Ben A'an is a 454m high hill situated next to Loch Katrine and Loch Achray. On the south side Ben A’an is forested. On top there are many rock outcrops and some cliffs. Even though Ben A’an is not a high mountain the views are very good. From the peak you can see Loch Katrine, Loch Achray, and Ben Venue which is just next to Ben A’an. The translation of “Ben A’an" means “Small Pointed Peak”.
Ben A’an is very popular among tourists and suitable for hill-walking beginners. Therefore it can become well-visited during good weather conditions. Some parts of the walk are quite steep though. There are even some possibilities for climbing walls and cracks which dry relatively quickly after rain. Most climbs don’t exceed a length of 30m but can be combined with other climbs. Ben A’an can be seen from the south shores of Loch Achray where the Duke’s Pass follows the loch.
Starting from Tigh Mhor (an imposing 'Castle Looking' Stone Building overlooking Loch Achray) make your way west towards the woods that spread up the hill (opposite a small carpark). The path up to Ben A'an starts here with no warm-up as you start with a climb, passing through Larch plantations and mixed woodlands while walking beside the Allt Inneir Burn. The route is varied with a lot of scrambling up rocks, but perservere as the constantly changing views are worth the scrambling. The final assault is the most challenging, weaving at times through a constantly changing and rocky stream. Nearing the top you can continue on the obvious route ahead and approach the summit from the North, or if you are feeling adverturous, veer off to the left and there is a small chimney route again on the left on the crest of a small coll. It just adds a nice alternative.
Ben A'an must have one of the most rewarding views in terms of effort & time put in. Weather & time of day permitting you may be lucky enough to see the 100 year old SS Sir Walter Scott sailing up Loch Katrine and in the distance the distinctive crabby top of The Cobbler.
To get to the starting point of Ben A’an follow the A821 either from Kilmahog (by Callander) or from Aberfoyle. However, the road from Aberfoyle is the more interesting one as it goes along the Dukes Pass in The Queen Elizabeth Forest Park and offers some good views to the surrounding area including Ben A'an and Ben Venue.
Other hills nearby
For those who like to combine climbing Ben A’an and other hills or mountains, there are many possibilities in the area. Just a few hundred metres south-west of Ben A’an Car Park starts the path up to Ben Venue. This neighbour is 729m high and the walk has a length of approximately 5km. The highest hill of the Trossachs is Ben Ledi and offers fantastic views on Loch Lubnaig and Loch Venachar.