Variety of theme and good attendances have characterised this winter's lecture series. Suggestions for future talks are now welcomed. Normally NEMT organises six lectures but this year a seventh took place in April 08 when, along with the Cairngorm Campaign, we arranged for Irvine Butterfield to talk on America's National Parks [From Yellowstone to Yosemite – United Services Club, 15 Bon Accord Square]. This lecture saw the launch of Harvey's new map of the Cairngorms.

Pioneered by HARVEY, with BMC, MCofS and BGS, this map is the same format as the universally popular "Lake District" and "Ben Nevis and Glencoe" editions. Printed in tough polyethylene, 100% waterproof

For walkers, mountaineers and climbers

Full Geological map of Cairngorms Mountain; Incident and First Aid advice; Climbing Crag Route diagrams on the back. Available at ever mountaineering shop worth their socks! RRP £ 12.95

Given past conflicts, NEMT was keen to hear about Cairngorm Mountain's proposals for a 'National Centre for the Mountain Environment'. Bob Kinnaird, Chief Executive of Cairngorm Mountain [September 07 - A New Vision for Cairngorm], described the steps the company is taking to make the current enterprise more ecologically sound. The idea of an 'Eden Project of the North' is at an early stage, and the devil may well be in the detail, however the company is to be commended on its adoption of green principles. We await developments with interest.

In October 07, a large crowd welcomed back Andy Nisbet, Scotland's winter climbing phenomenon [The North West - A Winter Climbing Playground].The turf of Glen Shiel, the cracks of Ben Eighe and the icefalls of Foinaven- nothing has been safe from Andy's picks. As enthusiastic as ever after thirty years, he even promised us a snowy winter based on his seven year cycle theory [partially true!- ed.]. He would not, however, let us into the secrets of his plans for the season!

From the cruel to the comical, Alan Stewart, Wildlife and Environmental Officer- Tayside Police] had a fund of stories about poachers and persecutors [December 07 - Wildlife Detective- Forty Years Investigating Wildlife Crime]. The audience came away much more aware of what to look out for and what we should do if we have concerns.

We like to see mountains as symbols of the permanent but Peter Craig [geologist and teacher] turned this on its head and presented them as transient protuberances on the earth's crust [January 08 - Scotland's Mountains- Why are they there?]. Peter told a fascinating story of how Scotland was originally at the South Pole and how our hills rose through continents colliding and volcanoes erupting but also how, the minute they finished growing, gravity and ice began to wear them down. [Peter contributes to projects supporting the teaching of earth sciences in schools and can be contacted at].

Starting in Applecross and ending on the Ben, Guy Robertson [February 08 - Torquing Adventure] took us on a modern extreme alpinism trip to places as far afield as the Lofoten Islands in winter, Peru and the Jorasses. Guy's light and humorous touch belied the seriousness and difficulty of these impressive endeavours.

Roger Owen and friends [March 08 - Walking the Roof of Scotland] shoulder heavy packs in the Cairngorm car park and disappeared into the mist. Moving west in improving weather, tantalising glimpses of their final objective kept appearing. Scotland's highest hills were traversed culminating in a heatwave on the summit of Nevis. Roger demonstrated that we do not need to travel the world to find demanding but enjoyable challenges.

George Allan
Lectures' Organiser

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