The Steall Gorge in Glen Nevis is a place that leaves an impression on all who go walking
there, but money is urgently needed to preserve its paths.
Set amid rugged scenery beneath the towering south flanks of Ben Nevis and overlooked by the peak of Sgurr a' Mhaim, the gorge consists of cascades of water burrowing their way between smoothed cliffs and boulders in a deep cleft, surrounded by woodland.
The waters can seldom be seen, but they are invariably heard as they roar thunderously through the gorge.
Walkers who continue to the top of the woods are then treated to a sudden change of scenery as they reach an elevated meadow, where the Waters of Nevis take on the appearance of a benign, shallow, slow-moving river, crossed by the wiry Steall Bridge.
Even here there are spectacular sights to behold, with the white cascade of An Steall Ban plunging down from An Gearanach, the second highest waterfall in Britain.
Small wonder, therefore, that it is popular. But there is a price to be paid in human erosion and landowner the John Muir Trust (JMT) has appealed for £60,000 to carry out urgent repairs to the paths.
It said: "The path is popular with tens of thousands of visitors every year and its dramatic and rugged mountain location leaves it exposed to all weathers.
"Sections of the path are under serious threat of erosion, with some areas in danger of crumbling away completely."
Many will be aware that earlier this year the JMT won £25,000 towards the project from the European Outdoor Conservation Association after a Europe-wide online public vote, but the Trust stated at the time it would be launching an appeal in due course for more money.
As well as the aesthetic qualities of Steall itself, the path helps drivers parking at the end of the Glen Nevis road to access the Munros at the eastern end of the Mamores range,such as An Gearanach, Stob Coire a' Chairn, Na Grugaichean, Sgurr Eilde Mor, Binnein Mor and Binnein Beag.
There is also a route from the ruins of Steall up Aonach Beag, the second highest mountain in Lochaber after Ben Nevis itself. This can be climbed along with Aonach Mor, with the other end of the ridge being somewhat busier with its ski lifts, cable car and world championship mountain bike