Old Meet Reports 2003-2004

Salvaged from the old website:


7/18/2004  Reiff part IIILast visit,  left of Pinnacle area:

SomethingBlue (Hard Severe 4c) where I was unable to pull over the top which makes it a 4c.  Didn’t affect my confidence, just backed up that I am not yet technical enough to make 4c moves.

Sonia tried Juniors’ Groove (vdiff *) but I think her confidence had taken a beating the day before, and she was fed up doing corners, which most of our routes were.  I did it, she still decided she didn’t like it, but again I thought it worthy of a *.

The trip was good with me getting lots of short routes, harder than I would normally do.  But Sonia who was ever impatient had wanted to be able to do VS by the end of the trip.  But she did ok for her first real rock climbing trip and soon I am sure VS will come.

Sadly, I received some bad news at the end of the trip.  One of Harry’s climbing partners had died in a tragic accident at Dunkeld.  He was one of the nicest, blokes on the climbing scene and had everything going well for him and his family.  He was always cheerful and encouraging to others.  Words cannot say how sad we feel for his family at this time.

Posted by Harry Mc , 7/18/2004 9:34 PM  

7/18/2004  Reiff part II 

Next day Rock Garden crags south of Rhiconich.  We managed to do 2 V diffs.  One of which Sonia led but more like soloed, with me moaning at her put some gear in.  It was quite windy and a good lead for Sonia to get under her belt in those not so perfect conditions.

Back to Reiff, to Poof Cliff where we did

Pooh Corner (VS 4c) 

Sonia tried the Ramp (S) but with the alternative start which is much harder VS?  I thought Sonia had it cracked but unfortunately her foot slipped and she came off the bottom move.  Never mind she had a soft squishy landing, ME!  Could have been nasty though as she nearly went over the platform head first without a helmet.  One thing learned by me, put a belay in if there is any chance of flying backwards, wear a helmet if there is any chance that you may have to spot your leader.    

Posted by Harry Mc , 7/18/2004 9:25 PM  

7/18/2004 Helen and Sonia’s trip to Reiff part I

Sea Cliff area took quite a time to find.  If you face out to the bay it lies in line with the right hand side of Eilean Glas island.  The routes done here were:

Sea Stytis (S**) or Sea Weed? (VDiff *) felt severe but description sounded like the VDiff?

Sea Phylis (VD*) which Sonia led and didn’t like. I found worthy of star

Around the corner we found x3 * climbs but with the need to set up an ab in, so we didn’t do them.  They face south but are affected with patches of bird droppings.  Still these are worthy of a next visit.

Other routes done over the next few days:

 Bay of Pigs and Minch Wall where we did

Creeping Jenny (VS 4c) short but enough to give me Elvis legs half way up.

Chockstone Crack (V diff) - one of Sonia’s leads

Slip Jig (HS *) Sting in the tail at the top!

Polka (Mild VS 4b*) Thanks to the guys who loaned me a small cam for the bottom move.  I found the part after the traverse tricky to place gear and ended up having to pull on the ab rope to get through the move.  Though an easier grade, not having good gear in depletes confidence.  In hindsight I should have took more effort to place better gear and make the move.  Next time???

Posted by Harry Mc , 7/18/2004 9:18 PM  

7/15/2004  Ben An 

Danny and Jules Ben An. Good routes bad midgies.

Posted by watchword5, 7/15/2004 4:46 PM  

7/11/2004  The Long Wait 

Well, its been pretty dour this summer so far, so it was good to get a long route in at last.  An inspirational last minute decision to go up Sunday rather than Saturady was rewarded with a dry, albeit cloudy day.  Harry and I went to the Etive Slabs and did The Long Wait; the longest route on the slabs and giving 9 pitches of sustained 5a/b - E2 overall. Harry claimed 'he didn't know how to climb slabs' and complained a bit about the lack of holds on the first pitch and the lack of gear leading the second pitch, but made light work of it all.  He made a good lead of the second pitch up a blank slab, then an awkward undercling traverse below the big overlap with the odd patch of moss to negotiate.  Higher there were some good 5b sections, often with fiddly or distant gear.  Especially exciting was Harry's lead on Pitch 8 up a narrow strip of dry but green slab between two slimey water streaks, with some good 5b friction moves well above the gear.  The route made its length felt and we were both pretty tired by the end of the 255m.  In fact the final 5a corner caused a bit of trouble, spitting Harry out off the initial strenuous moves.  All good adventure.  What was even nicer was that we had the place virtually to ourselves.  One other party was doing Pause, and there were even very few midges around.  What joy!

Posted by Robin , 7/12/2004 12:25 PM  

7/7/2004  Loudon Hill Evening Meet 

Danny Church, Jules, Carol, Dave and Matt made it down to Loundon Hill in time to climb the pinnacle and the Original Route. Danny and Jules were still climbing as it went dark, Hardcore! We were eating anything the chipshop had left. Congrats to Jules who notches up his first (second and third) lead climb. Cheers Matt

Posted by matt_bridgestock, 7/9/2004 12:49 PM  

7/4/2004  Glen Etive Meet 

Contrary to the weather forecast Saturday was better than expected, unfortunatly Sunday was not. Thoughts of a plan B climb were banished as rain squalls scurried over Ranoch Moor. It was still pelting after a cup of tea in the Whitecorries Cafe, and dispite the calls to use the chairlift we headed up Meall a Bhuiridh. The rain eased as we crossed the ridge to Creise, the cloud lifting over the hills. A wee dram of the finest Speyside on the top and we headed down slippery slopes to the Kingshouse. The Euro 04 final interupted by satilite failure indicated it was time to jump back in the Carol mobile for an adrenilin filled ride home.


Matt, Jules, Carol and Derek

Posted by matt_bridgestock, 7/4/2004 10:04 PM  

7/3/2004  Ben Narnain 

Margaret, Petra and Claudia and Gunther (guests) decided to stay close to Glasgow due to the mixed weather forecast. Ben Narnain was very quiet and we had a much better day than forecasted on the hill.

Posted by petrasamba, 7/4/2004 9:12 AM  


I hadn't seen Matt for years, possibly since the day I got married. A lot has passed in that time, I got ill, he became a buddhist. One thing wehave both retained is a taste for whisky. Subsequently, friday night and a lot of saturday morning passed in what is now a bit of a haze.


Feeling decidely rough we decided on a target for the morning(ish). An Gearbhanach. Needless to say the rope bridge at Steall is decidedly wobbly with a hangover. With dry, but very tired legs ( I concluded that all my glycogen stores were being used up metabolising whisky) we proceeded and eventually made it to the top. Unfortunately, most of the forecast was correct, it became driech, but the promised hoolie didn't deliver, even on the ridge. A return was made via Nevis Sport Direct (a very good route).


Sunday dawned dry and bright (not that we saw it - much less whisky 'cos we'd practically polished it off the night before, but a few beers deferred an early start). We fancied a climb and in particular Ardverikie Wall. 


The first shower came in as we walked in, the second as we geared up. Neither of these really made the rock wet so like ducks to the slaughter we set off. The third shower was the lightest yet, but was closely followed by the big daddy of mountain showers, just as I was feeling a little lost half way up the second pitch, 30 feet from my last runner. After some very careful climbing I made the ledge, which was now a small river with a waterfall at one end. Enough was enough so we bailed out and went home.


It was Matt's first taste of Scottish summer rock. A fine introduction.   



Posted by El Presidente , 6/28/2004 12:29 PM  

5/30/2004  Pointe Marcel Kurz, North Face Direct 

Pointe Marcel Kurtz (3,498m) is the western subsidiary summit of the Mount Brule group (apparently a well known landmark to Haute Route types…) that forms a section the frontier ridge between Switzerland (Valais, Upper Arolla glacier) and Italy (Valpelline). The largely glaciated, 450m north face has three imaginatively named routes; L hand, R hand and Direct Route.

Following two weeks of snow pit digging, metrological work, ice temperature profiling and snow stratigraphy/ablation measurements on the glacier the urge to climb something got the better of us. Having eye-balled the frontier wall for some days… A small selection of climbing gear was discretely taken to work!

Following a strenuous day’s work of snow digging, playing with wires/data loggers and stuff, we decided to make an ascent of the Direct Routereaching the foot of the face at around 5.00pm. Alpine climbing Scottish style! The first 100m or so follows an icefall spur falling from the central basin, mostly straightforward but with (at present) three short vertical pitches of about Scottish 3/4 and an interesting “detached” serac, don’t know how it stayed in place but we didn’t hang around just in case Newton’s laws still hold.

The central section of the face was initially a soft snow slope to the central bergshrund that cuts across the entire face, here snow buckets and buried axes had to suffice as belays, a trifle unnerving in light of the now considerable exposure. This was where the real fun began; it proved impossible to cross this impasse directly since I’m a crap climber and the ice tools would not gain sufficient purchase on the rotten ice of the upper rim. A precarious R wards traverse in the rapidly descending darkness, provided us with several hairy moments, but gained access to a tenuous snow ramp giving access to the upper face.  Three rope lengths on 55-degree ice and snow of variable quality and poor belays took us to the foot of the headwall and the first decent screw belays for some time. The angle here reared up through what had been the terminal serac band, an “easy” line to the left tempted us but the insecurity of the near vertical sugar soon forced us back to the post serac ice wall. This was followed, trending rightwards to keep Karin out of the fall line of the rotten plating water ice. I was aiming for an apparent easing in angle when a distant voice emanating from an eerie LED glow fifty runner-less metres below told me I was out of rope, some thirty minutes or so later I had managed to construct a semi-hanging screw belay. Karin quickly reached me and following an awkward change over I continued directly up steep rotten water ice to gain the moonlit summit ridge at about 12.30am. A very ice battered and bruised Karin soon joined me to enjoy the vista of the softly moonlit mountains of Italy.

Descent was made via the west ridge (F+/PD), carefully avoiding the monstrous cornices projecting far into Switzerland. We collected our skis from the foot of the face and Karin glided down the hard frozen snow-covered glacier to arrive at our camp at around 4.00am. Skiing is not one of my areas of competence and following several frustrating and painful falls I removed the bastards (Anyone interested in buying (or swapping) a pair of short Rossignol “Free Venture” skis complete with skins?) and walked back to camp to be greeted, at around 4.30am, with a beer and cup of tea. The tea was best; beer doesn’t seem to work at this early hour!

The following morning it was back to work at 8.00am as usual, only four days work left, two days on the glacier followed by two days luxury and surveying from the Refuge des Bouquetins and then almost two weeks solid climbing and frolics to look forward to...

The present Alpine Club guidebook grade for the climb is AD; I thought it more like TD- in the semi-winter conditions prevailing (done easier Scottish 5’s and Swiss route on Les Courtes (TD) was easier…but I was young, fit and handsome then…).

Posted by Russell_Salisbury, 6/25/2004 3:17 PM  

6/20/2004  Glen Nevis 

 On Sunday, Danny and I decided on Glen Nevis as being possibly a bit warmer and dryer than the high routes at the moment.  We drove up to the end of the road to find it damp and pretty dreary, but further down the Glen things were drier, so we decided on the old favourite Storm.  Three great pitches; see photo.  The True Finish at E1 added a bit of spice; pretty exposed with fiddly and not very reassuring gear.  It certainly got me going!  Danny did the HVS Weaver's Loom next door, before a heavy shower came in and we retreated to the car for lunch.  We then took a chance and went up the glen to Gorge Crag.  The likes of Plague of Blazes and Travellin' Man were wet, but there are two ever dry E1s there which are very worthwhile.  We did All Our Yesterdays which gave steep exciting climbing up a big corner.  We abbed off a block above the difficulties to avoid the wet easy finish, as it was actually raining while we were climbing on the routes.  Worth remembering.  That was about it for the arms so we headed off to find a cream tea. 

Posted by Robin , 6/21/2004 12:47 PM  

6/12/2004  An easy day for a..... well anyone really 

You would have thought that after a week of rain in Glen Coe a crag called Weeping Wall wouldn't be a very sensible option. You'd be right, it wasn't.


The high crags on the Buachaille were in clag as were the ones in Stob Coire nan Lochan so they were pretty well out too. Polldubh didn't seem attractive, lots of trees, much dampness and a significant risk of anaemia (for my views on midges see the comments on Staffin by Andy Heald).


Having gone through this thought process we carried on to Weeping Wall anyway. Everything was wet, well nearly everything. Two poor souls were set for Long Crack and making very worried noises about it too. At this point our combined experience kicked in "lets go and do soemthing easy" I said, "righto" said Dave.


So we did Bowstring and Archer Rib.


As a final note, they were both good, the latter being superb. Many thanks to strange decision making, because we'd never have done them at any other time.


Next time, we go to Polney.......



Posted by El Presidente , 6/14/2004 12:11 PM  

6/13/2004  Castle Ridge on Ben Nevis 

This was supposed to be a Womens' Climbing Meet but lack of members forced cancellation.  But friend Linda from Roybridge was still keen to go out, so that was great.


