Walk: Mull's Ben More (and more)

[Ridge to Ben More from A' Chìoch]

Ben More is the highest peak on the Isle of Mull - and what a peak! Sharp ridges separate at least three great coires, with a scree-girt summit standing proud in the middle of it all. One easier side (to the west) provides a popular "tourist route" to the top, but misses out on the most dramatic profiles of the hill. Instead, experienced walkers can approach by this eventful ridge route taking in Beinn Fhada and A' Chìoch on the intimidating north side of Ben More, saving the other path for the descent. Route finding higher up requires care, but stick to the easiest line and any scrambling is simpler than it looks from Beinn Fhada, at least if the ground is dry. Views are fantastic in clear weather, with the only downsides being the road walk to start (or end) the day and an energy-sapping initial ascent.

[Looking back along Beinn Fhada's north-west ridge]

Name: Walk: Mull's Ben More (and more) ★★★★☆
Length: 14 km / 9 miles
Ascent: 1260 metres
Main summits: Beinn Fhada (702 metres, Graham); A' Chìoch (867 metres); Ben More (966 metres)
Start / finish: Car park on B8035 at Dhiseig, G.R.: NM 494360 ///scratches stroke depths

Route: Car park - leave road at Scarisdale River - foot of Beinn Fhada north-west ridge - Beinn Fhada - A' Chìoch - Ben More - Abhainn Dhiseig - start
Terrain: 2 miles of road walking at start. Pathless ascent to point 563 metres with some awkward and wet ground, then easy ridge with intermittent paths to Beinn Fhada. Pathless to beyond bealach, then clear paths with some easy scrambling over A' Chìoch. Path braids on ascent of Ben More; scrambling is easy on the easiest line - just to the left of the crest on the steepest part. Wide, clear path for descent, though fainter and wetter as it braids low down.
Wildlife today: Seals and cows on coastal road section, sheep and lambs throughout. A golden eagle, a mouse and some midges on A' Chìoch.
Weather today: Dry and mostly sunny lower down with light winds, but a little hill fog. Temperature in high teens at the base; single figures on the summit.

[The start of the descent is on a wide, stony path]


Route credit: Walkhighlands (modified)

[The route starts by following the scenic coast road]

[Lower slopes of Beinn Fhada (right) from the coast road]

[Excellent views help the early tarmac pass quickly]

[Head of Loch na Keal from the tough ascent of Beinn Fhada]

[Beinn a' Ghraig from Beinn Fhada's ridge]

[Along the ridge to Beinn Fhada]

[Early ridge walking has great views of Ben More]

[Beinn Fhada - summit view]

[Looking into Mull's wild interior from the summit of Beinn Fhada]

[Glen Clachaig from the ascent of A' Chìoch]

[A' Chìoch looks intimidating from below, but any scrambling is straightforward]

[Looking back from A' Chìoch]

[Golden eagle soaring above the ridge]

[Ben's More's northern coire]

[The way ahead to Ben More]

[Looking back to the descent off A' Chìoch]

[Ascending Ben More is easier than it looks if the best line is taken]

[View back down the north ridge of Ben More]

[Ben More summit]

[Partial views from the top of Ben More!]

[Descending Ben More is on a very wide path at first, with frequent cairns]

[Approaching the Abhainn Dhiseig on descent]

[Paths further down are fainter, and wet in places]

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