Saturday, 28 April 2012

BMC Club Training Program

This weekend we're running an advanced navigation course in Snowdonia as part of the BMC's Club Training Program.

'An introduction to the skills of advanced navigation to enable you to get off the beaten track whatever the weather. Navigation is a fundamental skill for hill walking which will increase your enjoyment and safety in the British hills and further afield. This two day course will challenge your preconceptions of what is possible with just a map and a compass. We will get lost, we will be out after dark and we will walk around in circles but by the end of the training you should have a good personal strategy for navigating and have gained plenty of confidence in your new skills.'

There's a second course running in the Peak District on the 15th & 16th September so if you're a member of a BMC affiliated club and are interested in improving your navigation please have a look at the BMC site.

Monday, 23 April 2012

New email address...

With a new website being developed I now have a new email address. Please use if you'd like to contact me. I'll still be checking '' but am hoping to move over to the new site in the next few weeks. Thank you.

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Mountain movement skills

Jude on the traverse of Pluto (HVS 4c)

Today I've been running a work shop on movement skills in the mountains. The ability to move efficiently and safely across a variety of terrain is the key to challenges like a traverse of the Cuillin Ridge which Jude has set her heart on. We headed into a very quiet Langdale and up to Raven Crag. The focus of the day was on footwork, moving your center of mass efficiently and becoming comfortable with the environment  We climbed up (and down!) Middlefell Buttress (D) and Revelation (HS) a couple of times before picking a route up the main crag using a combination of Original Route (VS), Pluto (HVS) and Bilberry Buttress (VS). The rest of the day was spent on the scree and scrambling terrain around the crag. Bring on the Cuillin in May!

Saturday, 14 April 2012

Coledale Horseshoe Fell Race

Ben Bardsley on the climb up Eel Crag

It was a stunning cold but clear day for the Coledale Horseshoe, a British & English Championship counter for 2012. There were a number of snow showers as the runners set off up Grisedale Pike and some very chilly looking runners came past me on the scramble up Eel Crag. I was out taking photos on the second half of the course from Eel Crag, over Sail & Barrow and the final run into Coledale. Plenty more images on my Flickr page. In the event the good running conditions meant that both the mens and womens records were broken. Full results are on the FRA website (mens & women race).

A couple of Ambleside fell runners reach the Eel Crag plateau

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Skiing the Aig de Polset

Early morning light at the start of the skin up the Aig de Polset

Simple pleasures - sun, snow and a good skinning track!

Still on the way up with Mont Blanc in the background 

 Steep summit slopes and the arrival of the bad weather

Approaching the summit

 Final few meters and looking forward to a loooong descent back to Meribel

Monday, 9 April 2012

Crossing the Col d'Aussois

Great snow conditions after yesterdays storm

 Arriving at the Col d'Aussois

The second climb of the day to Les Planettes

The final climb to the hut in the sunshine

Arriving at the Refuge Peclet Polset

Saturday, 7 April 2012

A long day over the Vanoise Ice Cap

Leaving the unmanned Refuge de l'Arpont

 A long days climb up the Glacier de la Mahure

Traversing below La Dent Parrachee

More skinning!

Approaching the Col de Labby

Friday, 6 April 2012

Crossing the Vanosie Ice Cap

 Climbing away from the Refuge du Col de la Vanoise

 The climb back up onto the Glaciers de la Vanoise

Our route to the west of Mont Pelve

 The climb up from the Glacier du Pelve

 Making tracks in perfect conditions

 Climbing towards the Dome de Chasseforet

 Mont Blanc above the clouds

Approaching the west ridge of the Dome de Chasseforet

Steve enjoying a hot day on the plateau

Skinning tracks across the Vanoise Ice Cap

Friday night film - Ueli Steck

Thursday, 5 April 2012

Vanoise High Level Traverse

Skinning into the Refuge du Col de la Vanoise

Afternoon avalanches off the Aiguille de la Vanoise

Sunday, 1 April 2012

Bourne Glacier Tour

A stunning day spent ascending and descending the Bourne Glacier