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Scottish walkers and climbers ready to hotfoot it back to the hills after easing of five-mile travel limit

By Alasdair Fraser

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The Cairngorm mountains, as seen from Loch Morlich
The Cairngorm mountains, as seen from Loch Morlich

Mountaineering Scotland has welcomed the Scottish Government's green light for hill walkers and climbers to return to the Scottish hills for the first time since lockdown began.

A majority of regulars on the mountains will be able to hit the peaks again following today's lifting of the five-mile travel limit for recreation.

Although the weather forecast predicts rain for the weekend, climbers and walkers from all over Scotland are expected to take advantage of the relaxation.

Mountaineering Scotland's CEO Stuart Younie said: “The lifting of the travel restriction is great news for Mountaineering Scotland members, hill walkers and climbers across Scotland, most of whom have been unable to access the hills and mountains during the last three months.

“We urge anyone heading to the hills to plan ahead and enjoy their activities safely and responsibly while continuing to protect themselves and the communities they may be visiting.

“Remember to stay Covid-19 aware – the virus is still out there and we cannot yet return to normal, so we should all be aware of physical distancing and hand hygiene, and be sensible in our ambitions for the moment.”

From tomorrow (Friday) people – with the exception of those in Dumfries and Galloway – will be able to travel any distance for leisure and recreation.

They will also be able to stay overnight in self-catering accommodation or caravans where there are no shared facilities.

However to help manage visitor numbers over the next couple of weeks the Scottish Government is asking those who want to camp in tents in the wild to wait until the 15th of July.

Mountaineering Scotland counts 14,500 members and also acts for 75,000 members of the British Mountaineering Council on matters related to landscape and access in Scotland.

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