UKH

/ Quickest descent route from Ben Nevis North Face

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O'Donopoo - on 05 Oct 2018

Hi,

With the exception of the painfully dull Tourist track, what's the fastest route to descend the Ben via? We'll be climbing around the North face

Cheers

yesbutnobutyesbut - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to O'Donopoo:

Depends where you want to end up.

Dave Kerr - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to O'Donopoo:

As above, we'd need to know where you were going to advise you!

 

O'Donopoo - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to O'Donopoo:

Going back to Fort William , just wondering if there's another route which cuts out most of it as my friend has a particular aversion to it for some reason

malky_c - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to O'Donopoo:

Someone's bound to post it if I don't...

https://www.ukhillwalking.com/images/dbpage.php?id=268860

Dave Kerr - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to O'Donopoo:

If you're walking all the way Fort Bill then the tourist route is probably quickest. If you're really in a rush cut out the upper zigzags by going straight down the Red Burn. Or come down the tourist route to the lochan then cut straight across to the CIC path and hitch back to the fort from Torlundy.

O'Donopoo - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to malky_c:

It won't open on my laptop but is it that photo of the chap on the cornice by any chance? Every time I look at that I get butterflies like I've just driven over a bridge

O'Donopoo - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to Dave Kerr:

That's what I thought. Hadn't thought about nipping down the Burn, the zigzags are the biits he hates so sounds like a good bet

Dave Kerr - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to O'Donopoo:

It's pretty obvious and the top bit is the line taken by everyone in the Ben Race.

http://www.scottishhillracing.co.uk/Graphics/Maps/RA-0098-main.jpg

Post edited at 17:55
Trangia on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to malky_c:

> Someone's bound to post it if I don't...

Well it's obvious what he is doing wrong.

He isn't wearing his helmet!

Red Rover - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to Dave Kerr:

I thought the red burn was dangerous or is that just in winter?

Mal Grey - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to Trangia:

> Well it's obvious what he is doing wrong.

> He isn't wearing his helmet!

Its OK, he'll have time to put it on before he hits the bottom.

Gordon Stainforth - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to O'Donopoo:

It's just amazing/sad that no one has answered your question. I'm an old fart of nearly 70 yrs old, and know that you have basically two choices (apart from the Tourist Route): No 4 Gully, or down the head of Coire Leis. 

Eric9Points - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to Red Rover:

> I thought the red burn was dangerous or is that just in winter?


People have been avalanched going down the Red Burn but I wouldn't say it was particularly dangerous. It's a common way of getting back to the North face car park or the distillery.

GrahamD - on 05 Oct 2018
In reply to O'Donopoo:

Imo the quickest way from the summit to Fort William is the tourist track which you can come down pretty quickly.

Dave Kerr - on 06 Oct 2018
In reply to Red Rover:

> I thought the red burn was dangerous or is that just in winter?

No more so than much of the rest of the hill.

steelbru - on 06 Oct 2018
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

> It's just amazing/sad that no one has answered your question. I'm an old fart of nearly 70 yrs old, and know that you have basically two choices (apart from the Tourist Route): No 4 Gully, or down the head of Coire Leis. 

That answer would be useful if asking quickest way back to CIC hut or north face carpark. But for Fort William you would recommend going down to head of Coire Leis, surely not ????

petestack - on 06 Oct 2018
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

> know that you have basically two choices (apart from the Tourist Route): No 4 Gully, or down the head of Coire Leis.

Since it's posted without further qualification in 'Hilltalk', has anyone actually asked if this is summer or winter?

 

O'Donopoo - on 07 Oct 2018
In reply to petestack:

Good point, sorry about that. Was thinking both, we've got a summer and a winter trip planned. Red Burn seems like a good idea in summer but less so in winter and Number 4 Gully at grade I seems like it'd be alright in descent in good conditions

sg - on 07 Oct 2018
In reply to O'Donopoo:

I'm no FW local expert but this is surely a bit of a daft discussion. If you want the quickest way back to FW direct from the summit (as requested) then it's obviously the tourist path and your mate should get over it - otherwise generations of fell runners have all been getting it hopelessly wrong. If you're walking or scrambling and are happy with a circuitous route (not the quickest) then there's a plethora of options, some of which take in other peaks or else just detours down to the Allt a Mhuillin. The red burn is just a bumslide alternative to the zigzags upper part of the tourist track in the right winter conditions but in summer not a particularly pleasant or speedy alternative, I'd have thought.

Post edited at 20:31
Webster - on 08 Oct 2018
In reply to Red Rover:

in summer your not actually descending down the burn, or even close to it. there is a very obvious 'path' that leads direct down cutting off the zig zags, but is a good 20m or so away from the gully for most of its length. actually going down the burn would be quite dangerous!

in winter under good snow it makes an excelent bum slide and you can get from the summit to the half way lochain in about 10-15 mins if you wish! the danger comes in that the burn ends very abruptly in quite a large waterfall where the main path crosses it just above the lochain. there have been a number of serious accidents here over the years i believe. also in late season the snow line may be broken in places, with other smaller waterfalls to negotiate which can also cause grief.

Sean Kelly - on 08 Oct 2018
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

> It's just amazing/sad that no one has answered your question. I'm an old fart of nearly 70 yrs old, and know that you have basically two choices (apart from the Tourist Route): No 4 Gully, or down the head of Coire Leis. 


Going down via Coire Leis is very tricky without a rope. I'm assuming Gordon you mean via the abseil posts that I think are no longer there. Often slippy and wet outside the winter season.

Sean

Dave Kerr - on 08 Oct 2018
In reply to Sean Kelly:

> Going down via Coire Leis is very tricky without a rope. I'm assuming Gordon you mean via the abseil posts that I think are no longer there. Often slippy and wet outside the winter season.

> Sean

I don't think the Coire Leis descent is much used these days.

Dave Kerr - on 08 Oct 2018
In reply to O'Donopoo:

Here's the actual answer:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ysBMpIqfW0

teh_mark on 08 Oct 2018
In reply to Dave Kerr:

Bit expensive if you do it every week though.


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