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Scotland's Best Small Mountains (Cicerone Guides) Paperback – 13 May 2010

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Cicerone Press; 01 edition (13 May 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1852845783
  • ISBN-13: 978-1852845780
  • Product Dimensions: 11.7 x 1.8 x 17.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 588,255 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

About the Author

Kirstie Shirra is a freelance writer and environmental campaigner. Climbing mountains since she could walk, she has travelled throughout Europe and the Americas but always ends up back in the wonderful mountains of northwest Scotland where she now lives with her partner Pete.

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Format: Paperback
Kirstie Shirra's wonderful guidebook is the antithesis of the list-ticking, Munro-bagging approach to Scotland's mountains. For those of us who would rather climb a hill because of its quality rather than its quantity, then Ms Shirra has produced a fine guide to an assortment of Scotland's very best. Her route descriptions are informed and also engaging, bringing out the individual character of the mountains she describes; the warmth she feels for the hills in her book is tangible.

As well as all the useful 'getting there' information you'd expect from a Cicerone guidebook, I particularly appreciated the 'something else' caption included with the route information. This points readers in the direction of nearby visitor attractions, sites of interest or just a top pub or tea and cake opportunity. I also really liked the pictures of Kirstie's friends (male, female, all ages)out among the hills with smiles on their faces.

Without putting too a fine a point on it, this book benefits from having been written by a woman who really enjoys the mountain environment of her homeland. It makes a refreshing change from some of the mountain-collecting manuals out there.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Handy Hill Walkers Guide 6 Jun. 2012
By applewood - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I recently had the pleasure of using this little guide to the smaller mountains of Scotland (the ones smaller than the "Munros" which are the country's 284 peaks greater than 3000' elevation), and found it accurate and easy to use. It is part of a series of literally dozens of guides that Cicerone publishes for the specific outdoor activities and regions of the UK. I liked the fact it covered all the areas I was wanting to visit, and did so by selecting only 40 choice routes. (The book is organized by regions, with an overview map of the routes covered in each, then a more detailed description of each walk including a close up topo and photos.)

This book helps with providing a quality introduction to a given region, often via not the most famous or popular walk. We did 2 of the walks covered (#'s 11 & 21), and found the descriptions accurate, and the routes outstanding. Once we were on an established route we could then spot others nearby that we wanted to do next, sometimes these were Munros, sometimes not, and most often all you need in Scotland for an adventurous walk is a topo map (there is a wonderful walker-friendly national policy of "right to roam" which allows anyone to go anywhere as long as you respect other's privacy, and the open topography makes route finding, at least in clear weather, pretty simple). Also local advice is a great way to find quality walks, but this book was helpful in providing a knowledgable starting point and reference.

Initially it was a little hard to use the guide as Scottish mountains are often named in Gaelic which is so foreign to this English speaker that it was hard to remember, let alone pronounce the words. It would have helped to have a single map at the beginning that shows all the routes covered. Instead the book ends with a table of all 40 routes, the pages they are found, and a brief description of quality, length and time involved. This is a most helpful reference. What we ended up doing was just skimming through the guide looking for attractive photos and descriptions, then planning our itinerary around those regions.

Finally, besides being well conceived, organized and written, this book also is the perfect size for walking - small enough to slip into a hip pocket, and covered in a weather resistant jacket.
3.0 out of 5 stars the trail descriptions were ok but we found it difficult ... 17 July 2014
By Robert B Brodie - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
the trail descriptions were ok but we found it difficult to find to locate the mountains as there were no maps. if you weren't from the UK you didn't know the local names.
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