/ (infomation) wanting to climb ben nevis for charity next year
Some good advice at: http://www.westcoast-mountainguides.co.uk/ben-nevis.asp
What time of year are you planning on climbing Ben Nevis?
If you (or anyone else going on the trip) doesn't know how to use ice axe, crampons etc then a summer time ascent is probably best - it can be a pretty unforgiving place in winter. It also gives you a lot more daylight to play with.
Time wise, allow 8 maybe 9 hours if you're a big group or not regular hillwalkers. If it takes you more than 2 hours to get to the half-way lochan via the tourist path turn around, you're going too slow. That said, if you're fit and used to hillwalking 1000m+ up/down in a day then you may find a round trip takes 4-5 hours.
Make sure you know how to navigate so that if the clag comes down you can get yourself down safely.
Try to pick a good day if you can.
In the right weather, it's a decent days walk. If you haven't done any hill-walking before, I'd suggest the easiest route is the good path all the way from either Achintee, or the Youth Hostel, both in Glen Nevis. There are more scenic routes via the Carn Mor Dearg arete, which would take a bit longer.
Best time of year would be late spring and early summer. Depending on the winter we have, there may still be snow lingering at the top in late spring. Navigation at the top can be an issue in bad weather, so make sure you have a map and compass and know how to use them.
The weather can be a complete lottery and can change quickly, at any time of the year. On a good day, it'll be a good day out. On a bad day, it could be horrible and potentially dangerous for the inexperienced. It's a shame you're so far away, since I presume you're going to have to fix a date sometime before you travel, which may or may not be the best time for decent weather.
Basic hill-walking gear is needed - decent footwear and waterproofs.
When you do decide on a date, post again here - you might get someone more experienced to go along with you.
You can get a bit more info here:
If your stated location is correct you're a way away from Fort Bill and the Ben. Before you commit to the plan it might be worth thinking about another that could be done closer to home to cut overheads and reduce the chance of failure but which still sounds impressive.
For example, by road I think it's 960 miles from Land's End to John O'Groats. How many people could you get involved and how far would they each have to walk for the same distance to be covered in a weekend? Or a day?
You could even get people signed up to walk a stated distance to contribute so they don't all have to walk the same course; a fit young lad like you could do twenty miles over the moors and your granny could do a mile to the shops, each finding their own sponsors. Present them with a certificate saying which miles of the 960 they walked - so your granny's mile to the shops may represent a mile between Carlisle and the border, for instance.
Just a thought with far fewer overheads, just as great if not greater appeal, more community involvement and a much greater chance of success.
Are you planning to walk it or climb (making that distinction as both are possible given your abilities (quick look at your profile)?
If walking & you're fit, you shouldn't have any trouble (taking the usual gear one would take in case of poor weather etc). It just goes on longer than most other hill walks. Late summer best if you wish to avoid any residual snow / ice.
If climbing, someone else will be better placed to advise!
It depends on amount of daylight you have etc but if you've taken over 2 hours to get to the half way lochan then you've still got about the same length of time again to get to the summit. Getting down will likely be a bit faster. In retrospect maybe I should have said, consider turning round if you've taken a lot more than 2 hours to the half way lochan.
That said if you're fit, feeling fine and have plenty daylight you can take as long as you like.
The best way (only sensible way IMO)for an inexperienced party is the normal ('tourist') track from Achintee in Glen Nevis. If you do it from May onwards there will be a constant stream of humanity on the track for company.
It is a long steady haul on a good path. Comfortable footwear is a must. It will also feel much colder on top so be prepared for that.
Contact the Nevis Partnership, or whatever they are called now.
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