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Kit list

You are always advised to be prepared for unforeseen circumstances. It's not unusual to have warm sunshine, cold wind, rain, and hail or snow all in the same day, and you will be putting clothes on and taking them off again as conditions change. Clothing must be 'stuffable' into your rucksack, and fortunately, modern gear can be pretty lightweight. Whilst much of this kit list is self-explanatory, you must make sure that you know how to use the likes of a compass, read a map and use an ice axe and crampons in winter.


Everyone has personal preferences for kit, and you will soon learn what works for you. If you need advice, CB members will happily help if you are not sure, and might be able to lend you some kit if necessary. 

The following kit list is based on recommendations by Mountaineering Scotland and


All year round hillwalking and mountaineering

  • Rucksack (30 to 40 litre capacity is recommended)

  • Boots (waterproof, and with ankle support and soles which will grip on rock, grass and mud)

  • Walking trousers (modern fabrics are lightweight and dry quickly after getting wet - avoid the likes denim jeans and corduroy, that get wet, heavy and cold during rain)

  • Waterproof over trousers

  • Gaiters (not always essential, but recommended)

  • Thermal top (base layer)

  • Fleece top (mid layer)

  • Warm jacket (down or synthetic filling)

  • Waterproof jacket (preferably with a hood - outer layer)

  • Warm hat

  • Gloves or mitts (thin liner gloves are also useful)

  • Spare layer e.g. fleece top

  • Compass

  • Map (waterproof or in a waterproof case)

  • Watch

  • Torch (preferably a head torch)

  • Food (something savoury as well as high-carb chocolate, sweets and cereal bars)

  • Drink (water and maybe a small flask with a hot drink too)

  • Emergency survival bag (polythene is OK)

  • Whistle

  • Small first aid kit

  • Mobile phone (not essential but if you have one then make sure that it's fully charged, and take it)

  • GPS (not essential, but note that an active GPS on your phone can be a big drain on the battery)

  • Walking poles (personal choice)

You might also consider some clean clothes to change into (to be left in your car) - unless you fancy driving home in dirty, wet and sweaty hill gear!​

Winter (in addition to the above)

  • Boots for winter need to be stiff soled

  • Ice axe

  • Crampons

  • Waterproof gloves or mitts

  • Goggles

  • An extra fleece or thicker top layers


In sunny weather

  • Sunhat

  • Sun cream

  • Sunglasses


In the midge season (May to October)

  • Midge repellent

  • Midge net​

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