Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Ben Hiant Walk

OS Map: 1:25,000 Explorer Map 390 Ardnamurchan

Start Grid Reference: NM 555 629

Walk distance:  5 miles

Date walked: 1st June 2012

Time: 4 hours approximately

Route:  Taken from Walks - Mallaig and Ardnamurchan (publ. Hallewell - www.pocketwalks.com) available from Amazon.  

View Ben Hiant Walk in a larger map

This is the last of the walks I'm blogging from our stay at Mingarry Lodges in Scotland at the end of May.  It is quite a hard walk and I would advise that it should only be undertaken in good weather conditions.  I think it is also a good idea to take a compass or GPS with you, I found my GPS particularly useful.  Although hard, it is an incredible walk and from the summit you have magnificent views from the inner hebrides to Loch Sunart.

Although the walk starts by following a vehicle track, very soon you reach the open hillside with red deer up on the ridge.

Red Deer on the ridge

 There are magnificent views over Loch Sunart throughout the walk.

Loch Sunart
The ascent in this direction is hard work with much of it on rough terrain, where sheep tracks provide the easiest walking.  The next two photos show views from the summit.

Panorama from the summit 
The path down is on the other side of the hill from the ridge walk you take to the summit from where it is easily visible

The descent path seen from the summit of Ben Hiant
The view of the summit on the way down is completely different to the ascent.  It looks much more foreboding.
The summit of Ben Hiant during the descent.
Arriving at the road, there is another car park, which could be used as an alternative.  An alternative route to climb Ben Hiant would be to  simply use the descent path to go up as well as down.  It is one we did several years ago when our children were with us.  The route we took today is much more rewarding, although it unfortunately it had to end with a walk along the road back to where we left the car.

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