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Ben Nevis & Carn Mor Dearg
Quick Facts
This is the summed total of all the climbing within a route and is a good indicator of the strenuousness of a route.
Total Ascent
1778 m

An estimate of the time taken based on a derivation of Naismiths rules. Our calculation is based on the horizontal and ascent components of a climb, we do not make a reduction for descent.

Registered users can customise these walking times by specifying their own walking and ascending speeds. They can also add a fixed time period for stoppages.

Route Time
6.5 hrs
The horizontal distance of the route.
Route Distance
16.68 km

The UK is covered by 204 Ordnance Survey Landranger 1:50,000 scale maps. Maps numbered 1 to 86 cover Scotland but for the highest mountains (Munros) only 23 maps are required. The name given roughly describes the area covered by the map.

You can click on the map name to purchase the map for £6.29 including postage which is one of the cheapest prices we have found.

OS Landranger Maps Required
  41   Ben Nevis, Fort William & Glen Coe
Only £6.29  (£13.49 Laminated) from  

A brief summary of this route.

Our summary will always contain one of easy, moderate or hard to indicate the severity of the route.

This is a more difficult ascent with some exposure and scrambling, but it avoids most of the crowds and gives a taste of real mountaineering. Navigate with care, this is a dangerous mountain for the unwary.

Here we provide the nearest town to the start of the route where you will find basic services.

We then give directions from that location to the route start. Your approach route may differ.

 Travel Information

Head to: Fort William

From Fort William (A82), at the Nevis Bridge roundabout, follow signs to Glen Nevis. Park by the Glen Nevis Youth Hostel.

Route Waypoint Map

The total ascent is 1,778 metres. Allow 6.5 hours to complete this 16.68 km route.

The hillphones service can inform you of stalking activities in the area.

Usually the shortest way to climb the mountain, making best use of tracks and paths to gain altitude. Route navigation requires map reading skills and an ability to navigate with a compass.

The information given here will enable you to annotate your map and plan your route. We do not give anecdotal descriptions on where to find the paths, worn by the feet of previous mountaineers.

Where the access routes are few or the ridge is narrow, paths are generally obvious. On open ground, following paths without using your compass may get you lost in poor visibility.

 Route Information
Waypoint Detail
  Start from Parking near Glen Nevis Youth Hostel
  NN12747175 Distance
30 m
Cross river and ascend ENE to join main path
NN13327202 Distance
0.66 km
175 m
Ascend SE on path
NN14007178 Distance
1.00 km
372 m
Continue NE on path to junction above lochan
NN14737240 Distance
1.03 km
600 m
Turn Left and head NNW
NN15097320 Distance
0.96 km
614 m
Follow path SE around Ben Nevis into Coire Leis
NN16167276 Distance
1.22 km
560 m
Cross Allt a' Mhuilinn and ascend slopes of Carn-Dearg Meadhonach
NN16867334 Distance
0.97 km
920 m
Continue ascending NE to reach the ridge
NN17307320 Distance
0.57 km
1060 m
Ascend SSE to Carn-Dearg Meadhonach
NN17597267 Distance
0.50 km
1179 m
Continue SSE to summit of Carn Mor Dearg
NN17757217 Distance
0.55 km
1220 m
Descend S onto exposed narrow rocky ridge = Arete
NN17667145 Distance
0.75 km
1075 m
Follow Arete SW to reach the south ridge of Ben Nevis
NN17207103 Distance
1.14 km
1130 m
Continue WSW around corrie rim
NN17047098 Distance
0.17 km
1094 m
Ascend NW to summit of Ben Nevis
NN16697127 Distance
0.46 km
1344 m
Bear SSW to reach ruins (Do not navigate direct to descent path)
NN16667118 Distance
0.08 km
1340 m
Turn WNW and descend onto boulder strewn slopes (Beware steep gully to south)
NN15707139 Distance
0.97 km
1190 m
Descend WNW down winding path
NN14707151 Distance
2.02 km
750 m
Continue N to rejoin ascent path
  NN12747175 Distance
3.62 km
30 m

A selection of weather forecasts local to this route.

West Highlands
by MWIS (PDF format)
West Highlands
by Met Office
Ben Nevis
by Metcheck
Images of Ben Nevis & Carn Mor Dearg
Route Area Map
Legend  Munro  Corbett  Graham  English/Welsh Top  Accommodation

A selection of local accommodation options who advertise with Munromagic.com.

 Where to Stay
We currently have no
sponsored accommodation listings for this area.

Rating & Reviews

 Rating & Reviews
 from 25 votes
Click Stars to Vote
Your Rating
Written by Gary Tate on 11 Sep 2012:
Started from the North Face car park. Upto the CMD and then ascended the North Face Ledge Route to BN summit. Great route and easier than thought. Low cloud base, snow and rain on top, but found way to CMD. Look for upright poles to point way down boulder field. Low cloud, heavy rain and winds along the descent of the arete, but cleared around 900 m. Great day 8.5 hrs Big thanks to Steve and Martin.
Written by Rik Gordon on 11 Apr 2011:
Great route, if looking for solitude in the Nevis region then this is it! I spoke to three small groups between leaving the "Tourist Route" at the halfway Lochan and hitting the summit of Ben Nevis.
Written by Steven Budd on 26 Jul 2010:
Excellent route although got lost at the mountain hut so had to climb 900ft up the face of CMD to get to the ridge. definately the best route to climb Ben Nevis. climbed on 23 july 2010. www.8summits.co.uk
Written by Brian Sutherland on 25 Jun 2010:
Everything was perfect untill i reached the summit of the Ben, which was heaving (100+) with tourists/kids and litter. This is the only route worth taken, classic views and the route can be as easy or hard as you choose. Climbed 19/06/10
Written by Mike Watson on 29 Dec 2009:
3rd ascent. 1st in winter and in fantastic conditions, reminded me of the alps.
Disclaimer. The details provided above are an aid to planning an expedition, but all distances, altitudes and bearings must be considered approximate. You must navigate with the appropriate map, a compass, your navigation skills and common sense, MunroMagic.com accept no responsibility for your interpretation of our route information.
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