If you haven't yet tackled a Munro (a mountain over 3000 ft high) then Ben Lomond is a popular peak to start with.
I have heard it described as an easy Munro, but believe me, there is no such thing! No matter how good the path is and how straightforward the climb, you still have to get your body up a steep hill over 3000 feet high.
Nothing easy about that, especially if you are a pensioner like me!
As always, my technique is just to go slow and steady - letting all the fit young things pass by - I get there in the end!
The views both on the way up Ben Lomond, and at the top are just amazing - making it a very worthwhile climb.
This climb should take you 5.5 - 6 hours. The temperature can drop dramatically by the time you reach the top - go properly equipped.
Ben Lomond -Part 1 - Getting There.
Follow the B837 through Balmaha and keep going until the road ends in the car park at Rowardennan. This is your start point.
The car park is ample, and there is an information centre and toilets. There is a charge for parking, which at the time of writing was a very reasonable £3.00 for the day.
The road from Balmaha to Rowardennan is narrow in places with some steep hairpin bends - take it easy as this road is also used by walkers on the West Highland Way.
Ben Lomond - Part 2
The path begins behind the information centre.
It passes through woodland and you immediately start to climb.
The summit of Ben Lomond, which is not visible from the car park, soon comes into view - and you know you have a climb ahead of you!
As you continue to climb, the summit disappears from view again, but now there are fine views looking up towards the Tarbet end of the loch.
Ben Lomond - Part 3
Finally you clear the woods.
The summit re-appears and you realise that there is still a good distance to go.
The path goes up the right hand side, before cutting across the front to reach the top.
Now you are rewarded with views over the islands at the bottom end of the loch, and great views of The Cobbler and The Arrochar Alps in the other direction.
Ben Lomond - Part 4 - The Final Peak
It is a steep push up the right hand side of the final peak.
Now as the path swings left to cross over to the summit, you get views over Loch Ard, and in the distance, The Lake of Menteith
The path now is fairly level. A couple of rocky places to negotiate and you are nearly there.
Stop to admire the magnificent corrie on the right hand side before you eventually make it to the summit.
Finally, sit down and rest, and admire the views!
Return the same way as you came.