walkhighlands

Share your personal walking route experiences in Scotland, and comment on other peoples' reports.
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.

Ben Chabhair

Ben Chabhair


Postby Jock McJock » Wed Jun 16, 2010 2:30 pm

Route description: Beinn Chabhair, from Inverarnan

Munros included on this walk: Beinn Chabhair

Date walked: 15/06/2010

Time taken: 7 hours

Distance: 14 km

Ascent: 1010m

1 person thinks this report is great.
Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).

So, after much deliberation the night before, (really wanted to do Ben More and Stob Binnein but discovered late the night before I didn't have a map :lol: ), I settled on this wee charmer. I say that because although I had seen this walk on the site and it was a Munro I could get to easily etc, I never really fancied it ,but I'm glad i did.

Left Glasgow at 06:45 and arrived at Inverarnan at 08:00. Sat and checked my map, walk description, gear etc, had a wee bite to eat and set off at 08:30. Along the road, through the camp site and up onto the steep (very!!) hill behind and up towards the waterfall.
Photo0964.jpg
Beinglas Farm Campsite and the way up behind.
This would make a great wee walk on its own. Its not far and your at the waterfall before you know it. Not a lot of water when I was there but I have passed below numerous times and seen it in full torrent; it must be good when its like that becuase you can get really close.
Photo0880.jpg
Beinglas Waterfall
Photo0883.jpg
Looking down on the Drovers Inn form Beinglas Waterfall


Anyway onwards and upwards I went, passing some goats
Photo0888.jpg
Goat 1
Photo0889.jpg
Goat 2 - What kind?
(mountain? angora? my wildlife knowledge is pants! :lol: anyone know?) who said hello as I passed. Well I like to think that's what they said, probably more along the lines of "eejit" :lol: . It soon flattens out not long past the top of the waterfall and you get your first sight of Ben Chabhair looking far far away. As I walked up looking at it I was actually quite confused and at first thought that Meal nan Tarmachan or even Parlan Hill was Ben Chabhair. Soon had a wee squint at the map though and realised that it was the further away, higher one I could see between the aforementioned hills that was my destination.
Photo0891.jpg
What one is it?


The going once up past the waterfall is pretty easy with just some boggy, mushie stuff to get round now and again. It doesn't really feel like it but you're climbing all the time and when you turn around the views begin to really open up across to the Arrochar Alps and to the north west with Ben Lui (I think) looking quite disticnt in the distance.

After about an hour and a half I stopped and had a wee rest and looking back could see another guy heading up behind me. The first person I had seen since the camp site. Soon set off again and started to look for the fork in the path that would take me across to Meal nan Tamrachan and up onto the ridge. Try as I might I couldn't see it.
Photo0898.jpg
Where's the path?
When I ended up at Lochan Beinn Chabhair I knew that I had missed it and at first contemplated heading back down a little to try and find it.
Photo0900.jpg
Lochan Beinn Chabhair
Stood a while though and soon spotted the path high up on the hill. There was nothing for it but to head staright up through the long grass and heather and I managed to meet the path about halfway up. It climbs steeply here again and then heads to the right and up towards the ridge of Ben Chabhair.
Photo0905.jpg
Looking towards the top ridge on Ben Chabhair
Once I had gained a fair bit of height I decided to have a wee rest. The guy following me soon caught up and we had a wee blether before he carried on ahead.

Was soon on my way again and enjoying the undulating path heading up onto the ridge. It's really up and down sometimes and just when you think your really gaining height it drops you down again quite abruptly. There are some very minor scrambly bits and even a wee bit of exposure as you head up onto the ridge proper as the path really hugs the edge of the ascent up some of the big butresses.
Photo0926.jpg
Path close to the edge at times.
Photo0922.jpg
Looking down from the ridge on Lochan Beinn Chabhair way below on the left and way along the ridge Lochan a Chaisteil now in view.
Photo0925.jpg
An Caisteal on the left and Beinn a Chroin
Once up there's quite a nice wee walk along the ridge to a wee cairn which at first I thought was the top but soon realised wasn't as I could see another cairn on a higher top just along the ridge.
Photo0934.jpg
The first caiirn and the true summit just up ahead.
Headed over there and arrived at the top 3hrs 45mins after I set out. I could then sit and eat my lunch and watch the other guy come up behind me as I had passed him again when he had stopped for a break. He lingered around the first cairn then headed up to where I was.
Photo0937.jpg
View from near the top looking back along the ridge.


Turns out, this nice old gent, Bobby Ross, from Livingston, had completed all the Munros but had his doubts about whether he had actually stood on top of Ben Chabhair. On the day he done it the weather was awful and he told me that he had reached a cairn and took it to be the top. His GPS however was telling him something different. So today he took another GPS reading at the first cairn and guess what? He was right, both his readings were the same, the first time he didn't actually get to the top. So well done to Bobby for getting back up there just to make sure :D That's dedication. I think I might have been tempted to take the first one and call it a day :lol: Anyway Bobby and I had a good wee blether. He was full of knowledge, stories and advice for a novice like myself. We even seen an RAF Tornado screaming along about 500m below us between Beinn a Chroin an Ston an Duibhe at one point. After about an hour I left Bobby to enjoy his "final" top and headed off back down.
Photo0938.jpg
Bobby Ross in the distance on top of Ben Chabhair.


