Sir Hugh Munro: Scotland's mountain hero

THE famous Scot is known for drawing up the list of Scotland’s mountains in 1891.

His name has become synomymous with every Scottish mountain which is over 3,000ft.A spokesman for Mountaineering Scotlnad said: "His list has acted as an inspiration and focus for generations of hill-goers, particularly in recent decades, when ‘Munro bagging’ has become increasingly popular, getting people out into the hills and enjoying an active lifestyle."At the time when he drew up his famous Tables, they did much to open up to Scottish mountaineers the great wealth of opportunity on their own doorsteps."They helped establish Scotland internationally as a mountaineering destination and these days you can expect to meet people who have come from all over the world specifically to climb and walk in Scotland’s mountains.Despite his Scottish background, Hugh Thomas Munro was actually born in London, in 1856.The Scottish Mountain Council describe him as the eldest of nine children and was the son of Sir Campbell Munro of Lindertis.They state: The family was Scottish, but divided their time between London and the family estate near Kirriemuir, about 20km north of Dundee, in the county of Forfarshire. The London connections led him to a business training in London."Munro was an original member of the Scottish Mountaineering Club, which was founded in Glasgow, in 1889."He entered politics for a while, standing once as the Conservative for Kirkcaldy Burghs, in 1885. He worked hard at organising the local political life in Forfarshire, and also served on the County Council. "In 1891 the sixth number of the Scottish Mountaineering Club Journal published his now famous ‘Tables of Heights over 3000 Feet.’The MSC states: "Munro was 33 years old when he began his task. At that time he had personally visited only 42 tops."Fellow climbers were invaluable sources of knowledge, as of course were the O.S. one-inch and six-inch maps. He finished the list in the summer of 1891, with a total of 283 separate 3,000-foot mountains."While the original list contained anomalies which would later be corrected, it should also be recognised that given the conditions under which Munro worked it was a remarkably accurate list."Since 1889 there have been only four major revisions. The latest now lists 282 Munro mountains."Ironically, Munro was fated not to climb all the Munros on his list. Having said that, from a strict point of view he had only one mountain left to do, the Carn Cloich-mhuilinn.Over four thousand people have now completed all the MunrosThe list can also be accessed on the Internet, at

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