Highlands & Islands

Views wanted on walks from funicular to Cairn Gorm peak

Cairngorms funicular railway
Image caption Funicular railway passengers have taken part in the walks

A consultation has been launched on whether a trial scheme offering funicular railway passengers guided walks to the summit of Cairn Gorm should be made permanent.

Hillwalkers were not initially allowed to use the funicular as a quick means of reaching the plateau.

Walkers had to start their journey from lower down the mountain in an effort to prevent damage to the environment.

However, a trial scheme offering guided walks to the summit began last year.

More than 10,000 people have taken part in the Walk@The Top events so far.

Those on the walks must return to the top station with their guide, and SNH said there had been 100% compliance with that rule during the trial period.

Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) and Highland Council are now seeking views on making the walks permanent.

The six-week consultation ends on 23 December.

The new walks would require changes to the Cairn Gorm visitor management plan, a legal framework between Highland Council, SNH and CairnGorm Mountain Limited.

Badenoch and Strathspey Conservation Group opposed the walks last year because of concerns it would increase pressure on a fragile environment.

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