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RURAL LAND RESOURCES THE CAIRNGORMS. You must be able to: –Describe and explain the formation of a glaciated upland and the features found within. Important.

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Presentation on theme: "RURAL LAND RESOURCES THE CAIRNGORMS. You must be able to: –Describe and explain the formation of a glaciated upland and the features found within. Important."— Presentation transcript:


2 You must be able to: –Describe and explain the formation of a glaciated upland and the features found within. Important that you can name features –Discuss the restrictions placed on economic development by environmental factors –Explain the economic and social opportunities afforded by this landscape –Explain land use conflicts in the area and outline solutions which have been put into practice commenting on their effectiveness


4 The Cairngorms was made a National Park in September 2003 because it is a unique and special place that needs to be cared for – both for the wildlife and countryside it contains and for the people that live in it, manage it and visit it. It is Britain's largest national Park. The Cairngorms National Park has the largest area of arctic mountain landscape in the UK at its heart, with diverse communities around it. It is home to 16,000 people and 25% of Britain's threatened birds, animals, and plants. It includes moorlands, forests, rivers, lochs and glens. For more information visit

5 THE CAIRNGORMS ACTIVITY: You have 2 minutes to note as many glacial features as possible! Look at your features and group them in any way you think Appropriate – be prepared to justify your groupings! Look at the following os map extracts and see how many of the features on your list you can spot in this small section of the cairngorms national park



8 CAIRNGORMS NATIONAL PARK PHYSICAL FEATURELOCAL EXAMPLE U-Shaped valleyLairig Ghru CorriesCoire Cas Ribbon lochLoch Einich Scree SlopesCairngorms Plateux

9 THE CAIRNGORMS FURTHER BACKGROUND TO CAIRNGORMS: –Low population density (at margins and valley floors) –Swells at weekends and in holidays –Tastes in landscapes – Cairngorms not always viewed so positively Improved as a result of extensions to railway networks and writing / celebrity visits –Growth in Active tourism –Many visitors attracted by dramatic scenery – shown by research

10 THE CAIRNGORMS RESTRICTIONS ON DEVELOPMENT 1. RELIEF: –Much of the Cairngorms is mountainous –Higher surfaces are bare rock with dangerous scree slopes below 2. CLIMATE: –Temperatures are cool in summer due to high altitude –Growing season too short for many crops –Precipitation is high throughout the year –Leaches the nutrients out of the soil –Heavy cloud cover limits hours of sunshine 3. DISTANCE FROM MARKETS: –Remote from large urban centres – transport costs –Steep slopes / rocks make road building expensive

11 THE CAIRNGORMS OPPORTUNITIES FARMING –Some hill sheep farming on lower slopes and valley floor in winter FORESTRY –Trees largely removed during agricultural and industrial revolution –Forestry Commission set up in 1919 –Extensive reafforestation has taken place –Some have criticised the visual impact of this development

12 THE CAIRNGORMS OPPORTUNITIES HYDRO-ELECTRIC POWER –The Highlands of Scotland offer the ideal conditions for H.E.P. –Steep valley sides which can be dammed –Large volume of water / catchment areas –Civil engineering skills in Scotland have maximised these conditions –Glacial lochs also major sources of water supply

13 THE CAIRNGORMS OPPORTUNITIES TOURISM –Natural attractions – Cairngorm, Lairig Ghru –Upland glacial features – Waterfalls, lakes etc. –Recreation – hill walking, rock climbing, mountain biking, skiing at Cairngorm –4 of the biggest 5 mountains in Scotland –Contrast with city life – quiet and much less polluted –A9 links Central Belt to places like Aviemore –Many jobs in tourist industry (Accommodation, services, catering etc) –Facilities developed to encourage tourism – leisure centre –Accounts for 80% of the economy


15 CAIRNGORMS - CONFLICT TOURISM VS CONSERVATION Only area of sub-artic environment in the UK Designated as SSSI then a National Park in 2003 Ease of access from A9, growing car ownership have led to increased visitor numbers Superb conditions for winter sports – hill walking 500,000 people visited the Cairngorms in 2001 Tourism accounted for 80% of the local economy – shooting, hunting, fishing skiing etc.

