Stob Coire a' Chairn from Glen Nevis
An Gearanach  Stob Coire a' Chairn


Estimated net time 5-6 hours
Difficulty No difficulties, but parts of the ridge between An Gearanach and Stob Coire a' Chairn has some exposure.
It's also worth noting that crossing the river in Glen Nevis, by the An Steall waterfall, either requires wading, or using the wire bridge and then carefully cross the streams below the waterfall by stepping on slippery stones. The quickest crossing is most likely to be to continue approximately 350 metres past the bridge (it's only a wire for the feet and two parallel wires for the hands), take the hiking boots off, and wade the river where it's reasonably shallow.
Drinking water There's running water from several sources up to where you cross the river.
GSM coverage Coverage above 5-600 metres (October 2013).
Parking Room for many cars at trail head car park.
Start height 140 metres
Vertical metres 1200 metres for the roundtrip.
Trip distance 11.2 km
GPS-file X


Route photo

  Trail head at the end of the road in Glen Nevis.
  River crossing below Steall waterfall.


From the north side of Fort William turn right from road A82 and follow signs for Glen Nevis Visitor Centre. Drive approximately 1.9 km (1.2 mi) to the visitor centre, and then continue 8.3 km (5.2 mi) to the very end of the road. Park at the car park.

Start your hike by following the path into the valley. After 1.6 km you get to a wire bridge, and will see a bothy on the other side of the river. Instead of crossing the river on the bridge you should continue another 350 metres along the left shore and then wade the river where most suitable (you probably need to take your boots off). When you've crossed the river head uphill on the path, which you will find a little above the river. Follow this path up into the valley, up to 600 metres. From here follow the path right up to a small pile of stones at 630 metres, turn right and follow the path up An Gearanach's north ridge. The summit is marked by a pile of stones.

From An Gearanach continue south along the narrow ridge, then steep down to the saddle at 857 metres, and then up to Stob Coire a' Chairn, where you'll find a small pile of stones.

Descend by reversing your ascent route.



05. October 2013

We had planned to go for a hike from Glen Nevis this Saturday, and despite wet and misty conditions we drove down to Glen Nevis from our base at Invergloy. The car park at the end of the road was in practice full, but we managed to find a small slot for our hire car. We later found out that most of the cars belonged to hikers only going as far as An Steall water fall.

When I had planned this hike I had noticed a bridge crossing the river but was very surprised to find this bridge to be only four wires; two strapped together for walking on, and two for each hand. Crossing this bridge was relatively easy but you had to focus, and when you got half-way and there was some swing I definitely concentrated very hard. And with Njl we had to work a little before we got him to take on the crossing. With everyone across we proceeded past the bothy, and were faced with another crossing; the wild stream below the water fall. Sigurd crossed by balancing on some slippery stones, Elisabeth took off her boots and waded, and again Njl had hesitations. At the end him and me went further down and waded across. From here on we could follow a fine path all the way up to the summit of An Gearanach. Unfortunately we had close to zero visibility at the summit, and it was raining and very windy. Elisabeth therefore decided to head back down, but Sigurd and Njl wanted to continue to Stob Coire a' Chairn together with me.

The ridge between An Gearanach and Stob Coire a' Chairn proved to be a very narrow ridge, but without any technical difficulties. But some easy scrambling was required a few places, and the strong wind made us focus a little extra. Fortunately we got a short spell of visibility around Stob Coire a' Chairn, and we had a fine view back towards the ridge we had followed. But the mist soon closed in again, and we descended in the same mist as we had ascended.

Back down at the river we decided to wade the river instead of wading the streams and cross the river on the bridge. And since we were all fairly wet anyway we didn't bother about taking the boots off, but just walked across the knee deep river. This worked out well, but the water was flowing at a steady pace so we crossed one at a time and threw the one pair of poles we had back to the next hiker after having crossed. With wet boots and socks we ran most of the way back down to the car, where Elisabeth had been waiting a little less than 30 minutes.

Photos 05.10.2013