The descent was pretty uneventful except that I managed to follow the path off Meal nan Tarmachan to where it meets the path on the way up. Really, if you don't have a GPS, or know where that path is it will be very difficult to find. It just meanders off into the long grass and is very indistinct. But it really doesn't make a lot of difference going the way I did.

Really enjoyed this walk and Ben Cahbhair really is a lovely Munro. The views all around are great with hills in all directions as far as the eye can see. If you've not done it yet because, like me, you have been thinking it doesn't look that great then think again and get yourself up there :D

I arrived back at the car at 1600, but was really just taking my time and enjoying the walk and the weather. The 7hrs 30mins it took me all in, could easily be cut back to 5 or 6. And remember I sat for an hour at the top with Bobby! :D
Last edited by Jock McJock on Thu Jun 17, 2010 10:35 am, edited 2 times in total.
Jock McJock
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 448
Munros:170   Corbetts:5
Grahams:2   
Sub 2000:1   
Joined: Feb 5, 2010
Location: Dumbarton

Re: Ben Chabhair

Postby magicdin » Wed Jun 16, 2010 7:30 pm

great report Jock - Beinn Chabhair and it's north-west ridge is a fine days hillwalking
User avatar
magicdin
Rambler
 
Posts: 2655
Munros:282   Corbetts:222
Grahams:110   Donalds:23
Sub 2000:13   Hewitts:24
Wainwrights:10   Islands:22
Joined: Aug 11, 2008

Re: Ben Chabhair

Postby Jock McJock » Wed Jun 16, 2010 8:13 pm

magicdin wrote:great report Jock - Beinn Chabhair and it's north-west ridge is a fine days hillwalking


Thanks Magicdin. Yeah it is a nice walk. Don't know why I didn't fancy it before but I take it all back :lol: it's a lovely day out up there and if you get the weather like I did it makes it even better. :D
Jock McJock
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 448
Munros:170   Corbetts:5
Grahams:2   
Sub 2000:1   
Joined: Feb 5, 2010
Location: Dumbarton

Re: Ben Chabhair

Postby FloozySuzie » Wed Jun 16, 2010 9:00 pm

We were walking passed one morning, and saw a few folk heading up that really steep hill. We thought that was part of the WHW :? But we asked in the wee shop, and luckily not :lol:

So that's where everyone was headed! I did wonder.
User avatar
FloozySuzie
 
Posts: 137
Joined: Mar 30, 2010
Location: Ardersier, Inverness-shire

Re: Ben Chabhair

Postby Jock McJock » Thu Jun 17, 2010 10:38 am

FloozySuzie wrote:We were walking passed one morning, and saw a few folk heading up that really steep hill. We thought that was part of the WHW :? But we asked in the wee shop, and luckily not :lol:

So that's where everyone was headed! I did wonder.


Yeah Suzie, they must have been heading up to Ben Chabhair or even just up to the waterfall. Like I said, the wee walk up the the falls is a nice one too and would be worth doing if you were passing or in the area and looking for something quick and easy. :D
Jock McJock
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 448
Munros:170   Corbetts:5
Grahams:2   
Sub 2000:1   
Joined: Feb 5, 2010
Location: Dumbarton

Re: Ben Chabhair

Postby magicdin » Thu Jun 17, 2010 10:43 am

lochan a'chaisteil is well worth a wee visit also :)
User avatar
magicdin
Rambler
 
Posts: 2655
Munros:282   Corbetts:222
Grahams:110   Donalds:23
Sub 2000:13   Hewitts:24
Wainwrights:10   Islands:22
Joined: Aug 11, 2008

Re: Ben Chabhair

Postby monty » Thu Jun 17, 2010 10:44 am

Nice report Jock,
That looks a fairly steep initial climb. But then opens up to some lovely views. Hope to do this one soon. :D
monty
 

Re: Ben Chabhair

Postby Jock McJock » Thu Jun 17, 2010 10:48 am

monty wrote:Nice report Jock,
That looks a fairly steep initial climb. But then opens up to some lovely views. Hope to do this one soon. :D



It is quite steep at the start Monty but it doen't last too long, you're up past the waterfall before you know it. And the views open up nicely to keep you amused when you stop for a wee breather. :lol:
Jock McJock
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 448
Munros:170   Corbetts:5
Grahams:2   
Sub 2000:1   
Joined: Feb 5, 2010
Location: Dumbarton

Re: Ben Chabhair

Postby kevsbald » Thu Jun 17, 2010 11:17 am

Did Bob Ross have his easel and paints with him? Nice report.
User avatar
kevsbald
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 2151
Munros:260   Corbetts:115
Grahams:76   Donalds:51
Sub 2000:12   Hewitts:8
Wainwrights:15   
Joined: Jan 15, 2009
Location: Glasgow

Re: Ben Chabhair

Postby audreywaugh » Thu Jun 17, 2010 11:49 am

Hi Jock

after reading this, I wondered what the midgies were like walking along by the water?

