The Ledge Route

For the more adventurous hiker there is a fantastic grade 1 scramble available on the north face of Ben Nevis.  This hike should really only be done on a good weather day in order to fully enjoy the route and scenery.  The day starts at the North Face car park near Torlundy.   Take the CIC hut route up through the forest and over the stile at the start of the valley between CMD and Ben Nevis.  Follow the track to the CIC hut alongside the river called Allt a Mhuilinn.  From the car park to the CIC typically takes 70-90 minutes depending on fitness.  After a drink and a snack get ready for the scrambling up to Carn Dearg, which is the northern part of Ben Nevis.  The route up is via Gully No5, but there are few other options available, including passing around the left side of the gully.   Most information on the Internet and in the books says go up No5 then after 100m turn to the right over a slab of rock.  Once above the level of No5 Gully you pass a large balanced rock and head on up.   Join the bouldery ridge and scramble to the top of Carn Dearg.   Having achieved the top at 1221m most people would logically want to visit the summit of Ben Nevis which is just half a mile away.  If not head west to the Tourist Path and down to Lochan Meall an t-Suidhe.  Take the path towards the CIC hut but depart this at the end of the Lochan and head north down to the stile you crossed in the morning.  It is just about a mile over rough ground but if you are lucky you may find bits of a path.