With a wild feel, but easy to reach, the three big peaks of the Ardverikie Forest are an attractive trio, making a long but relatively manageable three-Munro round. In the neighbouring hills of the Ben Alder Forest the abiding themes are scale and inaccessibility, but Ardverikie bucks this trend, with convenient access from the Laggan road (made even quicker by bike). It's worth noting that 'forest' means here a big tract of land given over to hunting, and that thanks to the deer shooting industry these forests are strikingly tree-less. Despite the poor practises of landowners it remains a beautiful area, however, and the historic stalker's paths that weave through the hills do help smooth your progress.
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StatisticsDistance: 12 miles (19.30 km)
Total ascent: 1,253m
Time: 8 hours (Walking)
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Layby off the A86 near Luiblea (parking for several vehicles), NN432830
A vehicle track leads to the base of the hills, and as far as Lochan na h-Earba a mountain bike would be useful. On the hills it's a mix of clear stalker's paths and muddy hillwalkers' trails, though there's a fair bit of rough and pathless ground too. The worst bogs are found on the final descent.
No real difficulties are encountered in winter, though the short steep climb onto Beinn a' Chlachair needs some care in the snow (consider axe and crampons essential). The extensive summit plateaux of Geal Charn and Beinn a' Chlachair need some close navigation in mist, particularly with snow on the ground.
Weather and Hill Conditions: SAIS: Creag Meagaidh – mwis: Northwest Highlands – Met Office: East Highlands
Sadly there's no public transport link between Newtonmore and Fort William
The Munros (SMC)
OS Explorer 393 (1:25,000), OS Explorer 401 (1:25,000), OS Landranger 34 (1:50,000), OS Landranger 42 (1:50,000) Directory Listings:
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Spean Bridge (0845 22 55 121)
by Dan Bailey UKH