We decided on Castle Ridge (Moderate) on Ben Nevis, a nice longish easy route to move fast away from the midges.


After tea at the car park we set off.  At the bottom of the ridge I discovered I had remembered my stove for more tea but forgotten the runners for climbing.  So we fashioned some runners using slings, cord, knicker elastic, bra straps etc.


Walked up the gully to miss out the initial wet, greasy slabs.  Starting just below the first chimmney, one of the two difficulties on the route.  Both chimneys are ok, but the first is much easier.  (I got the first, Linda got the second).  The second 'chimney' is quite exposed which makes it seem harder than the moderate it is given.  Moved together on the other sections which were ok but with care to be taken with some loose rock.


At the top the clag was in, so we decided to practise our map reading and pacing and go as the guidebook states 300m west before descending.  It is really difficult to pace on rough rocky ground that is not snow covered, I soon lost count.  We managed to arrive where we wanted to be but the scree slopes are time consuming.  If the weather had been clearer and time better we would have made a trip to the summit to descend.


Back to Linda's for more tea and pizza and an insight on how difficult it must be to be a working mum to a toddler, and still manage to find energy to climb.


posted by Helen

Posted by Harry Mc , 6/14/2004 11:49 AM  

6/11/2004  Ben Vorlich and Stuc a' Chroin 

Helen, Louise and Margaret.


Good planning on meeting place by Louise and Margaret meant I was able to stock up on tea and cakes at Callandar bakers.


The weather looked as if it was going to be grim. It was everywhere around but suprisingly it didn't actually rain on us, just everywhere very close by.  But it was windy and chilly.


Passed the trig point and went on to the cairn of Ben Vorlich.  I'm not sure which is highest as there is not much height between them.  Stopped for tea at the summit cairn and then on to Stuc a Chroin, following a bearing which took us past the old fence posts.  Quite a steep pull up to Stuc a Chroin, which was a new munro for me!  The previous times I have decided that it was too much height lost and gained but it was not as bad as I expected. 


Back down via the shoulder and a traverse across took us over the col at Corrie Buidhe and reconnected with the original path.


A good day out on a Friday.


posted by Helen



Posted by Harry Mc , 6/14/2004 11:46 AM  

6/13/2004  The diminishing grade effect... 

After much debate and deliberation, we set off for Creag and Dubh Loch, fuelled by Luke's optimism and a bit of local ken. To our delight (and my suprise) the cliff was virtually bone-dry.  The sun was shining but there was a stiff breeze, but we didn't give that much thought.  But up in Central Gully the wind was funnelling up the cliff - too windy for our (overly?) ambitious plans of Cougar, E3.  So we had a look at Sous les Toites/Falsface, E2, instead.  It seemed a bit of a long complex route for the day, and the conditions, and the state of the team.  So back  to the Dubh Loch Monster, E1.  Luke led the 4b start, but it was slow going.  The wind had now picked up some more, and it was gusting hard, making each move tense and precarious.  I started the 5c crux but found the wind very off-putting.  So we traversed off to the left, having a quick look at Kraken, HVS (just to wimp out of the full spectrum if grades!), before belaying on Mousetrap, VS.  By now all enthuisiasm was blown away.  We were fed up of getting buffeted by the wind, so abbed off.  A little complex, as when you tried to throw the ropes down, they just got blown up the cliff!  So Luke lowered off, and then I just abbed down the ropes after.  So another unsuccesful attempt on this face for me - foiled by the weather three times in a row now!  I'll be back.

Posted by Robin , 6/14/2004 7:53 AM  

6/5/2004  The two hills behind Ben lawers 

Petra, Louise, Paul ( LMC) & Ishbel, Nicole & Jens ( Non LMC), headed for the the two hills behind Ben lawers wanting to aviod the lawers crowds ( meall corranaich & Meall a'Choire Leith), after driving through glorious weather on the way up , the low level mist swirled round us for most of the day...two new ticks for most of us!!

Posted by Louise , 6/8/2004 3:18 PM  


 Skye: the gentle art of dominoes Part II<o:p></o:p>

The following day we woke early (except for Robin to whom it seemed dreadfully late) to find cloud on the tops, descending rapidly as we broke our fast.  Helen was joining Margaret for a round of Coire Bhasteir, so Ed was brought on from the bench to ensure odd numbers.  Lucy went to Dunvegan, from where it was reported that McLeod had tried to sell the Cuillin because he was roofless.  At least I think that was the word.  At Glen Brittle, the Famous Five found the clouds at ankle level and rain coming on so they skulked off to a coastal cliff.  This proved to be the second bad domino, especially when we found that Staffin is an old gaelic word meaning ‘steep wide cracks inhabited by plant and insect life otherwise known only in the Amazon basin’.  Ed set off up a route but Chris showed the decision making that has got him where he is today and, with an utterance that remains the subject of some dispute, he led a retreat to make Napoleon proud.  Ed and Robin, made of the stern stuff that wins empires, stayed for 2 routes and attempted a third.  The zenith was Robin’s lead of Gorbachev but the midges took full advantage of the glasnost of Ed’s shirt.<o:p></o:p>

Harry, Chris and Andy returned to the, now sun-baked, Cuillin and made a rapid ascent of Pinnacle Ridge.  Here they were pleased to run separately into Helen and Gil, both in various states of toplessness, and less pleased to encounter a young boy glued to a vertical grass patch between the pinnacles and shouting down “Do you need a hand Dad?”<o:p></o:p>

H & H had to leave before the rest of us blinked into a sunlit Monday morning.  We called at Ed & Lucy’s tent to ask what they were doing.  From inside came the muffled response “we’re exploring”.  We didn’t know how to take this and so left them to it.  Robin, Chris and I sped to Coire Lagain and passed everyone in the gully in case they too were after Vulcan Wall (of course they weren’t).  Chris generously stepped aside to let me lead the coveted second pitch and was rewarded by a first pitch that was just as good and difficult.  I was a bit ashamed that we didn’t let Robin lead the E2 finish from the tiny foothold of a “possible stance” with dodgy nut belays.  Robin took it well, starting with “I’m quite happy if you don’t want me to” via “if you really don’t want me to” and “are you sure you don’t want me to?” finishing with “Why?”  Basically Chris was froz and I was frit.  So he led the normal finish.  But what a great route!  And it just goes to show that you only need one good domino to make a good weekend.

Andy Heald

Posted by El Presidente , 6/8/2004 11:58 AM  


 Skye: the gentle art of dominoes: Part I<o:p></o:p>

 Helen, Harry, Ed, Lucy, Chris, Robin and Andy camped at Sligachan but both Margaret and Gil wisely chose to stay elsewhere on the island with their families and friends.<o:p></o:p>

Arrival on Friday was torrential and so it was with low expectations that the Secret Seven trudged to Coire Lagain next day.  Ed & Lucy were on a familiarisation tour of the upper coire and lochan, while the remainder argued traditionally over wet weather options.  This was how we played our first bad domino, but how were we to know that, had we taken the precaution of a lie-in and a leisurely breakfast, the sun would emerge later and dry off all our projects.  It took us longer to decide on a mass ascent of the classic VDiff Eastern Buttress, than it did to lose the route.  In hindsight we did most of Chimney Route before finding the crux wall of our chosen route, which Helen led with alacrity.  It seemed a long way to go for 40ft of good climbing.  Toward the top I understood something Harry said, for perhaps the only time in the weekend.  His urgent yell sent Helen & me diving for the narrow protection of a jutting overhang.  “Please try not to drop it” we whimpered as we calculated the possible ricochets that would result in a bulls eye.  Meanwhile Harry, Sisyphus-like above, tried to push the boulder back onto its ledge while hanging from his other hand.  It struck his foot before shattering on our flimsy overhang into as many fist-sized pieces as there were unsuspecting climbers on the Cioch Buttress and gully below.  Amazingly, he missed the lot.  He has clearly lost his touch since his street fighting days.<o:p></o:p>

As we descended in bright evening sunshine all our ambitions winked mischievously at us, so we stopped off for a couple of short hard routes.  We polished up our hopes for the morrow.<o:p></o:p>

<o:p>Andy Heald</o:p>

Posted by El Presidente , 6/8/2004 11:54 AM  

6/4/2004  Ardvreikie Wall 

Once again chasing the weather.  We decided to change plans and go west hoping the weather would be fair enough to climb.  Four of us stayed over at the hut on Fri 04 June (Danny Church, Harry, Helen with friend Mark) with Carlos arriving Sat morning.


The weather looked a bit grim on the way in but we decided to go for it anyway, especially since it was too windy for midges.


Ardvreikie wall was decided on as the warm up (although Helen, Mark and Danny looked on it as the main route of the day).  Went up in two pairs Carlos with Mark, Harry with Helen and Danny.  The first pair managed to complete the route before the rain came on but the second trio of Harry, Helen and Danny got caught in the downpour.  Helen finding the last pitch a nightmare even seconding.  The downpour put paid to anymore climbing for the day.  But despite the weather, the situation of Ardvreikie Wall at Binnein Shaus makes for a good mountaineering trip.


Back to Glasgow for Danny but a stay over at the hut for Harry, Helen, Mark and Carlos.  Joined by friend Kevin who dropped by with lap top and excellent slide show of his Himalayan trip.


The next morning again was too wet to climb.  We had tried to contact Carmel, who wanted to go walking, but we were too late so visited the indoor climbing wall at Kinlochleven.  Where the guys climbed and Helen managed a hassle free exchange of her faulty rock shoes (good service from the shop at the ice factor!).



Posted by Harry Mc , 6/7/2004 8:26 PM  

6/5/2004  Dunkeld 

The forecast for west coast drizzle proved right so Dave and I had to head East to Dunkeld.  We started with a jungle bash to rediscover Lover's Leap (there was a path but we didn't find it straight away).  Sadly the routes were pretty poor and vegatated and we did one two-pitch VS.  Then it was back to Polney.  We led alternately up the End (VS) - much more fun than Lover's Leap.  Then I led The Way Through (E2) which was quite exciting through three sets of overhangs.  A nice day in the sun.

Posted by Robin , 6/6/2004 8:24 AM  

5/29/2004  Skye 2004 

The following went to Skye, mostly camping at Sligachan: Harry, Helen, Chris, Andy, Robin, Margaret and friends (based in a B&B nearby), Ed, and guests Lucy and Gemma.  Gareth and mates were seen on Sron na Ciche on Sat. Gil was also seen somewhere on the island!  Mostly fine weather allowed the following ascents: Sgurr nan Eag and Sgurr Dubh Mor; Chimney Route/Eastern Buttress combination - a polite way of saying we got lost - (MS), Petronella (MVS), Stormy Petrel (HVS) and Vulcan Wall (HVS) on Sron na Ciche; Pinnacle Ridge; Lat up a Drainpipe (HVS) and Gorbachev (E2) at Staffin; Bruach na Frithe and Am Basteir; and the Talisker distillery and Dunvegan Castle and gardens.

Posted by Robin , 6/2/2004 4:10 PM  

5/22/2004  Creag Dubh, Newtonmore 

Chris and Robin decided it was time to test their bottle at Creag Dubh.  We started on Strapadickteami (E1).  This climbs the central wall and is superbly steep.  The first pitch was pretty serious with some dubious rock once the gear was left well behind, but the jugs appear just in time.  The second pitch had great exposure and was pretty sustained.  Sadly we noticed a nest and spoted a distressed Peregine, so we avoided the area after that (ruling out the classic, Inbred).  I then led Wet Dreams on the Waterfall Wall (E2).  To quote Ron Renwick from the LMC meets log years back: 'What a route! Not enough stars in the sky to describe this.Whoopee over and over and overhangs for ever, don't stop for tea breaks.' I have to concur; steep as hell but at least it had gear.  Finally Chris led the suprisingly good and spacey Tip Off (VS). A sting in the tail!

Posted by Robin , 5/23/2004 9:43 AM  

5/19/2004  Spring cragging 

Theres been a fair amount of cragging going on lately, at weekend and evenings.  Sunday a couple of weeks ago, Chris, Ed, Harry and Robin managed between them to do The Doobie Brothers (E1), Easy Contract (E1), Not Easy Contract (E1) and Another One Bites the Dust (E1) at Cambusbarron before getting drenched by a thunderstorm.  There have been a couple of Wednesday night trips to Craigmore, pulling large crowds of Lomonders, for some short routes and bouldering, and there was a bit of a 'ropework training session' the other week.  I even saw some wire brushes out so you may find a few routes looking all shiny and clean now.  Last weekend some made it down to the Lakes, and I know that Andy and Mat did Troutdale PInnacle (S?).  Also last weekend, Chris, Damien, Harry and Helen visited Polney at Dunkeld, doing Springboard amongst others.  This Wednesday we met at Auchinstarry.  Chris led A Walk on the Wild Side (HVS) and Trundle (VS), Ed led Gold Rush (E1), and Robin led After the Grave Dig (E1) and Power Play (E1).  Andy joined in later on, and Harry was spotted at the top of the cliff but not thereafter - where did you go Harry, did we see you on Promatory Direct (HVS)?

