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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.

Wyvis winter walk

Wyvis winter walk

Postby snowdonia7 » Mon Nov 18, 2019 10:20 pm

Route description: Ben Wyvis, near Garve

Munros included on this walk: Ben Wyvis

Date walked: 15/11/2019

Time taken: 4.3 hours

Distance: 13.5 km

Ascent: 964m

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After driving up on Thursday evening and sleeping in the van just outside Inverness we got to Garbat for a 10am start.
The ground was still frozen solid when we set off, which was a good thing as we could crunch our way over any boggy areas. There was a single vehicle in the car park when we arrived, so someone had got off to an early start.
To keep warm we set off at a brisk pace up along the allt. The first part of the climb proper came into view and we could see a solitary walker on the zigzag. We headed on up, and as soon as we left the low ground by the allt the temperature dropped, although it was still quite sunny.

We kept up our steady pace and gradually started to catch up with the walker in front. On reaching the snow line we decided to put on crampons as the snow was pretty firm. A short while later we caught up with the chap in front, who was sitting down enjoying the sun. After a chat we pushed towards An Cabar in lovely conditions. However, on reaching the high ground the wind picked up requiring extra layers and snow goggles as we headed in a north easterly direction towards Ben Wyvis.

Visibility reduced as we trudged along the broad ridge, trying to avoid the softer snow which would mean high knee lifts and more effort to make progress. Without being able to see our objective, and in a bitterly cold wind it seemed like a long slog to get to the trig point. It was then with some relief we reached Munro 255 and stopped for a spot of lunch, but after only a few minutes the cold prompted us to get moving again.

Ben Wyvis2.jpg
Ben Wyvis

Neil returning to An Cabar2.jpg
Neil returning to An Cabar

We followed the same route back passing the chap we had spoken to earlier. Off An Cabar I was almost jogging down the slope, whilst Neil went for the glissade. Back at the allt we maintained the quick pace arriving back at the car for 2.30.
After getting dried off we drove to Kinlochewe for some well-earned refreshment, only to find the hotel closed for a holiday :( So it was camp stove grub in the van, but fortunately Neil had some beer he had won at a recent fell race, so that raised our spirits, although we settled down for early night in readiness for an early start on Slioch next day.
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