Ben Vorlich, Loch Lomond

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Plans to walk up Ben Vorlich were looking like being in doubt with a forecast of low cloud, heavy showers and possible lightning, so a bit of head scratching and a last minute search for low level alternatives kicked in. Whilst doing that and finding little that jumped out as either interesting or not best enjoyed with two cars, one at either end, we noticed the sky in Vorlich’s approximate direction looked quite promising.

Having decided on sticking with our original plan, it was looking even better for the walk ahead on our arrival at Ardlui, our start and end point.

This was my second ascent of the hill and for variety we chose a different route to that previous one (from Inveruglas) which had us walk up and into Coire Creagach, the huge corrie on BV’s eastern side, before breaking out for the skyline on the low point just southwest of Stob-nan Coinnich. Great and dramatic views north to the Crianlarich hills opened up before us, some clearly experiencing worse weather than us, but that was short lived, we were soon being battered by wind driven hail for a short spell as we climbed further towards the lower, northern summit.

Things improved for us as we reached the top, great views over Arrochar’s Alps and to an extent down the length of Loch Lomond too. It was cold though and time cracking on so we didn’t hang about long before taking a different route down to our starting point which followed a continuation of the rim of the corrie. Tiredness put us off regaining lost height to the summits of the ‘Small Hills’ on the way down – we had already enjoyed great views anyway – instead we traversed under them to regain the ridge of Stuc na Nughinn further down.

A really enjoyable walk was had with four seasons thrown at us along the way, lots of dramatic colours on the hillsides and rainbows on display for most of the second half of the day. We saw deer on the skyline and close up, but again like the previous week, none were roaring.

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