Ben Nevis Summit Management Position Statement

Published: 28th June 2015

This position statement sets out our management aims for the Ben Nevis summit plateau in relation to man-made structures (August 2011)

The Trust encourages all visitors to take their litter home with them in accordance with the Scottish Outdoor Access Code.

There are a number of structures on the summit plateau of Ben Nevis stretching back over a long period. With the Nevis Partnership, the Trust advocates no new structures, while recognising that there is historical and cultural significance to some.

The Trust advocates a presumption against waymarkers or poles and the removal of any new ones that appear (in consultation with Nevis Partnership, MCofS and any other relevant bodies or individuals).

The Trust advocates that no new cairns are erected and will remove cairns built by individuals for personal purposes as these may dangerously be mistaken for way markers and give a cluttered appearance to the landscape.

Cairn building can also damage the saxicolous lichens and bryophytes living on the broken rocky ground of the summit plateau (a feature of the Special Area of Conservation designation for Ben Nevis).


The summit of Ben Nevis attracts well over 100,000 visitors a year. There are a number of ruins, shelters, cairns and memorabilia on the summit which have accumulated over the years. This policy sets out the Trust's management aims for the summit plateau of Ben Nevis in relation to man-made structures.

Download our Ben Nevis Summit Management position statement below.