Ben Lui and Beinn a’Chlèibh Walk
The Ben Lui and Beinn a'Chlèibh Walk from Glen Lochy invites hillwalkers to tackle two marvellous peaks, including the grand Ben Lui and its somewhat less famous neighbour, Beinn a'Chlèibh. The challenging trail brings the heat, with a river crossing and two confronting ascents, but the views from 1,130 m above atop Ben Lui’s summit and achieving a climb of one of the highest peaks in the Southern Highlands makes it well worth the effort.
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Route Description for Ben Lui and Beinn a’Chlèibh Walk
Ben Lui is known as one of the most impressive, elegant peaks in Scotland’s Southern Highlands and the Ben Lui and Beinn a'Chlèibh Walk invites hillwalkers to experience the majesty of this incredible peak. Beyond the demanding ascents, this walk also includes a crossing of the River Lochy (do not attempt when in spate) and some highly boggy sections where the route is virtually pathless, so proper footwear, a change of clothes (if you wish), and navigation skills are good prerequisites to keep in mind for this walk. If tackling this route during the winter, especially when snow is present, be sure to equip yourself with the necessary gear, including an ice-axe and crampons, as well as a working knowledge of hillwalking in these conditions.
Revered by many, Ben Lui is often referred to as the finest and most grand peak in all the Southern Highlands. The river crossing of Glen Lochy makes for an involved walk and is sure to delight those with a keen sense of adventure. Ben Lui is also one of Scotland’s famed Munros, a collection of 282 mountains named after Sir Hugh T Munro. This walk is an excellent opportunity to experience some of Scotland’s most coveted scenery and join the ranks of those who tackle its highest and most challenging peaks.
From the Glen Lochy Foresty car park off the A85, take the path that leads from the car park towards the river Lochy. Continue the path riverside until you find a place suitable for crossing (this depends on how wet you’re willing to get). Do not attempt to cross the river when in spate, as this presents extreme danger and is not recommended. Look out for the railway on the far side (do not cross as this is illegal), and take the metal grid bridge over the Eas Dàimh.
Take the path that leads through the trees alongside the burn. After 500 m, you’ll arrive at the joining place of Eas Dàimh and another burn. Make sure you cross the Eas Dàimh taking the path that follows the burn from the Fionn Choire. Continue the trail, then cross the Fionn Choire, where you’ll pass through a steel gate contained in a deer fence. Spot the track that leads uphill and walk 300 m to reach a second main forest track. Take a left on this track to reach a bridge suspended over the Fionn Choire, then take an immediate right onto the trail that climbs steeply.
After around 490 m, the trail departs the forest as you pass through a gate in Fionn Choire. Begin the ascent on the east, pursuing a fairly pathless route to Ben Lui’s north ridge. Pause here to enjoy the views over Glen Lochy before turning right to continue up the steep ridge. Press on, keeping your eyes peeled for a cairn that marks Ben Lui’s northwest summit. To reach the southeastern summit (the highest of the two), continue a little further across a dip that will lead to the second summit. Revel in the sense of accomplishment that climbing one of the finest Munros in the Southern Highlands brings, and pause to catch your breath before the descent.
Follow the path of descent down the ridge, retracing your steps that led to the summit to rejoin the path below. Continue on a lengthy stretch, descending the broad slope until you reach the bealach. Embark on a zig-zagging path from the bealach, which leads high up the ridge, soon reaching a plateau. The Beinn a'Chlèibh summit is marked by a cairn that stands at 916m, ringing in your second successful summit of the walk.
Return to the bealach by way of the route above Coire Fionn, enjoying views towards Ben Cruachan along the way. From the bealach, a steep and formidable descent ensues as you make your way down, following the Fionn Chorein burn back to the path which you emerged from the forest on in the initial section. Pass back through the steel gate, retracing the exact route through the trees and back across the Lochy. Complete this route with a final stretch to the car park where the walk began.
The Ben Lui peak is known as one of the finest mountains in the Southern Highlands. At 1,130 m, it lords over the head of Glen Fyne and consists of 5 well-defined ridges. Ben Lui is also known as one of the grandest of Scotland’s Munro mountains, a group of 282 mountains named after Sir Hugh T Munro, all of which feature an altitude of over 914 m.
Although Beinn a'Chlèibh may appear anti-climactic compared to its famous neighbour Ben Lui, Beinn a'Chlèibh features steep slopes leading down to Glen Lochy and makes the cut to be included in the Scottish Munros, standing 916m.
Insider Hints for Ben Lui and Beinn a’Chlèibh Walk
- There are no toilets at the Glen Lochy Forestry car park. Your best bet is to stop in Dalmally to find a facility there
- There is a picnic area located at the car park, making for a great spot to enjoy the views and have a snack either before or after the walk.
- The nearest places to enjoy a bite or a pint before or after the walk are Dalmally and Tyndrum
- The river crossings on this walk make it a good idea to bring a change of bottoms and socks.
Getting to the Ben Lui and Beinn a’Chlèibh Walk Trailhead
To get to the Ben Lui and Beinn a'Chlèibh Walk from Dalmally, head east on the A85 towards B8077. Continue for 7.6 km, and look out for the Glen Lochy Forestry car park found on your left-hand side. Park here to begin the walk.
Ben Lui and Beinn a’Chlèibh Walk Elevation Graph
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Ben Lui and Beinn a’Chlèibh Walk Reviews
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