WALKERS attempting a challenge to conquer the highest peaks in Scotland, England and Wales within 24 hours are damaging the environment, groups responsible for their management have claimed.
Thousands of people each summer battle against the clock to try to scale Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Snowdon in what has become known as the Three Peaks Challenge.
But increasing numbers have led to a host of problems, including erosion on the mountains, litter and noise pollution for local residents.
Will Boyd-Wallis, of the John Muir Trust, which purchased the summit of Ben Nevis less than two years ago, said: "Visitors to the Ben Nevis area are always welcome and very important to the local economy. However, large scale three peaks events contribute little except disruption and damage."
The National Trust, which own Scafell Pike and parts of Snowdon, asked walkers to think twice before they attempt the challenge.