On 3 June I touched the summit cairn on Ben Hope in the Far North of Scotland 39 days 9 hours and 6 minutes after starting the climb of Ben More on Mull to complete the fastest round of all the Munros. The next part of my Challenge is to persuade 100 new people to join the John Muir Trust. You can join the JMT online by visiting their website via the link on this page.
Starting with Ben More on the Isle of Mull I have set myself the challenge of climbing all of Scotland's 3,000 ft mountains, better known as the Munros, on a continuous round. The stunningly beautiful Scottish Highlands is an area I fell in love with when I climbed my first Munro, the iconic Buchaille Etive Mor at the head of Glen Coe, back in April 1999. Since then this magnificent landscape has inspired a dream...There have been a number of continuous rounds of the Munros since Hamish Brown first achieved the feat entirely on foot in the summer of 1974. The fastest round was set by Charlie Campbell who climbed all 284 Munros in just 48 days 12 hours – averaging a marathon a day whilst climbing more than 10,000ft! My aim is to complete a round of the Munros under my own steam (on foot, cycling and paddling) and, maybe see if I can come close to Charlie’s incredible record.
I am keen that through my efforts I can give something back to this magnificent landscape, which is why I have chosen to promote the work of the John Muir Trust, Britain’s leading wild lands charity. Named after the pioneering conservationist John Muir, the Trust aims to conserve, protect and restore wild places. The Trust’s ethos and approach fits very closely with my own thinking and is why I was very happy when they agreed to support my round. I would encourage you to read more about the Trust’s work - http://www.jmt.org/home.asp - and to consider becoming a member and getting actively involved. All donations made through my web pages will go directly to the Trust.
The clock is now ticking to the start date of 25 April. It's been a busy winter - as well as working out the best route, there has been the huge logistical task of organising the vital back-up support needed to keep me on track. I already need to thank the many friends who have kindly offered to come up to the Highlands and either accompany me in the mountains or provide support from the roads and at overnight stops. It would be good to see a few more of you out on the hills.
You can follow my progress on http://munros2010.blogspot.com/