Dad just before 8. Mum was reluctant to let him go but once I’d promised to look after him we were on our way 8)

The road to the North Face carpark has not improved since my last visit there in snowy April :shock: but it was significantly quieter (and less dark :lol: )

We headed off down the track and followed our noses along the track and upwards, eventually coming out of the forest. We were able to come back to Fort William and Loch Linnhe
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We could see our route ahead – a bit of fluff on Nevis itself but that was hardly surprising :lol:
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Dad looking excited 8)
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We removed some layers before carrying on
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Easier in the light, we spotted the path up onto Carn Mor Dearg. It was pretty boggy but I was wearing my new boots 8)
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We were managing to hop between the bogs to keep dry and there may have been the odd stop, just to enjoy the views mind :wink:
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As we gained height Halfway Lochan came into view
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And we could see all the way down Loch Eil
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We were starting to see more of the north face as well
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The fluff was just resting on the arete but we were confident it would clear
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Looking back again
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The ascent was unrelenting and kept going straight up and up until the path began to traverse diagonally below the boulders (hooray, I hate boulders!!)
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We hit the ridge just before Carn Dearg Meadhonach – this impressive ridge appeared out of the cloud
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Ahead to the summit of Carn Dearg Meadhonach
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It was an easy climb to Carn Dearg Meadhonach and the route ahead to Carn Mor Dearg itself was clear
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Carn Mor Dearg and the Ben
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Looking back along the ridge from Carn Mor Dearg
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Looking into the north face
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It was cold so we didn’t hang about too long on the summit of Carn Mor Dearg. After adding more layers we decided to go and see what the arete had to offer…to start with it was easy enough. Dad leads the way
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Nevis was clearing more and more and it was looking stunning 8)
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The whole arete was clear now – we could see the whole way ahead
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Not entirely sure what I’m doing here :lol:
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We could see almost directly down the glen now
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The arete, Ben Nevis and Carn Mor Dearg
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The arete got gradually rockier. I joked that the bypass path is for wusses – Dad seemed to take me seriously :lol:
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As we progressed we began to get the pointy view of the Ben that you only get from this angle 8)
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Coire na Ciste – impressive or what :shock:
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We were much more sheltered from the wind here, so despite moving much slower we were pretty toasty and able to enjoy ourselves (I was anyway!)
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The Ben looking even clearer – it was looking good for us 8)
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70 going on 40 :wink:
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Looking back to Carn Mor Dearg
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As we got towards the wee halfway pinnacle we were able to see the whole way along the arete
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Looking amazing!!!
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Caol
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Binnein Mor and Binnein Beag
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The Aonachs
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More Mamorey goodness
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We were over the hump and could see the rest of the arete and all the way to Ben Nevis
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The second half way more exposed but less rocky – much easier to walk on!
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I joked that now we were on the more exposed bit and closer to the CIC hut we would be a lot more considerate if we fell off there….
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Dad on the move again
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Our target
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Looking back to CMD – just wow 8)
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So BIG :shock:
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Looking back again
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We reached a cairn which we thought probably signified the end of the arete; looking back it reminded me of the ridge leading to Sgorr Dearg on Beinn a’ Bheithir 8)
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Mamores 8) 8)
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It was such an incredible day – and we were so lucky that the weather had shined on the one day we were able to do this that we were reluctant to leave. Or perhaps it was the thought of 300m of ascent to the highest peak in the UK was what was holding us back :lol:

Eventually we got going – looking back to the arete
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It was steep and full of huge rocks – last time this had been a big flat sheet of snow; easier on the ankles but tough work :shock:

