The list below represents the UK hills & mountains that have provided me with the fondest memories and best experiences. Most of my choices have dramatic profiles, offer stunning views from the summit and along the route.
A stunning mountain to look at and even better to climb. I have only climbed the "peak of the young men" once – on my 18th birthday. I reached the summit via pinnacle ride, which as you can see from the picture is like climbing on sharks teeth, not least because the gabber rock that the Cuillin Ridge is composed of is very rough on your fingers and hands.
What Suilven lacks in height it makes up for in a stunningly beautiful and iconic profile. Like Ben Hope it sits in isolation and rises suddenly from the ground around it. The one and onlytime I climbed Suilven, I was with a group who paddled down Loch Veyatie from near Elphin. We were equipped with tents and provisions for 3 nights. We also climbed Canisp and Cul Mor.
I have climbed Haystacks twice, but never had a view from the summit – the perfect excuse to go and climb it again. However, the views of Crummock Water, Buttermere , Whiteless Pike and Rannerdale Knots are fantastic. I first climbed Haystacks on a field trip, when I was on an art course, so we were encouraged to take lots of photographs and do lots of sketches en-route. Great memories.
A very short, simple climb from the convenient car park below, to the jumble of rocks that you can explore and scramble around on for hours. A fantastic introduction to hill walking and climbing for children, as it was for me. When I was in my teens we spent a family holiday at Swallerton Gate Cottage, so Hound Tor was on the doorstep for the week.
This was the first Lakeland fell I climbed. It ignited my passion for the fells that are set in the beautiful Lake District. I was with my scout group and climbed it in the snow and mist from Thirlmere. On another occasion I did the classic route taking in Striding Edge and back down Swirral Edge. On that occasion the conditions were clear.
For me, Clent Hill and Walton Hill make up the Clent Hills. My earliest memory of these hills is being taken a walk up Walton with my nursery group. I grew up nearby and always wished that they could be a little bit higher and a little bit wilder. I rather took them for granted back them, but enjoywalking up them when I'm back in the Midlands.
The most northernly munro, Ben Hope stands tall in splendid isolation. I have climbed it only once whilst on holiday in Sutherland and was lucky to do so on a clear, sunny afternoon. We were treated to magnificent views of the Loch Hope, Loch Eriboll, the Kyle of Durness and to the south-east Ben Loyal.
My first munro! I climbed it in my teens with my mum, dad and dog, Chloe. My brother refused to join us and sat in the car by himself for the entire time. The previous day we had had a very unsuccessful attempt at Lochnagar, therefore he opted out of trying this munro. Schiehallion was climbed in perfect conditions with lovely views from the top - just as well as we didn't have a map!
This provides a long, wild mountain walk around a horse-shoe of ridges and is something of an epic. It is inevitable that you will also take in Mam Sodhail, as we did, on the walk. Fantastic views, far into the wilderness of Affric and lochs Monar and Mullardoch.
I have climbed Tryfan twice, once whilst on a nearbyscout camp. A dramatic, steep climb takes you to the summit , where, if your nerves are good you can attempt the leap from Adam to Eve. I've done it once and lived to tell the tale – good luck!