Saturday 28 February 2015

From this to this...

Zoe gave me a couple of pictures from last week to remind me what conditions were like.
This weekend its a change of pace as I've been at TCA Glasgow working with John Kettle Assessing candidates for the Mountain Training Development Coach Award. Congratulations to Alan Cassidy of TCA and Mike Mullins of EICA on becoming the first two holders of the Award to be Assessed in Scotland, 2 strong performances from good coaches.

Friday 27 February 2015

Cha No-last day for the lead climbers

A breezy walk in, a breezy climb (with some soft snow building at the lip of the gullies) but another route in the bag for Zoe and Callum and a quick go on something harder too. Not an easy week for the guys but they seemed to quite enjoy the 'train hard- fight easy' approach to winter lead climbing brought on by persevering against the weather this week. 

Thursday 26 February 2015

Spiral Gully, snow, ice and rock

Day 4 of the Intro to Winter Lead Climbing at Glenmore Lodge and our first day in the Northern Coires! Excellent if windy fun on an icey Spiral Gully for Callum and Zoe. A breezy walk across the plateau as the snow arrived at the end of the day.

Wednesday 25 February 2015

2 more days with Callum and Zoe

Yesterday's forecast for wind and avalanche hazard meant that we opted to make use of the facilities at Glenmore Lodge doing some dry tooling and rope work so that the guys would be ready to get on the sharp end today.
With a still less than ideal avalanche forecast and the knowledge that plenty of folk were streaming over from the west we went totally outside the box and drove west! The west face of Aonach Mor was as close to a sure fire safe aspect as we were likely to find and I knew just the place to go. Zoe and Callum led 5 pitches of up to III and although the wind appeared at lunchtime to give us our daily exfoliation the precipitation wasn't to bad and a useful day was had in a new venue for them. More climbing tomorrow!

Monday 23 February 2015

Wild and windy day 1

I'm over in the east working a climbing course at Glenmore Lodge with Callum and Zoe. A wild day and plenty of blown snow kept us low down today at the Ciste Crag.
 Shooting cracks on the walk in
 'Never underestimate the Ciste Crag'- now if only I listened more to my own advice
 Graham with his climbers
Zoe dressed for action

Saturday 21 February 2015

Climbing wall and Aonach Mor

Since getting back from the east I've spent 2 days working with West Highland College students on their skills acquisition module at The Ice Factor. On wednesday it was wild outside and just about every Instructor and their dog was in the wall.
Today I was out for AMI running a workshop on mountaineering for Trainee MICs. We headed round to the west face of Aonach Mor where we managed to get on a rocky rib interspersed with deep powder wades. Higher up we hit some more open slopes and looked at managing traverses and short descents.
What looked like debris from 2 large avalanches on the east side of the CMD arete visible.

Tuesday 17 February 2015

I've just spent 4 days in the east working with Scott and a team from Worksop College helping prepare them for a wee adventure we will be having together in Greenland this summer. A real mix of weather and lots of hard work from all.
 Self belay rom Scott
 Coming down after day 1
 Hanging around
 Heading for windy col...
 Which lives up to its name
 Cairngorm summit
A hole in the snow