Tuesday, 8 March 2016

Winter Fun!

It's been a busy few weeks since the last blog post. We've had some stormier weather which seems to have settled down and the last few weeks have been fantastic in the mountains.

I had a couple of great days with Rebecca and Debbie who were here on a Ben Nevis Winter weekend trip. We had a proper wild day around the CIC hut looking at Winter skills (and survival skills!).

 Rebecca and I headed up the Ben and she put in a superb effort getting to 1200m before calling it a day.
Andy and I headed out climbing and it was a sociable day on the Douglas Boulder with Steve and Hannah on Gutless and Nathan and Cormac following us Jacknife (V,6). It was nice to get on the sharp end on something a bit harder and the crux pitch was great with good protection and absorbing climbing.

 We had planned on a second route but on descent I was struck down by the Winter vomiting bug! Glad I wasn't on anything too committing that day!
 Last weekend Hannah was out with Gemma and Nick  and Dave was our with Sonnaz and her friends for a couple of trips on Ben Nevis and Winter Skills. Some stunning weather showcasing the UK's Highest Peak in all it's glory!

 After a few days in bed recovering, I headed back up to the Ben on a very 'Scottish' day! With lots of spindrift piling down the mountain, we settled on Fawlty Towers (III) for a quick hit.

 Last week I was out in Glencoe with Julie and 3rd year students from West Highland College looking at decision making in the mountains, using the 'Be Avalanche Aware' model. This was a great day out and there were lots of interesting points for the students to consider
Mark was out for us with Liz on Friday tackling the Ben in some challenging conditions, well done team!

Yesterday was set to be glorious so James, Andy and myself decided to go climbing! Andy led up P1 of Vanishing Gully (V,5) which was in great nick whilst I got to lead the steeper icefall and up onto Tower Ridge. The continuation gully had a great little pitch where it narrowed which was well worth doing. With a few slower teams ahead of us, we decided to descend Tower Ridge and back into Observatory Gully. Lots of teams out enjoying the day, with the Orion Face looking very popular (and rightly so!)