Home   Glossary

Ben Alder


Quick Facts
This is the height of the mountain above sea level. However, on the climb, it is the ascent that matters, i.e. the sum of all the uphill parts of the route.
1148 m (3766 ft)

This is the standard notation used on Ordnance Survey Landranger maps.

Each reference consists of two letters identifying a 100,000 metre square block then three digits defining the Easting and finally the three digits defining the Northing with reference to the South West corner of the block.

NN166712 is the grid reference for the summit of Ben Nevis. Where you are given the map number ( For Ben Nevis = 41) it is acceptable to omit the two initial letters e.g. 166712. (Instructions on how to read the references are given on the OS maps).

Grid Ref.
An indication of this mountains height rank within its class. Where two mountains share the same height they are ordered alphabetically.
25 of 282 Munros
The number of ascent routes currently available on Munromagic.
Mountain names are usually in Gaelic, the native language of the Scottish Highlands, or have been derived from the old Scots and Norse languages. We give the most commonly accepted meaning, but accept that some of these are disputed.
Hill of rock and water

The UK is covered by 204 Ordnance Survey Landranger 1:50,000 scale maps. Maps numbered 1 to 86 cover Scotland but for the highest mountains (Munros) only 23 maps are required. The name given roughly describes the area covered by the map.

OS Landranger Maps Required
  42   Glen Garry & Loch Rannoch

A description of the characteristics of the mountain including any hazards of which you should be aware.

The summit of Ben Alder is a gentle rise on an broad plateau close to the precipitous cliffs on its E flank overlooking Beallach Beithe. The ground initially slopes gently from the summit in all other directions, but the N flank of Ben Alder is also steep and craggy.

The most common route of ascent is the NE ridge and involves a scramble up the more northerly shoulder of Coire na Lethchois.

To the S there are the steep slopes of Coire Chomhlain, but the SE ridge gives easy access to Beallach Breabag which separates Ben Alder from Beinn Bheoil. To the W easy slopes lead down to Meall an t-Slugain and to the path through Beallach Dubh.

Hazards you may encounter on Ben Alder include
 Remote Mountain navigate with care.
 High Plateau, summit may be difficult to locate.
 Stony/rocky Slopes on or near ascent routes.
 Crags on or near ascent routes.
 Crags near summit.
 Scrambling (minor), easy hand and footholds.
General Considerations
 Temperature decreases by 1degree C for every 100m of ascent.
 Wind usually increases with altitude.
 Visibility can change markedly with cloud level.
 River/Stream levels can increase markedly in one day.
Picture Gallery for Ben Alder

A selection of weather forecasts local to #GetMountain.Top_Name#.

Ordnance Survey digital maps are also available to members.

 Weather & OS Maps
West Highlands
by MWIS (PDF format)
West Highlands
by Met Office
Ben Alder
by Metcheck
Ben Alder Area Map
Legend  Munro  Corbett  Graham  English/Welsh Top  Accommodation

A selection of local accommodation options who advertise with Munromagic.com.

 Where to Stay
We currently have no
sponsored accommodation listings for this area.

The summary information of one or more ascent routes that include Ben Alder.

Click on the route title to load the full content for that route.

 Routes that include Ben Alder
  Ascent Distance Time Including... Description Rating
1 1819 m 46.70 km 12.5 hrs Ben Alder and Beinn Bheoil  This long route (with some scrambling) is more of an expedition. If you cycle to Loch Pattack the remaining route is 7h, 22km, ascent 917m which can be completed on a long summer day. Otherwise take a tent.  

Pictures submitted by members on the summit of Ben Alder

 Baggers Gallery for Ben Alder

Ben Alder from the approuch

© Alexander McMillan

Image by Alexander McMillan

Roy and John at the top on a lovely sunny day

© John Forster

Image by John Forster

going over the swinging bridge

© John Frew

Image by John Frew

VS crossing the swing bridge just below Culra Bothy.

© Mark Cullen

Image by Mark Cullen
View All 15 Baggers Images for Ben Alder
The logging section stores any entries for Ben Alder in your own log. From here you can
  1. Add a route log entry that includes this mountain
  2. Write a full account of your route including photos
  3. Edit an existing log entry including uploading a GPX file or add a photo
  4. Delete your log entry
Your Route Log
You need to be a member to have a route log.
Recently Climbed By
Kenny Mcneill on 27 Sep 2020
Margaret Bryant on 24 Jul 2020
John Findlay on 20 Jul 2020

If a member has uploaded a tracklog as part of their personal route log and opted to share it then it will be presented here.

You can view a members route overlayed on an online map or download the KMZ file for use in Google Earth.

 Shared Members Track Logs

Post a few words about Ben Alder or read what others have had to say.

Showing the most recent 5 of 13 comments. Would you like to view all 13?
John Mortimer
wrote on
July 28, 2011
I tried the cycle route from Gallovie but found it difficult with a tent etc. Had to remove panniers for the high stile and the swing bridge. Also there are a number of sandy streches that I could not cycle on the inward journey but just managed some on the return. Probably better for younger, fitter and more proficient mountain bikers. The Dalwhinnie route has ben resurfaced from above Ben Alder Lodge to the hay feeder. Overall I think this is the better route altghough, if you are travelling from the west you will save road miles via Gallovie.
Joseph Buchanan
wrote on
July 24, 2011
Did all six with my wife we cycled in from Dalwhinnie to Culra which took around 2 hours and camped across from the bothy. In the morning we took to Carn Dearg directly behind the bothy. The complete route took us 12 hours it was a glorious day and we took our time and had many stops. With hindsight I would have did the route clockwise and climbed Beinn Bheoil first. This would give you a better approach to Ben Alder with better views
Richard Goodman
wrote on
May 2, 2011
If cycling in consider taking the track from the turn off for Galiovie farm on the A86 Laggan road. Parking available at Strathmashie 1km or 2km before the turn off. It is longer than the track from Dalwhinnie but apart from a couple of short steep bits and a boggy section just before Loch Pattack, the gradient is fairly gentle and it gives easier cycling than the track from Dalwhinnie and is scenically more interesting.
John Mcallister
wrote on
April 9, 2010
I did these two from Moy, walked in over Creag Pitrech and nirghbour, stayed at culra, ben alder and ben bhieol the next day, another bothy stop then a quick dash out again over Beinn a' Clachair- which was surprisly easy, decent path all the way up. Could easily be cut down to a one night stop though would be quite task.
Chris Ridley
wrote on
August 10, 2008
The complete round of all 6 Munros here is possible after an overnight in Culra...its a long day with a drop down below the Bealach Dubh and then steep climb back up to the Ben Alder plateau. Care should be taken in cloud as you follow the crags south then south east to the terminus of Ben Alder above Bealach Breabag. At the terminus the path peters out - head west then south down easy grassy slopes to reach the bealach.

A full written account of a climb submitted by our members.

You can prepare your own write up by first making an entry in your route log and then visiting the logging section above.

 Route Write-Ups
There are no Route Write-Ups submitted for Ben Alder
Privacy Policy Cookie Policy Contact Us