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Monthly Archives: January 2010

Highland Council Access Officer objects to Alladale licence

With its application for a zoo licence pending, Alladale Estate has come under fire with local Highland Council Access Officer Matt Dent objecting to the renewal of its current licence under the Dangerous Wild Animals Act. According to the Press and Journal, Mr Dent’s objection concerns the obstruction of access rights by the current scheme, following a complaint sent to Mr Dent by a mountaineer who had difficulty in descending from the hills past the enclosures. The Mountaineering Council of Scotland’s access and conservation officer Hebe Carus told the P&J “It’s an important mountaineering area as the ridge on which

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Posted in Uncategorized

Epic Ben Nevis climbs at Mountain Fest

Next month top climbers Dave MacLeod and Andy Turner will attempt to recreate a legendary era of climbing on Ben Nevis, 50 years on, while making a film for the Fort William Mountain Festival. In 1960, Jimmy Marshall and Robin Smith were the first to ascend six routes on Ben Nevis in winter conditions. These ascents, made without the aid of modern equipment, are highly respected by climbers. The following quote from Colin Wells’ Who’s Who in British Climbing says it all, “In one legendary week on Ben Nevis in 1960 Jimmy Marshall and Robin Smith advanced Scottish winter climbing

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Posted in Uncategorized

Add OS maps to your walk reports on Walkhighlands

Walkhighlands is used by many walkers for sharing their walking experiences and photos with Walk Reports. In a unique new feature we’ve now made it possible to easily illustrate where you went on your walk using Ordnance Survey mapping, both at Explorer and Landranger scales. You no longer need a GPS device – nor even to upload or download any files. How to put a map in your reports When adding a new trip report on the Forum there is now a link to ‘Draw route’. This opens up a new window containing an OS map. Type in the area

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Posted in Uncategorized

West Harris buy out completed

The West Harris Trust has completed its purchase of more than 16,000 acres of government-owned land. The Trust raised almost £70,000 from various bodies to buy the three crofting estates – Scaristavore, Borve and Luskentyre on Harris in the Western Isles. The land had been owned by the Scottish Government. Grants were provided by Highlands and Islands Enterprise, the local authority Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, the Big Lottery Fund, and a loan from local housing organisation Tighean Innse Gall. 123 people live in the area but only one is below school age and there have been worries about maintaining the

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Posted in Uncategorized

Outdoors celebration planned for Scott

The 200th anniversary of the publication of Sir Walter Scott’s poem Lady of the Lake, is to be celebrated in a series of outdoor events later this year, including a new walking trail around Loch Katrine. Scott’s work transformed popular perspectives on landscape and generated the first surge of tourists to the Trossachs and Scotland. The new event, Scottsland – Celebrating the Language of the Landscape will run from June to October this year. It will include a varied programme of cultural and literary events to take place throughout the Trossachs. These include a new art and literary trail around

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Posted in News

Heather Hopper funding withdrawn

The Cairngorms National Park Authority is to stop funding the Heather Hopper bus service which currently runs in the summer months. The heavily-subsidised service, which runs twice a day in the summer and connects Ballater to Grantown on Spey with connecting buses to Aberdeen, only carried an average of 40 passengers a week last year. The National Park said it would consider how best to use funds to provide transport. As well as making the Park more accessible, one aim of the Heather Hopper service was to reduce car use and lower the carbon footprint of the Park.

Posted in Access issues

Balmoral access bust up

The Westminster and Holyrood Governments have had a serious bust up over access to paths at Balmoral resulting in a humiliating climbdown by a Scottish Minister. It is understood that the Home Office put Roseanna Cunningham, Scottish Environment Minister, under pressure to scrap plans to include two paths near Balmoral Castle on a new paths map because of alleged worries about royal security. Previously Buckingham Palace, the UK Government and top police officers had expressed concerns about the inclusion of two paths on the new Core Paths Plan being developed by the Cairngorms National Park Authority. Ms Cunningham had dismissed

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Posted in Access issues

GO Outdoors plans major Scottish expansion

The UK’s fastest growing outdoor retailer GO Outdoors is to open five new superstores in Scotland in the next two years. The expansion will begin in March when its second Scottish superstore opens in Clydebank. In a break with traditional outdoor store layouts the new store will feature a centre-piece family-friendly five-metre high indoor climbing wall will allow customers to experience indoor rock climbing. GO Outdoors already operates Scotland’s largest outdoor superstore in Coatbridge. The 70,000 square feet store opened in 2007. In addition to the new superstore in Clydebank, the Sheffield-based company is targeting two more openings in the

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Posted in Uncategorized

Plans for Bungee-jumping venue in Perthshire

Perth and Kinross councillors will today meet to decide whether to approve plans for the construction of the UK’s first dedicated bungee jumping platform. The structure would be built from the Garry Bridge (on Walkhighlands’ Bealach na Searmoin walk between Pitlochry and Killiecrankie). A company, Highland Fling, has been set up especially to promote the development. Phillip Riddle, chair of VisitScotland, was reported on the BBC as stressing the economic importance of adventure tourism, “whether it’s climbing, or walking, sailing, or bungee jumping”, whilst the John Muir Trust warned that there is a danger that such developments could harm the

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Posted in Uncategorized

MSP call to limit hill tracks

The Scottish Parliament will soon get the chance to debate whether the cutting of new tracks in Scotland’s hills and mountains should be more tightly controlled. Following lobbying from the Mountaineering Council of Scotland (MCofS) previously reported on Walkhighlands, a Labour MSP has lodged a motion in the Scottish Parliament to control such hill tracks. Labour’s environment spokeswoman Sarah Boyack asked sumbitted the motion which calls on the Scottish Government to tighten planning regulations on where new routes through the hills could be cut. Announcing the potential measure, Ms Boyack said, “The magnificent scenery in the Scottish uplands deserves to

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Posted in Nature


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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.