Our website uses cookies throughout our system and to help us provide a better service. Continue to use the site as normal if you're happy with this, or click here to change your settings

Health and hygiene in the hills

Can I drink the water? What’s Lyme disease? What are clegs? How do I cope with midges? Where’s the toilet?

Heading to the hills is great for your health, both physically and mentally. However, as these very common questions above indicate, there are also risks to our health.

With a little knowledge and common sense, none of these should spoil your enjoyment of the outdoors, but we do have to take responsibility for looking after ourselves in terms of hygiene as well as skills and safety.

Camping hygiene

There are some basic common-sense rules to follow if you want to ensure you don't have your camping trip cut short by illness

Dealing with ticks

There is growing awareness of the health risks associated with ticks in the countryside. Read more about how to deal with them.

The dreaded midge

What's best about Scotland? Our mountains. What's worst? The midges you find in those mountains. Learn the best way to deal with the wee pests.

Drinking the water

Can you drink the water? In most cases it's the finest water you'll ever drink, but there are a few do's and don'ts you should be aware of.

Plant hazards

There's more to bracken than just being difficult to walk through. Read more about the health risks associated with this hazardous plant

Where to 'go' in the outdoors

There are few toilets amongst the mountains, but sometimes we still need to 'go'. Find out the practicalities and the etiquette.

Sunburn is also an important issue. A sunny day on the hill makes most of us feel good, but too much sunlight can be hard on the skin. Check out this Health and Safety Executive document for advice on good practice while enjoying a great day out on the hill.