Munro Bagging in Scotland
Bagging (or reaching the summit of) a Munro, a mountain of at least 3,000 feet, is one of thebestways to see the wonders of Scotland from a different viewpoint. Providing breathtaking views, unrivalled scenery and wildlife, as well as a number of seasons in one walk, Munro bagging is an experience in itself, with nothing quite like it. And with Scotland boasting 282 Munros and 227 subsidiary tops, you’ll be spoiled for choice.
If this sounds like it’s up your street then you won’t be alone as thousands of people are now pulling on their hiking boots every year to tick another off their list. The activity of Munro bagging has seen a recent surge in popularity and become somewhat of a phenomenon in Scotland, with many tourists travelling to the country to see what all of the fuss is about. For a hugely fun activity, little experience is required to navigate the first or indeed, every other Munro following that.
You can also maximise your stay and bag a few Munros in the space of just two or three days – many now plan a Munro bagging weekend to make the most of their time in Scotland.
Some Munro Bagging Facts
- Munro bagging isn’t a new activity, as Reverend AE Robertson was reportedly the first person tocomplete the first round of Munros in 1901 (reaching the summit of all 282 Munros). Some of his climbs were speculative however, and Ronald Burn in 1923 is looked upon by others as officially the first to achieve a round.
- Sir Hugh Munro compiled the first ever full list of Munros (hence the name), the ‘Munro’s Tables’, in 1891.
- Ben Nevis, the highest mountain in the UK is arguably the most well-known of the Munros, standing at 4,411 ft (1,345 m).
- The fastest round was carried out by Stephen Pyke in 2010 who managed to bag all the Munros in 39 days and 9 hours. He also didn’t use any forms of motorised transport and even cycled and kayaked between each of the Munros.
- Remarkably, the youngest person who has completed a round of the Munros was 10 year old Ben Fleetwood, who finished the last of his Munros in August 2011.
- 13 rounds of the 282 Munros is the current record which was achieved by Steven Fallon in 2006.
Tips for Beginners
For those setting off to bag their first Munro, there are some fantastic hiking tools readily available for you – from interactive maps to detailed guides, these tools will allow you to make the most of your time climbing the mountain and to help you enjoy it as much as possible.
Here are a few munro bagging tips to get you started:
- Plan Ahead
Scotland’s fantastic climate is unpredictable. It may be the middle of summer but it’s possible that you may still experience four seasons in one day. Take plenty of snacks and water, check the weather forecast and plan your route, letting someone know where you are going.
- Layers, Layers, Layers
Hiking is an arduous task and as you ascend and descend, temperatures can fluctuate – you are at the top of a mountain after all, and it is Scotland. By wearing layers, including a waterproof jacket, you can peel off and add back on as required.
- These Boots are Made for Walking
Investing in a good pair of walking boots and breaking them in could help your feet last the journey and avoid the much dreaded blisters afterwards.
- Are you Camera Ready?
When you finally make it to the top, you’ll want to capture the amazing views on offer so remember your camera or phone (and make sure it has plenty of battery) as you will want to remember the moment.