Norman Wares on his conversion to local tumping in Perth and Kinross
Having exhausted various hill lists, my attention was drawn to bagging Tumps (British hills with more than 30 metres of prominence). Like many others, I started by bagging Munros, after which I worked through all the S.M.C lists to complete a "Full House" on Druim na Sgriodain (September 2017). This was also my 1000th Marilyn, 1200th Hump and 2000th Tump... Since then I have concentrated on Relative Hills lists.
Someone said that you should start by bagging all the Tumps in your own county, and this seems fair enough especially if you live in Milton Keynes (UA) – just 1 Tump and 124 completions, or Wokingham (UA) - 1 Tump, 113 completions.
I have the great pleasure of living in Perth and Kinross, so the challenge to bag all the Tumps there is slightly greater. Three baggers have so far completed the list (Lindsay M, richtea5040 and alda), but when I attended Lindsay’s completion hill, I hadn’t fully considered the scope of their achievement.
With a current total of 688, I suppose Lidar could throw up another dozen that would bring the figure to 700. Even without that, Perth and Kinross sits 7th in the list of counties with the most Tumps. (Highland, and Argyll and Bute top the list.) I discovered that P & K borders 7 other counties, the above mentioned together with Aberdeenshire are the most notable. And just to complete the series of 7s, there are Tumps in 7 different map regions (1,2,4,5.6,7 & 26) demonstrating that the road sign proclaiming it’s “The Heart of Scotland” is no idle boast.
I suppose when people think of Tumps they envisage tiny insignificant hills, and yes, there are many of these in the list of 688, including some located in vast swathes of impenetrable sitka spruce. This occasionally leads the bagger to consider the wisdom of, or indeed the sanity of this Tumping pursuit. However, this is cancelled out by the huge number of attractive, remote hills which reward the avid Tumper.
With no less than 58 Munros and Munro Tops in the County it’s obvious that there is much high ground, and in fact 305 of them (44% of all the P & K Tumps) are also Simms. (Simms are British hills at least 600 metres high, with 30 metres of prominence.) To reach them involves some lengthy excursions along glens leading off the A9 trunk road and elsewhere. I also note that some are best approached from surrounding counties, for example Deeside and Glen Feshie, not to mention Corrour Station, on the West Highland railway line.
At certain times during Covid lockdown, it was possible to bag hills in your own county and I was able to work diligently on my bagging totals. I wish I could say I will be completing soon, but as I write this I still have 77 to bag, (which is coincidentally also my age) so it’s an ongoing project.
After that, I’ll probably move on to bagging Tumps by Catchment like so many of our more fit , younger and enthusiastic members. Tay catchment with 703 Tumps runs Severn a close second, and would you believe it, I’m currently 7th in the League Table, not that I’m counting. After all, it’s not a competition, is it?
To put statistics into perspective, one of our members (RHW) has completed 129 Counties and 86 Catchments. Quite a feat, don’t you think?
All of the statistics quoted above are extracted from the excellent website www.hill-bagging.co.uk.