Today I was with Caroline who was really up for a stretch of the legs in the form of mountaineering. She is up from Norfolk with Steve and Stuart, both who wanted to go rock climbing, so Big Jamie took them to Huntlys. It rained on us most of the day but as we were moving all day it didn't affect us. We climbed up North buttress to the summit in 3 hours from the car had a quick bite to eat then headed down Curved Ridge in two and half hours back to the car. It was not weather for standing around so we did move pretty fast and got Caroline back to the Ice Factor for some bouldering. I cant climb at the wall because I've torn a ligament in my finger.
Wednesday, 28 October 2009
Today Dan and I took the bikes out into the rain and the mud. We started off at the Braveheart car park, Glen Nevis and did a circuit around Cow Hill, just above Fort William. This brought us back to the car so we then rode over to the North Face car park at Torlundy planning to do a few routes at Nevis Range, but I fancied biking up to the CIC hut. So off we went steeply at first and worked our way up to the hut, we didn't see a soul. Whilst having a sandwich at the hut we saw one bald looking bloke heading up for a quick solo mission on Tower Ridge, we saw two coming down from the half way lochain and passed 3 climbers on their way up (staying at the CIC?). Back to the north Face car park, popped into Grahams in Inverlochy for a cupper then back to the car. A good 4 hours biking.
Monday, 26 October 2009
Day two with the scouts and it was a different bunch from yesterday, but the same route for me. Fortunately it was sunny at first with a nice breeze throughout the day, unfortunately we hit the cloud at around 1000m so no view from the summit. A much busier day today from yesterday, probably 150 people on the tourist route.
Sunday, 25 October 2009
Today I was leading 35 scouts up Ben Nevis with help from Ben and Lorenzo from the Ice Factor and a Summer ML trainee from Dunoon. It was very wet throughout the morning and the wind was quite steady, a total soaking did make the walking quite tiresome. The group did very well to get to the top as we did feel at one point that we would turn the whole group around due to the severe weather. Later on in the afternoon the weather did clear and we had a pleasant final 40 Min's! I've seen many unprepared walked on that path - Jeans, open toed sandals etc but today it topped them all. One guy was walking up with a map case around his neck with a map for Snowdonia . . . . I wonder if he thought he was on the Miners track?! I hope he got up and down OK. Heading up tomorrow with another 35 scouts!
Saturday, 17 October 2009
On Thursday Emma and I decided we would have a shot at Tower Ridge. Emma did Curved Ridge a week or so ago and she was super keen to try something a little harder. The weather was perfect, the cloud was sweeping in and out of the North Face throughout the day however we were pretty much above it all the time. The cloud inversion allowed for some great views with only a few peaks sticking out from the top. We were 1 of two teams on the ridge, they passed us as we were sun bathing on to of the Little Tower. It was a very warm day with hardly any wind. A quiet day on the mountain, only passed about 15 other teams walking down.
Wednesday, 14 October 2009
Day two for Al's client Gordon so I tagged along for some more training. Again Al let me take the lead and this time Al got on the rope as well to improve my ability in leading two clients. Very productive day for me. The weather was somewhat better than yesterday however the rock was greasy which did seem to make some sections a little harder than when I last did it. We chose this route as its good step up technically from the Aonach Eagach, however it is a shorter day, so any tired legs from yesterday didn't get such a beasting today.
Yesterday I Was up in Glencoe with Al and Gordon. Gordon was Al's client for the nest two days so Al asked me to come along for some training preparation for my MIA assessment. When he said training, I didn't think I had to do the shuttle run on the bike to get back to the car! It was good fitness training though. On the Aonach Eagach ridge I led Gordon all the way on the technical sections, with Al soloing around and giving me crucial feedback on my methods and techniques and teaching me techniques to make movement slicker. It was super wet all day, the moisture got everywhere, however we moved very efficiently and went car to car in just over 7 hours.
Saturday, 10 October 2009
On Thursday Emma and I went up Curved Ridge on the Buachaille to introduce her to mountaineering. Her aim is to climb Tower Ridge and as she only started climbing indoors within the last few weeks and is quite gripped at height and exposure, I thought Curved Ridge would be a good place to start. It was a cold, crisp day, there was even enough snow on the top for a quick snowball fight! We were followed up by one team and passed a couple of walkers on the decent. I think Emma is now ready for Tower Ridge so we'll try and get on it next week.
Last Wednesday Graham and I headed over to Ardnamurchan's Ring crags. The crags are composed of excellent, rough gabbro and have an excellent outlook towards Rhum and Skye. The crags looked wet from the distance but as we arrived the sun and cold wind had dried off the rock and it was perfect conditions. We climbed at Meall An Fhir-Eoin Beag which has a good spread of graded. We started off with Graham leading up Yir (VS 4c), I then led up Up-Pompeii (E2 5b) and Star Wars (E3 6a) and we finished off on Return of the Jedi (E2 5c) which Graham led up. Plenty to still go for in this area and always a good option when it is raining inland. Great day!