An outlier of the Cuillin, Bla Bheinn is regarded by many as the finest mountain on Skye.
Often anglicised to “Blaven”, it’s the only one of the island’s 12 Munros not on the main Cuillin ridge.
It’s separated from the rest of the group by Strath na Creitheach, and that isolation means it can be appreciated as a single mountain, rather than a complex mass of jagged peaks like the main ridge.
With its separation and distinctive outline, Bla Bheinn stands out in many views and is easily identifiable – even from distant mainland mountains.
Bla Bheinn’s distance from the rest of the Cuillin makes it perhaps the best viewpoint on the island for the main range. It looks close enough to touch but is significantly far away to give a proper sense of perspective.
It’s a great viewpoint, too, for the Red Hills – or Red Cuillin as they’re sometimes known. They’re beautiful hills themselves, but much smaller and far more rounded than their more dramatic cousins.
One of the best days out on Skye is the Clach Glas – Bla Bheinn traverse. It’s a graded climb – a “moderate” by the easiest line – so rock climbing and abseiling skills are necessary. There’s no walking route on Clach Glas, which is a sheer blade of rock linked to the main summit by a ridge, and its summit is a real prize.
Bla Bheinn is a popular hill and a more accessible and easier climb than the other Cuillin peaks. The “normal” route, which I recommend, is from a car park near the head of Loch Slapin.
It’s a relatively short day, but, while “easier” than other Cuillin summits, it’s still a challenge; very rocky with a little bit of scrambling required. A superb introduction to the Cuillin.