Ben Nevis and Kinlochleven

I got back last night from the Falkirk Community Trust CIC Hut trip with John, Andrew, Gary, Linda and Steven. We headed up to Ben Nevis on Wednesday and in the afternoon climbed a soggy upper North Trident Buttress section of Moonlight Gully. The lower section was broken, so we avoided it by a rising traverse line from the left. We then climbed the upper section in two long pitches to the ridge above Number 5 Gully and descended back down by abseil and down climb before traversing out to Coire na Ciste along the ramp.

The team below the upper section of Moonlight Gully.

On Thursday we climbed Tower Ridge, with the difficulties mostly on rock, but with sugary snow on the easier angled sections and firmer snow above Tower Gap. We didn’t put crampons on, but an axe was required. The snow will firm up again with colder temperatures over the weekend. On Friday with a windier wetter forecast we decided to head down and had a good couple of hours climbing in The Ice Factor at Kinlochleven.

Linda enjoying The Ice Factor.

Mamores

Ivor, Nettle and I had a good day in the Mamores yesterday. Starting from Kinlochleven we walked via Loch Eilde Mor and up Sgurr Eilde Mor before dropping down it’s West ridge to head out to and up Binnein Beag. We then climbed the North-East ridge of Binnein Mor taking in some easy scrambling in the upper narrow section before descending over it’s South Top and Sgor Eilde Beag.

Ivor and Nettle on the North-East Ridge of Binnein Mor.

A pleasant route with a lot of ascent and some stiff climbs linked by good stalker’s paths. The weather was pretty much as forecast with rain holding off until late afternoon and a brief sleet shower on Binnein Mor. The hills are currently very wet with streams up.

Binnein Mor and Binnein Beag

I was out in the Mamores yesterday with a Falkirk High Tops Team of Cath, Marian, Sandra and Tom. I wasn’t sure about the situation with driving up to Mamore Lodge, so we walked up from Kinnlochleven. With a strongish Southerly wind forecast we headed up Sgor Eilde Beag first in order to have the wind at our backs on the higher ground. This worked well and gave an excellent high level ridge along to the summit of Binnein Mor.

Tom and Marian scrambling down the North-East Ridge of Binnein Mor

Tom and Marian scrambling down the North-East Ridge of Binnein Mor

We then scrambled down it’s North-East ridge, which is craggy in places and would require considerable care in descent if the quartzite was wet. We then headed up Binnein Beag, which stands on it’s own and hence gives superb views.

Tom, Cath, Marian and Sandra on the summit of Binnein Beag with Ben Nevis behind

Tom, Cath, Marian and Sandra on the summit of Binnein Beag with Ben Nevis behind

After returning to the bealach we used the very good stalkers path via Coire an Lochain to return to Kinlochleven. A long day on quiet hills, with some strong winds at times, but with excellent views and the sound of stags bellowing for company.

Sgurr Eide Mor and Sgurr Eilde Beag with Buachaille Etive Mor and The Blackmount behind

Sgurr Eilde Mor and Sgurr Eilde Beag with Buachaille Etive Mor and The Blackmount behind