What’s been going on?

It’s been a long time coming, and it was never guaranteed, but Rob has finally made the move from Newcastle-upon-Tyne to the Highlands, his spiritual home. It’s a big change for our General Manager, but one that’s already bearing fruit with relationships built and time spent outdoors and on the hill. The picture above captures Andy Hein on the traverse of Balaton on Càrn Mòr, taken during Rob’s first week living in Inverness.

While things may appear to have been slow from a publications perspective, plenty is going on in the background, and we’re working on several projects that you’ll see more of throughout the year.

We’re delighted to announce that the new edition of the SMC’s Lowland Outcrops is reaching the final stages of production, and it should be in the warehouse within a couple of months. This long-awaited update covering Scotland’s most densely populated region presents over 1,900 boulder, trad and sport climbs with almost every route marked on a photo diagram, as well as updated maps and access information and plenty of inspiring action shots – everything you expect from our new series of SMC guidebooks. Keep your eyes peeled for pre-order details coming to your inbox and on social media.

The manuscript has just been completed and we’ve started selecting photos for our next Press biography, this time about Harold Raeburn. Much like the subject of our last biography, Tom Patey, if you’ve climbed much in Scotland, you’ve probably climbed one of Raeburn’s routes (the usual giveaway being the name ‘Raeburn’s <insert name of mountain feature here>’). This book explores the life and travels of a Scottish climbing legend and, supported by archive photography, sheds light on his extraordinary character. Not only that, we’ve begun work on an autobiography by the maestro of climbing photography, John Cleare – you’ve seen some of his fantastic photos in The Fox of Glencoe and One Man’s Legacy, and it’s great to get a perspective from the other side of the lens.

Finally, we’re thrilled that, supported by the Gaelic Arts Fund, the Highland Bookshop and Wildland, we’re in a position to initiate a Gaelic writing project that will expand the canon of literature on landscape, language and ‘dualchas’ told from a Gaelic viewpoint. Adding the Gaelic language to our Creatives project and bookshelves feels like a great step forward, and we’re looking forward to sharing more information with you soon.