Friday, 30 July 2010
Saturday, 24 July 2010
(image from www.adventurepeaks.com)
Friday, 23 July 2010
After a week of interesting weather it all came good for the final day out with Chris, who was getting some final practice in for his MIA assessment. With a perfect forecast we opted to make the steep pull up to the Scafell and have a look at the classic Central Buttress (E1 5b). After a very warm walk in the clouds rolled in as we started the first pitch. A few hours later as we topped out it all cleared again giving some stunning views but it did mean a rather chilly and atmospheric climb. Despite the cloud the rock was reasonably dry apart from the final corner. The moves and the situation are outstanding and it deserves it's reputation as one of the best climbs in the Lakes. Best of luck to Chris for his assessment at the beginning of September.
Good luck to all the competitors in the the Lakeland 100 which is taking place this weekend. This is a very scenic ultra marathon starting in Coniston and describes a clockwise circuit of the Lake District. You can follow everyone's progress here. I've deferred my entry till next year as running 100 miles is probably not the best preparation for an expedition to Khan Tengri the following day!
Taken from the Trusts website...
'The Chris Walker Memorial Trust Fund will basically comprise two main areas...
The first is an exploration/expedition fund designed to support climbers who are keen to establish new routes and/or repeat rarely attempted climbs because of their remoteness or level of difficulty. There is to be an annual award of £1000 to the expedition, considered after due application process, selected by a dedicated Board of Trustees from the climbing fraternity.
The second element is the establishment of a British Mountain Guide bursary re Avalanche Awareness Training. Variable payments of up to £1000 per annum will be made to keen, talented and active climbers and mountaineers who meet the exacting standards for the BMG Training scheme.
In addition there will be a Ski Performance Course grant available to those climbers who wish to take an existing level of ski performance to the next level. This part of the Fund has been set up and organised by Alison Culshaw and based in the Chamonix area.'Good luck to all the riders who are turning out for a very worthy cause and in memory of a very unique individual who is sorely missed.
Thursday, 22 July 2010
Today was Chris's mountain day. On his MIA assessment he'll have to short rope two clients up and down grade 3 scrambling terrain. This is one of the most misunderstood techniques used by mountaineering instructors and guides but offers real security to folk on steeper terrain. Chris's better half Ellen joined us which gave him the opportunity to work with three people on the rope. We headed up to St Sunday Crag, opting for the quieter Broad Buttress to the right of the classic Pinnacle Ridge. This gave us a real mountaineering route with plenty of route finding difficulties. Despite plenty of low cloud the rock was dry and we made good progress through a combination of short roping and short pitching.
Wednesday, 21 July 2010
Chris enjoying the sunshine of Arthur's Pike
Tuesday, 20 July 2010
Today Chris had the opportunity to practice his coaching and client management in preparation for his MIA assessment. Steve & Hazel were keen to get out on the lead again despite the weather. However with perfect timing we arrived at the crag as it stopped raining and were back in Shepherds Cafe by the time it started again. Quayfoot Buttress (VD) in Borrowdale was very greasy but gave an interesting challenge for everyone before a multi pitch abseil back to our bags. A big thank you to Steve & Hazel for their help in making it a very successful day despite some pretty grotty conditions.
(Photo from Adventure Peaks)
In October this year I'm going to be leading an expedition to Ama Dablam for Adventure Peaks. This is one of the most stunning and iconic mountains in the world ranking alongside Khan Tengri and the Matterhorn. We plan to use fixed lines to ascend the South West ridge, the most popular route on the mountain but far from easy. This short film gives a good indication of the terrain and the exposed nature of the camps and climbing. There are still places available so if you are interested in climbing one of the worlds most beautiful mountains please get in touch with Adventure Peaks in Ambleside
Monday, 19 July 2010
Friday, 16 July 2010
Thursday, 15 July 2010
Wednesday, 14 July 2010
With rain stopping play Niv and I went out on the fells for a run around the Kentmere Horseshoe. We had a couple of big squalls blow through which soaked us to the skin but apart from that conditions were fairly benign and we made good time. I also managed to tick off another four Wainwrights to add to my tally.
Tuesday, 13 July 2010
Monday, 12 July 2010
After a long drive north from Pembroke Niv and I headed into Gogarth, arguably the UK's premier sea cliff. Although the Snowdonia mountains were wreathed in cloud we had light winds and sunshine. We had the Main Wall area to ourselves so quickly jumped on the 2 star Gauntlet (HVS 5a) to warm up before heading down to the crag classic Gogarth (E1 5b). This, the origional route on the cliff, weaves it's way in 5 pitches through some very impressive scenery with the crux reserved for a short steep section on the final pitch.