/ Donald Bennet

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Dave Hewitt - on 15 Feb 2013
Not sure if anyone has yet mentioned here that Donald Bennet died recently. He hadn’t been well for a number of years, following a stroke, and he gradually became something of a forgotten man in terms of Scottish hillgoing. But in his day he was a stalwart of the SMC, writing their Southern Highlands and Western Highlands guidebooks (I still use my copies of these), and he was a fine photographer. He was also very active in the early days of the MCofS – I believe he was secretary for a number of years, and there is a brief obituary notice on their website:

I was once told by a friend that even though Donald was keen on the idea of ski tows in Lurcher’s Gully, he dutifully went along with the agreed MCofS anti position in terms of correspondence etc and no one from outside would have known that he took a different view on the personal level – this has always struck me as very impressive if true, and something which painted him in a good and unselfish light.

He was an excellent all-round hill man, whether climbing or walking, and completed a round of the Munros in 1984. There is a certain sad irony in one of this country’s most accomplished ski-mountaineers having died almost unnoticed during a spell when the media has been full of all sorts of news and speculation about avalanches.
drmarten on 15 Feb 2013
In reply to Dave Hewitt:
I know Donald Bennet from the SMC Munro & Corbett Guides, probably two of the most studied books I own. I'd imagine a majority of regular hillwalkers in Scotland will have one or both of them.
Simon Caldwell - on 15 Feb 2013
In reply to drmarten:
He also wrote a coffee table book Scottish Mountain Climbs - a bit like the Classic Rock series but including both summer and winter climbing, walking, and ski-ing. One of my favourites.
Joak - on 15 Feb 2013
In reply to drmarten:

Aye very true, the definitive hillwalkers bible, studied and memorised. My 1985 edition of "The Munros" sits on a bookshelf, pages and cover tenuously held together with sellotape.
Doug on 15 Feb 2013
In reply to Dave Hewitt: Sorry to hear this, I think I only met him once or twice but his Scottish Mountain Climbs was one of my favourite 'guides' & his Ski mountaineering in Scotland has given me many a great day out.
In reply to Dave Hewitt:

Hi Dave, I'm very sorry to hear this. One of his lesser known publications was the West Col climbing guide to the Staunings Alps on the east coast of Greenland and a bit of a bible to me and several other enthusiasts for that area. It is an impeccably researched guide and made the explorations of subsequent expeditions much easier and more productive.
Sean Kelly - on 15 Feb 2013
In reply to Dave Hewitt: Sad news indeed. Not only a producer of excellent guides but also a very good photographer. He always semed to get lovely weather for his pics, but I am sure he was there in bad weather as well. Sadly missed.
Colin Moody - on 16 Feb 2013
In reply to Dave Hewitt:

He did a lot of work for the last series of SMC climbing guides.
We had a couple of nights at the hut in Glen Brittle in 1996, Donald was there with some SMC friends and he was working away at diagrams for 'Skye and the Hebrides' climbing guide. I wasn't in the SMC but wrote Mull for that guide so was interested in his work.

I liked his book (but I didn't buy it) it had some good photos of some classic routes.

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