Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Loch Quoich

James and I paid a visit to Loch Quoich today for a spot of ridge-walking on Gleouraich in pretty wild weather. For once we agreed that the weather forecast was probably right in its prediction of 70mph gusts and at times both of us were nearly knocked from our feet. A good day on the hill nevertheless - snow nice and firm mostly and turf surprisingly solid from quite low down.

Tuesday, 19 January 2010

Ben day & Ordinary Route

No pics again as I forgot my camera - probably for the best though as I got a proper soaking on both days!

On Saturday I went out on Ben Nevis with Guy who was guiding Stephen for the day. The weather was pretty wild, but Stephen was keen to make the summit and we eventually did - stopping for a brief lunch in the shelter there. Quite a mild day with lots of slushy snow around, freezing level only a couple of hundred metres below the top.

Sunday saw myself and Jamie B heading up into Coire nan Lochan to have a look and see what was in. Jamie was keen on climbing Moonshadow (IV,5) but there were a couple of other teams in the area (including Al and his client for the day) and a lot of spindrift coming down Twisting Gully so he decided that Ordinary Route on Central Buttress (III/IV, 4) would be a better option.

This was my first time on a mixed route of this grade, so Jamie lead the whole route. I was quite glad of the rope above me at times, but really enjoyed the climbing. There's a lot more to think about than with ice routes in terms of variety of techniques you can call on and I'm already keen to go again and learn some more!

Heading out for a couple of walking days tomorrow and Thursday and then hopefully climbing again on Friday before work - and this time I will take my camera!

Monday, 11 January 2010

Skiing at White Corries

Daniel and I headed over to White Corries today for a spot of skiing. The snow wasn't bad, a little icy and scoured in places. Flat light conditions made it tricky to see what the run ahead held, which made for a few interesting moments... I remembered the best thing about skiing in Scotland though - mid-week there are no queues :-)

Sunday, 10 January 2010

Number 6 Gully & The Posse

Today Pete and I went to play on some ice routes on the north side of Stob Coire Leith. We climbed a route called The Posse, which is a broad, slabby ice route for most of its 150m length, with a great crux pitch at the top to finish which Pete is pictured leading above. Pete lead the harder stuff - it being only my second outing on 'proper' ice routes - and I lead a pitch of ice at about II where the angle eased. Good to have some practice placing screws on easy terrain. For more photo's and Pete's account of the day see his blog.

On Friday I went up No. 6 Gully on Aonach Dubh with Alan and Gillian. Gillian is preparing for her MIC assessment and she and Al swung leads whilst I took photo's. There were two other teams on the route just ahead of us, and we spotted more people on their way up as we were coming down via the rake. A lovely route, great ice, fantastic weather and good company... There are worse ways to spend a day! Photo's and video on Al's Blog.

Wednesday, 6 January 2010

Belated Pics

Some belated photo's from Forcan Ridge on December 23rd. Amazingly, my lost camera was found a week later, encrusted in ice and still in perfect working order! Thanks to UKCer Jalapeno for returning it to me in person a couple of days ago, made my day. I must have used up my good karma quotient for a while though, so best be a little more careful with my belongings...