|Meall an t-Suidhe from
Meall an t-Suidhe
|Estimated net time||1½-2 hours|
|Drinking water||No access to running water.|
|GSM coverage||Coverage throughout the route (April 2012).|
|Parking||Room for a couple of cars at trail head.|
|Start height||350 metres|
|Vertical metres||395 metres for the roundtrip.|
|Trip distance||4.4 km|
Just north-east of Fort William, on road A82, follow signs for Glen Nevis visitor centre. From the visitor centre's car park walk 200 metres north along the river, then cross the river on the bridge, and continue south along the river. 330 metres after having crossed the bridge turn left (east), and then turn right 300 metres later. Follow this path in the south/south-east direction, and continue up to the saddle at 565 metres. Note that there is a short-cut (which isn't signed as being "not allowed") by leaving the main path just after crossing a small stream 1.8 km from trail head. This is at altitude 160 metres. This short-cut re-joins the main path at 210 metres, and only shorten the route by 180 metres.
When you re-join the main path continue up to the flat section at 565 metres, south of Lochan Meall an t-Suidhe. Leave the path and head left (north-west) towards the small saddle south of Meall an t-Suidhe. Then turn right and head north to the summit, which is marked by a small cairn.
Descend by reversing your ascent route.
01. May 2012
Håvard and I were due to fly home from Aberdeen this May Day, in the afternoon, but we figured out that it was plenty of time for a hike if we started a little early. Since Håvard isn't terribly keen on getting up dead early we agreed on breakfast at 7 as something both of us could accept. Given that the weather had improved since yesterday, with clear sky and no wind, I should have got up earlier and gone for something more ambitious than Meall an t-Suidhe, but that was too late now.
At the visitor centre in Glen Nevis we parted, with me hitting the path towards Ben Nevis, and Håvard heading into Glen Nevis with the intention of walking as far as possible with as few vertical metres as possible. I kept a good pace up the zigzags towards Lochan Meall an t-Suidhe, but had to slow down considerably in the final hill from the loch to the summit, because of soft grass. And by the time I got to the summit I was very exhausted, which was soon recovered when I had a closer look at the nice views this fantastic morning.
When descending I met a lot of other hikers, on their way to Ben Nevis, and some
of them looked very tired already. I was feeling great and was doing more
running than walking down the fine path. Back at the visitor centre I had to
wait a while for Håvard, as he had walked all the way to the end of the valley,
and I eventually decided to walk into the valley myself. Driving to pick him up
was not an option since he had the car keys. When we met we walked back to the car
together, then back to the hotel for a shower and to check out, before the drive
up to Aberdeen.