National Trust for Scotland (NTS) says campfires have damaged Glen Coe’s famous Coire Gabhail.

Better known as the Lost or Hidden Valley, the glen was once used by members of Clan MacDonald to hide stolen cattle.

Today it is part of a site of special scientific interest, partly because of its rich and internationally-important plant life.

NTS said people were harming the protected habitat by cutting off tree branches that were covered in mosses and lichens to build fires.

Fragile peatland has also been damaged by the fires.

The trust said the problems had come while Glencoe National Nature Reserve was having one of its busiest ever years for visitors.

Visits to its visitor centre have gone up by 35% compared to last year, and there have been 18% more tents and 10% more campervans and motorhomes on the reserve.

While the majority of visitors acted responsibly, NTS said the latest tourist season had been marred by fires and litter.

The trust said it removed 200 bin bags-worth of rubbish.

Senior ranger Scott McCombie said: “Campfires have a negative impact on both the glens’ peat-rich low-level soils and thinner, fragile upland soils.

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