Ben Nevis (Munro No. 1 - 1343 m/4409 ft) - Coire na Ciste (~ 700 m) - Early Aug. 2011 (no summit attempt made)
- North Face car park, Torlundry >
- Alt a' Mhuilinn path >
- Coire na Ciste >
- Decend back to starting point
Setting off from the North Face car park.
Shortly, the track forks right for the Atl a' Mhuilinn route to the North Face.
Up through the trees - the path ahead is clearly sign posted.
Up a bit more.
... and up a bit farther through more trees.
Into the mist - a flat(ish) portion of the woodland approach.
A break ahead in the trees and another bench.
Not sure what this is - stood watching it moving for a while.
The above 'machine' may have something to do with the 'water feature' which lies a few metres to its left (and may part of the Hydro-electric installation).
Clearing the trees - first view of Meall an t-Suidhe. I didn't have a watch on, but it felt about 30 - 40 mins. into the walk.
Turning towards The Ben. Mist/cloud ahead.
The North Face of Ben Nevis (from afar) comes briefly into view.
Looking towards the Carn Mor Dearg arête, sadly in cloud.
Beginning to walk along-side the North Face.
The CIC hut lies just ahead.
The CIC hut and the adjacent North Face - with Tower Ridge just visible.
That which I went to see in particular: the Coire na Ciste (complete with snow).
The Douglas Boulder at the foot of Tower Ridge.
View back down the Alt a' Mhuilinn [route] at approx. 700 m.
Carn Dearg buttress on the right-hand side of Coire na Ciste.
View back to the North Face while 'coming off'.
View forward while 'coming off'.
Notes: Should have been on Skye, but found myself with some walking time on my hands. A North Face visit had been something I'd wanted to do for a while, with no intention of striking for the summit - a reconnoitre of No. 3 and No. 4 gully (with a view to a possible future [winter] climb) and to have a peek at the end of Coire Leis to see how the summit climb looks up the headwall on the Ben side of the CMD arête (not done).
Set off around 7.45 am. The section of the walk through Chapman's wood is steeper, in places, than it looks from the photos, but is not prolonged. Thereafter, it's an easy walk up to the CIC hut on a gentle gradient (a total round trip distance of approx. 8 miles [estimated off the OS map]). Got back to the car park at 12.25 pm (with approx 20 mins. spent around the CIC hut).
Glad I turned for the car park when I did as it was getting pretty hot and the day turned out to be a complete scorcher. Sat back in the camp site (under a 'burning' sun for a while) and watched walkers on the Tourist Track wondering how many might 'pass-out' in the heat. Saw a group coming off the Ben around 1 am with head torches. For another day.
Photos copyright © 2011, Trev.