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Showing posts from July, 2012

Update on Dumbarton Rock access

MCOS and myself attended a meeting with Historic Scotland at Dumbarton Rock with David Mitchell (HS Director of Conservation), Ian Lambie, (District Architect for HS) and Stephen Gordon (Head of Applied Conservation at HS): they are keen to 'de-schedule' the crags and boulders so climbing can become official, but there are a few issues to resolve first. A geo-technical survey commissioned by Historic Scotland will allow a climber to accompany the survey to promote better understanding; there will be a council meeting with a climber representative to discuss landscaping; and any graffiti cleaning will be accompanied by a climber so no damage to holds is done (cleaning is a priority for the non-climbing crag face below Omerta). Cleaning methods will be discussed and whilst non-climbing rock might be blasted, climbing rock will use a non-damaging solution/steam cleaning method.





So, good news really and a real opportunity to keep our heritage alive at the Rock... thanks for everyon…

Coiregrogain Blocs

A very wet Sunday in the Arrochar Alps, so I put the running shoes on and took the long escalator-paced track up to the Allt Coiregrogain in horizontal, soaking drizzle. I'd been tipped off by Tom C.E. that there were some impressive blocs in the hanging glen between Beinn Ime and Ben Vane. He isn't wrong! Some giant stones with attractive, steep walls and flying aretes... the usual bogs might be an issue, but a dry week might make them just about approachable, if you like 5km walk-ins with big mats. Some nice camping spots, so perhaps a dry spring trip would see some big lines climbed. Apologies for the retro-style photo - the phone battery was so low, this was the only camera app that would work.

Summer Bouldering

The sandstone boulders under the cliffs of Raasay have seen some serious attention from top-end climbers Michael Tweedley and Dave MacLeod. Dave reported an amazing and very continental-looking project on the giant boulders round Screapadal. Dave reports on the stunning potential of the area in his blog:

'We spent ages looking round the boulders finding countless problems in the V0-V3 range that looked great, but not much for ourselves. But finally we stumbled upon one line that changed our psyche - the biggest, baddest Font 7c/+ roof in Scotland!'

Beastmaker Dan Varian has written a hilarious blog about the ups and downs of Scottish bouldering, cranking out some big new testpieces in Torridon and Applecross in June. Lovingly entitled '3 days in Paradise, 1 day in a Shithole', you can tell he wasn't impressed by Dumbarton! Don't worry, Dan, we feel you and are trying to get the place cleaned up! See here for further developments on the clean-up and development o…

Dumbarton Rock Update

It seems there has been some confusion and misinformation about cleaning of the boulders/crag at Dumbarton. Currently, the issue is in the hands of the MCoS, Historic Scotland and SNH, so please check for official statements on the MCoS website, the most recent of which is here >>> official news.

Whilst we may all have different views on how best to manage visual pollution such as graffiti - some would like to see it go, some feel it is part of the urban character of the place - the best we can do is represent our feelings on climbing heritage to the MCoS as our official access representative.

My own personal statement in defence of climbing here remains:

1. We LIKE the place and USE it a lot, in all seasons, so naturally want to see a balance between conservation and the rights of our climbing heritage.

2. We clean the place up independently every year and ought to be recognised, or at least consulted, when decisions are being made on 'cleaning' the rock, which, fro…