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£100k improvements planned for popular Scottish trails

NatureScot is funding almost £111,000 of improvements to the path network, including many on Scotland’s Great Trails such as the West Highland Way. The aim is to reduce barriers and improve access for all. With a big increase in the number of people heading to the outdoors and connecting with nature over the past year, and more than 70% of the Scottish population living within 5 miles of a Great Trail, much of the work is designed to improve the accessibility of the network. The Clyde Walkway will benefit from around £20,000 for a new wooden boardwalk and the replacement

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Posted in Magazine, News

Long Covid – a hillwalker’s experience

Jackie Baxter, a keen hill bagger, wild camper and lover of the outdoors, describes her struggle after contracting Covid-19 at the age of 30. It’s early March 2020 and I’m plodding my way along a track in the Borders, exhausted and out of breath This seems a bit odd given that the gradient is virtually flat, I’m walking slowly and I’m used to long days in the outdoors. Putting it down to an “off” day, I push myself through the rest of the walk, getting more and more exhausted with every step and let Malky, my other half, drive home.

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Posted in Features, Magazine

Consultation begins on return of lynx to Scotland

An extensive and impartial study to assess people’s views about the possible reintroduction of Eurasian lynx to the Scottish Highlands is being launched this month by a new partnership of the charities SCOTLAND: The Big Picture, Trees for Life and Vincent Wildlife Trust. Ecological research has shown that extensive areas of Scotland could support lynx, but the charities say returning the shy and elusive animal is less about science and more about people’s willingness to live alongside a species that’s become forgotten on these shores. The year-long Lynx to Scotland consultation will impartially and accurately assess public and stakeholder attitudes around the idea of lynx reintroduction, including in rural

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Posted in Magazine, Nature, News

Hill walking paradise gets path upgrade

A popular route up one of our most iconic hills will be easier for walkers, and less damaging to the mountain, thanks to work that has just been completed on Quinag, in the north west Highlands. The work was undertaken by ACT Heritage and managed by the John Muir Trust, who maintain the mountain’s extensive path network which provides access to the summit and stunning views over the peaks and lochans of Sutherland, and beyond. It was funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund, through the Coigach & Assynt Living Landscape Partnership scheme, and through the generosity of John Muir

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Posted in Magazine, Nature, News

Data shows most Scots staying local for walks

An analysis of walkhighlands traffic data suggests that most people in Scotland are respecting the Coronavirus travel restrictions when taking their outdoor exercise. There has been a huge shift away from searches for walks in remoter parts of the Highlands, with record people searching out walks close to the cities of Glasgow and Edinburgh, and the rest of the central belt. “We all tend to get discouraged by stories on social media about people flouting the rules and travelling wherever they like,” said site co-founder Helen Webster. “Undoubtedly such people exist, and they tend to generate a lot of noise

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Posted in Access issues, Magazine, News, Walkhighlands news

Booking holidays in Scotland for 2021

From Boxing Day, all accommodation in Scotland closed for leisure travel and holidays, and will stay closed for an initial period of 3 weeks. Currently, no-one knows for certain when travel restrictions will begin to be lifted once more, as the vaccination programme gathers pace. Although many people are desperate to be able to have a good holiday break when things improve, the current climate means that some are holding off on making any bookings for 2021 until the situation is clearer. However, this may risk any chance of securing a 2021 holiday at all. There is likely to be

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Posted in Magazine, News, Walkhighlands news

Cairngorm snow gates closed at Glenmore

The snow gates on the road up to Cairngorm were closed at Glenmore on Christmas Eve, and are set to remain closed during the current Coronavirus restrictions. This means there is currently no vehicle access to the Coire Cas or Coire na Ciste car parks, nor to the Forestry and Land Scotland car parks at the Sugar Bowl and Allt Mor, even for local residents. We were informed of the closure by Forestry and Land Scotland, who pointed out that they were not involved in the decision, which was requested by Cairngorm Mountain, who have said that Highland Council and

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Posted in Access issues, Magazine, News, Walkhighlands news

Brain Games

The mountains in winter are both exciting and dangerous. David Lintern takes a look at what happens in our heads when we’re lost in the moment outdoors – whether we are ‘beginners’ or ‘experts’. A couple of months ago I had an accident in my boat on the River Findhorn. My friend Debra and I had enjoyed a glorious afternoon paddling under a bluebird sky flanked by broadleaf trees in full autumn psychedelia. We’d paddled all the rapids we’d set out to, bathed in the blissful tranquillity of the flat stretches in-between and finished earlier than planned. It was just

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Posted in Features, Magazine

#ThinkWINTER mountain safety campaign launched

It’s International Mountain Day, and Mountaineering Scotland and Scottish Mountain Rescue are amongst a group of partner organisations launching the 2020 #ThinkWINTER campaign to encourage and help people to be safer in the outdoors and the mountains this winter. This summer saw a noticeable increase in the number of people heading for the outdoors and, with foreign travel opportunities still limited due to coronavirus, it’s likely that many will carry on their new hobby through the winter, domestic COVID restrictions permitting. The core messages from Mountaineering Scotland are: • Check the COVID protection measures where you live and where you

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Posted in Magazine, News

Scottish Avalanche Forecasts start for winter 20/21

Avalanche hazard warnings will be produced daily for all Scottish mountain areas from today Friday 11 December. Forecasts will be provided by the Scottish Avalanche Information Service (SAIS) for the following areas: Lochaber, Glen Coe, Creag Meagaidh, Southern Cairngorms, Northern Cairngorms and Torridon until mid April. As well as providing detailed daily forecasts which hillwalkers can use in combination with weather reports to plan their routes, the SAIS builds up a record of avalanche activity across Scotland. Last season there were 241 avalanches, 27 of them human triggered and one fatality; the previous year there were three deaths. Hillwalkers and

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Posted in Magazine, News


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Walking can be dangerous and is done entirely at your own risk. Information is provided free of charge; it is each walker's responsibility to check it and navigate using a map and compass.