10th February 2023

Warm, wet and windy with poor visibility today. The snowpack is thawing rapidly.

As a raven managed to photobomb one of my photos today I thought I’d remind people of this additional hazard, particularly on Ben Nevis. Over the last few years and again this year there have been multiple incidents of ravens trying and succeeding to get food out of rucksacks left by climbers while they are climbing. They are clever birds and can open zips, rip holes in bags and pick bags up to drop the contents. Large stones put on top of bags haven’t stopped them and they’ve also flown off with approach shoes this year so a lack of food doesn’t keep your kit safe. The raven hazard is Considerable.

Waterfalls getting blown back upwards (and a raven photobombing my picture).

Looking towards Coire na Ciste.

Looking up the Allt a’ Mhuilinn towards Ben Nevis.

Comments on this post

  • John Lumbard
    10th February 2023 10:06 pm

    It is worth remembering that Ravens are fully protected in law by the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 (as amended). The Act offers the species general protection, meaning it is illegal to kill or injure a Raven. These birds are particularly intelligent and can live for between 10-15 years, so it is quite probable the Ravens have learned to associate food with visitors who have thoughtlessly discarded unwanted food or waste which so frequently litter our mountains. I should imagine, Ben Nevis as our highest mountain gets more than it’s fair share of visitors illiterate in the Outdoor Access Code which clearly states -“Do not leave any food scraps or associated packaging as these might be eaten by animals and help to spread disease”.- Leave nothing but footprints- or ski tracks in winter!!

  • Ross Burnside
    11th February 2023 5:51 pm

    Not the Ravens fault: they have been here long before humans set foot.
    Don’t be giving the Countryside Criminal Alliance et al. yet more barnstorming ideas of blootering them, as has happened elsewhere…

    The human hazard to our faultering planet is more than considerable.

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