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/highlands_and_islands/10337812.stm

I fancy a wee wander up there on Saturday, as handy for the bus and a pint of something cold at the end of the day! :lol:
User avatar
audreywaugh
Wanderer
 
Posts: 189
Munros:178   Corbetts:37
Grahams:14   Donalds:13
Sub 2000:22   Hewitts:49
Wainwrights:47   Islands:18
Joined: May 10, 2009
Location: Glasgow

Re: Ben Chabhair

Postby Jock McJock » Thu Jun 17, 2010 5:13 pm

audreywaugh wrote:Hi Jock

after reading this, I wondered what the midgies were like walking along by the water?

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/highlands_and_islands/10337812.stm

I fancy a wee wander up there on Saturday, as handy for the bus and a pint of something cold at the end of the day! :lol:


Midges were around but not that many. Weren't a nuisance at all. It was hot and sunny though, don't know what it would be like if it was a wee bit cooler and overcast. Actually not that many by the water at all come to think of it. Was mainly on the hillside and in the wee dips on the ridge itself that I noticed any midges etc. Forecast is good for the weekend too so don't think they'll be a problem. :D Have a good one :D And yes the Drovers is very handy! :lol:
Jock McJock
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 448
Munros:170   Corbetts:5
Grahams:2   
Sub 2000:1   
Joined: Feb 5, 2010
Location: Dumbarton

Re: Ben Chabhair

Postby Jock McJock » Thu Jun 17, 2010 8:07 pm

kevsbald wrote:Did Bob Ross have his easel and paints with him? Nice report.


Do you know him Kev?
Jock McJock
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 448
Munros:170   Corbetts:5
Grahams:2   
Sub 2000:1   
Joined: Feb 5, 2010
Location: Dumbarton

Re: Ben Chabhair

Postby audreywaugh » Thu Jun 17, 2010 11:28 pm

Cheers Jock...checked out my photos from last time I was up there and had a few with the goats in them..wonder if its the same ones? Goats are about all I saw that day as vis was bad on top, will be good to get a view this time :D
User avatar
audreywaugh
Wanderer
 
Posts: 189
Munros:178   Corbetts:37
Grahams:14   Donalds:13
Sub 2000:22   Hewitts:49
Wainwrights:47   Islands:18
Joined: May 10, 2009
Location: Glasgow

Re: Ben Chabhair

Postby Grimbo » Tue May 03, 2011 2:36 pm

Was interested to read your report on Bienn Chabhair, particularly Bobby Ross' return trip, since I had a "same, same but different" experience on the same hill. I made my first attempt in early January 2009 but having fallen into numerous snow covered bogs and realising that it would be dark before summiting, discretion got the better part of valour and I retreated. My second attempt was in September last year, on a glorious sunny day with excellent visibility. I went up the "west route" onto the summit ridge and fairly skipped along until faced with a big drop before seeing the top some way in the distance. I dropped down into the valley and at the bottom got a severe attack of cramp that made me give up and wander slowly back to Inverarnan. That was just as well since it transpired that my map reading had gone totally awry and that the top I had been aiming for was Beinn a Chroin! (and I'm embarrassed to say, I have a geography degree!). So back home and having had a good look at my maps and reading the SMC guide and McNeish, I couldn't make sense of how I had got so lost. And how did I miss the summit cairn? Nothing for it but to have another go, last Saturday, another glorious day, though a bit windieron the top. This time I followed the "classic" route, traversing the slopes above the lochan and , guided by another walker on his way down, arrived at the ridge bang on the summit. It seems that in September, I had walked straight past the cairn, without noticing it! I had passed within three feet of it and still managed to miss it. Felt a complete wally. In my defence, all that I can say was that I was possibly distracted by a large herd of deer that had come up the north side and crossed in front of me, about 25 yards away, just as I would have passed the cairn.
PS I really wouldn't reccommend the classic route, neither I nor another 8 people I spoke to were able to locate the path and the final approach to the summit is a frustrating slog. Aiming for the bealach could take you far too far to the east. The western route is far easier to follow and a much more pleasurable experience.
Grimbo
Hill Bagger
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Dec 10, 2009

Re: Ben Chabhair

Postby Fudgie » Wed May 04, 2011 2:24 pm

I climbed it last year on a horrible wet day and it was a 4 hour slog to get to the top. The visibility was non existent as we got closer to the summit and the seemingly endless up and down nature of the path towards the end was becoming demoralising. I read on here about the first cairn not being the highest one so we battered on until the next one and although we couldn't see more than 15ft, it was a great feeling.

I've got other Munro's I want to climb but I'll definitely be back to this one on a better day.
User avatar
Fudgie
Hill Bagger
 
Posts: 994
Munros:96   Corbetts:20
Grahams:3   Donalds:7
Joined: Aug 30, 2010
Location: Port Glasgow

1 person thinks this report is great.
Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).



Walkhighlands community forum is now advert free

We need help to keep the site online.
Can you help support Walkhighlands and the online community by setting up a monthly donation by direct debit?



Return to Walk reports - Scotland

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: dav2930, Heffalump777, neurone and 35 guests