1221 m. |
Translation: Big hill
Pronuncation: oenach more
2005 For the third year in row we embarked on a walk starting in Glen Nevis. From the car park we walked to the Steall ruin and to the bridge over the Allt Coire Giubhsachan. From there we followed the path up the south-west ridge of Sgurr a’Bhuic. Climbing steadily we gained height quickly. Then we lost the path.
We were on the south-westerly side of the ridge and had to climb very steep grass slopes to reach the final steepening of the south-west ridge of Sgurr a’Bhuic 150 m below the summit. The cairn of this fine hill is perched at the edge of a long vertical drop. There were new and interesting angles on Ben Nevis to be seen from there. Before continuing onward to Stob Coire Bhealaich we took a break to eat a snack and to take in the views of the Grey Corries and Sgurr Choinnich Mor. On the ridge leading to the summit of Stob Coire Bhealaich the east face of Aonach Beag dominated the view ahead. There still were some cornices left and there was still plenty of snow in the gullies and even on the plateau.
From Stob Coire Bhealaich we continued on the path and climbed the broad south-east shoulder of Aonach Beag. It was quite windy on the plateau so we did not stay at the cairn for long. The descent to the bealach between the small ridge and the big ridge did not take long. From the col we followed the path to the massive cairn of Aonach Beag where we paused for a while. As forecast, the wind picked up and the air got considerably colder. Soon conditions became quite uncomfortable on the plateau and we headed for the west ridge of Aonach Mor. The path on this ridge is sandy, gravelly and very steep. Real fun and exciting. Once at the bealach under Carn Mor Dearg we took the path on the right-hand side of the Allt Coire Giubhsachan which – over two steps in the floor of the glen – leads all the way down to the Steall ruin in Glen Nevis. The big slabs of rock very evident both in the slopes below the CMD and Ben Nevis and in the bed of the stream were interesting and impressive. Soon we reached the flat terrain of upper Glen Nevis and then strolled back along the path beside the gorge.
A very entertaining walk with exciting views and a mix of stony, sandy, grassy and snowy terrains. A very good day in Scotland!
2001 Walking Scottish hills during the times of the 2001 Foot and Mouth Disease outbreak meant accepting compromises. Not only was Glen Nevis closed, so that the hill needed to be approached from the north but also did I have to use the gondola to get to the Snow Goose Restaurant and above the 2000 ft contour. So after stepping out of the cabin into the harsh wind and after having put on my rainproofs I set out and climbed the uniformly steep slope to the west of Corrie an t-Sneachda until – with some effort – I reached the rim of the plateau and the top of the last ski-tow. With but a few walkers on the hill the day promised to be entertaining. Caught a few unimpeded views of the summit of Ben Nevis which was temporarily outside the clouds. Also, good views of Carn Mor Dearg. However, the weather forecast had “promised” showers and gusty winds and here they came from the west. The driving snow and ice crystals hurt my eyes so I put on my snow goggles. I continued to the summit of Aonach Mor. There I paused for a minute or two and thought about continuing to Aonach Beag a mile further along the plateau. But the weather did not get any better and I took the safe and sensible decision of calling it a day. I spent another half hour on the plateau of Aonach Mor and looked down into the corries, to the Grey Corries range and to Carn Mor Dearg. The Grey Corries looked interesting indeed. Soon I walked back down into Corrie an t-Sneachda and took the gondola to the glen and my car. Magnificent hill(s) the Aonachs – but all those ski tows!!
Description The Aonachs form a high ridge several kilometres long lying to the east of Ben Nevis and Carn Mor Dearg. The south end of this ridge rises from Glen Nevis over the peak of Sgurr a'Bhuic to the great dome of Aonach Beag. To its north there is a high col, beyond which the long level ridge of Aonach Mor continues to the wide north-facing corrie which is the site of a major downhill skiing development, with ski tows and lifts. The east and west sides of the Aonach Beag - Aonach Mor ridge are continuously steep and craggy, with several fine corries.Ignoring the gondola which can take one half way up Aonach Mor in a few minutes, the best approach to these mountains is from the end of the public road in Glen Nevis. Follow the path through the splendid Nevis gorge and on along the north side of the Water of Nevis to the ruins of Steall. From there climb north-east up a broad ridge to Sgurr a' Bhuic and continue over Stob Coire Bhealaich to Aonach Beag. Descend to the col and continue north up the gradually rising slope to Aonach Mor.The quickest descent is to continue north along the level ridge and down the skiers' corrie to the top of the gondola and ride down to the forest, but this is a long way from Glen Nevis. To return to the starting point, go south from Aonach Mor for 1 kilometre, then descend east down a steep ill-defined spur to the col at the head of Coire Giubhsachan. Go down this corrie to the Steall ruins and the path down Glen Nevis.