Frequently Asked Questions and facts about Ben Nevis

Posted on August 16, 2019

Frequently Asked Questions and facts about Ben Nevis

Here’s a selection of our Ben Nevis Walking Tips, Ben Nevis Facts and Frequently asked questions.

Where is Ben Nevis? Ben Nevis is found in Scotland in the Lochaber area of the Scottish Highlands. Fort William is the nearest town.

Can I walk up Ben Nevis – Yep – there’s no climbing involved on the Mountain Track but the CMD Arete is for experienced hillwalkers only!!

How High is Ben Nevis in Metres? 1345 metres in altitude – though it was thought to be lower until recently. It is the highest point in Scotland and the UK.

NO – How High is Ben Nevis in Feet? If you must – then the height of Ben Nevis in feet is 4,411

How long does it take to climb Ben Nevis – How long is a piece of string?! Allow 8 hours up and down – but it could take 10 or 12 hours if you’re lacking the fitness. If you allow 12 hours as a maximum, plan to turn around after 6 hours at the latest whether you’re at the top or not! If it’s taking you that long, then you’ll be suffering even more on the descent. We’d never be able to walk up and down in 12 hours as we’d find that harder going than just being on our feet for 5! If you’re fitter, then you should be able to make it up and down in about 5 hours.

how long does it take to climb Ben Nevis?

How far is it to the top of Ben Nevis? 

If you take the Mountain Track, then it’s a 17km round trip or 8.5km from the bottom of Ben Nevis to the Summit of Ben Nevis – just over 5 Miles…

How many people have climbed Ben Nevis?

Too many to count – but estimated at 150,ooo in a year!

How hard is it to climb ben nevis? AKA – How Fit should I be?

Anyone with a reasonable level of fitness should be fine, though that doesn’t mean it’ll be easy! Consult your doctor if in any doubt.

I’ve never been up a mountain, there’s an easy path all the way right?

Not really! In mist you can easily get lost on the summit plateau. If in any doubt, make sure there’s an experienced walker in the group, or hire a mountain leader.

Will there be snow on the summit?

Statistically, yes. You can easily find patches of snow into the early summer. The image of the summit below were taken in May on two different years – you can see that the depth of snow is considerable! We’ve personally walked over unavoidable patches on the mountain track in June. Keep an eye out on the forecasts!!

Why is it called Ben Nevis?

Etymology. “Ben Nevis” is an Anglicisation of the Scottish Gaelic name “Beinn Nibheis”. “Beinn” is the most common Gaelic word for “mountain”, “Nibheis” is variously understood, though the word is commonly translated as “malicious” or “venomous”. Source – Wikipedia

Who owns the mountain Ben Nevis?

The mountain is owned by the John Muir Trust.

Will the cafe be open?

Wrong mountain!

What about the Railway?

Wrong mountain!

But there’s a Ben Nevis cable car right?

No – the cable car, or gondola, is on the neighbouring mountain of Aonach Mor. But at least that’s only a mountain away and not in Snowdonia!



Recommended Ben Nevis Guidebooks: 

Recommended Ben Nevis Maps: 

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