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Showing posts from June, 2006

No maps, no topos, no blogs...

Imagine a climbing world without any documentation, or need for it... it wouldn't look much different: the high peaks would still look untrodden, the rock faces immutable and unknown, the boulders just attractive lumps of swirling geology. We would come across signs of climbing only on close up: chalk marks, rusted pegs, bolts, rotting slings and wonder what sort of experiences they had found, what successes, what failures: the act of having to imagine your way forwards is always preferable than following an arbitrary trail laid down on paper. You can get too divorced from it by proxy, which is why it is important to simply go exploring on your own: bouldering, soloing, walking: and not take any maps, or topos, or blog cut-outs... just finding your way on a good day over some fine rock is enough.

Not that I want to knock sales of guidebooks or anything, but Scotland is still a land of adventure and summer is the time to get out and do just that. On a sunny day on a remote peninsula…

Ardvorlich pics

Jo George on Dilemma 6a Ardvorlich Walls

Ardvorlich Hidden Walls - Sport Climbs

The Climbing.

If you're looking for a F6a-6c venue to ease the radical jump between indoor and summer trad in the mountains, this is an excellent venue: sportingly bolted 15m technical walls that will improve your onsighting ability and work your head round to the idea of climbing above gear. The climbing is never desperate - all very steady crimps and pockets on two excellent sunny walls and the bolts come just when needed! Many combinations can be created by mixing the routes up a bit to allow a bit of traversing experience... the rock is excellent schist, if still a little dusty - a little more traffic will help. Usually gets a wee breeze to keep midges off - the bracken in summer makes approach more difficult.

Where are they?

GR 323 123 Landranger 56

Being only forty minutes from Glasgow, and ten minutes from the roadside, this is an idyllic sport venue on the west bank of Loch Lomond. A knoll behind Ardvorlich B&B hides twin west facing walls - this is a few miles north of th…

Akita Boulders

Dave MacLeod has kindly revealed where the Akita boulders are: check his blog at:

http://www.davemacleod.blogspot.com

These are seriously clean and steep boulders, with some superb projects and excellent mid-grade lines. The whole of the far Northwest is littered with crags and stones like this, as if some climbing God sprinkled them out of his boulder box... it's a long way to go for most, but look at the quality of the rock that awaits you...