Blog Posts in Category: Mountaineering

Hidden Chimney

It has been a few years since we winter climbed in Scotland, mostly due to injuries and conditions. This year we decided we wanted to get back into it, but unfortunately conditions were making it difficult. The option with the safest approach seems to be the Mess of Pottage at Coire an t-Sneachda in the Cairngorms. We decided to climb hidden chimney again as a suitable re-introduction to Scottish winter, unfortunately so did a large number of other people. The walk in was surprisingly easy given how much snow was on the ground, and by the time we had arrived in the coire the cloud had lifted and showed us an excellent view of the crag, and the army of climbers in front of us. Thankfully not many teams had already approached Hidden Chimney. We started the route behind out friends James and Jon and had a very enjoyable climb. It wasn’t too cold and the conditions on the climb were excellent, and very different to last time we climbed the route. There was some very poor crag etiquette going on with a team climbing over us and the team. Read the full article…

Geal-charn Mor

With the weather looking significantly better in the east we chose to do another Corbett to make the most of any of the better weather. The start of the walk took us up the Burma road, which was fairly snowy from a low level. Despite the snow we were able to make good progress and enjoy the brilliant views back towards the Cairngorms. As the snow became deeper we all put on our snow shoes, which made the path easier, but I don’t think they made a significant difference. As we left the path to head up to the summit the poor weather came in, so the compass came back out. The show shoes also started to provide a significant benefit and we were certainly grateful for them. The descent was lovely and it was really great to see the Cairngorms from afar and from up high. It was really impressive seeing the vast expanse and how easy it was to identify a number of the major features of the range.

The Fara

The weather forecast for the first day of our trip wasn’t brilliant, so we elected for a short day on a local Corbett called The Fara. The walk in along Loch Ericht in the morning was beautiful in the sunshine, the estate gatehouse was very impressive. After a relatively short distance we were at the start of the steep ascent up a clearing between different plantations. The start of the ascent was brutal as it involved a very steep ascent with very deep snow. As we got to the top of the plantations the gradient eased off, and the poor weather started to come in. Becky was able to make good use of her new snow shoes which made the going much easier for her. As we ascended the weather deteriorated and we were soon in the white room and unable to tell what was up from down. As we were approaching the summit we had to make a detour to avoid a slope which was fairly loaded with wind slab. After some quick lunch at the summit we made a hasty descent back down. It was fairly easy going. Read the full article…

Nantlle Ridge

After a number of years of wanting to do the Nantlle Ridge, we finally ended up in North Wales with a weather window which would enable us to enjoy the ridge at it’s best. As the weather was best in the morning we started fairly early, which enabled us to see a beautiful sunrise as we were leaving the hut in Rhyd Ddu. The start of the walk soon woke us up, but once we were established on the ridge it was just brilliant. We had wonderful views in every direction and good weather, apart from the very strong wind! The scrambling was not extensive, but some of it was fairly involved if you stayed on the ridge crest rather than skirting off on the path to the side. The final section of ridge before the descent was fairly hard going underfoot, and if I were to do the ridge again I might have descended sooner. We had dropped a car at the end the night before, but somehow avoided having to do shuttle runs as Becky managed to hitch a lift with the only person we saw all day,. Read the full article…