Stob Ban, 999m (Pale Peak)
Mullach nan Coirean, 939m (Top of the corries)
917 W of Stob Ban, 917m (unranked)
Meall a' Chaorainn, 910m (unranked)

Mountain area : Scottish Highlands
Nearest town : Ft. William
Map : OS Map 41
Primary Factor: Stob Ban: 249m+ (Sgorr an Lubhair)
Primary Factor: Mullach nan Coirean: 99m+ (Stob Ban)
Primary Factor: 917m: 77m+ (Mullach nan Coirean)
Primary Factor: Meall a' Chaorainn: 25m+ (Mullach nan Coirean)
Hiked : July 2002
Stob Ban seen from Sgurr a Mhaim

Stob Ban seen from Sgurr a Mhaim


Stob Ban is one of the many characteristic peaks in the Mamore range, located just north of loch Leven. The east face of Stob Ban is dramatic with a steep fall down to Coire Musghain. Mullach nan Coirean is a large, rounded mountain with a distinct red color when viewed from Glen Nevis. 917m is an insignifcant point on the ridge between Mullach nan Coirean and Stob Ban, while Meall a' Chaorainn is a small hill that marks the western end of the Mamore range.

The two main mountains here - Stob Ban and Mullach nan Coirean, are typically done on the same hike. The Forest Walk parking in Glen Nevis is the trailhead. The hike normally runs up Coire Mhusgain valley, to the Mamore ridgeline just east of Stob Ban. Over Stob Ban and the ridge to Mullach nan Coirean before heading down to the Forest Walk parking by descening a long and nice ridge. This round trip is a classic walk for the Munro collectors.

Trail Descriptions

Stob Ban and Mullach nan Coirean from Forest Walks (summer/autumn)

Difficulty : Easy
Risk : Low
Distance : Approx. 13km round trip
Time : Approx. 5-7 hours round trip
Starting Elev.: Approx. 45m


From Ft. William, exit from A82 into the Glen Nevis valley. Follow the valley road until you see "Forest Walks". A relative large parking area is available.

The trail:

Follow the valley road for a very short stretch. Cross a bridge, and locate the path that begins on the other side of a fence, on the right hand side of the road. A small wooden staircase takes you over the fence. Follow the main track up the valley. At the foothills of Sgurr a' Mhaim, the Sgurr a' Mhaim trail runs up to your left. Continue straight ahead into Coire Mhusgain valley.

About halfway up the valley, just after a point where Sgurr a' Mhaim blocks your view to the upper valley, the trail divides. It is easy to miss this junction, because the main trail running 90 deg. up to your left is hard to notice when you are looking straight ahead. The trail running straight ahead takes you to a small waterfall down by the Allt Coire a' Mhusgain stream. So, be aware of the trail junction and take the left trail that switchbacks upwards, taking you much higher towards Sgurr a' Mhaim than you were before.

There are no steep sections on this trail, and the trail continues gradually upwards towards the Mamore ridgeline. Be sure to fill up water before hitting the ridge, as there are no more streams before you are far down towards Forest Walk, after descending Mullach nan Coirean. The steep east face of Stob Ban should keep you entertained while hiking up to the ridgeline. The trail runs head on up Stob Ban, on what seems to be a very narrow ridge from distance. The are however no exposed or difficult points upwards this ridge, and you'll be on the summit before you know it.

From Stob Ban, the trail runs a little north on scree/small boulder before turning west down on the ridge. The trail over to Mullach nan Coirean is easy and without any major ups and downs. On the summit, you will find a proper built cairn and a great view towards the Mamore peaks, Aonachs and Ben Nevis. A trail runs down the obvious ridge towards Forest Walks. Down in the forest, you will have to cross a fence on a staircase, continue into the forest (stay left towards the river in case you lose the trail in the forest). A little while later, you arrive a gravel road. A small ladder takes you proper down on the road. Follow the gravel road until you reach a road fork. Then look for a shortcut down trough the forest, directly to the parking.

Trip report July 17 2002:

The group gathered for another day in the mountains. The goal for the day was Mullach nan Coirean, with Stob Ban as a possible option. To me, Stob Ban was no way near an option. It was a must. As such, we decided that Gro, Else and Dag should hike Mullach nan Coirean up and down the ridge from Forest Walks. I was going to (possibly) join them on the summit, but hike up Coire Mhusgain and over Stob Ban on my way to Mullach.

I felt a strong obligation to fulfill my part of the plan, and hiked Coire Mhusgain as fast as my legs could take me. I was on the ridge in just little over one hour, and assumed the other group would be halfway up the other mountain. I was very curious about the trail up to Stob Ban summit. It looked mighty steep from down in the valley, but turned out to be quite harmless. From Stob Ban, I saw people on the ridge up to Mullach nan Coirean. Far higher than I had hoped for. It was still a while to go, so I had better get going. I ran down Stob Ban, and nodded somewhat embarassed to two guys coming up from west. "Who cares?", I told myself. "I'll never see them again". I met them already the next day on An Garbhanach...

Running down a mountain is not good mountain ethics, I think. First of all, it looks stupid. Second, people could get confused. Such as the time I was jogging down from Mt. Elbert in Colorado. A group of people was moving upwards, and out of the group came a guy, running towards me with arms waving, while shouting "What's wrong? What's wrong?".

Anyhow, I was making good progress over the ridge, but the people on the Mullach ridge was closing in on the summit. And they were much higher than I was. Everyone's competitive, one way or the other, and I gave my heart and soul (but without running) up the final hill towards Mullach nan Coirean. Just as I reached the summit, 2.5 hours after starting, the other party came onto the summit plateau. BUT IT WASN'T MY FRIENDS!

I was given a rough location on my group's whereabouts, and killed time visiting Meall a' Chaorainn while waiting. Back on the summit, the others arrived. They had a enjoyable time up the ridge, taking their time, grabbing some lunch. Quite in contrast to my hike up. But they don't understand WHY I had to had that extra peak. Neither do I. But it's just they way it is. Everybody was happy with the events of the day. That's the most important thing.

Pictures from the July 17 2002 hike:

Move cursor to read notes, and click on the images to see full version.
Some of the thumbnails may have been cropped to fit the format

Stob Ban ridge seen from Coire Mhusgain (231KB) Stob Ban seen from Coire Mhusgain (134KB) Aonach Eagach (Glen Coe) seen from the ridgeline (217KB) East face of Stob Ban (165KB) Ben Nevis and Glen Nevis (179KB) The trail up to Stob Ban (215KB) West part of Ring of Steall (259KB) Mullach nan Coirean seen from Stob Ban (323KB) Stob Ban summit (217KB) Glen Nevis seen from Stob Ban (223KB) On the ridgeline after Stob Ban (170KB) Mullach nan Coirean (200KB) Stob Ban west face (191KB) Ben Nevis and Glen Nevis (180KB) Meall a Chaorainn (309KB) East view of the Mamores (202KB) South view from Mullach nan Coirean (478KB) Sgurr a Mhaim (157KB) Else and Gro on Mullach nan Coirean (204KB) Dag on Mullach nan Coirean (201KB) Glen Nevis view from Mullach ridge (204KB) Sgurr a Mhaim seen from forest road (170KB)

Other pictures

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Some of the thumbnails may have been cropped to fit the format

Sgurr a Mhaim and Stob Ban seen from Ben Nevis (163KB) Sgurr a Mhaim and Stob Ban seen from Glen Nevis (210KB) Stob Ban seen from Sgurr a Mhaim (232KB)

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