Munros: Ben Nevis, Càrn Mòr Dearg

Date walked: 24/09/2013

Time taken: 8 hours

Ascent: 1560m

Well, it had been a long time coming, my last Munro. I did my first one, Buachaille Etive Mor, in 1974 with my late husband. I hadn’t spent much time in the hills until our honeymoon in Snowdonia in 1972 when to my shame I ascended various hills, including Snowdon, in a pair of Woolworth’s plimsolls and Marks and Spencer’s anorak. But I caught the bug and after that we spent all our holidays and weekends climbing and walking, particularly in Snowdonia and the Lakes. We only came to Scotland twice: once we spent a week on Arran and then we had a couple of weeks in Glencoe and the Gorms. The arrival of children in the late 70s and early 80s saw us having more “civilised” holidays at the seaside until, for his eighth birthday, our eldest decided he wanted to go camping. So we borrowed a tent and headed for Langdale where we had a splendid muddy time. On the way back through Elterwater we dropped in to the new timeshare development and bought a week. We had a couple of visits there, carrying our youngest up such hills as Haystacks and Helm Crag, before my husband died in 1989. I continued to take the children to the Lakes but it wasn’t until they were old enough to be left to their own devices that I was able to really take up climbing and hill walking again. When I came up to live in Scotland about 8 years ago I had still only ticked off a handful of Munros but since then I have been steadily working through them. And here we are – the last one. With my daughter, Katie, who, thankfully I did not put off mountains by dragging her up hills during her youth.
Sitting on the summit of Carn Mor Dearg having a celebratory cup of tea we reminisced about some of the hills we had done together. Her first Munro, Ben Na Lap, which we did in a ferocious wind, our expedition to the Fisherfield Six (I don’t care, there will always be 6 in my book!), long walks up Glen Tilt, river crossings, blizzards, sun burn, horrendous midges in Glen Affric, cheese sandwiches (we always eat cheese sandwiches!) and wild camping, not forgetting (how could you?) Torridon, Kintail and Skye. I have had a brilliant time.
I’m not going to bore everyone with a route description except to say that if you use the bridge to cross the Allt a’Mhuillin just below the dam you won’t stub your toe very painfully on a rock crossing higher up. But here a few photos to mark the occasion.
04 (640x480).jpg
Ascending the slopes of Carn Dearg Meadhonach
09 (640x480).jpg
The north face of Ben nevis
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Cloud coming over the arete
17 Final climb (640x480).jpg
Heading for Carn Mor Dearg
18 Celebratory cup of tea (480x640).jpg
21 The arete (640x480).jpg
On the arete
24 (640x480).jpg
Someone being rescued from the zig zags

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Comments: 59

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