11 Munros to try within two hours of the Central Belt

An Caisteal. Picture: Contributed
An Caisteal. Picture: Contributed
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Despite being home to 282 peaks over 3,000ft, reaching Scotland’s highest mountains can still be quite an undertaking if you don’t live in the Highlands.

There are, however, a handful of these peaks within two hours of the Central Belt, ensuring that a Munro-bagging adventure is never out of the question.

Ben More and Stob Binnein. Picture: John McSporran

Ben More and Stob Binnein. Picture: John McSporran

Ben Vorlich and Stuc a Chroin

Perched over the banks of Loch Earn, this pair of Munros are easily accessed from the Central Belt.

Ben Vorlich is as straightforward as they come, a gradual and forgiving climb - each look back offering an improved view of the pretty Loch Earn below.

Stuc a Chroin is a different proposition altogether; an awkward scramble up craggy terrain may be unpopular with an acrophobic climber.

This scramble can be avoided with a slight detour northwards, however this still involves an awkward and steep walk up a grassy slope.

Time from Edinburgh: 1 hour 44 minutes

Time from Glasgow: 1 hour 23 minutes

Ben Lomond

Ben Lomond’s proximity to Glasgow often makes it the mountain of choice for first-time Munro baggers.

A relatively easy climb, Ben Lomond is often busy on weekends and during school holidays - if you’re looking for a quiet climb head up on a weekday in spring or autumn.

The walk itself is relatively straightforward, a well marked and trodden path making it very difficult to get a lost.

An intrepid walker should look to incorporate the Ptarmigan ridge to the south-west for the return home.

Time from Edinburgh: 1 hour 50 minutes

Time from Glasgow: 1 hour 6 minutes

Beinn Chabhair

This fine Munro is a short drive for Glaswegians, but a great deal further for Edinburghers.

The trip is worthwhile for citizens of the capital though, as Beinn Chabhair offers delightful views of neighbouring Munros An Caisteal and Beinn a’ Chroin, as well as Loch Long.

For the first three quarters of the ascent, the walk is simple enough, however a bumpy and rocky finish makes for a fun finale.

Time from Edinburgh: 2 hours 5 minutes

Time from Glasgow: 1 hour 11 minutes

An Caisteal and Beinn a’ Chroin

Located a short distance from Beinn Chabhair, this pair of Munros can make for a great day out for anyone living in the Central Belt.

An exquisite ridge walk with views from Glen Lomond to Ben Nevis is the highlight of this stroll.

The walk tends to last around six or seven hours, with a drive either side that can make for a long day.

However walkers can take pride in knowing that they’ve ticked off two more peaks over 3,000 feet.

Time from Edinburgh: 2 hours 12 minutes

Time from Glasgow: 1 hour 30 minutes

Meall Nan Tarmachan

Thanks to a high starting point, Meall nan Tarmachan is one of the easier Munros to bag.

The Tarmachan ridge is by no means on the Central Belt’s doorstep, but the shortish walk makes the climb and drive achievable in a single day.

Once you reach the peak of Meall nan Tarmachan make sure that you descend via the Tarmachan ridge to ensure a truly rewarding walk.

Fine views of the Ben Lawers range, Loch Tay and Lochan na Lairige reward those who undertake the climb.

Time from Edinburgh: 2 hours 6 minutes

Time from Glasgow: 1 hour 43 minutes

Beinn Narnain and Ben Ime

This pair of Munros is actually closer to Glasgow than the far more popular Ben Lomond.

It’s hard to think why, as Beinn Narnain and Ben Ime make up possibly the most spectacular walk in the Southern Highlands.

The route up Beinn Narnain involves some low-grade scrambling and from its peak the terrain up Ben Ime is mildly boggy, but the route overall is relatively safe.

Views of The Cobbler on the way up are sensational, so be sure to bag this pair on a clear day.

Time from Edinburgh: 1 hour 59 minutes

Time from Glasgow: 58 minutes

Stob Binnein and Ben More

The countryside of Crianlarich is dominated by the peak of Ben More and its neighbour Stob Binnein.

This walk’s unrelenting incline will put the strain on climbers’ legs on the way up and take it out on their knees on the way down.

However the view from Ben More to Stob Binnein over the deep Bealach that separate the pair of Munros will make it worth your while.

Taking eight hours and located around two hours from both Edinburgh and Glasgow, walkers might want to consider camping or staying at a nearby hostel.

Time from Edinburgh: 2 hours 6 minutes

Time from Glasgow: 1 hour 44 minutes

• All travel times taken from Google Maps

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