Those taking to the Scottish mountains in the winter should take care, the country's sport minister has warned.
Shona Robison said that those who venture out should make sure they are well prepared for everything the landscape and weather may throw at them in the coldest and darkest months of the year.
Noting that there are "many hazards" around at this time, she stated: "It's extremely important that those wanting to enjoy the outdoors take the time to plan ahead, check the weather and have the correct safety equipment before heading for the hills."
People keen to pick up the best equipment might wish to visit a Go Outdoors store to get men's winter jackets
or women's winter jackets
, as well as other walking gear
such as backpacks
and a walking pole
A walking GPS
may also come in handy in white-out conditions caused by snow flurries.
Winter dangers can include avalanches, with the Scottish Avalanche Information Service providing warnings of where these might be likely to occur around the five highland areas it covers.
Posted by Elaine Arthur