Posted by Robin , 5/20/2004 12:06 PM  

5/1/2004  North West 

A weekend not quite running to plan but well worth it. Delays on the A9 scuppered plans to walk in to Shenavall on the Fri eve, so settled for An Teallach on Sat and the bothy on Sat night. Fantastic day, reminiscent of when I first did this 11 odd years ago, but about 10 degrees colder. Warm in the sun, cold in the wind.

Bothy not too busy - about a dozen or so. Beinn Dearg Mhor - a big little hill on Sun before walking out. This mountain would be terrific come the next ice age - a bit too low for reliable winter routes at present I suspect..

Back to Glen Carron for Monday - wee surprise on leaving the campsite in the morning - snow down to 2000ft...

Still 3-4" on the summits and hoar frost to boot.... On drive home noticed Carn Mor Dearg and the Ben had substantial cover up high.... was that a line of ice on Hadrians wall...?


Iain G.

Posted by igribbit, 5/5/2004 6:48 PM  

5/2/2004  Where have all the climbers gone (in Borrowdale)? 

Where have all the climbers gone?

Gone to Shepherds every one

Where have all the climbers gone?

Gone to Shepherds every one

Where have all the climbers gone?

Long time passing


Where has Chris gone?

Gone to Eagle Crag

What's he done?

Praying Mantis - first Hard Rock tick of the year, Yee haa  

Posted by El Presidente , 5/5/2004 11:39 AM  

4/30/2004  Aonach Dubh 

I've done winter routes at this time of year, so shouldn't have been suprised that it was so cold.  But it was frigging freezing on Friday;a biting wind.  Mat and Robin climbed Nirvana Wall (S) on Far Eastern Buttress.  By the top I couln't feel my hands, making the climbing a bit more interesting though.  Nice route all the same.  We dropped back down to the Weeping Wall and climbed The Long Crack (S).  Mat discovered that gear placements are not always very obvious and did some bold climbing at the grade; good lead.  A bit warmer wearing full Goretex!


PS Whilst kayaking round Moidart (down Loch Shiel, out the river at the end and on round to Loch Ailort), we endured hail showers.  On the way home, I noticed the Ben was under quite a heavy mantle of snow.  Winter is not over yet!

Posted by Robin , 5/4/2004 4:47 PM  

4/24/2004  Sun rock in Borrowdale 

Sunshine at last!  While the girls were up Blencathra, the boys were just down the road on Shepherd's Crag in Borrowdale.  Danny and Robin had a fantastic day bagging a string of multi-starred routes: Kransic Crack Direct (HVS), Fisher's Folly (VS), Finale (HVS), Evel Knieval (HVS), Jaws (E1), and Adam (VS).  Finale, Evel Knieval and Jaws were all pretty hard work for those un-accustomed arms, so we had to retreat to the cafe, to enjoy tea, cake and sitting out in the sun.  Just a perfect day.

Posted by Robin , 4/25/2004 10:58 AM  

4/24/2004  Blencathra 

Louise, Margaret and Petra went up Blencathra via sharp edge & lots of breaks in the sun.

Posted by petra3009, 4/24/2004 7:47 PM  

4/19/2004  Crammag Head 

Hats of to the LMC team on the first ascent of 'Bumble in the Savannah' - weather looked lovely! 


On Monday, Danny and I chased the dream of sunshine and drove down to the Mull of Galloway.  That part of the plan worked - having left Glasgow in driving rain, it was in fact sunny at Crammag Head.  Sadly, you couldn't hear yourself think due to the wind, and you had to keep a firm hold of your guide book, boots, lunch, whatever lest they were blown away.  The next problem was that the waves and spray were reaching the full height of some of the shorter routes, and an abseil approach into the foaming melee was not attractive.  So after having had a look around and enjoying the situation, we went back to the warmth of the car.  We did a couple of poor VSs at Carnseugh Point, near Port William, as a consolation then headed home.


As the main aim of the day was to get some fresh air, we seemed to get more than we bargained for!

Posted by Robin , 4/20/2004 12:10 PM  

4/18/2004  Etive Slabs 

We arrived at the Manse on Saturday evening to be treated to a three course banquet courtesy of Jules, then a quick one in the Onich Hotel followed by another party in the Manse.

Awoken by Jules, Sunday at about 8.30 to be told “A pot of tea is on the table”, which is of course a euphemism for “get up you lazy bastards”? We decided on the Etive slabs to climb Spartan Slab, however on arrival we determined that this, (plan A) was perhaps “unjustifiable” at this time, in spite of the good friction on the first few moves, due to the steadily falling drizzle. Plan B, Buzzard Arête (VD) was duly climbed as a wet day alternative, good climb it was too, though the poor protection and long run outs came as a bit of a surprise for the grade and the guide book description. Also, it didn’t really have a ridgey feel…very strange! Got back to the car park and celebrated with four bottles of Miller (between 4) that had been kindly donated earlier by a lone fisherman, “Och if ye manage to get up that today ye’ll deserve these”, very nice!  Drove back, hallucinating of food as we had missed the 9.00pm cut off at the Kings House and everywhere else. Aladdin’s take away in Nedsville (Dumbarton) later provided us with very good mix kebab and not so good fish and chips!

Monday morning, whilst engaged in the three S’s I had another look at the guide to realise that we had not in fact climbed plan B route, which is high up to the left of the gully terminating the left edge of the slabs (must learn my left from right!). We seem to have climbed an unrecorded or new route between Bitten by the Bug and Penguin’s Paradise. Approximate description as follows:

Bumble in the Savannah 195m Severe ****** (?) (Tentative name and grade)

A logical route taking the easiest left to right line through some steep and potentially difficult ground, worthwhile! Good clean rough granite between the grassy bits. Start at the extreme lowest point at the left end of the Slabs immediately before the prominent LH gully proper.

  1. 40m Climb the slabby wall, with two tricky mantelshelf moves, then faint grooves to a small overlap climb this and up the cracked slab to belay (Friend 2.5 + Rock 6) on a small sloping ledge.
  2. 35m Continue up the cracked slab and trend right on steep grass to good cracks and tree below a prominent rib.
  3. 30m Climb up and onto the rib and follow it, without difficulty, to a grassy niche.
  4. 60m From the grassy niche move right onto exposed hanging slabs, follow these trending right to gain a short corner (Friend 2 + Rock 7) on “banjo string” rope stretch. An exposed and poorly protected pitch.
  5. 30m Continue up the slab and then on steep grass to belay below headwall. Traverse off to the left to gain the left hand descent gully.  

There is a possible continuation: 6. Traverse right across easy slabs to the arête. This is in superb position, overlooking the main slabs but very vegetated - we stopped here due to the late hour (euphemism for loss of bottle?) and uncertainty of the way ahead…. But guess it would lead to near top of Jaywalk?

Present: Carol, Damien, Jules, Russell

Posted by Russell_Salisbury, 4/20/2004 11:56 AM  

4/9/2004  Easter Meet at Ullapool? 

Not sure if this constitutes a meet!  Helen and Harry.


Helen and Harry made the journey North West.  Due to the expected weather conditions we made a detour to Inchnadamph to stay in the warmth of a dorm.  Arrived pretty late and put my clothes including bra and knickers in the allocated box below the bunk.  The other occupant woke up early and after a few rumages he decided to switch the light on to discover the bra and knickers did not belong to him.  Thankfully he had not packed any of my stuff away.


Despite friends trying to entice up to rock climb we decided to go up Conival and Ben More Assynt.  The long walk in is not really noticed as it is gradual and before you know it you are at around 750m height. Then a short pull up the shoulder to Conival where we met the first person up the hill.  All 3 of us went on together to Ben More Assynt where the clouds cleared giving us good views.  Didn't fancy the long slog out down the south ridge, so opted to reverse the route which I think was the easiest option.  By this time the hill was getting pretty busy and I was very suprised to be one of the first up.


Back down Inchnadamph for shower and drove to Kylesku Hotel for an excellent dinner.  The best meal ever.


Next day, after gaining two weather reports from LMC member Carmel at Ullapool and friends Karen/Gary northwards, we decided to go climbing on crags at Rioconich(not correct spelling) with Karen and Gary who were camped up at Oldshoremore.  The crag was wet and cold but Hary managed VDiff, Severe, HSevere before stopping for tea and travelling on to the next crag southwards.  Here, the others went on to a couple of VS/HVS whilst I (Helen) opted out. 


Headed homewards with a brief stop in Ullapool to meet with Carmel and friend.  It was good to meet up finally and even better to know they managed to get out on the hill.


Monday saw us back out again for a brief afternoon at Hawkcraig in warm sunshine if a little windy.





Posted by HelenK , 4/15/2004 7:07 AM  

  Easter weekend at the Manse Barn, 9 – 11 April 2004 

Last to be kicked out of the Onich Hotel bar again on Friday night with prospective new member Carol, wehad planned to do Gardyloo Gully on the Ben. Following a late start on Saturday and feeling like I’d had a good kicking (did I snore?), we arrived at the CIC to find very warm wet snow conditions, avalanche trails in Observatory Gully and to be told that # 2 Gully had a lot of “stuff” coming down it. This was all a bit disconcerting in view of the usual monster cornice of Gardyloo Gully so change of plan required. After a relaxed lunch break, interrupted by construction work outside the CIC, we decided to wander into Corrie na Ciste to take a look at conditions higher up. # 3 Gully had avalanched from just above the gully entrance proper so we decided to be cautious and skirt the foot of the Trident Buttress’s to # 4 Gully. Things had firmed up slightly here so we decided to rope up and cautiously continue up # 4 to the plateau. Two young lads, with eye balls bulging, passed us on their way down about 70 feet short of the top, informing us that  the cornice was about to go and we should go down or we will die! Hmmm, well they were only young, the cornice was tiny and the right hand exit  obviously trivial, anyway I fancy my chances better with a close encounter rather than a rumble from far above - however, the sound of running water was slightly disconcerting, # 4 never avalanches…does it? Carols first climb suitably completed in fine style with no wibbling or wobbling! The plod to the summit shelter seemed more of a slog than usual due to the sinking, sucking wet  snow. We had our picture taken by a young chap who was paranoid about his bodily bouquet, can you validate this Carol? Was he humming? I am very squeamish so kept a safe distance. Rapid descent was made via a series of bum slides down the left bank of the Red Burn, great fun – sore bum!

Back at the Manse, Jules had arrived and had made an absolutely corking pasta and vegetable meal for us all. Thanks Jules, we had only taken enough food for an anorexic hamster, to say we were hungry is perhaps a gross understatement! Unfortunately (or not), we missed the pub so we contented ourselves very nicely with a party in the hut.

Sunday morning the weather was warm and wet so we decided on The Ice Factor. At Kinlochleven the weather had improved and fresh air was required so we all took a pleasant, if at times strenuous walk up Am Bodach, the snow was lovely wasn’t it Carol? What next? Oh yes, we came down again, had a good nosh up at the Clachaig and then hummed all the way back to Glasgow. Is there room for a shower in the Manse Barn, extension perhaps?

Present: Carol, Jules and Russell.

OED - humv.3  


 intr. To smell disagreeably. Hence hum n.3, a disagreeable smell.
  1902 C. H. E. BROOKFIELD Random Reminisc. xi. 200 The burglar..finds a piece of Camembert cheese in the buffet, and exclaims: ‘Lor’! it do 'um!’ 1906 E. DYSON Fact'ry 'Ands XV. 197 Ther hum iv it was so fearful..Killin' cats is rotten luck. 1927 W. E. COLLINSON Contemp. Eng. 23 Things didn't smell, but ponged, niffed or hummed. Ibid., An awful pong or hum. 1946 I. L. IDRIESS In Crocodile Land xvi. 111 The abos certainly did ‘hum’. 1970 Daily Tel. 31 Oct. 1/3 When the wind drops this stuff really hums.


Posted by Russell_Salisbury, 4/15/2004 12:14 AM  

4/5/2004  Beinn Dearg etc 

I picked Gary up at 7am after his night shift, and hit the road north to Ullapool.  We had a good walk on Saturday; a bit of sleaty rain, some glorious sun and great views.  The view north from Seana Bhraigh was stunning, with all the Inverpolly hills in profile.  We spent the night at the bothy in Gleann Beag.  We had the company of an eccentric English teacher, so the conversation hinged round the use of semi-colons!  Dinner was a bit grim; all the food was best before Sept 2003.  I had done a good job at avoiding going to the supermarket and cleaned out my cupboards, but in the end regretted my laziness!  Sunday's sunrise was beautiful with a pristine blue sky and new snow on the tops.  But it was a mixed day.  This was a spectacular and wild part of Scotland.  Adventure was provided by a direct route on Cona Mheal, which was steep and snowy, without ice axes.  But thankfully it turned out ok, and we finished the day with a bagging frenzy.  6 ticks in all, and some beautiful wilderness.

