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Tips for walking up Ben Nevis

VisitScotlandRonanVisitScotlandRonan Member, Administrator, Moderator, VisitScotland Staff
edited June 2020 in General Discussion

In light of COVID-19, everyone's health and safety is the most important thing. This means despite the love and desire to share our friendly, passionate, and unique country, we must ask everyone at this time not to travel to or around Scotland. Please stay safe everyone.

Have you heard the term ‘Munro bagging’? It’s a term coined by how many Munro mountains a person has climbed and is a popular pastime of avid climbers and outdoors lovers in Scotland and the world over. Ben Nevis, based in Fort William, is one of Scotland’s 282 Munros and is the king of them all!  Standing at 1,345 metres tall the mountain welcomes 125k walkers a year wanting to bag ‘the Ben’.


The average time to climb Ben Nevis is seven to nine hours so taking on the meaty Munro is no mean feat – it’s the height equivalent to three and a bit times the height of the Empire State Building in New York which stands at 443 metres – so you’ll want to be prepared if you want to reach its peak and to be able to sit back and take in the astonishing views from the top. Trainers in winter or going without a map or compass aren’t going to cut it.


If you've already made the climb, congratulations! How did you find it and what advice do you have for future climbers?


If you’re thinking of climbing Ben Nevis soon, ask anything below!


As a starting point, we spoke to Mountaineering Scotland who gave us these top tips.

·   You need to have reasonable fitness levels and stamina and if you’re new to climbing, it could be worth climbing some smaller Munros first.

·   Having the right clothing is essential. You’ll find that it’s a complete microclimate as you climb and all four seasons can hit at any moment, even in the summer months. Warm, wind and waterproof clothing is important, plus footwear that has good ankle support for the uneven terrain.

Carrying a torch, whistle, first aid kit and a compass will ensure you’re covered for any emergencies should they occur. 


  • JamieCJamieC Member ✭✭
    Hey Ronan, maybe worth checking your text......7 to 9 House("s" as it should be plural) takes me 30 seconds to walk ;) Ben Nevis takes a fair bit longer  :D
  • FullStopNextChapterFullStopNextChapter VisitScotland Ambassador ✭✭✭
    I think that's meant to be 7-9 hours. 

    It took me 8.5 hours - that included a lunch break at the top. We were super lucky to have one of the very few clear days the Ben has. This was a weekend at the end of May, ten years ago. 

    Join in my new chapter over on the blog. Discovering all things that make Scotland the place everyone wants to visit. 

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