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Walk up Ben Lomond From Rowardennan

By Dave Roberts   

on August 14, 2018    4.5/5 (2)

Walk up Ben Lomond From Rowardennan

Further Details

Route Summary:

A walk to one of the most popular mountains in Scotland – Ben Lomond – up the quieter of the two main routes from Rowardennan.

This walk includes the Munro of Ben Lomond

Route Start Location: Rowardennan

11.63 km 937 m 5 hours or so

Calculate the time using Naismith’s Rule and factor in your own pace.

Activivity Type: Hard Walk

Summits and Places on this Route


Toilet and visitor centre at start with a Youth Hostel, Bunkhouse and the Rowardennan Hotel and Clansman Bar at Rowardennan. Camping is available at the Rowardennan Youth Hostel or a permit for “wild camping” can be bought for £3 per night at Lochan Maol Dhuinne here.


Reasonably straightforward for a Munro – with the usual hazards associated with high mountain terrain.

Remember that we cannot outline every single hazard on a walk – it’s up to you to be safe and competent. Read up on Mountain Safety , Navigation and what equipment you’ll need.

Parking : G63 0AR

Ample free car parking at start of the walk

Public Transport:

None – but there are ferries available to the pier from various points on the Loch – visit the Cruise Loch Lomond site for details.

Traveline for UK Public Transport

Recommended Maps


Walk up Ben Lomond From Rowardennan Ordnance Survey Map and GPX File Download

Download file for GPS

Walk up Ben Lomond From Rowardennan

Ben Lomond is the most southerly of the Munros and is located in the Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park. Ben Lomond is one of the most popular mountains in Scotland as it’s reasonably close to Glasgow and the nearby area is popular with tourists. Around 30,000 people climb Ben Lomond every year according to the Lomond MRT. It’s also a more straightforward proposition to climb than many of the other Munros. Most will ascend the Tourist Path from Rowardennan, but for the more experienced hill walker the Ptarmigan path is a much more interesting proposition. Despite it being straightforward, it is still a mountain and anyone attempting to climb Ben Lomond should wear the proper clothes, have the right gear and map, and know how to use them.

The Gaelic name is Beinn Laomainn – or Beacon Hill – as it’s a particularly visible hill from all directions including from Glasgow.

Ben Lomond From Rowardennan Route

1 From the Ben Lomond car park you’ll initially need to follow the West Highland Way for around 1km, passing the Rowardennan Youth Hostel and keeping an eye out for the footpath up Ptarmigan to the right.

2 The track pulls uphill, through the forest before contouring along the hillside rather than attaining the ridge. This makes for an interesting approach with excellent views – mainly back over Loch Lomond. The path is good and easy enough to follow and after around 3km and a final ascent, you’ll finally arrive at the summit of Ptarmigan.

3 From Ptarmigan, there’s a pleasant and grassy ridge that curves around towards Ben Lomond. Along this section of the walk you’ll pass knolls and even a lochan, as well as the views over to Ben Lomond, this section has plenty of interest.

4 Continue along the path towards Bealach Buidhe, and from here you’ll be starting the final ascent to the summit along the narrow grassy NW ridge. You can look for adventure by taking the crest more head-on, or follow the path, depending how hard you want to make the walk.

5 The summit Trig Point finally comes into view – and so will the people, probably. The ascent has been along the quieter side of Ben Lomond, you’re now left with the busier and more touristy side! With any luck, you’ll have clear weather and the views will be extensive from Ben Lomond’s 974m high summit.

6 The descent along the Ben Lomond Tourist path is reasonably straightforward. Start off roughly south east along the summit ridge, before it heads steeply down a shoulder to easier ground below.

7 The going is now easier, so make the most of the views ahead towards Loch Lomond. The path has been improved in places, so the going is good, or downright excellent by Munro standards! This section is a steady 4km downhill plod, with this steady gradien precisely why its become such a popular ascent.

8 Eventually, the Tourist Path enters the woodland, with around 1.5km left to walk before you arrive back at the car park.

Dave Roberts founded Walk Eryri in 2004, with the aim of providing routes that are off the beaten track. Walk Eryri is now part of Mud and Routes which continues to provide more off beat routes and walks in Snowdonia and beyond. Dave has been exploring the hills of Eryri for over thirty years, and is a qualified Mountain Leader. Dave also established Walk up Snowdon, Walk up Scafell Pike and Walk up Ben Nevis just to mention a few.
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