Hostel guests enjoy hot showers for first time in 85 years

A REMOTE Scottish youth hostel is providing hot showers for its guests for the first time in its 85-year history.

A straight line of cairns leads to the large summit cairn and weather station beyond. Picture: Nick Drainey

Walk of the week: Munros challenge - Cairn Gorm

Walking up the sixth highest Munro might not seem like the best cure for a bad back but it works for me. A couple of weeks ago even my chiropractor was perturbed by the twisted nature of my vertebrae and at first seemed surprised I was planning a trip to the Cairngorms. However, the workout given to the upper leg and lower back muscles when going up a steep slope is apparently good for you.

Travel 1
Yellowcraigs. Picture: Nick Drainey

Scottish walks: Dirleton’s beaches, East Lothian

Dirleton is a great Sunday afternoon kind of village with its castle, green and country pub. You wouldn’t really want to leave it when the sun is shining, except for the fact that there are two wonderful beaches a short walk away – Yellowcraig and Broad Sands.

Wind surfers at Tiree. Picture: Ian Rutherford

Roger Cox: Young surfers earn seal of approval on windswept Tiree

On Tiree, the wind is king. Make enough visits to this almost entirely flat little island, poking its snub nose defiantly out into the Atlantic from beneath the skirts of the Western Isles, and you soon come to appreciate its power to dictate your day.

Liane Llewellyn, right, and safety kayak escort Eila Wilkinson enjoy a well-earned dram

Brave physio completes first swim around St Kilda

Just reaching the most remote islands ever inhabited in Scotland is challenge enough for many visitors with wild weather often cancelling trips into the notoriously rough North Atlantic.

Inverness, Highlands & Islands
Newall Hunter heads for the summit of Everest and left he celebrates after reaching the South Pole last year. Picture: Newall Hunter

Scot completes explorer’s ‘grand slam’ on coldest mountain

AN adventurer has become the first Scot to achieve the explorer’s “Grand Slam” by scaling the highest peaks on each of the seven continents and reaching both Poles.

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Underwater photos by freediver and photographer Janeanne Gilchrist

Roger Cox: The hidden world captured by Scots freediver

It’s only been going since 2014, but already Edinburgh’s annual photography festival, Retina, is turning into a serious, city-straddling proposition.

Art 1
A "Star Camp" near Aberfeldy, Perthshire will invite up to 100 people to stargaze. Picture: Ian Rutherford

Astronomers get set for Aberfeldy ‘star camp’ for gazing at night sky

Astronomers from across Britain will take part in a so-called “Star Camp” near Aberfeldy, Perthshire.

Kyle of Durness. Picture: Nick Drainey

Scottish walks: Four of the best this summer holiday

The summer holidays are here and the prospect of spending time in the outdoors stretches out before us. Weather permitting there are many places to explore; beaches are an essential part of this time of year but the mountains are also a wonderful escape while the days are long.

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Mark Boyd of the Scottish Surfing Team. Picture: Ben Reed

Roger Cox: Endless summer beckons for Scots surfing team at Costa Rica

There’s always been a lot at stake at the Scottish Surfing Championships, which these days usually take place in the spring in the world-class waves around Thurso.

A young Robert Glancy

Robert Glancy: ‘I thought it was normal to have a crocodile in the school pond’

Author Robert Glancy was born in Zambia to a Scots father and Irish mother. His new novel, Please Do Not Disturb, draws on his childhood in Malawi, a place he now knows was not as idyllic as it first appeared

No Map Could Show Them

Roger Cox: The ascent of women in mountain climbing

The extraordinary female climbers celebrated in two very different books had to overcome more than mere mountains, writes Roger Cox

Adrian J Walker

How an author’s running in Edinburgh helped his apocalyptic fiction flourish

A writer explains how the picturesque jogging trails around the capital ended in fictional catastrophe

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A slalom race on the Goose at Nevis Range . Picture: Steven McKenna

Roger Cox: Has Scottish skiing really had a disappointing year?

When the five Scottish ski resorts announced their end of season results earlier this month, the media didn’t seem sure what to make of them.

The C-listed Derry Lodge. Picture: Flickr

19th century hunting lodge in Cairngorms could become hostel

PLANS have been submitted to convert a dilapidated 19th-century Cairngorms hunting lodge into a hostel.

Rod Macdonald

Stonehaven wreck diver uncovers secrets of the deep in Palau, Micronesia

For his new book Stonehaven-based wreck diver Rod Macdonald travelled to Palau, Micronesia to explore the 20 Japanese warships sunk there in 1944

Glen Tanar and Mount Keen. Picture:  Nick Drainey

Scottish walks: Glen Tanar and Mount Keen

Walking up Glen Tanar creates a longer route up Mount Keen than from the more popular starting point in Glen Esk to the south.

Roger Cox. Picture: TSPL

Roger Cox: Artificial waves the only way of ensuring reliable surf

There were two significant pieces of news for surfers last week: one exciting, the other... confusing.

The Ancient Pinewoods of Scotland

The ancient pinewoods of Scotland resemble an ancient landscape

Author Clifton Bain traversed the country to research his book, The Ancient Pinewoods of Scotland. Introducing an extract, he describes the haunting beauty of these woods and the need to protect them for the future

Picture: YouTube

Tourist captures ‘Loch Ness Monster’ on video

A VIDEO captured by a holidaymaker visiting Loch Ness has caused a stir on social media as to whether it is a video of the famous monster.

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