Posted by Robin , 4/5/2004 12:20 PM  

  26-28 March 2004, Not the Muir of Inverey, March weekend meet 

Something to do with a missing deficient key for Muir of Inverey hut had us staying the weekend at the salubrious Manse Barn Hut. As a new member on my first meet with the Lomond MC, this suited me fine! A great cosy little hut in a wonderfully convenient location, not to mention its proximity to a bar. Spent a pleasant evening in the hut and later in the vibrant atmospheric ambience of the Onich Hotel bar. Awoke Saturday morning to disgruntled talk of somebody snoring like a beast, sounded like “sawing logs” apparently, good job I’m a deep sleeper, never heard a thing apart from a bit of cursing in the dead of night, well I never, some people!

We set off at around eight thirty to do the Aonach Eagach, the decision having been made the previous evening (I wanted to go to the Ben as I have no sense, so I was in a sulk…). However, conditions on the ridge fully confirmed that conditions on the Ben were almost certainly Sh**e. Lots of wet melting snow, not really in proper winter nick, but a great trip nevertheless with ten of us strung out along the notched ridge. Got down to Clachaig at around four thirty and consumed a couple of well deserved pints. Back to the hut for a change of clothes and a fester, then some of us back to the Clachaig for food and to get slowly bladdered whilst listening to a superb blues band (Juke Joint Boogie Band, I think?). Left pub around eleven, after Sir James fixed it for us, with some carry outs, “Now then, now then, now then…” Back at the Manse the fire alarm in the bunkroom decided to go off (wasn’t me, I never did nuthin’), which reminded me of surreptitious rumours of a snoring monster the previous night. This provoked me into the decision to sleep in the kitchen diner to avoid the possibility of being awakened from my delicate beauty sleep by lumberjacks at work and/or profane language; very cosy it was too, slept like a log.

Following a rude awakening (in one piece!) on Sunday morning at the unearthly hour of seven fifteen (well, that’s what my watch said) some of us went to Buachaille Etive Beag from Meeting of Three Waters. A pleasant short day with strong winds on the summit ridge, some lovely snow patches and a birthday party on top. Then we all went home, a very good weekend in the hills. 

People present: Me…and 9 others, sorry but I’m crap at remembering names, but I will give it a go - Andy, Derek, Gary, Harry, Helen, Jules, Louise, Margaret, Martin, Russell and on Sunday Paul and Petra.  E&OE.

PS: Email received a few minutes ago:

You missed nothing...conditions were shite. Really
soggy and wet. Only two of us went and we did Towere
Ridge. Only TR, NEB and ledge route were getting done” 



Posted by Russell_Salisbury, 3/29/2004 12:41 PM  

3/22/2004  Buachaille Etive Mor and Stob Coire nan Lochan 

Reports on Sat suggested heavy snow and not particularly cold.  So it was rather optimistically that Kevin (guest) and I walked into Coire nan Lochan through heavy snow fall on Sunday.  Fears were realised when we found the crag, although snow covered, not at all frozen.  We met Luke and Gareth up there, also poking around despondantly.  I started up the first pitch of Ordinary Route on the Central Buttress, but it wasn't any fun: mud and soft snow.  So instead we walked over the top and back down the lost valley. Not a bad day for a walk, with good views. 


Our route choice on Monday was much better, and it was a bit colder.  We enjoyed North Buttress on Buachaiulle Etive Mor.  At Grade IV, it was a good long, sustained route with 4 or 5 good technical pitches and plenty steep ground and scrambling.  Time consuming conditions but fun, and even some sun between the snow showers. 

Posted by Robin , 3/24/2004 7:17 AM  

3/9/2004  Cumming-Crofton Route 

     Garbh Choire of Beinn a'Bhuird beckoned. Helen (non LMC) and I started the long walk in accompanied by a full moon and the chuckling of Ptarmigan. The corner line of Cumming-Crofton on the west wall of Mitre Ridge looks steep and intimidating. I tried not to look at it as I geared up. The first pitch has the only section that the guide refers to as hard which is an awkward move around a chockstone. At this point progress halted but security increased as my boot wedged itself in the crack and refused to budge for several minutes. As Helen arrived at the belay I optimistically said "That's fine, there shouldn't be anything harder than that". That was true but there were lots of moves only marginally easier.

     Helen led an awkward traverse and wall which took us into the main corner. Approaching this it steepened dramatically. Clearing the snow revealed good gear placements which enticed me upwards. A thoroughly absorbing pitch followed during which I torqued and hooked every part of my axes for progress. As Helen arrived at the belay I optimistically said "That's fine, the angle eases a bit now, it's almost in the bag". The first part was true but the difficulties continued. As I reached Helen's belay above it looked like easier ground above but the climb still hadn't finished with us yet. The sun started to set, clouds started to roll in over the summit plateau and the ambience became less friendly. The next difficulties were short-lived however and we were down at the Sneck for last light. All that remained was the long walk out. One of my best days on the hill.

Posted by Lukearnott1, 3/14/2004 9:17 PM  

3/8/2004  Western Rib, Aonach Mor 

Whilst Bill and Martin were playing catch (and not very well by the sounds of it) me and Ed decided to join the crowds on Aonach Mor. Then we decidedto leave the crowds by wandering round to the west face. After pondering the "four obvious buttresses" and counting at least seven (the cloud was quite low) we decided to head upwards on what we took to be the right line. Some steep turf soon lead to enjoyable, fairly steep, snowy rock and a splendid expedition. No cornices to fall off either.

Posted by El Presidente , 3/11/2004 12:24 PM  

3/8/2004  White Shark on Aonach Mor 

On Sunday Bill and I set off for Aonach Mor. An early start got us to the
Nevis Range Gondola by 7:30am. I had never taken the Gondola/Chairlift ride
to top but I would recommend it to anyone wishing to climb in the Aonoch Mor
area. For £8.50 you get to eliminate two hours of slogging with a winter
pack (up and down).

As for the climb when we got there, let me summarise it by saying: I lost
my helmet and took a 20 foot fall (two separate incidents) and Bill lost
his Belay device and a filling in his tooth. HOWEVER it was a fantastic day
and a fantastic route.

We climbed White Shark in two, almost full rope, pitches. The first pitch,
led by Bill, looked like it had lots of ice and not too steep,  NOT so !.
The ice was thin and what was there came down on my head (Fortunately I
still had my helmet at this point). The first pitch had three small but
very steep sections, the first of which Bill cruised over with no gear
(very bold). His first gear placement after that cost him a filling in his
tooth (awch !) so needless to say the rest of the pitch was sparse with
gear. Just before I finished seconding the first pitch my helmet
mysteriously popped off, I wasn't sure what happened at first, but the
group below quickly shouted up "anyone loose a helmet". It was a day for
lost gear, Bill dropped his belay device while setting up the first belay
(we won't talk about his "Italian hitch") and on the climb next to us a
climber shouted out "I've just dropped two ice screws" to which his partner
replied in a deed pan sarcastic tone "Terrific".

The second pitch was not in at all so we detoured off to, what we think,
was the last section of Aquafresh. I led what was a similar pitch to the
first but with a desperate finish. The finish involved cutting through a
steep cornice (about 20 mins worth). Half way through hacking and clearing
the snow a large clump of snow/ice, that my ice axe was imbedded in, gave
way and I tumbled backwards about 20 feet till my last peg caught me. All I
could think about as I fell was: SHIT I don't have a helmet and Bill
doesn't have a belay device, but all that got damaged was pride/confidence.
I had a second shaky,  nervous go at the cornice and, after getting in an
ice screw close to the top, hauled myself over.

Posted by Martin , 3/8/2004 5:52 PM  

3/8/2004  Coire Gaothaich - Ben Lui 

Thursday being the only day off in about three weeks, I decided to return to Ben Lui and do Central Gully - something I have wanted to do since Winter began. Being something of a masochist and fed up with the bus timetables, I chose this time to carry up into the Coire a full weekend backpack with tent and food, etc. The idea being to pitch high up and spend the whole day pottering around the mountain and sleeping out overnight to catch the early bus back the next day for work at 3pm. Ah, the dreams of the naive. The whole walk in was a long stride into mist and low cloud with Ben Lui shrouded and mysterious - refusing to reveal herself to me. High up in Coire Gaothaich, around 750m, I pitched the tent and brewed up a cuppa before setting off to do Central Gully. Then the blizzard hit, then I stumbled up the wrong gully, then I came across some footsteps which led me into a rockface, then I went over my right ankle, then I decided to limp back to the tent and lick my wounds. Risotto went down well and only later when I struck camp and trudged back to meet the bus did the cloud and snow finally lift to reveal something of the beauty of the mountain. Still, banging sleet and snow off the tent was fun . . . some photos at http://homepage.mac.com/francishagan/

Posted by frankyhagan, 3/8/2004 10:06 AM  

3/2/2004  Aonach Mor 

Helen, Harry and Mark (non LMC member)

Took Gondola and CHAIR LIFT ,and whilst Helen psyched up for the descent down easy gully (it was OK, just a bit steep for a couple of metres) Harry and Mark scouted for a route that remained free from hordes.  After giving up any idea of climbing on the left of easy gulley with not so much ice on the buttresses we tried an easier option that I (Helen) could lead. 


Nausea II/III was chosen, the first pitch was a short ice pitch and the rest snow/neve with a short step/wall to surmount.  Was suprised at how short the climb was to the top.   Mark followed thru easily and led to the top meanwhile Harry had already soloed to the top.


I decided to go on to Aonach Mor but did not have time to complete Aonach Beag.  On return I bumped into Bill and Iain and then again bumped into Harry and Mark who had climbed two climbs with no names but they reckon grade III and IV


Next day Harry and Mark failed to get up early enough for the Ben and settled for easier option of Aonach Mor again.  Climbing Siamese Twin IV and another grade III/IV to the left of Stirling Bridge with a very hairy cornice exit. 





Posted by Harry Mc , 3/2/2004 8:55 PM  

3/2/2004  Sat 0 the ben, sun, annoch mor 

Got on Thomsons route on the ben on saturday.  It need more ice.  It was quite tricky in the first 10 metres, but tanya didn't notice to much when seconding it so i kept quiet.  No 3 gully butress was in excellent fun fast condition and we moved onto the upper section of that and into the sunshine.  I haven't been down the zigzags for a couple of years and have just remembered why, it took ages!  We gave up at the halfway lochan and went down to glen nevis and got a lift from there.

Sunday on annoch mor.  Rammed is the word, but then what did i expect!  The trickier ice lines have all been hacked off and are unclimbable and the easier ones that remain are becoming harder in some places as they get hacked thin.  We climbed somethin over on the right of the twins area that i'm sure should be a iii but -1 on the ben was easier to be honest.  Again i kept stumm and Tanya seconded with ease.  Women!

James e

Posted by grey-corries, 3/2/2004 3:33 PM  

2/29/2004  Shelter Stone Crag 

Wanting to be completely away from it all so that the wifelet would have no chance of proposing (not that she would), I left Glasgow with Alasdair at 5am for the Cairngorms.  Breaking trail almost all the way to the shelterstone was enjoyable in the morning sunshine and we were soon at the bottom to see a pair on the upper cruz of the Needle (either mega fast or on day 2??).  We climbed Postern, or what we thought was Postern as it seemed to be fairly easy for the grade and we completed it in 5 hours.  There were short technical sections, but the route was not at all sustained.  It does follow some spectacular ground with fantastic position climbing on concrete turf and good handholds.  A grand day out.

Posted by AndyMcIntyre, 3/1/2004 1:17 PM  

2/28/2004  Meall Garbh 

No internet reports, no racing, no crowds, in fact nobody else and the crag to ourselves.  It made a fabulous change.  Kevin and Robinwalked in over Chno Dearg from Fersit.  The intended route, Central Gully, was sadly bare of any ice and didn't look much fun in its current condition.  A small ice pitch to the left, the 'blue icicle', was there just but catching the sun - yes, it was yet another fine day - so we opted for the good ice on Deep Slit as consolation. This gave three pitches of ice then easier ground, but was not very sustained.  A right hand varient on the third pitch upped the technical content.  The ice was very variable and fragile, which kept one focused.  Guide book opinions varied, but we felt it was III,4 and maybe worth a star (not IV,4 *** given in the new guide!)  We walked back out over Stob Corie Sgrodain, which was a bit of a slog through the slabby drifts with fatigued legs.  Great views down over Loch Trieg and across to Ben Alder and down to Glen Coe. A great day in the hills getting a nice climb and two Munros.

