The Munros refers to a group of mountains in Scotland whose summits above 3,000ft above sea level. They are named after Sir Hugh Munro, who first produced a list of all peaks above this height in 1891.
There are 282 Munros and 227 Munro Tops (lesser peaks which are above 3,000ft but too close to - and not distinct or separate enough from - higher nearby Munros to count in their own right), according to the current list of the Scottish Mountaineering Club.
The largest Munro is - of course - Ben Nevis, which stands at 1,344m (4,413ft), making it the highest mountain in the UK.
Munro-bagging is the attempt to climb to the summit of all 282 Munros, and various other types of challenge have arisen involving the mountains - from 'bagging' all of the Munros in a continuous round (for which the record is staggeringly just short of 32 days) to completing all of the peaks multiple times (the record is a whopping 16 rounds!), to 'self-propelled' rounds involving walking or cycling between all of the peaks rather than driving or using public transport. Those who bag all 282 Munros are called 'Munroists'. A list of Munroists is maintained by the Scottish Mountaineering Club, which as of 2020 had well over 6,000 people on it.
By traditional geographic definitions, all of the Munros are in the Highlands, however not all Munros are in the Highland Council area, but let's not get into the whole 'Where are the Highlands?' thing again...
Bagging a Munro is a hugely rewarding experience and can give a great sense of achievement. If you feel like bagging a Munro or several during your visit to the Scottish Highlands, Walkhighlands has an excellent set of guides to the ascent(s) up each of the Munros, including information on the route, terrain and any challenges or special features to look out for. Please take care in the mountains and ensure you have the correct gear and are fit for the walk - the weather at the summit of a Munro can be very different from the valleys below, and you should be prepared for it to change quickly. The safety advice prepared by the Scottish Mountain Rescue is very helpful to prepare you for ascending a Munro.
If you'd like to climb a Scottish peak but Munros are a stretch too far for you, try one of the 222 Corbetts (2,500 to 3,000ft high with at least 500ft of prominence) or the 219 Grahams (2,000-2,500ft), which should be plenty to keep you busy!
Image: Unsplash / v2osk