Little bit of Munro magic at end of a symbolic climb

Grandad John Clark climbs to the summit of his last munro, accompanied by his grandson Kyle MacDonald, who had completed his first.
Grandad John Clark climbs to the summit of his last munro, accompanied by his grandson Kyle MacDonald, who had completed his first.

A grandfather and grandson from Kirkcaldy have scaled the heights of Scotland to mark a special family rite of passage.

When John Clark (60) reached the summit of Beinn Na Lap at Rannoch Moor, he had achieved the remarkable feat of climbing all 282 munros - and joining him for his very first climb was grandson Kyle McDonald (10).

“He always said to me, when you do the last one I want to do it with you,” said John.

“He managed it - he had some blisters but he never moaned. He looked so chuffed when he reached the top!”

John scaled his first munro 23 years ago after he and his work colleagues from the papermill at Inverkeithing got the climbing bug.

But while others gave up, John bought himself a chart of all the munros and one by one, methodically ticked them off as the years ticked by.

Furthermore, he used the same walking stick from that first climb in 1991 to climb number 282.

“When we reached the top of Beinn Na Lap I handed Kyle the walking stick to keep,” said John. “It felt like passing on the baton.”

The sponsored climb raised £505 for the Sick Children’s Hospital in Edinburgh and was followed with a party that same night in Fort William.

As for the future, John hopes Kyle develops the same passion for climbing that gripped him.

He said: “There are so may people who do it and as well as making friends, it’s just great way to enjoy wildlife and scenery.

“I want to do the West Highland Way and Hadrians Wall next and we’re hoping to go climbing in Braemar.”