Posted by Robin , 2/29/2004 9:04 AM  

2/26/2004  Aonach Mor 

Yet again, Luke decided to ignor my plea for a grade 3 route and headed straight for Grooved Arete 4/5***. We did however take the gondela and chair lift to get us an early start. Luke led all the way in grand style with only one fall just above a belay. My jacket, now sports 24 small punctures, but no blood was spilled. I followed with confidence, at first, but by the time we reached the summit, I was physically and mentally drained. A great day out.

Posted by Gary , 2/28/2004 6:30 PM  

2/20/2004  CIC (Ben Nevis) Meet 


Gill and Kevin decided to approach over Carn Mor Dearg from Aonach Mor and were treated to a stunning cloudscape (See pics) with a surreal descent down into the gloomy cloud then up into another world along a soaring snow arête. At this stage Gills Koflach boots died suddenly of old age as the bottom fell out of both boots in quick succession. An enjoyable scramble followed along the arête with cloud billowing over into Coire Leis. Sufficient time was left for an ascent of Moonwalk on the Little Brenva Face which was in good condition considering it had been in full sun all day. The summit ridge was gained just as the sun dipped below the horizon. A hurried descent follwed by a game of hunt the hut in the pitch blackness soon saw us ensconsed by the fire with a mug of tea to await the rest of Fridays arrivals Derek and Jules. By this time Gills boots, which had been held together by his crampons, had totally disintegrated. (See picture)


Derek and Julian set off to do Ledge Route. Gill set off to buy a new pair of boots and Kevin had an enjoyable morning soloing Tower Ridge and Comb Gully followed by a rather lazy afternoon drinking tea by the fire admiring Gills new boots.


Derek and Julian arrived back from their climb in what seemed like the early hours (Julians first winter climbing experience which I am sure will succumb to his journalistic talents) The smell of Jules frying up a monster gourmet breakfast after his previous days epic made it difficult to summon the energy to leave the cosy confines of the hut but a couple of hours saw Gill and Kevin on the summit via no 2 gully enjoying once again the fabulous weather on what turned out to be one of the best CIC meets for a number of years with good company, good weather and good if slightly lean climbing.

Posted by KevMcG, 2/23/2004 6:48 PM  

2/20/2004  Point Five 

Glorious cloud inversion, so excuse me for putting so many photos on the site!  Luke and I followed up rumours and headed for Point Five (V).  Sadly we just arrived second so were delayed for a while, and had a the usual bombardment all the way up.  We were in good company with various famous names sharing the route.  Pitch one was glorious icy slabs and then a good steep step, much leaner than normal I'm sure.  The chimney pitch was really nasty.  Broken, disintergrating snow ice with little gear - definitely your mates lead. Won't last long with traffic.  The Rogue Pitch was nicer but still lean.  Above were 200m of fun grade II stuff.  Poor conditions but great route.  On the summit we enjoyed the glorious sunshine - what a day.  As ever with Luke, you don't get off that easily by just doing one classic 325m route - nope, we descended the CMD Arete to get the sunset from Carn Mor Dearg.  Good brocken spectres from the arete. The descent in the dark was a bit of purgatory, but brilliant day, if a little scary in places due to that horrible second pitch.

Posted by Robin , 2/21/2004 10:52 AM  

2/15/2004  Cascade, Ben Nevis 

After spending the night in the Onich hut, Gareth, The Cheese, Sandy and myself ventured up the Ben where we had heard there was some ice to be had.  Cascade was good and so we climbed it, climbing the top icicle to avoid the blood stained ramp right which most people had followed (guess someone must have got a sore one on Saturday!).  We followed Rayburns easy route to the top.  Parties on Comb, Green, the central gullies all reporting good snow ice, if thin in places.

Posted by AndyMcIntyre, 2/18/2004 7:28 AM  

2/15/2004  Glen Nevis 

Sad, but true, that it was more like April than February this weekend!  With few, and probably crowded, options for ice on the Ben, Robin and Luke headed to Glen Nevis for some cragging.  After a stunning drive across the Rannoch Moor, it was freezing and misty first thing.  But it was dry enough and it turned into a fine (but cloudy) day.  We bagged Severe Crack (VS), Clapham Junction Direct (HVS), Pine Tree Wall (HS), Secretaries Direct (S) and Superdirect (HVS), Weaver's Loom (HVS) and The Fly Direct (HVS).  Not bad for a first day out, or for February, but I do feel we could do with a few more ice routes before starting rock-climbing proper!

Posted by Robin , 2/16/2004 12:15 PM  

2/11/2004  Slide show 

We had an excellent evening of slides on Wednesday at the Stirling Castle.  We had pictures of climbing Kilimanjaro, kayaking in Turkey and Maine, rock and ice and skiing in British Columbia and Washington, a grand tour of the Pyrenees and Northern Spain, adventures on the North Face of the Dru, cragging at El Chorro, climbing in Bregaglia, and loads from Scotland.  Plenty walking, rock, ice, kayaking and skiing slides from Scotland from all sorts of vintages (from the last fortnight to the days of Joe Brown helemts!)  So thanks to Martin and Kevin for bringing projectors etc, and thanks to everyone who brought slides along.  We must have another soon as there must still be more great slides out there.

Posted by Robin , 2/12/2004 4:59 PM  

2/9/2004  Original Route Stob Corie nan Lochan 

As always with Luke, an early start and hi speed drive had us on the hill by 9am. After overtaking about 20 people on the walk in, we were ready to tackle anything. The weather was fine, cold and just sufficient snow and ice to climb whatever we wished. Luke chose Original route IV 5**, on the Summit Buttress, as it was much harder than anything I had climbed for years. Robin had told him to lie to me about the grade (it nearly always works for him) The route itself was 3 pitches of quite sustained climbing, with a tricky problem on every pitch. Luke volunteered to lead and who was I to argue.  A bum slide down Broad Gully and race down the path had us at the car before nightfall. A great day in fine weather  

Posted by Gary , 2/9/2004 11:13 PM  

2/2/2004  Sron na Lairig 

Luke and I ignored the weather forcast and headed for Glencoe. We were greated by dry, overcast and warm weather and not much wind. There was even quite a lot of snow around, too. We opted for Sron na Lairig, a safe, all weather route at grade 2*** By the time we reached the bottom of the route we had passed 2 other pairs of climbers who had abandoned the route due to the thawing conditions and the rain. We climbed most of the route without crampons and with one axe, ropeing up for the last section.  The descent was complicated by the fact that neither Luke or I consulted a map and headed for Glen Etive(a long detour) Some awkward traversing put us back on course but by now it was bucketing down so by the time we made the car we were both soaked. Despite the weather we both enjoyed the route and the exercise. It beats playing computer games, anyday. 

Posted by Gary , 2/3/2004 4:58 PM  

2/1/2004  Ben Challum 

Skied up in a whiteout and heavy snow, down in a whiteout and heavy rain. Visibility terrible all day, snow terrible, wind terrible, spindrift terrible, i.e. a good winter day on the hill!

Posted by KevMcG, 2/1/2004 5:06 PM  

1/31/2004  The Cobbler 

Luke and Robin had a wild day on the Cobbler.  The wind was very strong, and cold with it.  Having walked up from Glen Croe, we were hit by the full blast of it at the col by the Centre Peak.  We started on North Wall Groove (V,6).  We scrambled up the easy introductory pitch.  Robin led the next pitch which gave good turfy climbing with a technical traverse mid-height.  Luke led the main pitch which had a desperatly thin traverse across a steep slab (nowt for the axes, with less for the feet).  Just when things were getting totally out of control, a few tuffs of turf arrive leaving some strenous pulls up the steep wall above.  Good value!  After abbing off the South Peak and a bite to eat, we raced up Maclay's Crack (III,4) on the North Peak which gave two more steep pitches, and more buffeting from the gusting wind.  A wild but great day. See photos

Posted by Robin , 1/31/2004 7:04 PM  

1/31/2004  Ben Lui/Tyndrum 

Tuesday saw me return to the Connonish glen and do a circuit of Ben Lui's great Coire Gaothaich. The plan was to pull up the left ridge - Coire an Sneachda - and then return down Stob Garbh into the Coire. This route was recommended for a winter traverse of the summit. The weather was changing rapidly and the cloud level dropped down to around 500 metres once I was into the early tramp up into the Coire but the snow fell in gentle flakes and the bulk of the mountain sheltered me from the edge of a southerly, bitter, wind. I picked up a companion on the citylink bus - 'Coke' - who was doing a mirror-image route and we promised to look out for eachother as we crossed on the summit and then met eachother again back in the Coire from opposing directions! But when I reached the summit cairn around 1:30pm, I found his footprints showing that he had beaten me to the summit and then retreated back down his ascent route - which gave me a handy point of reference along with some map-work to get down into the Coire safely in the near-whiteout! A long, hard, and thoroughly satisfying winter-day out. More photos at http://homepage.mac.com/francishagan/

Posted by frankyhagan, 1/31/2004 3:16 PM  

1/25/2004  Stuc a Chroin 

Sunday 26 Jan 2004

Ian and Margaret:  started from Loch Lubnaig about 10.50 am, blue skies and some cloud. Took theGlen Ample access up to the col in the Glen and then turned right up towards Beinn Each, in reasonably clear weather. From there along the series of broken tops towards Stuc a Chroin. Occasional drifts of powdery dry snow. Reached the top at about 2.15 shrouded in cloud which cleared within a few minutes to give us a partial cloud inversion and great views beyond. We walked over to the second cairn (northerly) to take a look at Ben Vorlich, and with the sun low at our backs we saw quite intense brocken spectres in the cloud hanging over towards Vorlich.Came off due north and then NW along the left side of the ridge, watched someone coming up over a cornice which looked fairly dodgy from where we were. Then W down into Glen Ample with a long walk to get back, so we had our torches out when we hit the trees. Got down to the loch about 5pm.

Great day!  By the way, theres a good web site at http://www.philiplaven.com/index1.html on Brocken spectre.

Posted by IanStraub, 1/30/2004 12:43 PM  


It was a dark and stormy night and the Captain turned to his mate and said "I want to tell you a story" and the story began like this "it was a dark and stormy night......." Oops, the winter snow outside the office must be having a strange effect. or perhaps it was the wintry conditions on Saturday as Derek and me climbed the two Munros to the west of Loch Treig. There has been much discussion and philosophising about the weather Gods and their attitude towards us mortals. On saturday, their mood could be described as gruff, but amiable. A strong wind, with plenty of spindrift and variable visibility was the gruff bit, but occasional sunshine and not enough wind to blow you around was the amiable (or is that the extra pounds gained over Christmas). There was also enough snow for some mild sport on the first top. We both had a good day and as importantly, got back to the hut in time for some judicial application of alcohol in preparation for Na Gruichean on sunday, but that's another story.......

Posted by El Presidente , 1/28/2004 12:16 PM  

1/24/2004  Dorsal Arete 

Martin and I quickly climbed into Stob Corrie nan Lochan to find lots of snow, despite a week of heavy thaw. Closer inspection revealed powder snow, wet rock, no ice, soft turf and only the biggest gullies full of compact snow. We opted for Dorsal Arete as SC Gully appeared very thin in the middle. The ascent from the basin to the start of the route was torturous. The snow had a hard crust, which sometimes supported our weight and on others colapsed just as you pushed off. The route itself, was straight forward and fun, with the added bonus of a helicopter buzzing around below us. A bum slide down Broad Gully and rapid descent had us back to the car as the light failled.   

Posted by Gary , 1/26/2004 12:08 PM  

1/19/2004  Borders 

Snow and Ice are not what our 16 week old boy likes so we decided to go to the borders and spend a few days walking there. We are making new experiences regarding necessary gear, e.g. do not forget your pump for the pram as we managed to get a flat tyre the first day walking along the Tweed (the dornbush it was) and spend all night trying to get the repaired tyre blown up. And styles might be good for our untrained arm muscles, but not that much fun for Jonas and really the only walks we can currently do are forest walks so we headed for Glentress and spend some time there. But soon he will be able to sit up and then it goes up the hills again.




Posted by petra , 1/20/2004 12:47 PM  

1/17/2004  Carngorm,Meall Garbh,Carn Mairg,Creag Mhor 

Absolutely fantastic ski conditions. Blue sky,no wind,not a rock in sight. Skinned up Carngorm but  mist appeared from nowhere on the top. A search for the compass was fruitless and the map had a big hole in it around Carngorm. With no wind I  guessed wrong and was almost at  Loch Rannoch before the mist cleared. A long reascent got me back to the summit for another try this time in clear conditions. Uneventful ski accross the tops of Meall Garbh,Carn Mairg and finally Creag Mhor. Magnificent views accross Ben Alder and the Cairngorms with a sunset on Schiehallion. Exciting run down the Allt CoirChearcaill racing the sunset over Ben More on still perfect untracked snow with a final plod down to the road in the dark.

