Sunday, 27 May 2012

Pinnacle Ridge, Skye

Pinnacle ridge this morning with Sgurr nan Gillean the final summit.

A very early start this morning to head back North upto Skye to meet Darren, Mark and Fraser at 6.30am so we could try and get as much done as possible before the temp got too high. It didn't really work as it was still 20C at 9am this morning. We made our way to the foot of Pinnacle ridge but unfortunately for Darren and Fraser the heat and Yesterdays ascent of the Inn Pinn had taken it's toll. They turned around and headed back down whilst Mark and I carried on up. A great route with lots of great scrambling on pretty sound rock, we arrived at the third pinnacle in good time and abseiled down. From here on in the scrambling is sustained but excellent and we topped out just in time for lunch. We descended down Sgurr nan Gillean's west ridge and headed back out to the Slig for a well deserved drink. Working for Skye Guides again today.

The team behind us abseiling off the third pinnacle.

Saturday, 26 May 2012

Scrambling in Glen Coe.

I was working for Scotch on the Rocks today with Wendy, Jim, Gordon and Neil who wanted to learn some ropework so that they could tackle some of Scotland's classics such as Tower ridge. We started up the first corner of the Zig Zags and looked at different ways we can belay and then headed to the right to climb the direct Grade III scramble. Once we topped out we headed back down the Zig Zags and had a look at abseiling. Another great day with hot temperatures and  wall to wall sunshine though we did manage to spend some time in the shade. Back on Skye tomorrow.

Friday, 25 May 2012

A quick trip up the Ben.

Had a quick trip up the Ben this morning for Maximum Adventure with a 3 peaks group from Mars. They did well despite the heat and we were up and down in 5 Hours and 35 Min's. There has been a considerable loss of snow over the past few days with half a metre of snow lost on the summit and looking over to the North Face it is starting to look like it should for this time of year. A couple of teams on Tower ridge and some others making their way into Coire na Ciste.

Three stunning days on Skye.

I got back last night from three days of work on Skye for Mike Lates at Skye guides. The weather has been very warm and with Blue sky's as far as the eye could see which you can hardly complain at. On Tuesday I headed up the west Ridge of Sgurr Dearg to the Inn Pinn with John Jeff and Ian. Here we joined the ques and had to wait nearly an hour before we started climbing. We then descended down Coire Banachdich.

Busy on the Inn Pinn.

As much of the ridge as I could fit in using my panorama mode from Sgurr Dubh Mor.

Rick spending some time contemplating on top of Sgurr Dubh Mor.

Teams descending down the west ridge of Gillean.

Wednesday I was out with Mike and Rick who were up to tick off the remaining munros on the ridge so we headed to the South end and climbed Sgurr Dubh Mor and Sgurr Alasdair and descended the great stone shoot into Coire Lagan. Thursday was more of the same but this time we headed to the North and and climbed Sgurr nan Gillean and Am Basteir. Great company, great weather and great scrambling, what more could you ask for.

Monday, 21 May 2012

A weekend on the Ben.

I've been on the Ben this weekend working for Maximum Adventure on Saturday and Abacus Mountain Guides on the Sunday. As expected with the nice weather it was busy. There is a lot of snow on the Plateau at the moment and peering over the North face it looked very much like winter but with warm weather forecast for the next few days at least, I think it is all going to start melting pretty quickly. Day off today and then up to Skye first thing tomorrow morning for a few days work.

Friday, 11 May 2012

Winter just keeps holding on!

I've been pretty quiet on the blog front recently as most of my work has been at Outward Bound or other outdoor centres but work is about to get a bit more exciting in the coming weeks. Any way yesterday I was out with a couple of students on the Outdoor degree at the UHI to assess them on their leadership skills. The last set only had their peers as group members but these two were lucky enough to have a P6 class from Inverlochy Primary School. We got a lift up to the top car park and made our way in and out to the CIC hut (with a stop for hot chocolate in the hut) and got back to the van before the worst of the weather hit yesterday afternoon.

It's been a while since I've been up to the North face and I was surprised to see how much ice was visible from the hut. I obviously can't comment on the quality of it but there are definitely things to go for if you went up with an open mind. There was some very heavy snow yesterday and I would think that the easier ridges would be a bit of a wade and the easier gullies might not be the best places to be. Here's some photo's to have a look at.