M211 | 953 m. | 3127 ft.
Translation: Monk Hill
Pronuncation: byn vanach

30 May 2014 was Frank’s 48th birthday and the tour planning we had done had a singular present in store for him: The solitary Munro hidden way back in Gleann Ach’Inns Challein where the Allt Kinglass rules and the sheep-hating poet Duncan Mac Intyre lived at Ais an t-Sithean: Beinn Mhanach.

But first we needed to get there. We parked the car at the large lay-by on the A82 where access to Auch Glen and Auch Farm is possible by means of a paved private road. After having got our act together we set off towards Auch Farm, crossed the West Highland Way and followed the track below the (probably) second most famous railway viaduct in Scotland.

The landrover track beside the wide Allt Kinglass allowed for easy progress and we made good headway on this very sunny day. Frank and I crossed the Allt Kinglass dryshod at several fords before we reached Ais an t-Sithean which nowadays boasts a few sheep fanks, a more or less derelict hut and a nice collection of ice age drumlins. Not extremely romantic but in the sunshine the spot was inviting enough. At a T-junction in the landrover track we turned right (east) and continued towards the bealach leading to Loch Lyon. Once the bealach was reached we took a short break sitting in the sunshine beside the tumbling burn coming down from the bealach between Beinn a Chuirn and Beinn Mhanach 450 metres further up.

Then we started to climb the very steep hillside towards this bealach following a more or less distinct path that unrelentingly winds its way beside the burn and over steep grass slopes towards the hill tops. After some considerable effort we reached the bealach and continued over easy grass slopes towards the plateau-ish summit of Beinn Mhanach. At the cairn we rested for a while in the bright sunshine enjoying the great views! Then – with nothing better to do but shopping for food in Fort William and driving to our cottage in Laggan – we returned to the A 82 by the way of ascent. The hike back was again very scenic and relaxing. The Allt Kinglass provided some very welcome refreshment on the way back. It was a warm day indeed!

After about six hours we were back at our car, heading for Laggan and a very small birthday party of two in our beautiful cottage. A perfect but short day out in the hills. This hike was the last one in the Bridge of Orchy Five, the other four of which we had compleated many years ago. A nice birthday hike for Frank!

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Total distance: 21179 m
Max elevation: 955 m
Min elevation: 194 m
Total climbing: 859 m
Total descent: -849 m
Total time: 06:26:30

Description The twin rounded summits of Beinn Mhanach and its slightly lower Top, Beinn a' Chuirn, lie just northwest of the head of Loch Lyon. They are hidden from most viewpoints behind their higher neighbours, but there is a view of them from the A82 road between Tyndrum and Bridge of Orchy. Beinn Mhanach is for the most part a grassy hill, steep on its south side, but craggier on the remote and seldom visited north face. Any route to this hill is quite long. One possibility is to start from the A82 road near Auch. Walk down the private road under the arches of the West Highland Railway and continue up the Auch Gleann by the right of way leading to Glen Lyon as far as the watershed just west of Loch Lyon. From there climb north up steep grassy slopes to the summit of Beinn Mhanach. An alternative route starts from Achallader Farm near Loch Tulla. From there go up Coire Achaladair to the col at its head and make a slightly descending traverse north east to the col between Beinn a' Chuirn and Beinn Achaladair. Finally climb east south east directly to Beinn Mhanach.