Posted by KevMcG, 1/19/2004 7:59 PM  

1/16/2004  Beinn Chuirn/Beinn Dubh 

An update from the earlier entry. Four days later and another attempt at the route - and the contrast coudn't have been greater! Glorious sunshine, hardly any wind, even on the summit of Beinn Chuirn, and stunning views not just in the distance with the alpine ridges of Beinn Cruachan, but also up close with the majesty of Beinn Lui rearing up as I tramped up to the summit of the Corbett and then along the ridge to (almost) reach Beinn Dubh. Being half a kilometre from the second top when I hit my turn around time (for the return bus) meant that I had to give up on it and head back for Tyndrum for the 3:30pm bus - yet again frustrated that a good day had the edge taken off thanks to the constraints of the bus timetables! One suprise of the day was the lack of walkers or climbers out on Lui (apart from a party of 3 or 2 and a dog), it being Friday and with such beautiful weather . . . Will post photos on my homepage when I shoot off the rest of the film soon!

Posted by frankyhagan, 1/18/2004 3:32 PM  

1/15/2004  Festive climbing 

First off i can't spell.  Those who have seen mr crucify the english language on ukclimbing.com will testify to this matter.  Anyway

I met up with Gareth "still not a member" Hughes for a day in the coe where he made a storming lead up anew line on Bishops Buttress on Bideon.  It was left of the Crook and all that Jazz and as far as i can tell its all on totally new ground - no ground is summer climbing, which is allways a bonus when winter climbing i feel.

That afternnon i met up with Tanya (who hence forth will be refered to as 'my missis' if for no other reason than to get on her nerves, which as men in long term monogomous relationships will know is reason enough), Sam 'Can you hear my new Canadian accent' Barron and Kate 'but my Canadian accent is better' Ludley.

Gareth went off to pastures plush in the form of a rented chalet in Onich and the four off us stopped in the hut.  The next day we attempted the ring off steel in glorious winter weather (it was nice i mean).  We made it half way b4 deciding to bunk off down the valley system to the west and back to the road.  Sam was O.K. with this as he commented 'Iv'e climbed those other munros already'.  Its the truth!  When he wasn't sure about a hill near us he scrutinised the map to see if it was a top or not but mumbling 'best be sure...' ran over with a few other adventureres whilst myself and 'the missis'  sauntered down the path at a leasurly pace.

That afternoon we drove up to the ling hut in glen torridon and after a good 4 hours sleep Sam and i drove over to Beinn Bhan (or Ben Van if you are a lazy sasanach like me) to try and scare ourselfs.  We failed on this matter but suceeded to climb a cheeky new line up the Giants Wall. It was a stunning day.  Needless to say we were walking down in the moonlight.

The women (Kate says i'm not allowed to say Ladies - too patronising she says (i wonder if its just the way i say it??)) tried to swim into The triple Buttress corrie on Ben Eighe but having left their snorkles behind turned back at the loch as the day was too late for a climb and they were worried that they would get asked to brake trail by the big strong boys out in front. (Katw will have me for that!).

Sam and i did not return back to the ling to a home cooked meal and 'the missis had not darned my socks as i'd asked but such is life.  Actually we were knackered and Kate did cook a loverly tea.  Thanks Kate.

We all tried to get out of the hut for a walk the next day, but turned back 50m below the ridge of an teallach as the snow was dodgy and the wind was in training for the hurricane season.  Back at the hut i got out of cooking duty again and the next day i made breakfast whilst everyone was still asleep.  When they woke up however i thought i'd have another breakfast so making out i was doing them all a faviour and i made a poor attempt at toast for them insisting that they have all of it (as i was quite full anyway).

It rained all day ('the missis' had been singing the night b.4.) and we went to look at some waterfalls and the Girls (i can't remember if Girls was allowed, but i'll chance this one) went to the youth hostle and blagged a shower.  I had a bath in a bucket and 'the missis' fell about herself laughing when i sat in it and got my arse stuck.  Fortunatly no camera was avaiable at the time so no one will ever know (oh shit, what have i said....)

We had hogmany some time in all this but it was most memorable for hearing the news hearlines after the pips begining 'a bomb has gone off'....'.  We turned off the radio and went to bed.

On the last day we traversed the Ben Eighe massiff and i took arty shots of the females (O.K.?) stricking poses.  Unfortunatlt (or fortunatly?) neither of them would be perswades to show much flesh beyond what a balaclava gives away.  I tell you they made down town bagdad look like soho!

Anyway, i might have boiled some pasta at some point, but i definatly didn't do any washing up.

Moral of the story?  Don't ever go on an expedition with me without a cook.  You will hate me (especially if your a woman)

The End

Posted by grey-corries, 1/15/2004 3:17 PM  

1/12/2004  Beinn Chuirn to Beinn Dubh/Tyndrum 

Well, I'm posting this with two reservations in mind - the first being that I have never written anything like this before (despite an aborted iblog effort last year!) and the second being that I awoke this morning in the full realisation that (yet again) the weather was against me and there was every chance that I would have to abandon the walk due to hail and severe wind. Still, better that than another day off with the x-box ; ). The main impetus for the trip was to complete the ridge walk from the summit of Beinn Chuirn (a Corbett of 880m) over to its subsidiary top of Beinn Dubh (696m) which would give me great views along Beinn Lui's NE and NW slopes; and also examine the top of the corrie beneath Beinn Chuirn's summit for any interesting gullies or routes. It would be a good day's tramping which might lead to some more challenging days in the future. It had already been put off from Thursday due to bad weather and today the forecast was, if anything, worse. However, the route in was the Connonish track just before it dropped down towards Allt an Rund then a pull up to the upper reaches of the Eas Anie waterfall\gully and then to the summit - so I thought I could chance it if the weather broke at just the right moment! It didn't. Once in to the Connonish glen, hail and and a good buffeting wind was the order of the day - despite a starry sky and glowing moon at 6am this morning. I struck on and pulled up off the path to finally reach the broader slopes around 700m but now the bulk of the Corbett longer shielded me and I fell into full force of hail, sleet and wind which was driving straight into me over an unseen summit up ahead. My hoped-for break failed to materialise so I gave up and retreated to the track below and an early bus back to Glasgow. I met one other solitary walker just as I made the track back - who ironically was intending on doing the same route. He was up from Devon for a week and had already been beaten back only 200m from the summit of Cruach Ardrain the day before. His real ambition was Beinn Lui but had given up on that. We swopped notes - the snow has dropped some 200m in height since he arrived 4 days ago. Of course, the moment we stopped to speak, the weather changed to gentle snow in the lee of the Corbett and my tales of a grim slog up the lower slopes sounded a little melodramatic! He pushed on but once I was back in Tyndrum the weather returned to driving rain, hail and sleet which would have hit him just around the time he would have completed the ridge . . . Next Friday is my day off - anyone fancy a trip up to Tyndrum?!

Posted by frankyhagan, 1/12/2004 3:49 PM  

11/2/2004  The Skraeling, Beinn An Dough 

Posted by Danny


Luke + Danny bagged their first winter route with an ascent of the skraeling (IV/5) on Beinn An Dotaidh? on the last day of Danny's 30th year.


After a quick blast in the subaru and a somewhat slower blast up to the bottom of menage a trois (very black and even too rock climbing-like for two ultra-keen lomonders), we decided that the skraeling was the only reasonable option.  Danny lead the turfy first pitch with a few boldish bits and an intimidating final traverse  into the bottom of the crux corner. 


Luke climbed the corner in good style although the ancient string peg tat didn't inspire confidence - a very good pitch, intimidating again, and sustained.


Not alot in the way of ice, but plenty of very frozen turf and a reasonable spattering of snow.  


A good warm up for bigger things to come perhaps?? 

Posted by Louise , 1/6/2004 7:30 PM  

1/2/2001  Twisted Gulley Right Fork 

Harry, Helen and Mark


After the last couple of days of wind and snow the temperature and the wind dropped, Friday was to be a good day for climbing.


We decided to go for Twisting Gulley Right Fork.Harry thinking it was grade III, but as it turned out the new guide gives it IV/V


Harry set off the first pitch, which was an easy start but we think he may have done some of the second pitch also.  It didn't matter as it became clear that Mark and I would have trouble seconding the hard bits never mind leading them.  


The difficulty on the first pitch was back and footing up a short chimney/groove.  The second pitch involved a blank right wall with a chockstone to overcome.  Again not really much ice to use.  After falling off twice, I (Helen) decided that it was impossible to get up unless on a very tight rope.  To be fair there was very little ice or hard snow on the grooves and Mark found it just as difficult but he was a little less vocal than I was and with less reliance on a tight rope. 


My only achievement of the day was to find a bomber thread belay to back up Harry's two insitu pegs.


The next pitch involved a slightly overhanging chockstone which Harry overcame by walking his feet up on the right wall until his feet were parallel to his head!   Then a squirming movement and he was up.  I wish we had at that point joined Twisting Gulley proper which for me would have been an easier option. 


The difficulties were near impossible because the snow was too soft in the places needed to overcome the obstacles. Between these difficulties the ground was very easy climbing.  I led the last easy pitch to the top and we came down by Broad Gulley.  Managed to get back to the car with only the last 30mins being in the dark.


Helen, Harry and Mark

Posted by Harry Mc , 1/5/2004 8:23 PM  

1/4/2004  Beasted at The Ice Factor 

All a bit damp and mild today, so Danny and Robin kept driving through Glen Coe and went to Kinlochleven to check out the Ice Factor.  £8.50 plus £1.50 registration (or £5.00 for the year) bought you 2 hours on the ice wall.  That turned out to be quite enough as we got totally pumped.  Plenty steep stuff with fairly realistic ice, albeit a bit more reassuring than your usual Scottish fair.  Really worthwhile and it will definitley boost confidence once out on the real thing.  We really enjoyed ourselves anyway.  It is worth noting that they limit numbers on the wall, so it may be worth calling ahead to check availability.


For another few quid we got to use the climbing wall aswell, for the rest of the day.  Not as big as Ratho but still excellent.  They had some very imaginitive lines and features.  Some of the corners offered the best 'fake' climbing I've done!  However, the grades were quite variable and fairly stiff, or was it just that the arms were weak with roast turkey and mince pies.  Once totally and utterly drained, we called it a day, and felt it had been worthwhile use of an otherwise unpromising day.  But lets hope we get some good real ice soon!

Posted by Robin , 1/4/2004 4:50 PM  

1/2/2004  Beinn Ghlas 

Went for a ski tour with Graham. (His first Munro on skis) Skinned up from the main road perfect neve all the way to the summit no wind but slightly overcast. Magnificent run back down the corrie but had to walk the last section on the road. Surprisingly good snow for the time of year. Interesting game of dogems trying to extract the car from its parking place.

Posted by KevMcG, 1/2/2004 10:29 PM  

12/30/2003  Ben Vane 

Posted by Louise.


Margaret & I decided it was time to do battle with

the new snow and headed up to arrochar on what promised to be a good weather day. 


The snow was deeper than we had anticipated, but with much thigh work we got to the top of Ben Vane.  The brilliant blue skies afforded views in all directions and it was one of those beautifully clear winter days.  Not satisfied - us girls take a lot of satisfying - we set our sights on Ben Ime.  The snow seemed to get deeper and after what seemed likes hours we realised we would have to leave BI for another day, or be benighted. 


We returned to the car after a quality mountain day. 

Posted by Louise , 1/1/2004 6:04 PM  

12/31/2003  Beinn Achallader + neighbouring munro 

Posted by Danny


I set out alone in an attempt to loose part of the stone I gained over the christmas period.  It turned out to be the wildest hill day I have ever had, at home or abroad.  Snow lay on the ground above 300m and was whipped around by the bloody strong winds.  Even with my newly aquired ballast I was struggling to maintain contact with the ground.  Despite the wind it was clear and some good views were possible.  In the interests of safety I kept 4m from the cliff edge, feeling as if I could be blown over at any moment.

I very nearly turned back before the top of the second munro, the wind was so strong, but pride won over common sense and I waited for a lull in the wind to allow access to the top. 


A wild new year's night followed the wildest day I have ever had.  I woke up with three red blemishes on my face.  I think these were due to wind burn/frost nip obtained whilst walking, but after a boozy new year, who knows?


The weather gods gave me a good run for my money that day.


Happy new year to all lmc'ers

from Danny

Posted by Louise , 1/1/2004 3:56 PM  


Harry and Mark


Had a look from the roadside, could see lots of lines but not so thick.  The walk in confirmed that nearly all the lines were forming but none were thick enough to be climbed other than Sunshine/Central Gully.  Saw one party on West Gully but the bottom half of the gully was thin.


We set off to do Sunshine Gully at 1pm.  The first pitch was a little hollow but in general OK.  The crux was thin and narrow below the belay.  The second and final pitch was good easy stepped ice with a more sporting finish of an ice wall on the right.  Back at the car for 3:30pm.  Good clear day.


