Monday, 29 August 2011

More hill time

On Thursday Glenda and I headed up Sgurr Mhaim expecting a miserable day with the forecast but instead were greeted with stunning views in almost every direction, one of those days you just don't want to come off the hill.

Glenda and I on the summit of Sgurr Mhaim

On the ridge to the descent path

Yesterday it was time to keep a promise and go on a Ben Nevis litter pick arranged by my friend Sarah who is a Conservation Officer for the John Muir Trust . We headed to the summit in less than pleasant conditions, if you want to test your faith in humanity just go for a walk up the tourist path on a busy day. We lifted a large amount of rubbish considering there had been a pick just the other week, roughly 7 of the bags were full of banana skins which are becoming a real issue on the Ben. Off to Ice Factor now for another training session!

Work party on the descent, that's some of the rubbish bags we collected

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Hill Days

The other day I got word about my operation definitely being in November. Facing a move back to Ayrshire for a stint and having to be inactive for a while has re-awoken the demon and my normal drive to be in the mountains is in high gear. With this in mind and a decent forecast Suzy and I headed for the Buachaille on Wednesday. We decided on North Buttress, probably one of my favourite mountain days and apart from us getting mauled by the midge it was a brilliant day finished off nicely in the Clachaig!!

Suzy on the Buttress with Kingshouse and Rannoch Moor behind

Us on the summit after an epic trying to work timer and balance my camera

Yesterday it was up to the Cobbler with Hector to work on a new route and check some other stuff. My ankle and knees hurt but with an impending feeling of time running out I felt I couldn't waste good weather. So we battered up checked some lines for the future then headed up the ridge to the South then Central peak which is a good scramble. Another clear day in the mountains, superb. On the way home we had dinner at Ben Arthurs Bothy, I then stopped to see my Gran & Grandpa who served up Mince and Tatties, then to Dalry where my Mum served up Bacon rolls, 3 dinners in 3 hours is a record even for me!

Hector at the Narnain Boulders with Cobbler in background

I've been on Central Peak of the Cobbler dozens of times and this is the first time I've had someone take the 'classic' shot, great place to be.

Sunday, 7 August 2011

Social Climbing

Last Saturday I teamed up with my mate Fran to do some Multi Pitch on Rannoch Wall for his MIA logbook.Also there was photographer Alan Fox. On the way up we passed a few parties on Curved Ridge and chatted to the Guides I knew. On arrival at the wall we got the guidebook out and had some lunch. After a blether with Gary Latter Fran decided on Grooved Arete, this was my second multi pitch route, climbed almost 10 years ago, I remembered the day clearly but not all of the route. There was quite a few folk at the base of the climb and as Fran set off I spoke with them, then Jenny and Karen arrived for Grooved Arete too, the day continued to be social all the way home, meeting various people we knew. I had planned on fulfilling an ambition to solo something on the wall but with there being so many people around I didn't feel comfortable doing that, Foxy had carried 100m of static up for nothing in the end!!

On Grooved Arete, Buachaille Etive Mor, Glencoe with Fran, Photo-Alan Fox

We were almost in Ireland this weekend but the weather beat us once again. Other than that I've just been training, managed a run the other day and absolutely loved every second of it the pain since has been bad but it was worth it.