16 CONFLICT TOURISM VS CONSERVATION MAJOR CONFLICTS THAT OCCUR IN ALL 3 CASE STUDY AREAS Footpath erosion – especially around major physical attractions Overcrowding / Congestion – especially on narrow country roads Noise / Air pollution Risk to endangered species Damage to natural environment which visitors are attracted to in the first place

17 CONFLICT TOURISM VS CONSERVATION MAJOR CONFLICTS THAT OCCUR IN ALL 3 CASE STUDY AREAS CONFLICTSOLUTIONEFFECTIVENESS Footpath erosionPaved paths Rocks to strengthen mountain tracks Walkers more aware via sign postage and maps. People sticking to paths Costs a lot of money to maintain LitterProvision of more bins Information through publicity / visitor centres Public more aware about impact of litter on environment Gates left openUse of kissing gatesCostly to install but very effective Traffic congestion Ring road on approach to Cairngorm ski resort car park Some additional public transport and park and ride schemes Opening of additional attractions Aids flow of traffic Narrow approach roads can still get congested early in the day Additional parking has been required People still inclined to take own car to the slopes Spreads visitors throughout the resort

18 CONFLICT AND SOLUTIONS 1.AVIEMORE – LACK OF HOUSING Lots of workers and retired people moving here –Employees in the tourist industry Shortage of housing becoming a much bigger issue Visual impact of tourist facilities (shop fronts, hotels) Strict planning policies in place – must be sympathetic to natural environment

19 CONFLICTS AND SOLUTIONS REMEMBER: People are brought around the table in National Parks to come to agreed solutions 25 Board Members on the National Park Board – they make decisions which affect the area (5 are elected by the local community)

20 CONFLICT – DEVELOPMENT OF SKIING FACILITES SKIING IN THE CAIRNGORMS BACKGROUND –Growth in skiing since early developments in the 1960s –Demand for better facilities (roads, ski runs, restaurants etc.) –Skiiers bring about £12m a year to the local economy –Generating the equivalent of 350 full-time jobs EARLY DEVELOPMENT –White Lady Chairlift opened in 1961 – first mechanical lift –Road extension from Aviemore –Concentration of skiing at Coire Cas –By the 1980s number of skiiers had reached limit –Plans to develop further ski runs into the Northern Corries

21 CONFLICT – DEVELOPMENT OF SKIING FACILITES SKIING IN THE CAIRNGORMS ARGUMENTS AGAINST DEVELOPMENT –Scottish National Heritage were against the plan –Concerns about visual impact, effect on other types of recreation and on wildlife in the area –Wear and tear greater than ability of natural environment to regenerate: snowmelt and rain leads to washing away of topsoil ARGUMENTS FOR DEVELOPMENT –Opening of other modern ski facilities elsewhere in Scotland and cheap flights to Europe increased pressure to develop in the Cairngorms. –The area was losing money. –The development of the area would create more jobs.

22 CONFLICT – DEVELOPMENT OF SKIING FACILITES SKIING IN THE CAIRNGORMS –Chairlifts unreliable and closed when winds rose over 30mph SOLUTION –Funicular Railway approved in 1997 – replace chairlifts –Benefits: year round tourism can be supported and existing services replaced with one integrated mode of travel, protection of skiing in the area. –Disadvantages: damages the natural habitat which attracts year round visitors. –Construction began in 1999

23 CONFLICT – DEVELOPMENT OF SKIING FACILITES SKIING IN THE CAIRNGORMS EFFECTIVENESS Strict Visitor Management Plan had to be adopted to satisfy the protesters – the end solution was a compromise Users cannot leave the top station (except skiiers in winter) Cannot visit the summit from the restaurant / shop Minimises erosion of the landscape Some of the Railway is hidden within a tunnel The Cairngorms remains a viable business with little additional damage to the environment – many conservationists were very angry though

24 CONFLICT – DEVELOPMENT OF HEP STATIONS BACKGROUND –High precipitation and natural lochs make it ideal for the generation of HEP –Many large scale schemes in the 1950s –Laggan HEP dam is a well known example –Problems: visual impact and environmental impact –Active recreation can be disrupted by this type of development –Fishing, sightseeing can also be affected SOLUTION –Unlikely that many more large scale HEP projects will be allowed in the Cairngorms –New solutions – allow water to run down river at all times to protect ecological health –Water is taken via pipes through the mountains




28 ACTIVITY: Working in pairs pick one of the conflicts / conservation issues from the Cairngorms: Conservation vs Tourism (E.g funicular railway) Expansion of skiing in the Cairngorms Changing Villages – Laggan Forestry H.E.P. SOURCE Environmental Interactions Textbook Pages Beualy to Denny Transmission Line Write down INFO ON: - Conflict - Solutions - Effectiveness

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