Posted by Harry Mc , 12/30/2003 8:42 PM  

12/27/2003  Red Gully Cairngorms 

After a phone call from my friend Steve, assuring me that the conditions in the Cairngorms would be climbable, I arranged to start at 06:00 fromhome. 


Following Steve on the track round to Corie an t-Sneachda was fast,  almost felt like I was chasing the funicular!


The fast pace was not needed as we turned into the corie to find it almost deserted.  Buttresses were pretty black and gullies were incomplete.  After a short debate we decided to go for Red Gully as it was one of the few that had snow on the approach to the mouth of the gulley.  I led the first pitch over the crux on thin sugary ice which fell off with each delicate axe placement.  Balancing rather than climbing I managed to do the first pitch with the rest of the climb rather easy, crap rock snow and not very frozen turf.


Wind was very strong and cold typically Cairngorms windy cold day.


Back at the car for 2pm deciding not to stay the night considering the conditions. 


Glad to get the first winter route of the season to iron out the glitches, ie like putting on my helmet back to front, dropping the rope, forgeting the belay plate.  All on this on the first day!

Posted by Harry Mc , 12/28/2003 5:08 PM  

12/25/2003  Ben Ledi 

Helen, Harry and Broxy


Went up Ben Ledi on Christmas Day to avoid the mad rush around visiting the Konkol clan. 


A very, very wet day, with heavy rain from the start and strong winds at top. Although much tempted we decided not to have a nip of the 'hidden' whisky at the top!


Very little snow left, just a little patch on the normal route down which we slid down; much to the amusement of Broxy chasing down after us.


There were only two other people on the hill and they were some distance behind so we did not greet anyone with a Merry Chirstmas.


After a quick wash in the river (Broxy only) we headed home.  Stopped just outside Stirling for a dog stop where two bull terriers came running and tried to attack Broxy.  Harry, the dogs owner, and I managed to fend them off with a little help from Broxy.  Luckily no damage was done to Broxy.


Going back home we decided to stop in on one of the Konkol clan and were treated to an unscheduled Christmas dinner of turkey and trimmings thanks to my sister Rozan.


Good day had by all.

Posted by Harry Mc , 12/28/2003 4:52 PM  

12/21/2003  Dumgoyne 

Went for a quick amble up Dumgoyne to check out the snow conditions. Looks good to the north.   http://homepage.ntlworld.com/kevin.mcgrath20/Ben%20Lomond%20from%20Dumgoyne.JPG

Posted by KevMcG, 12/21/2003 9:13 PM  

12/21/2003  Ben Vane 

Harry and Nicky


After seeing the snow on Sat night a quick change of plan from the climbing wall to Ben Vane was onthe agenda.  (the nearest new munro for Nicky).


The walk in was in good sunshine with the snow gleaming off the mountain.  The snow was soft and dry and knee deep in places with the odd drift being higher and more tiring work.  The weather stayed good and clear but it closed in on the last 30 metres from the summit.  It cleared again on the descent but too low down to see the sun go down.  Back at the car at around 4pm with the total trip taking just over 4hrs.


Posted by Harry Mc , 12/21/2003 7:49 PM  

12/13/2003  Milehouse Meet 

Most people arrived on Friday night and enjoyed a drink or two before hitting the sack.  Saturday didn't offer any winter climbing, the crags being totally bare, but it was a good day for walking.  People went their different ways and did the Glen Feshie hills, scrambled the Fiacal Ridge and walked in to Bynack Mor.  The wind was the real adventure of the day, with it being difficult to stand at times on the Fiacal Ridge.  The evening started with a few beers at Loch Insh.  Then it was time for the Christmas Dinner.  Predictably rowdy, and good fun.  Helen and Harry provided an excellent chilli and a lovely pasta bake.  Everybody else contributed too to make a great dinner, with crackers and hats and all!  Sunday was far more wintery on the tops.  Some did Beinn a'Chaorainn and some did the westerly Drumochter hills.  Again, a fine day for walking.  (Helen, Harry, Danny, Louise, Gary, Robin, Donald, Derek, Jules, Dave, Kevin)

Posted by Robin , 12/17/2003 8:00 AM  

11/29/2003  Beinn a Chochuill and Beinn Eunaich 

Ahh, what it is to be walking, once again, in proper Scottish conditions. Heavy rain from the start, in the middle, at the end and all times in between would normally spell a grim day. After a glorious summer, though, it made a refreshing change and as Billy Connolly once said "there's no such thing as weather, there's just the wrong clothes". So it was goretex from head to toe and as it was wintry, big boots too (for training you understand). Anyway, off me and my mate Ray trogged. Up the path, greeting the hairy coos who looked most doleful in the dreich weather and up the hill. I was expecting gales, but they didn't appear and snow, of which there was a little and rain, of which there was lots. All told though, it was a good day (not a big day) and the visibility was pretty good considering. The north side of Cruachan looked very wintry with much snow. I wonder how the day walk went.

Posted by El Presidente , 12/2/2003 12:09 PM  

11/30/2003  Buachaille Etive Mor 

Robin and Luke walked the full ridge of the Buachaille on Sunday.  Plenty snow above 600m, and great views and weather.  Obviously it was failry warm on Fri/Sat as it was soggy under the surface layer of fresher colder snow.  So it still needs a good freeze, but other than that it's all very wintery.

Posted by Robin , 12/1/2003 7:37 AM  

11/22/2003  Beinn Fhionnlaidh 

A combined hut work meet and winter walk.  Gary, Margaret, Louise and Robin drove round to Glen Creran via Onich.  A new microwave andfan heater were added to the hut, and a branch cut off a tree to stop it brushing against the slates.  As far a the walking went, it was a long slog up the west ridge in mixed weather.  There was snow above 650m, and significant drifts in places.  A cold summit - see the photo.  Hurrah for winter.  Hopefully it will last through to the Milehouse meet.  On the descent we got good views out over Loch Linnhe and Lismore. 

Posted by Robin , 11/25/2003 11:53 AM  

11/23/2003  Ben Lomond 

Helen, Harry, Jules and Broxy


Went up Ben Lomond on Sun.  Day started off misty and continued misty with snowlying on the summit.  It continued so until we started back down when it cleared enough to see the loch. Took around 4 and a half hours in total.


Broxy was a model hilldogger, passing people politely all the way up to the summit.  But then he blotted his copy book by fiercely barking at a Chinese guy who appeared at the summit.  So it is back to the training before he can be allowed out on the hill again.


Thank you to Jules who was brave enough to put up with us (I mean the dog and not Harry and I)

Posted by Harry Mc , 11/24/2003 9:30 PM  

11/16/2003  Meall Greigh,Meall Garbh,An Stuc 

One  of those last minute days again. Very pleasant walk sunny shirtsleeves weather to start but a bit cold on the tops. No snow but rime ice starting to form on the grass. Came down via Lochan nan Cat and back to Lawers. Very surprised to have dry feet after 3 Munros in trainers. View from An Stuc on http://homepage.ntlworld.com/kevin.mcgrath20/ it was too big for this site.

Posted by KevMcG, 11/23/2003 7:31 PM  

11/16/2003  Sgurr na Sgine 

Helen, Harry, Gill and Willie


Us four opted out of the drive round to Arnisdale and went for Sgurr na Signe which Willie wanted to do as he missed out the true summit last time.


Leaving the car, I decided to grab a quick head start on the faster other two, only to be held up at the dreaded river crossing.  After half crossing and crawling I managed to get across dry, only to find the others had caught up.  Gill doing a dainty river dance floating across the torrents.


The start up the west Faochag ridge is steep but a path winds its way up passing the first top at 850m.  At this top, on a clear day you are faced with the rest of the route.  The summit looks ages away in the distance but the going is easy and the ground is quickly covered (even by me). The NW top is passed at 944m.  It would be easy to see how people would think this is the summit but after a short descent the true summit at 945m is reached in around 10mins. 


Lunch was much more enjoyable due to the lack of wind at the summit. We opted for the shorter descent going back the way we came.

Total round trip around 5hrs.



Posted by Harry Mc , 11/17/2003 8:59 PM  

11/15/2003  Beinn Fhada & A' Ghlas bheinn 

Never be put off by a bad weather forcast. Despite warnings of gales, Saturday's weather was mild, calm and dry below below 2500' and despite a fresh cold wind, the odd sleet shower and poor visablity above, I think everyone enjoyed our navigation exercise on the tops. The group (Gary, Louise, Danny, Harry, Helen, Willie and Gil) left the Kintail Lodge and parked at Dorusduarn. We walked up a good path, crossed a stream and up to Meall a Bhealaich. Then we followed a ridge up to the plateau and after a navigation correction, followed a cliff edge up to the summit of Beinn Fhada. After a miserable lunch in sleet and cold winds we retraced our steps back to the Bhealaich, were Helen chose to leave us. We continued down a very steep slope to Bealach Sgairne then followed a good but steep path up to the summit of A' Glas bheinn. So far things were going to plan but on reaching the next col we realised that Harry was missing. Danny and I retraced our steps, but with no sign of him we assumed he had gone his own way. After rejoining the group we continued on a ridge heading north, as planned but this worried Gil as the cars were to the SW. After some debate we picked up a very good track and followed it to the cars, just as the light was fading. 8 hours after starting.    

Posted by Gary , 11/17/2003 11:41 AM  

11/8/2003  LMC Dinner 2003 

The crowd gathered by the fire in the Bridge of Orchy in time for a few pints before dinner.  A few folk had been out during the day - Laganagrdh Buttress and some Mamores had been climbed - and we were all in the mood for a good supper.  The food was good, and we finished with a pertinent speach from Chris on impending issues with the Access Bill.  It got peoples interest (until the next round of drinks arrived at least).  I went home at that point, but I'm sure the party went on for while after.  Thanks to Chris and Louise who organised it.  In all there were 14 memebers and guests, see the photo. A good evening.

Posted by Robin , 11/11/2003 12:17 PM  

11/8/2003  Lagangarbh Buttress and Chimney 

Over coffee and hot chocolate at The Bridge of Orchy it was decided that it was too cold and windy for the delicacies of the Direct on CrowberryRidge.  So Kevin, Harry, Chris and Robin decided on Lagangarbh Chimney as an appropriate adventure.  The buttress provided lovely, continuous scrambling and good sound, rough rock.  The strong, gusting wind was pretty unnerving, and you had to hold on tight at times!  Near the top we moved left to the base of the chimney and got the rope out.  Kevin, Chris and Robin tied on at 15m intervals and offered the sharp end to Harry.  Off he went armed with a couple of hexes, a sling or two, Kevin's shiney new wires, but nought to clip them into!  Pitch one was awkward, and it took a while for the fingers to warm up.  The team looked on in disbelief as Harry attacked the subterranean chimeny on pitch 2 - where the leader goes, everyone must follow.  Robin found his shoulders to be a perfect guage, and slugged his way up in second place.  Higher up the constricted chimney necessiated the team to be blayed over various ledges, off an assortment of dodgy gear, and few karabiners.  Harry lead on bravely up the cux.  It was exposed bridging up the outside of the final chimney; definitely exciting for Diff and probably great fun under snow.  Eventually we all regrouped behind a boulder for lunch, and trudged up to the top of Stob Dearg and down Coire an Tulaich, in time to get our party clothes on for the club dinner.

Posted by Robin , 11/11/2003 12:05 PM  

11/8/2003  Cruachan Hills 

Bill, Danny & Louise, headed for the hills behind cruachan, tempted by the fab forecast for sat. Turned out to be a windy old day with mist on the tops. Good bit of exercise as we romped round Beinn Eunaich & Beinn a chochuill in just 4 hours.

Posted by Louise , 11/9/2003 7:17 AM  

10/26/2003  Ben Lawers + 4 other munros 

Jules, Margaret, Alec, Dereck, Harry, Helen, Broxy (a crazy dog), Phil, Danny & Louise met at the Ben Lawers car park after an eventful journey:  Danny killed a pheasant, Harry nearly killed broxy and broxy killed helen's car.


With more than a sprinkling of snow on the tops and views to the Ben and Creag Megaidh on a pretty clear day a great day was had by all.  Harry & Dereck kept with us for the first two munros before returning to rescue helen from broxy.  The remaining party continued, narrowly escaping becoming un-stuck on

An-Stuc on the snow and ice descent. 


In true lomond style much dordling was done to ensure arriving at the car just after dark.  After a couple of pints in the Killin Inn, of past annual dinner fame, we swerved our way back home (even though the driver was the only one who hadn't been drinking).


Posted by Danny

Posted by Louise , 10/28/2003 6:38 PM  

10/18/2003  Aonachs!! 

Bill, Danny, Helen, Harry, Jules, Mark & Louise headed to the aonoachs for an absolute peach of a day.  Helen set off 15 minutes ahead of the rest of the pack to get a head start, and as we gained ground on her she said "she felt like a nubile young virgin being chased by a hoard!" Much to her a disappointment it was just a very sweaty bunch of walkers, all of whom were caught out in one way or another with the freakishly hot weather....shorts, suncream, sunglasses & more water were all required.

