Just before noon on Sunday 9th July 1978, Charlie Ramsay from Edinburgh, Scotland, and a member of Lochaber Athletic Club in Fort William was seen running down the lower slopes of Ben Nevis, his mind seemingly possessed by a desperate degree of urgency as he crossed over the footbridge and onwards for a further 25 metres past the youth hostel, to his finishing line.
There, his family and friends met him; as he checked his watch and fell to his knees with a mixture of exhaustion and elation.
For the previous 23 hours and 58 minutes Charlie had climbed a total of 24 Munros (mountains over 3,000 feet) of which Ben Nevis was the last. With just 2 minutes to spare he had achieved his dream of circuiting all the Lochaber mountains in a single day. Behind him he left a trail of exhausted bodies, his support team and even his teammate, Bobby Shields, who had to retire after 16 tops, so sustained was the pace.
Charlie had set a record, which was to last for nine years, and had created Scotland’s Classic Mountain Marathon, a distance of 56 miles and 28,500 feet of climbing.