On a cold day a blazing fire is as welcome as the chance to ease off your boots while at this time of year a beer garden can be a peaceful retreat after a day of exertions.
The Campaign for Real Ale know a thing or two about good pubs and have compiled a list of some of the best walks and hostelries to enjoy across Britain.
Written by Daniel Neilson, CAMRA’s Wild Pub Walks includes classics such as Ben Nevis with the inn of the same name at the bottom, as well as pubs in nearby Fort William.
If I had to pick a couple of favourites they would be the Moulin Inn below Ben Vrackie, one of the first mountains I went up after moving to Scotland nearly 20 years ago. Going back 40 years, I broke in my first pair of walking boots on the Langdale Pikes and proudly wore a button badge declaring I’d climbed them. That was the start of a love of hill walking although it was a few years before I started to appreciate the Old Dungeon Ghyll but it soon became a favourite of me and my mates.
One thing that does strike me about hillwalking and pubs is that, rightly, the pub is always enjoyed at the end of the day, when the strenuous exercise is over. But when it comes to ski-ing, especially in the Alps, the bar or restaurant is a lunchtime destination where a meal with a couple of glasses of wine is the norm. Without wishing to sound like a killjoy it does seem strange to have a drink of alcohol before setting off down a steep mountainside – I often ask myself what reaction you would get if you opened up a bottle of red by the summit cairn of a British mountain in the middle of June?