Out of this world views, Colin Prior eat your heart out, full 360 panorama of Aonoach Beag & Aonoach Mor.

Posted by Louise , 10/19/2003 11:06 AM  

10/3/2003  Stob Coiran Albannaich and Meall nan Eun 

Harry, Helen, Nicky and Broxy


went up to Glen Etive to do Stob Coir'an Albannaich and Meall nan Eun.  Gadget man Nicky with his Altimeter, GPS, Digital camera and radios came prepared, but it was useful as he was able to record on camera Broxy's first munro. (see photos)


Helen decided that one hill was enough for her and went down with a rather reluctant Broxy. Broxy became perturbed at the group splitting up and did a few sit down protests on the way off the summit.  Harry and Nicky continued to Meall nan Eun with the first flurries of sleet/snow that we have seen this year.


Broxy is still a bit new to hillwalking and did not understand that you do not bark at groups with guns, as we came across a shooting party coming off the hill.  Time for the lead on Broxy, before he realized that that was a dead deer on the pony.


We all met up again and went into the Kings House for some soup and chips.


Broxy still has a lot of training to do so that he does not bark at people on the hills.  Any tips would be much appreciated!




Posted by HelenK , 10/7/2003 7:36 AM  

9/27/2003  Torridon & Applecross 

Bank Holiday Weekend - Helen, Harry, Danny & Louise.


Saturday was a fab day, clear skyes & dry in torridon, although a bit too cold for climbing.....so Helen & Harry headed up the liatach ridge having made an earlier start than Louise & Danny who screeched into Torridon at one in the afternoon.

Determined to get Beinn Allighn in before the weather turned.......the book said 6&1/2 hrs to do the whole circuit, so we figured we had just enough time before it went dark and we were encouraged to see another 3 guys leaving the carpark also at 1.30pm.  Louise set the pace, and Danny moaned about being left behind and me trying to give him a heart attack! me thinks Danny has been doing to much rock jocking this summer!!!

The views were fantastic, and we were very pleased with our total walking time of 4 & 1/2 hours!

Off to the Bunk house in Kinlochewe to hook up with helen & harry, and plan a days climbing for sunday. I had my eye on a big VD on Beinn Eighe but it was too cold, so we all headed along to Diagbeg, great crag on the coast, only to find it lashing it down. Helen & Harry were determined to climb, so headed for newton more. Whilst Danny & Louise headed for Applecross to  walk up Beinn Bhan in the rain....oh well good training.


I was after ticking a classic rock route on monday......The Cioch Nose in applecross, but the weather gods had it in for the whole of scotland I think.....the mist was so low & the lashing rain put stop to my pursuit of classic rock ticks!!

Posted by Louise , 10/1/2003 10:09 AM  

9/27/2003  The Big Six 

The Bagger (Gary) and the Cripple (Robin) went off to bag the Fisherfield 6.  Walked in on Sat afternoon and stayed at the fab bothy Shenevall.  Good craic with a bunch of fishermen from Drumchapel, who put us to shame as they only had about 6 Munros left to do between them!  Sadly we, Gary and I, drank the whole weekend's supply of malt in the one evening.  This made the 6am start on Sunday a tad harder than usual - or was that the porridge!  It was a brilliant day: quite fresh with only the odd cloud over the tops.  There was rain about but never on us.  The views were great, including Kilbreck, Assynt, the Summer Isles, Skye, Torridon etc etc.  The hills were wonderfully rugged and varied - a real wilderness with no-one else in sight.  After 11.5 hours, Robin's back pain was cured, but his knee was shot and the blisters not pretty.  A big day on the Big 6.  The walk out from Shenvall was abit damp but relatively painless.

Posted by Robin , 9/30/2003 5:14 PM  

9/23/2003  Ben Dubchraig 

Paul, Jens and Lars (2 visitors from Germany) got ready on a sunny autumn morning to walk Ben Dubchraig.

Petra could not face to stayin Glasgow on a day like this and made sure the group slowed down sufficiently. Nevertheless we had a great day and made it to the top and back in daylight. Stunning light, crips air and great views.

Posted by petra , 9/24/2003 3:26 AM  

9/20/2003  Aonach Dubh - climbing tour de force 

Helen, LMC tea shop secretary, arranged for us to meet  at the Crianlarich station tea shop.  Top quality, and more importantly cheap,cakes and tablet were washed down with tea and irn bru. 


The LMC team consisted of Harry, Helen, Louise, Danny and two prospective new members?? - Karen and Steve.


As we cruised into Glen Coe the buchaille basked in sunshine and we were nearly distracted away from our intended destination - the East face of Aonach Dubh.


The weight of Harry's 60m 11mm 'nice yellow' rope slowed him down just enough on the walk in for him to arrive only 10mins before the rest of us.


After a less than promising weather forecast we were rewarded with a perfect Glencoe day, sunny, but not too hot... Or so I thought until I heard about Helen scrambling about in her sports bra.


Louise & Helen bashed a few long classics with Bowstring - 180metres of perfect rock, all done with a graceful feminine style.  Not sated with a full ascent of the aonach dubh buttress, they raced up to the far eastern buttress to climb Nirvama Wall in the evening cool.


Harry and Karen walked past the waterfalls of Lady Jane and Spider up to the sun drenched Far Eastern Buttress to climb the spectalur and maybe quite tough for the grade Sartori and Shambouti on Far Eastern Buttress.  They also gave Eastern promise its second ascent for the day, in good style, despite Harry wishing he hadn't volunteered to climb on a single rope, as he had to remove runners half way through the crux.


Steve & Danny started on Eastern Promise before hot footing it up to SCNL to climb Unicorn, all done in decidedly brutish style.  Not a square inch of their bodies avoided purposeful contact with the rock.


After such a splendid day our gallant heroes feasted in the Bidge of Orchy hotel before whizzing home.  - A great day had by all.


By Danny  


Posted by Louise , 9/21/2003 8:20 AM  

9/17/2003  Conic Hill 

Went for a run over Conic Hill. Lovely weather. Nice to be off when the sun is shining.

Posted by Gary , 9/17/2003 6:31 PM  

9/7/2003  Southern Hills no match for the Munroe Beasts 

Lomond member tests fitness out on the hills in Lake district. I hooked up with my pals from Uni to do the Kentmere round, which is a lake district classic big day out on the hill.......a  horseshoe with 5 tops!!  I was pleasantly surprised to find that the southern hills are mere tiddlers and no match for the scottish munroe beasts.

Posted by Louise , 9/9/2003 11:49 AM  

9/7/2003  lmc in the east exclusive 

Well, where was it going to be dry at the w/e?  Up till about 4 on saterday it was dry at the pass of balliter and the crag was wittnes to danny giving sandy a quick shower as the sweat was flung as danny romped up a wild e2 in the heat.  scorcher!  it must be noted that the boys moved to the lower teir when the siren song of FEMALE CLIMBERS was heard in the distance.  well we all had lunch and a good stare (danny and sandy made good use of their sun glasses (older and wise than young gareth huges and myself who made do with stolen glances).

rain stopped play and after debating the likely hood the dubh loch would be dry (the cliff, not the loch!) we went for my stag do in aberdeen (which i missed as i stayed in and watched forrest gump).  danny and sandy rolled in REIKING of beer (i'd had half a shandy and an early night snuggled up with my co-co). 

the next day we all made the pilgrimage to erenshugh (spelling!) to pick a fight with the sea gulls but they nhad heard that we were coming and had all buggered off aparently.  I had an easy time on one route and a much harder one on another.  i was however a witness to a SHOCKING site as danny and sandy built a raft on the beach for their cub scout award abd then GOT NAKED and went top try and shag some seals on the way to swimming out to see to get to the 'erenshugh ridge'.  by the time they were up the first pitch i noted that the tide had by now gone out anyway but that didn't stop them.  10m runouts on slopy lichenious 5b holds did however and the revised grade of E5 5b is as you read being submitterd to the SMC for inclusion into the next guidebook.

all good clean fun (especially as the two mentioned went for an early bath).

james edwards


Posted by grey-corries, 9/8/2003 7:14 PM  

8/31/2003  Aonach Dubh 

The East Face of Aonach Dubh was the venue, Sunday Sept 3 the venue, and Helen, Louise, Jill and Bill the climbers.

Despite the threat of rain, and the presence of the ever-hungry super midge we managed to have a great day….even if there was no stove for tea at the bottom of the climbs.

We were joined by loads of climbers that day, but ‘cos we were early managed to get the routes we’d planned. Helen led The Long Crack (Severe) with Louise, then Louise did her first lead (no probs!) in two years on Archer Ridge (VD).

Bill led Quietude (HVS) – bit of a tough overhang to begin with on second pitch, and Jill did Weeping Wall Route (S) – tough in a couple of places for its grade.



Posted by JillSte, 9/3/2003 3:42 PM  

9/1/2003  Glen Cannich 

An Epic walk taking 14 hours, an experience to be avoided. Maybe I should have paid more attention to Cameron McNeish's route description " returning... by the lochside footpath which is sketchy in places" he should try that path in the dark. The SMC suggest hiring a boat.

My route took in Carn nan Gobhar, Sgurr na Laphaich, An Riabhachan and An Socach from Mullardoch dam, returning along the north shore of the loch. I would suggest backtracking to Sgurr na Lapaich from An Socach to avoid that non existent lochside path.

Posted by Gary , 9/3/2003 10:43 AM  

8/30/2003  So we deviated from climbing & went mountain biking 

Louise & Danny & garys bike felt daring on saturday so went mountain biking instead of climbing in Glentress, a fab mountain biking development near peebles. We tested our non existent skills on some of the blue/red runs they had to offer. later we stumbled accross a specific skills area designed to hone ones technique before trying out any of the routes. With our new skills acquired from hopping over logs & a front brake which was connected we attacked some more daring runs.  

There is a fab cafe run by two women (thats why its good!!)called "The HUb", selling proper outdoor types mugs of coffee &  huge hunks of homemade cake,  at the end of the rides to refuel the depleted energy stores .

Posted by Louise , 9/2/2003 5:05 PM  

8/31/2003  The Wrong Reach 

After driving half way round the country - well at least as far as The Ben to see rain showers looming to the north - Danny and I ended up at the Etive Slabs, and doing The Long Reach (E2).  The first couple of pitches went well, although the bold, airy moves on the second pitch took me a while to muster the commitment.  Danny dispatched the overlap with relative ease before following a natural, albeit wrong line above.  So bit of engineering got us back on route and the belay on Pause.  I led the next pitch.  Many years ago I had followed Huan up the wrong route here,  the day ending in a nasty fall a couple of pitches later.  So I was keen to get it right this time - but still failed.  I moved too far left, and then did some really run-out, delicate friction climbing up a rib left of the real line (which we only worked out after Danny was half way up following it).  The next pitch was again a bit undefined, and Danny led a technical bulge and runout slabs above (which we are sure was the route in the end).  The upper overlap looked so improbable that it took a little investigation up the neighboring line of Pause before I convinced myself of where the route went.  So back down and up over the huge overlap.  Dynamic moves, realising one's blindly placed runner was crap just at the wrong moment, reached better holds and the upper slab.  Easier, but still delicate, run-out and interesting climbing led to the heather ledge.  Danny finished up the final pitch of Pause, as it looked nicer than the easier guidebook finish.  Quite a route, certainly mentally challenging, but marred but constantly stuggling (and sometimes failing) to keep on the non-descript and slightly artifical line.

Posted by Robin , 9/1/2003 12:01 PM  

8/23/2003  Super Midge carnage spreads as far south as Stob Gabhar! 

The Super Midge attacks, previously reported in Glen Coe, were witnessed across the country last weekend.  Mr and Mrs Whitworth of Bearsden,Glasgow, were ravaged by the Super Midge late on Saturday on their ascent of Stob Gabhar.  They were well equiped for the hills with midge hoods and repellent, but it was still traumatic.  Mr Whitworth said 'It was incredible, never seen anything like it at that altitude'.  Mrs Whitworth's version of events was not printable.  After the traumatic ascent, they were saved by a breeze and enjoyed a lovely evening camped on the ridge above Corein Lochan and overlooking the Rannoch Moor.  Unfortunately, the murderous frenzy resumed on Sunday morning.  The unlucky couple found themselves pinned in their tent, unable to reach the camping stove.  Eventually hunger and bladder stress got the upperhand and Mr Whitworth had to go and cook breakfast. Mrs Whitworth stayed put!  Eventually the sun and breeze made conditions just bearable and they completed their circuit of Stob Gabhar, albeit later than expected.  Glorious weather, lovely walking and scorching heat on the walk out helped heal the wounds from the Super Midge attacks.

Posted by Robin , 8/25/2003 12:10 PM