Driest September 2014
September has brought crisp dry weather unprecedented in Scotland in recent years, with opportunities for walking, climbing and cycling in fine dry conditions. It has felt almost continental in the sense of blithely venturing out any day, or at least being able to rely on the weather setting fair to coincide with your time off.
Mark Garthwaite took advantage and subdued the mighty Dalriada on the Cobbler with a sports-style pre-placed gear ascent (perhaps an opportunist methodology best for our weather), on the notoriously unreadable scooped schist of the Cobbler. Fraser Harle was on hand to take some stunning and inspiring shots of this modern classic rock route, check his photos here >>>
Dan Varian amongst others has been exploring the tidal reaches of the Solway to add a new, as yet unreleased, venue on this pleasant and sunny coast. Sea-washed rocks and eliminating foothold limpets seem to be the character of these coves, topos to follow shortly.
Tom Charles-Edwards is back climbing and he prefers big lines and stones over the 600m contour, discovering king lines for anyone who can show the legs to get there, if you are brave enough to camp out high in the boulderfields amongst the rutting stags that sound like Minotaurs hunting for you when you're in a tent! John Watson continued his plus-800m exploration of granite Arran tors and fought losing shoes and chalk-bags to the winds now presaging the changes of October.
Alex Gorham and friends developed some big stones in Crianlarich, again around the 600m contour and despite the long walk-in, these stones are some of the best in Britain but are unlikely to get much traffic due to the remoteness, a story many stones in Scotland are happy to tell...
The Ayrshire Coast has also unearthed some steep cave bouldering, with fine weather, low tides and a west wind needed to maximise conditions.