Before too long we felt the gradient easing and we were over the top into the mist
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It was a bit misty which made some of the gullies look particularly eerie :shock:
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Without cornices we were able to wander closer to the edge; although not perfect the cloud did clear a bit and we could see down to Carn Mor Dearg (although the arete was now hidden)
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Looking like some sort of abandoned city :shock:
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I decided to have a wee jump on the trig point….last time I had been here the trig point had been resting on the snow – must have been 6 foot of the stuff :shock:
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And we stopped for some lunch and a selfie 8)
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Last time – only the observatory and top of the trig point stick out!
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It was pretty chilly even with the extra layers back on, so we got going – inspecting some of the other gullies on the way down – this is Tower Ridge
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Looking a bit like Mordor :shock:
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Looking across to Carn Dearg
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Looking back up
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Now off the top of the plateau we could see all the way down to Loch Linnhe and Loch Eil – stunning 8)
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Loch Linnhe and an impressive skyline – the Moidart, Ardgour and Ardnamurchan hills
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Beinn a’ Bheithir in the background and Loch Linnhe 8)
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As we dropped down to halfway lochan on the zig-zags Dad was convinced that the path had been re-routed since we were up here around 10 years ago (with a bit of searching it looks like he may have been right!)
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Stob Ban and Mullach nan Coirean
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Loch Linnhe again
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An easy river crossing here 8)
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Down at halfway lochan Dad unearthed some chocolate bars which we enjoyed while we lost our extra layers again. It was getting warm 8)
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Loch Lochy and the Loch Lochy munros
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Loch Linnhe
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Looking up towards The Castle
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Dad wasn’t overly keen on off-piste and the river looked quite full so we followed the path towards the CIC hut before cutting down towards a likely crossing place. It wasn’t easy but we made it across unscathed 8)
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And we were safely back on the path!
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It was an easy walk down and eventually we met our outward route. It was still a bit of a trek from here back to the car :shock:
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It was turning into a lovely evening – Loch Linnhe shining in the evening light
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Looking back – we could see our whole route!
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Post-sunrise glow over Loch Linnhe
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It was a wee trek back along the track and through the trees back to the car. When we got back we had cups of tea, a hot shower and dinner waiting for us. Sometimes it’s nice to be looked after :lol:


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Last edited by Jaxter on Sat Dec 08, 2018 11:31 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Jaxter
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Re: 70 Not Out - the "Old Man" and the Ben

Postby Chris Mac » Sat Dec 08, 2018 11:12 pm

Superb, your Dad looked like he really enjoyed rock hopping and what a day you got for it! 8)

Love the photos of the arete especially some of the panorama's and shots of the Ben, top stuff! :clap:

I can't wait to do it myself!
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Re: 70 Not Out - the "Old Man" and the Ben

Postby Coop » Sat Dec 08, 2018 11:16 pm

Something about things like this that I enjoy reading.
Well in to you both
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Re: 70 Not Out - the "Old Man" and the Ben

Postby Sunset tripper » Sun Dec 09, 2018 1:36 am

Brilliant stuff Jaxter. A great route which I cant tire of. I dont know if you have tried the ledge route on the ben, and dare I say it is slightly better, not much more difficult but definately more exposed. I recently did it missing out the ledge at the beginning :roll: The first ledge is horribly greasy and sloping, it feels like you are going to slide off it :shock: and a better route is to roughly follow the waterfalls up from the CIC hut and then traverse round to the start of the ridge. Malky C recommended this route - Ledge route without the ledges :D .Cairngorm Creeper did a great report on it.
All the best. :D
https://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/Forum/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=74495
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Re: 70 Not Out - the "Old Man" and the Ben

Postby Mal Grey » Sun Dec 09, 2018 11:23 am

A grand way to spend time with your dad. Slightly disappointed not to see him doing a Jaxter on the trig point if I'm honest though ;) Madness often runs in the family! :lol: :lol:

I always remember the walk up to CMD as "that b****y 3000ft grassy slope". Unrelenting is exactly right! The ridge more than makes up for it, as do the views of the Ben.
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Re: 70 Not Out - the "Old Man" and the Ben

Postby Alteknacker » Tue Dec 11, 2018 12:14 am

Some great pics there - I especially like the one looking out at "Mamorey". This looks like a great route inasmuch as one walks right up under the North Face, which is simply awesome.

