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Showing posts from May, 2009

Spring Sport

Chilly day at Creag nan Cuillean - Cammy Bell climbing

Adrian Crofton on an early redpoint of Marlena

It's been a chilly, windy and often wet spring on the west coast and central belt, so we've been chasing moments of blustery sport to wind up the fitness - tag-teaming routes to keep warm, redpointing with cold pumps and numb fingers, huddling under permadry crags sucking the smoky warmth out of a roll-up. Maybe it would have been better for bouldering, but trying to climb seasonally in Scotland means sometimes having to fight the unseasonable!

Colin Lambton redpointing Beef Monster, Cammy Bell checking footy scores

I was chuffed to see Adrian Crofton bagging Marlena after a dedicated battle and endless unfolding screams from the last move. Nic Duboust impressed with a near flash of Marlena and old-skooler Guy Robertson dug out his engrams for another repeat, while flying visits from Stewart Brown and Will Atkinson saw flash ascents of Hamish Teds, which seems to be the benchmark…

Glencoe Unclimbed and Unclaimed

Last of the Snows

Took a jaunt up to the Coe to do a little trad and check the mountain walls. Not surprisingly Slime Wall was still pretty slimy and catching weeps from snow melt, but all the south faces were drying nicely and the Rannoch Wall was reliable as ever, despite the high winds. Angus Murray tried 'Line Up' but went off route on a new variation 'Wind Up' which meanders right from the first belay, which was fun despite the perishing wind.


'Wind Up' HVS Rannoch Wall - Angus Murray climbing

Despite the fine weather there was only one other party on the wall - where have all the climbers gone? The Kingy is also a sad shadow of its former glory - the climbers' bar is just a museum of old grizzled heroes on black and white ice, or 80's rock stars in lycra. The 'golden era' is long gone I know but the Glen is surely worth a renaissance from gym-fit rock monsters who onsight 8a - there are plenty of wild new lines in the Coe for those young, fit…

Lost Islands and Rumour Stones

Gigha Beaches

Torrential late April rains finally have given way to some blazing blue skies in the west. I've been out on foot in the Highlands and Islands for the last wee while due to a clutchless car but finally motoring again and visiting some corners of Scotland for the Book of Lost Stones, as well as bolting some new lines on our local crag at Dunglass, removing the rusted tat of old and adding a few shiny new bolts.


The New: new bolts for Beef Monsters

The Old: Political Legacy lower off

Keeping up the sport climbing as the weather settles into summer mode will hopefully mean a strong start on the trad climbing over the summer, with some big walls tagged for photography and Guy Robertson's magnum opus on sharp-end Scottish climbs. I'm also keen to get my backside onto some long-desired climbs such as Ling Dynasty, Titan's Wall, Expecting to Fly, New Testament and Clearances...hopefully we'll get the summer for good strong photography as well as some actual cli…