Ben More & Stob Binnein

Sunday May 2nd

Ben More is aptly named - it is a big hill, and along with the conical summit of Stob Binnein, gives a challenging day out.

Deirdre, Roni, Bill and David wandered up the Benmore Glen making rapid progress on the good track.

Don't attempt the direct ascent up Ben More - it's hellish!
Far easier to head for the bealach between the hills.
Tucked behind a boulder by the track we noticed a dead fox. As we were surrounded by lots of lambs we can only surmise the farmer is doing his job looking after his flock.

The cause of death? well it's not the sort of thing you want to investigate, lets presume it didn't die of old age!.
Leaving the track we took to the hillside, really boggy at the start, heading toward the Bealach-eader-dha-Beinn.
(pronounced Byalach-aitar-gha-ben) 'the pass between two hills'
The walk up Stob Binnein from the bealach is a delight, Ben More in the background just holding onto a ribbon of snow on its southern ridge.
We were keeping a weather eye - cloud was moving in from the west, was this going to turn out a navigation excercise?
Roni broke trail for us; although the weather closed in, there is never any difficulty navigating to the top on a ridge!

It was easy walking, the upper slopes were suprisingly wintery for May.
A brief clearing gave us reassurance of the distance to the summit
We didn't have any views from the top, which is a shame as its a grand viewpoint.
Retracing our steps to the bealach again, we now started up the Ben More slopes.
There is a bit of a path here so again navigation is easy.
A heavy snow shower caught us half way up. Where was the forecast sun?
It was a cold place for a sandwich - the summit boulders didn't offer much shelter as the wind seemed to find us no matter where we sat.
Mindful of the big north west corrie just below the summit we descended east of north, lets just say we were rather casual in navigating!
Fortunately the clouds parted and we had one of those moments, 'Where the hell is that....'

Well, it's looking east....not where we should have been going.......
It was with embarrassment that we traversed back to our preferred descent, the girls giving the boys a bit of a hard time as the terrain was not easy.
In places it was 'interesting'.
Redemption came by finding superb linked snow slopes, speed of descent was rapid.
We romped down.
Well the promised sun did come out, and it became increasing hot as we ran down every snow patch on the slope.
This was great!
We had completed our walk in under six hours, which is a very respectable time.

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