Blog Posts in Category: Winter Climbing

SW & E Ridge of the Douglas Boulder, Ben Nevis

With an excellent forecast George and I planned to go to Ben Nevis with the aim of climbing Observatory Ridge. The walk in was beautiful with a clear sky, views of a snowy mountain and a beautiful view back down into the valley. Unfortunately due to the lack of winter so far this year, while Ben Nevis was covered in snow it was lacking in ice which is what lead us to attempting a ridge route. Unfortunately while we were approaching observatory ridge it became clear that the snow was very unconsolidated with no base at all. I set off on the first pitch and quickly decided that we were going to have a long and unpleasant day if we continued, so made the unpleasant unprotected down climb back to the belay. We then decided to head for plan B which was the classic south west ridge of the Douglas boulder. This provided three pitches of excellent mixed climbing, with good hooks, reasonable snow, excellent protection and enjoyable climbing. George led the first pitch which was the crux of the route with an enjoyable technical traverse, the second pitch was more straightforward. Read the full article…

2016 in 100 Photos

It’s safe to say that 2016 was a very mixed year, with the highlights being an excellent start to the year with lots of successful winter climbing trips and a winter sun rock climbing trip. The summer rock climbing never seemed to start properly for me this year, before I injured myself and had to take an enforced break. My alps trips this year was very successful and I had an excellent two weeks in the Ecrins with Becky where we climbed a few peaks and enjoyed lots of sunny bolted multi pitch climbing. Unfortunately shortly after the Alps I received the tragic news that one of my close friends and regular climbing partners died in a climbing accident in the Avon gorge. Following this I was fairly disinterested with climbing for a while which resulted in a relaxed autumn and a chilled out weekend walking around on Lundy. As I was starting to force myself to think about climbing again I headed to south Wales for some sport climbing, and had an enjoyable day out until injured my finger & forearm which put me out of action until Christmas. Winter This year. Read the full article…

Alpine Striding Edge

After a brilliant day on Sharp Edge the day before we weren’t sure that we were going to be so lucky today. Thankfully when we were woken up we were treated to another crystal clear sky, although this did have the downside that it was -5 in the valley which had made the van a bit cold… After we had thawed out we started the walk in a little bit later than planned, which was unfortunate as we had planned to set off early to try and avoid meeting any unprepared people on the route. The start of the walk was very cold, but the ascent up Myers Beck soon warmed us up. As we ascended the view along Ullswater just kept getting better with the combination of the frosty valleys, sunlit heather slopes and snowy mountains. After the shady ascent up Myers Beck it was a relief to climb into the sun and see the first view of Helvellyn, and it just looked outstanding with it’s winter coat and the clear blue sky. We were soon on Striding Edge and decided to put our crampons on at the start,. Read the full article…

Alpine Sharp Edge

Last weekend and the start of this week was characterised by heavy rain and cold conditions in Bristol, which meant that in the Lake District the mountains were developing their first significant winter coat of the season. As the week continued a high pressure system started to build, so Becky and I decided to take a day off work and head up to the Lake District for a long weekend. On Friday morning we left Bristol at 6am hoping for a clear run up the M5 and M6 in order to get to the Lake District in time to climb Blencathra via Sharp Edge and descent via Hall’s Fell ridge. Thankfully we made good time, and by 11am we were in a lay by near the start of the walk into Sharp Edge with cold and and crystal clear blue skies. The walk in was beautiful leaving the green sunlit valley and climbing up in the warm sun, we soon arrived at the first col and left the sunlight behind and the temperature plummeted, but we were treated to a fantastic view of Sharp Edge being illuminated by the sun.. Read the full article…