Beinn a' Bhathaich Ard from Glen Strathfarrar

Beinn a' Bhathaich Ard from Strathfarrar

Hillwalking route up Beinn a' Bhathaich Ard from Strathfarrar

A short walk along the private road in Glen Strathfarrar then up tracks laid to install recent hydro works get close to the summit of Beinn a' Bhathaich Ard.

Route outline


Beinn a' Bhathaich Ard

Ascent 900m (2950ft)
Distance 16km (10m)
Time 5:30hr
Start/finish Inchmore near Struy
Grid Ref : NH395406
easy hard
easy hard
easy hard
ok fab

Utilising the private road and hydro tracks in Strathfarrar, the base of Beinn a' Bhathaich Ard is easily accessed, from where ATV tracks lead to the summit. With strong legs (or an electric bike), it is possible to cycle to within 2km of the summit !

Route map

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Route description

1. Getting to Glen Strathfarrar

Glen Strathfarrar

Glen Strathfarrar

The A831 heads from Beauly south-west to Cannich. Around 15km down this road is Struy and just before the bridge at the entrance to this village, a sign points to Strathfarrar. There is a short drive along a narrow road to a gatehouse and gate barring vehicular access to the glen. By the house is a rough parking area with room for around 15 cars.

This route doesn't really warrant taking a vehicle past the gate, but if you're also in the area for other hikes, it's worth noting there are access restrictions for vehicles - there are no access restrictions to walkers and cyclists.

From spring to autumn, vehicle access restrictions depend on the day of the week. In winter, access can be gained by Mountaineering Scotland members by prior booking through the organsiation. More information is available on the Mountaineering Scotland website.

2. Beinn a' Bhathaich Ard

Summit of Beinn a' Bhathaich Ard

Summit of Beinn a' Bhathaich Ard

From the gatehouse in Glen Strathfarrar, head for around 1.5km along the road to where a sign marks the access to Culligran power station.

Turn off the road and head up hill on tarmac past the hydro works. The tarmac becomes a track and twists and turns through some delightful woodland.

After climbing a bit, the track comes out of woodland, levels a bit and comes to a vague junction - stay with the main track.

Back into more woodland, the track drops, comes out of the wood and meets with the Allt Dubh-ghlaic. The track follows this river and under a line of pylons to meet with a hydro building at the foot of Neaty Burn. It's fairly steep uphill next, so if you've cycled to this point and if you don't have thighs of steel or are not on an electric bike, this might be a good place to leave your bike !

Behind the hydro building, a newish track heads north uphill. Follow this as it climbs steeply a height of over 200m to end by a dam over the burn around 1.5km further on.

Leaving the track and dam behind, clamber up some heather and onto grassy open hillside. You should be able to see some ATV tracks heading northwards - there are two sets of tracks, you'll need the more easterly one (if you meet with a wooden post, then you're on the wrong track). Follow the ATV tracks over soggy grass covered ground.

As the tracks close in on the Allt Doire Bhuig, they turn north-east and travel all the way to the bealach between Beinn a' Bhathaich Ard and Creag a' Gharbh-Choire at 770m.

At the bealach a path is picked up that climbs the short distance to the summit trig point on Beinn a' Bhathaich Ard. Fine views all around.

3. Return

On summit of Beinn a' Bhathaich Ard looking west

On summit of Beinn a' Bhathaich Ard looking west

The return is by the same route.

If you're out hill-running and provided you've put your brain into 'go' mode and not worried about getting wet and mucky, the run down the ATV tracks is a blast and a joy !

If you've cycled up the track from the hydro building, heck, this is a fast descent in reverse !

4. Personal notes

Weird rocks below Cnoc an Duine

Weird rocks below Cnoc an Duine

The first time I bagged Beinn a' Bhathaich Ard, the track above the hydro building didn't exist, so from the junction , I took the track on the right. This now seems a bit overgrown, but way back then it came to open hillside where faint paths and deer trods were used to progress in a fairly direct route through thick heathery ground and over peat-hags.

On this route and on the way up to Cnoc an Duine there are some weird rock structures to meet.

Route profile »

Maps and GPX downloads »

Other maps :
Explorer 430
GPX file(s) :
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