Wednesday 12 November 2014

A few dry square metres of rock...

… in a Glen of damp mica schist. To be fair the rain held off until we were heading back for the bus but today I had three of the ATM Students helping prepare them as lead climbers. It being November the rock of Glen Nevis sometimes seems perma wet but we headed up to Hangover Buttress nonetheless. The oldest recorded route in the Glen is Hangover's Left Edge- when wet the difficulties far outweigh its usual grade of moderate but there is plenty of gear and Magnus and Kate led a pitch each. Then it was time for Ben to get to grips with the only dry rock around. Cross 3 is a good single pitch Diff traverse under a deep roof. The exposure increases as you head left and the ground drops away but there is again lots of gear and the climbing under the roof is often partly dry leaving only wet footholds and a damp mantle shelf move to finish. The team then conducted their own retreat from the top of the crag before we headed to Pinnacle Ridge to look at some more rope work on a spacious ledge. They finished the day abseiling from a jammed knot in one of my Edlerid aramid slings- a true test of faith in the gear (and their Instructor)!
 Kate lacing the Crux of the Left Edge Route
 Ben finding dry rock on Cross 3 too easy decides to climb with his eyes closed
 Kate takes her hood down under the roof
 Magnus seconds to avoid the rain
 A little damp?
 Somewhere in the shower Kate retreats from the crag
 'If I plunge from this I'll come back and haunt you!'
The abseil anchor...

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