Ben Vane - espresso Munro!

Munros: Ben Vane

Date walked: 23/11/2020

Time taken: 4 hours

As a newbie I have been looking for 'easier' Munros and decided foolishly to rank them by height. Ben Vane is the smallest by this measure so I thought it would be easier than my only other conquests (Ben Lomond and Ben Chonzie). I now know this was a mistake. :shock:

My first attempt was on Monday and the omens were against me. I managed to get lost twice in the first 3 miles, misunderstanding the 'gated tarmac road' and walking round a field looking for a bridge over the railway (which is 200m further along the A82) and then looking at the wrong photo and turning left at Corriegrogan, two embarrassingly simple mistakes. I'm hoping this is a rite of passage :o

When I got to the 'steps' leading to the first plateau I met a walker coming down who assured me it was only 50 mins to the top. He must have been superhuman, because after 50 minutes I was around what I now know to be halfway. I toiled on, passing some fairly scary drops and doing my first bit of what I believe is called 'scrambling' and reached the first of the 3 final false summits. The weather had really closed in, the wind was fierce and the rain and sleet closed in around the next bit of scrambling. My legs had gone and my bottle crashed so I surrendered and the rain and sleet followed me down the mountain as a walk of shame.

Back on the ground the weather passed and the peaks didn't look so terrifying, and I resolved to return. On getting home I estimated I got to about 50m from the summit so I returned three days later when the weather was forecast as clear.

This time I knew the route and had eaten more sensibly and I got back to my point of surrender quite quickly with just the final two false summits to navigate, though I still struggled with the scrambling, something I hope will recede as I gain experience. There were a few walkers today and I resolved to follow no matter what, making it to the frozen loch an at the summit and an amazing view.

Definitely an espresso Munro; no froth or sugar, just concentrated mountain!

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Activity: Hill Bagger
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