Hiking Ben Nevis

Last week me and a mate hiked Ben Nevis in Scotland.

So this post is a few photos and preparation tips, some I wish we had known beforehand.

  • Take poles, prepare for snow.

As we went last week (early May) we didn't bother to prepare for snow. We were couldn't have been more wrong. With a few hours on the initial hike up, we encountered light snow on the trail, until the trail hit the clouds and the ski slope-ish section was ahead of us, we experienced all weather, from blizzard snow, to whiteouts to ice rain. Really we needed poles and a lot of people didn't make it to the top for this reason. We didn't have poles, but it was still possible.

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  • Have some form of GPS, and ensure you have a non-digital backup method of navigation.

At some points on the hike, especially during the whiteouts - the trails were almost impossible to see, as visibility was down to just a few meters ahead. It was also so cold that my iPhone 6 stopped working.

For navigation on the phone, we used MAPS.ME. It's a great app and shows many hiking trails. But if your phone stops working, ensure you have a good old map and compass.
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  • Only take 1 litre of water.

There are many streams and one particularly awesome waterfall (around half way up) where you can refill you bottles. Save carrying more weight and use what the mountain offers.

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Phil Hudson

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