Sunday, 27 June 2010

3 Peaks Challenge

Lliwedd from the Miner's Track on Snowdon

The last couple of days I've been guiding on a well organized and ultimately very successful 3 Peaks Challenge for Mountains to Water. This popular challenge involves summiting the highest peaks in Scotland, Wales & England in 24 hours. Unfortunately it's been a victim of its own success which has created a number of issues with landowners and local residents as discussed in TGO in Jan 09. This event ran from south to north, made use of the new facilities at Wasdale and had a small guide to client ratio, all of which minimise the impact of the group. We also allocated 10 hours for the driving which allowed the group 14 hours of walking time and reduced the temptation to speed in the event of any delays.

An easy start on Snowdon's Miners Track

The weather was perfect if a little to hot for Snowdon & Scafell. The participants had a wide range of fitness and we had some very quick times on all the peaks eg Scafell from Wasdale in 1.15. We had allocated 4 hours each for the first 2 peaks and 6 for Ben Nevis. In the event a couple of folk were just outside the guide time on Snowdon but made up time on a stunning evening on Scafell. A few hours later Ben Nevis was a wee bit damp and cloudy but everyone put in a top effort and ultimately 17 from 22 were successful in summiting all 3 peaks in 24 hours.
I'm back out again on Thursday for my second round in a week. Perfect training for Muztag Ata (7500m) next month!

No cheating allowed!

Cooling off after a very hot Snowdon summit

Evening light and a banana on the summit of Scafell Pike

Scafell sunset

Snow on the Ben Nevis plateau

Following the new Ben Nevis cairns in the mist

Guide Guy Steven enjoying the conditions after 24 hours on the go

Descending from the Ben after ticking the final summit

Better weather below in Glen Nevis