After doing Ben Lui & Beinn a’Chleibh, I decided to head back up and finish of the Tyndrum Hills group. That takes me to a total of 6 Munros this year. Nowhere near what I was hoping for, can only hope I get more done in July! It was a tough hike (more mentally rather than physically). The weather was horrible to begin with and seemed to change every 10 minutes! It was quite a humid day, especially walking through the forest which made the sweating worse… not to mention my body trying to sweat out the alcohol from the Czech game. Still annoyed at that. Although we did make up for it with a cracking performance against England only for us to bomb out after last nights game against Croatia. Typical. Glorious failure is the Scotland way. Anyway… moving on. Here’s what to expect when bagging Ben Oss & Beinn Dubhchraig.
Ben Oss & Beinn Dubhchraig
Category – Munro(s)
Height – 1,029 metres (3,376 ft); Ben Oss & 978 metres (3,209 ft); Beinn Dubhchraig
Location – Dalrigh
Difficulty Rating – 6.5/10
Approximate Timing – 7 – 8 hours
Pronunciation – Byn Oss & Byn Doo-craig
Ben Oss (loch outlet hill) and Beinn Dubhchraig (black rock hill) were the last two of the four Tyndrum Hills Munros that I had to do. To get to the car park, follow the A84 from Stirling and pass through Callander, Strathyre and Loch Earnhead. Join the A85, pass by the cut off for Killin and head along that road to Crianlarich. You’ll pass by where you would park for Ben More & Stob Binnein. Pass through Crianlarich and join the A82, heading North towards Tyndrum. After about 5 minutes, there will be a turn off for Dalrigh, take that and stay left. The large car park should be on your left. If you’re going to do these hills, try catch them on a dry day and prepare for a lot of boggy ground! And don’t forget midge repellent! I made that mistake and was eaten alive by the horrible wee creatures.
The Caledonian Forest
Start the hike by following the tarmac lane that crosses the West Highland Way and down to an old stone bridge. There’s another gate on the other side, once you go through that, turn right onto a smaller track. The railway should be running parallel on the left. After a short time, the track will swing left and you cross the railway via a bridge. Go through the gate on the far side and you’ll notice the track forks, take the smaller path on the right that leads across open ground. On the other side of the field, you’ll come to a wooden footbridge… cross it and follow the path left. You are now entering a stunning pinewood which is a remnant of the original Caledonian Forest.
This is where the path begins to get boggy. Follow the trail as best you can, staying on the right of the river. It’s relatively easy to follow with alternative options available crossing the boggy sections. At one section, it actually reminded me of Jurassic Park. As you gradually make your way up, you’ll come to a broken fence and the ground starts to open a little. The path gets better for spells after this, although there are still quite a few marshy sections.
Now that you are out the tree line, you’ll see Beinn Dubhchraig rising ahead of you. The path from here continues to come and go through boggy sections, however the views begin to show as you look behind. As you make your way along the path, you’ll notice a series of stunning waterfalls. There are a number of rocky pools as well, if you’re well prepared you could even go for a dip after the hike! Just remember you’ll have to go back through the forest afterwards… The track begins to ascend a bit more steeply as you make your way towards the ridge with rocky steps leading up. Once you reach the ridge, you’ll notice a path leading to the left, and up to the summit of Beinn Dubhchraig. It’s a short hike to the summit, around 80 metres to go, and what a rewarding view you get! On a clear day you can see the Northern end of Loch Lomond, Ben Lomond and the surrounding hills. However, once you’ve had your rest and summit photo… time to tackle Ben Oss!
As you make your way back down to the ridge, follow the path leading to the South-West (left) as you pass a series of small lochans on your right. The path will begin to descend steeply until you reach Bealach Buidhe, overlooking Loch Oss below. Continue following this track for a short while until you reach a small cairn with an arrow etched into one of the rocks. The arrow points to the right where there is a fainter path that heads West up a grassy hill. Soon you’ll briefly be heading down again before ascending to the summit of Ben Oss. During the last push, you get a fantastic view of Ben Lui. It’s a cracker of a Munro, when you see it without the clouds! It only took me 1.5 hours to get from summit to summit, which I was quite happy about. Although once I remembered I had to go back that way, I wasn’t so happy.
The descent is exactly the same as the route you came up, just follow the path back down… then up onto the ridge at Beinn Dubhchraig then follow the path left to make your way down passed the waterfalls and to the forest. Once you reach the footbridge on the other side of the forest, you know you’re on the home straight!
Don’t get me wrong, it was a fantastic hike and enjoyable for the most part. However the boggy sections can get a bit frustrating as you try navigate over the rocks/ dry patches. It’s a bit of a slog as well but I’ve faced worse and I’m sure I will face worse in the future! With the negative comments out the road, the views you can get on a clear day are superb (the weather changed too frequently when I was up so never got the greatest of photos to show the view!).
There are more photos below, feel free to have a wee browse and let me know in the comment section if you found this helpful… are you planning to do the Tyndrum Hills in the near future?
Thanks for reading,