Thursday, 3 March 2011

Tower Ridge

Tom on Tower Ridge's Eastern Traverse

Today promised to be warm but calm so a great opportunity to tackle one of the biggest and best routes on the Ben - Tower Ridge (IV 3) which has been at the top of Patricia's tick list for the past 6 years. There were plenty of folk heading up the Allt a'Mhullinn racing against the forecast rise in the freezing level. In the end it shot past us as we approached the Great Tower giving a very soggy end to the climb. Conditions stayed cloudy but there was always the promise of a cloud inversion above. Later in the day there was a lot of falling ice and a couple of what sounded like large cornice collapses.
Tower Ridge was in reasonable nick allowing us to make a quick ascent in around five hours including a couple of traffic jams. The snow was very soggy but there was good ice where it was needed. Teams were also on Zero gully, Hadrian's Wall Direct, Point 5, Tower Scoop, Glover's Chimney, Wendigo and North Gully all reporting a very wet experience.

Sheila & Patricia enjoying Tower Ridge with the promise of a cloud inversion

Tom, climbing with Nigel Hooker, starting the Eastern Traverse

Nigel Hooker beginning the crux moves to the top of the Great Tower

The scars of battle!

Approaching a traffic jam at Tower Gap

Patricia & Sheila in Tower Gap