David at journey’s end after 35 years on the hills

David Bethune and party scale last Munro.
David Bethune and party scale last Munro.

SELKIRK community council secretary David Bethune has completed a 35-year quest, reaching the summit of Aonach Mor – his final Munro.

He is pictured on the summit with family and friends who joined him as he completed the list.

The Munros are the 283 mountains in Scotland more than 3,000ft high.

“I climbed my first back in 1976 as a student, so it has taken me a long time, but I’ve enjoyed them all,” said David. “Getting to each Munro has taken me to some beautiful parts of Scotland never seen by the average tourist.

“It’s hard to pick a favourite, or even to select a top 10 because each has its merits and some of the best mountains in Scotland are not Munros, like Stac Pollaidh or Suilven in the north-west Highlands,” said David.

“I often climb alone, enjoying the solitude, and leaving behind the cares and concerns of work and my other commitments”.

David’s wife Anne has accompanied him on about half his trips, and seven family and friends joined him earlier this month for the final summit with champagne and cake.

He now joins the ranks of about 4,800 “compleatists” who have climbed all the Munros since the Rev Archie Robertson did so in 1901.

“Sometimes we are known as Munro-baggers, but Munroist or compleatist are the correct, and more respectful terms,” said David.