Project LP.A4 (2014 - 2016)

North Face Survey

It's all over!

Three years of geological & botanical surveying on Britain's biggest mountain has drawn to a close however the results from the final year remain to be collated, analysed and put together nicely in a report for all of us to get a grasp on just how big a job this was.

Year one was the first time the team got an idea of the scale of this mammoth project. The logistics of hauling climbing gear, rope and each other all over the side of the UK's biggest mountain was challenging to say the least and the weather was less than friendly! Despite these challenges the team completed training and an amazing exchange of knowledge took place between botanists, geologists and mountaineers throughout the course of the week-long survey. Film-maker Dave MacLeod captured the entire survey in our short documentary Ben Nevis: The Hidden Side, click to have a watch.

Year two picked up where year one left off and another fortnight of exploring, recording, mapping and rigging began. Amongst visits from BBC Out of Doors & Landward the team made discoveries of new populations of rare alpine plant species and collected huge amounts of geological data using an innovative mobile-app called FieldMove.

Year three's final survey week took place in August and after five days of hard-work and surveying this ground-breaking project came to a close. What a fantastic experience for all involved, a huge thanks to all of you. The final year was very, very wet but our team tackled the weather to record even more plant locations, take even more geological field notes, get everyone dangled into slimy gullies and up awkward scree slopes; all in the name of science & conservation! Now the hours of collating and assessing the data gathered begins to form the first comprehensive botanical map of Ben Nevis and Midland Valley will add their field notes from this year to their already impressive 3D Map of Ben Nevis to complete it and hopefully finally reveal how this wonderful mountain came to be.

Well done North Face Survey Team 2014 - 2016!



Project Brief

Project Report (Year One)

Project Report (Year Two)

Project Report (Year Three)

GeoScientist Article (Year One)

Botanical Society Article (Year One)

The Guardian Article (Final Year)

Photo Essay; Murdo MacLeod (Final Year)

The North Face Survey is generously funded by Heritage Lottery Fund & Scottish Natural Heritage.

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