Ben Nevis, Carn Mor Dearg, the Aonachs and the Grey Corries

Ben Nevis is the highest mountain in the British Isles and the main 'tourist path' and summit can get incredibly busy. Beyond this lie much quieter and more peaceful mountains, with dramatic views and some entertaining hiking. Ben Nevis's east shoulder gains the stunning Carn Mor Dearg arete which in turn leads to more Lochaber 4000ers (the name given to the high peaks in this area), to the 'Grey Corries' and beyond.

Main route summary

The popular 'tourist path' up Ben Nevis travels up the mountain's benign western bulk. It's only once approaching the summit that a sense of Ben Nevis's grandeur is gained. Beyond Ben Nevis, the stunning Carn Mor Dearg Arete leads to Carn Mor Dearg and though not particularly difficult, requires some concentration and shouldn't be attempted by inexperienced hillwalkers, especially in wet or windy conditions.

To the east, the Aonach Mor and Aonach Beag (often just referred to as 'the Aonachs') form a long plateau above craggy slopes. Some effort is needed up a very steep, loose path to reach the crest.

Further on, the Grey Corries range is a superb crest of bouldery quartzite summits, and apart from the last, Stob Ban, all on a continuous high-level ridge.

Munros Ben Nevis (1344m, Munro 1)
Carn Mor Dearg (1220m Munro 9)
Aonach Mor (1221m, Munro 8)
Aonach Beag (1234m, Munro 7)
Sgurr Choinnich Mor (1094m, Munro 52)
Stob Coire an Laoigh (1116m, Munro 37)
Stob Choire Claurigh (1177m, Munro 15)
Stob Ban (977m, Munro 177)
Ascent 3200m (10,500ft)
Distance       32km (20m)
Time walk : 13:20hr*, run : 8hr
*Naismith's rule : 4km/h distance + 600m/h ascent

Start   Glen Nevis SYHA
(grid ref : NN128718)

Finish   Corriechoille
(grid ref : NH253794)


Which map to choose ?
easy difficult
easy testing
stroll long day
ok stunning
Ben Nevis : 'mountain of venom/with head in clouds'
Carn Mor Dearg : 'big red cairn'
Aonach Mor : 'big ridge'
Aonach Beag : 'little ridge'
Sgurr Choinnich Mor : 'big mossy peak'
Stob Coire an Laoigh : 'peak of corrie of the calf'
Stob Choire Claurigh : 'peak of the brawling corrie'
Stob Ban : 'white peak'

Route detail & map »

Photos of route »

Alternative routes »

Other hill routes nearby »

Accommodation & food »

Forecasts & other useful info »

Guided days on these mountains »


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