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A mountain hut (also known as alpine hut, mountain shelter, and mountain hostel) is a building located in the mountains intended to provide food and shelter to mountaineers, climbers and hiker. Mountain huts are usually operated by a section of an Alpine Club. Most mountain huts are tended to by Alpine Club personnel throughout the mountaineering season, who prepare meals and drinks for mountaineers, similar to a restaurant, but usually with a limited selection, as it is not always easy to transport the food to the hut. Furthermore, mountain huts provide simple sleeping berths. Any mountaineer is allowed to access Alpine huts, but members of an Alpine Club usually get a discount. Some huts in more remote areas have no personnel, but mountaineers are allowed to access them.

As there is a lot of mountaineering activity in the Alps, there is a large number of huts along the mountaineering paths. One cannot necessarily count on finding a similarly dense network of paths and huts in other mountain ranges.

In the United Kingdommarker and Irelandmarker the tradition is of unwardened "climbing huts" providing fairly rudimentary accommodation (but superior to that of a bothy) close to a climbing ground; the huts are usually conversions (eg of former quarrymen's cottages, or of disused mine buildings), and are not open to passers-by except in emergency. Many climbing clubs in the UK have such huts in Snowdoniamarker or in the Lake Districtmarker. A well-known example is the 'Charles Inglis Clark Memorial Hut' (the 'CIC Hut') under the northern crags of Ben Nevismarker in Scotlandmarker - this is a purpose-built hut, high up the mountain, probably nearest in character to the Alpine huts.

Gallery

Image:Bertol.jpg|The Bertol Hutmarker in the Swiss AlpsmarkerImage:MOko_schronisko.JPG|Morskie Okomarker shelter in PolandImage:Dolina_Chochołowska_-_schronisko.jpg|Chocholowska Valley shelter in the Tatra MountainsmarkerImage:Refuge de la Sella 2, Franse Alpen.jpg|Refuge de la Selle in the French AlpsImage:Ciareido hut marmarole cadore.JPG|Ciareido hut, near Lozzo di Cadoremarker in the Dolomitesmarker in Bellunomarker, ItalyImage:CabaneduTrient.jpg|Cabane du Trientmarker, SwitzerlandmarkerImage:Smithsonian Hut Whitney.jpg|Smithsonian Institution Sheltermarker on the summit of Mount Whitneymarker, CaliforniaImage:Horse Camp.jpg|Shasta Alpine Lodge at Horse Camp on Mount Shastamarker, California.Image:Balfour hut aug 2005.jpg|R.J.marker Ritchie Hutmarker (Balfour Hut) in Banff National ParkmarkerImage:Greenleaf.jpg|Greenleaf Hut in the White Mountains of the U.S.Image:EPSummer.jpg|Elizabeth Parker hutmarker in the Canadian Rockies -->

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