Ben Nevis Latitude: 56.7969° N Longitude: 5.0036° W
Ben nevis is close to the end of the West Highland Way at the foot of Ben Nevis, Britain's highest mountain. The summit, at 1,344 metres (4,409 ft) above sea level
The Nevis Range is one of the premier visitor attractions within the Highlands, offering visitors a truly unique experience no matter what time of the year you visit, Situated in the shadow of Ben Nevis, the gondola ride has a truly stunning backdrop with some of the most spectacular views that you will witness throughout the Highlands!! boasting the longest and most challenging ski runs in the UK there is enough terrain to keep all standards of skier happy.
There are two ski centres – both very different in character, though small by European comparisons, they offer skiing for all standards from beginner to expert. Scotland is a great place to learn to ski and both centres have facilities for complete beginners or those who just want to brush up on their skills You can hire skis or a board and take lessons with our friendly English-speaking instructors.
The Nevis Range is the newest ski resort in Scotland, with a wide range of slopes for all abilities and the expanse of the Back Corries, it’s truly a modern resort by contrast, Glencoe is the oldest ski area in Scotland, but it boasts some really good varied terrain, both resorts offer snowboard hire but be early on weekends to avoid queues.
If it's your first time on a snowboard or you need a refresher course you'll be in safe hands, instructors are all professional BASI trained. BASP-trained teams of patrollers are always on hand with free medical attention at both resorts.
Conditions in the Scottish mountains can vary considerably - and the wind chill can make 0c feel like – 8c so always be prepared and consider your layering and outerwear carefully.
Though we're not that high up, the ski centres and the surrounding mountains have proper ‘winter weather’, so, conditions aren’t always predictable and you have to be prepared for anything.
The downside of this unpredictable weather is that you sometimes can’t ski for a day or two. The upside is that we usually get snow well into April. You can find real winter skiing conditions here when it is spring everywhere else, other activites you can also enjoy, walking, horse riding, ski-mountaineering equipment lets you travel up hills, along flat plateaux and down the steepest slopes, to climb up hills, the heel binding is released to allow the boot to hinge at the toe, then gripping skins are stuck to the bases of the skis to provide traction, once you master the knack of a rhythmical gliding walk, uphill travel becomes relatively easy, before you know it, you’re at the summit! Then remove the skins and fix the heels down – this turns your skis into modern Alpine downhill skis ready for the thrill of the descent!
Snow regularly covers the hills down to very low altitudes in Lochaber but often with little warning! If there is a good cover down to the road you can traverse whole ranges of hills without ever taking your skis off.
There are some very high access points that makes it easy to reach the snowline, if snow is restricted to the tops the two local ski areas, Glencoe and Nevis Range, give easy access to the summits Scottish winter climbing is a unique combination of climbing style, variable conditions, weather and spectacular scenery – all within reach of a warm hotel in town! Snow and ice climbing is very demanding on your skill, stamina and equipment. But the rewards are high.
Scottish winter climbing is pure adventure! From classic gullies, snowed-up rock climbs to water-ice and thin face snow-ice climbs or a mixed climb, Steep snow slopes lead up to all winter climbs, these require good judgement of the avalanche risk. Snow conditions are reported daily through the Scottish Avalanche Information Service but it’s essential to constantly monitor the weather and stability of the snow, you need to navigate precisely to descend safely after your climb.
The sometimes harsh and very changeable winter weather can easily catch out even the most experienced climbers – but it is also what makes our unique climbing conditions! At the start of the winter, with a covering of snow and a good freeze, mixed climbs in Glencoe and the Grey Corries are the best options. as the freeze continues, watercourses and low-level streams freeze up – creating great water-ice climbs.
The January storms bring frequent thaw-and-freeze cycles that leave snow in the gullies and on the faces, transforming them into perfect snow-ice climbs.
February could be the most reliable month to ensure a good cover of snow and ice and a good range of possible climbs. Late in the season, after all the lower hills have thawed out, Ben Nevis comes into its own. Its unique thin-face-ice climbs are known around the world as some the best climbs anywhere!
BEN NEVIS, (Gaelic for ‘Mountain of Heaven’) It is 4,406 ft high, and is the highest mountain in the British Isles, set at the base in Fort William, the nearest town, on the southern edge of the Great Glen Offering Bed and Breakfast accommodation making Fort William a good starting point to explore.
From one side Ben Nevis slopes gently to near sea level, Even on this fairly easy route the climber is strongly advised not to make the ascent in winter and or in bad conditions, as the conditions can become uncertain from the sea with its warm gulf stream being in line with the summit of the mountain.
There are two Munros listed in the Munros Table both of which are called Càrn Dearg ("red hill").
The higher of these, at 4,006ft, is situated to the northwest.
The other Càrn Dearg 1,020m it juts out into Glen Nevis on the mountain's south western side.
A lower hill, Meall an t-Suidhe 2,333ft, is located further west, forming a saddle with Ben Nevis which contains a small loch Lochan Meall an t-Suidhe,a popular tourist path from Glen Nevis skirts the side of this hill before ascending Ben Nevis' broad western flank. There is a bridle track from Achintee in Glen Nevis, this route up and down and can take up to eight hours.
The summit, which is the collapsed dome of an ancient volcano features the ruins of a Observatory it was established on the summit in October 1883. but was abandoned in 1904. The meteorological data collected during this period are still important for understanding Scottish mountain weather today.
To the north east face of Ben Nevis is the most extensive cliff in UK The upper section is rough and very stony; it is often snow covered and lose the line of the path easily leading onto dangerous terrain - navigational skills are needed. as with any mountain walk.
Any ascent when snow is lying on the path requires winter equipment and skills always prepare, research and communicate with the appropriate agencies before any activities especially when attempting any mountain, hill or Munro climbing it could save your life and that of others.
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