By the way, what's this about an "old man"???? 70 isn't old - it's the prime of one's life, right??? :D

Though I guess one is less inclined to perch on top of a trig point in the prime of one's life....
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Re: 70 Not Out - the "Old Man" and the Ben

Postby kevsbald » Tue Dec 11, 2018 5:11 am

I’m sure you know how blessed you were to share this walk with your father. A memory that will live with you forever. 🎁
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Re: 70 Not Out - the "Old Man" and the Ben

Postby malky_c » Wed Dec 12, 2018 2:19 pm

Considering how far in advance you picked the day for that, I don't think it could've been any better really. Nice one :D
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Re: 70 Not Out - the "Old Man" and the Ben

Postby Jaxter » Sun Dec 16, 2018 8:29 pm

Chris Mac wrote:Superb, your Dad looked like he really enjoyed rock hopping and what a day you got for it! 8)

Love the photos of the arete especially some of the panorama's and shots of the Ben, top stuff! :clap:

I can't wait to do it myself!

It's a great walk - I've been across twice and would absolutely go back again :lol: We got very lucky 8)



Coop wrote:Something about things like this that I enjoy reading.
Well in to you both

Cheers Coop, was a belter of a day 8) 8)



Sunset tripper wrote:Brilliant stuff Jaxter. A great route which I cant tire of. I dont know if you have tried the ledge route on the ben, and dare I say it is slightly better, not much more difficult but definately more exposed. I recently did it missing out the ledge at the beginning :roll: The first ledge is horribly greasy and sloping, it feels like you are going to slide off it :shock: and a better route is to roughly follow the waterfalls up from the CIC hut and then traverse round to the start of the ridge. Malky C recommended this route - Ledge route without the ledges :D .Cairngorm Creeper did a great report on it.
All the best. :D
<span class="skimlinks-unlinked">https://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/Forum/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=74495</span>

That's definitely something I've thought about - mebbe I could persuade Malcy himself to come up there with me!



Mal Grey wrote:A grand way to spend time with your dad. Slightly disappointed not to see him doing a Jaxter on the trig point if I'm honest though ;) Madness often runs in the family! :lol: :lol:

I always remember the walk up to CMD as "that b****y 3000ft grassy slope". Unrelenting is exactly right! The ridge more than makes up for it, as do the views of the Ben.

:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: I'm pretty sure the mad genes all came to me :wink:



Alteknacker wrote:Some great pics there - I especially like the one looking out at "Mamorey". This looks like a great route inasmuch as one walks right up under the North Face, which is simply awesome.

By the way, what's this about an "old man"???? 70 isn't old - it's the prime of one's life, right??? :D

Though I guess one is less inclined to perch on top of a trig point in the prime of one's life....

Aye the views of the North Face are just awesome - I just can't get over how BIG it is :shock:
You're only as old as you feel....given how many Christmas concerts I'm in the middle of I feel about 90 :lol:



kevsbald wrote:I’m sure you know how blessed you were to share this walk with your father. A memory that will live with you forever. 🎁

Aye it was a belter 8) 8)



malky_c wrote:Considering how far in advance you picked the day for that, I don't think it could've been any better really. Nice one :D

Yeah....as jammy as Rum!! :lol:
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Re: 70 Not Out - the "Old Man" and the Ben

Postby past my sell by date » Sun Dec 16, 2018 11:50 pm

"Easy crossing here" Isn't that what they call the Red Burn? I n spring I've come down a sort of Cresta run" in the snow from the top to here. You sit on you sack (or bum) and hopefully control your speed with an axe :lol: :lol: :lol:
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Re: 70 Not Out - the "Old Man" and the Ben

Postby Jaxter » Tue Dec 18, 2018 9:23 pm

past my sell by date wrote:"Easy crossing here" Isn't that what they call the Red Burn? I n spring I've come down a sort of Cresta run" in the snow from the top to here. You sit on you sack (or bum) and hopefully control your speed with an axe :lol: :lol: :lol:

Haha brilliant! I had some smashing ice axe fun up there earlier in the year. Great snow fields 8)
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Re: 70 Not Out - the "Old Man" and the Ben

Postby Anne C » Sat Jan 12, 2019 8:22 pm

Great report and photos. :clap: What wonderful memories of a grand day out with your Dad, very special. Congrats on winning the walk report of the month too :clap: :clap: :
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Re: 70 Not Out - the "Old Man" and the Ben

Postby goingforawii » Mon Jan 14, 2019 7:40 am

Wonderful photos and a beautiful day. To think only two weeks later the Mamores were covered in snow... and then another two weeks later it was gone again. Great report! :D
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