Thursday, July 31, 2008

Avoiding the rain

We headed to Anglesey today and managed to eek a good days cragging out of the weather window before the rain arrived. We climbed several Severes with Paul leading a couple of pitches and The Bruvvers HVS 5a before the arrival of the warm front and its associated drizzle!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

In the sunshine on the Orme

We decided to abandon the classic rock agenda today with heavy rain in the mountains and head for the sunshine of the North Coast. We climbed at Crinkle Crag and did 6 routes from V Diff to HVS 5a and enjoyed fine weather all day and the company of a couple of seals!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Gashed Crag, Tryfan

This fine multi pitch route climbs the South Peak of Tryfan on the East Face over 5 pitches at V Diff. We had thunder and lightening and heavy showers today so the thrutchy chimney pitches were a challenge!

Monday, July 28, 2008

5 day Classic Rock Course

I have been joined for the week by Paul and Mark for a week ticking off some of the classic routes in North Wales. This course celebrates the 2007 publication of the book Classic Rock which has updated descriptions and 200 new colour photos and is a 5 day rock climbing holiday. Today we had great weather and visited the Llanberis Pass and ticked off Wrinkle ( V Diff) Crackstone Rib (Severe), and Skylon (HS).

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Rock Improvers Course

It was a beautiful hot and sunny day on Anglesey and we had a great day topping up tans and doing some good climbing. We covered lots of new skills and enjoyed an ice cream at the end of the day!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Rock Improvers Course

This weekend I have been joined by Steve & Rob who have travelled up from Kent to invest in new some new skills to improve their rock climbing. Both have done some top roping outdoors and at the local climbing wall and wanted to take it further. We climbed Faith (V Diff) on the Idwal Slabs before looking at some roped scrambling and an abseil. It has been a gorgeous warm day, much better than forecast with no rain.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Rock Improvers - Llanberis Pass

Rachel had to finish at lunch time today so we headed to the Llanberis Pass to tick off some of the skills that she wanted to refresh. These included assisting a stuck second and injured second and escaping the system. We climbed Brant Direct (HVS 5a) and finished off on Brant (VS 4c) before abseiling down. We used our abseil ropes to look at ascending a rope to finish us off!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Rock Improvers Course - Gogarth

Its been a cracking day today. I have been joined by returning client Rachel for a two day rock improvers course. Rachel is happy leading Hard Severe and so today the target was to push her grade and comfort zone, so we went to Gogarth. We climbed Lighthouse Arete, VS 4c in 3 pitches, Pel, VS 4c, two pitches and Blanco, HVS 5a in 2 pitches. The sun was shining all day and we saw the resident seal!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Wen, Gogarth

Andy and I had the morning free this morning so managed a quick early morning dash to Gogarth on Anglesey to climb Wen, HVS 5a. The tide was in so we could dot climb the first pitch but really enjoyed the top two pitches after abseiling in. The route follows a natural crack line and then a traverse off to the left at the top of the route and we had the crag to ourselves. The lighthouse was flashing at us to start with but the morning got better and we celebrated back at the car with ice creams! You can see all of the photos on my gallery, follow the link on the right.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Cragging on the North Coast

I have got a couple of days off now which have unfortunately coincided with some rather wet weather! A friend of mine Andy came round at lunch time and we headed off to the Orme. After a spot of bouldering at Parisellas Cave we went and had a look at Lower Pen Trwyn and Crinkle Crag and then some bolt clipping at Caste Inn Quarry. As you can see that really is roadside cragging!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Little & North Gullies, Tryfan

We had a very pleasant day today on the East face of Tryfan on day 2 of our intro to scrambling course. The weather stayed fine until we reached the car at the end of the day and we had the East face to ourselves.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Intro to scrambling course

I have been joined by Andy, Marie & Simon today for two days of grade 1 scrambles in Snowdonia. We headed up the Gribin Ridge and across the top of the Glyders in thick cloud and had a great day out looking at how to look after ourselves on the steep ground, movement skills and risk assessment.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Y Garn & Foel Goch

We have had a beautiful day of sunshine today and some fantastic views on our hill skills and navigation course. We headed into Cwm Idwal, up the back of Twyll Du (The Devils Kitchen) and up Y Garn and then across to Foel Goch. Steve & Roddy navigated all day with me throwing in some extra tips and strategies to build on yesterdays new skills. I was assisted today by Sally my 10 year old Jack Russel who enjoyed the walk!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Mountain Navigation & Hill Skills Course in Snowdonia

This weekend I have been joined by Roddy & Steve for a mountain navigation and hill skills course. The course covers:
- Two full days of practical navigation in the mountains of Snowdonia
- Introduction to different map scales
- How to set the map
- How to interpret contours
- How to interpret key symbols ie how to find a footpath, fence, stream etc
- How to plan and follow a route using paths and other key features
- How to plan and follow a route across featureless terrain
- How to estimate distance using pacing and timing
- How to navigate in poor or limited visibility
- How to use the compass
- How to re-orientate yourself if you do get lost
- Training and Assessment to Silver NNAS standard (optional - if you want to attend the course for your own benefit and do not require the certificate and cloth badge then you do not need to be assessed)
- Certificate and badge for successful candidates assessed to Silver level
- Movement over steep gound (this is not a scrambling course but will give a gentle introduction)
- Mountain weather - how the weather affects our route planning and choice during the day
- Emergency procedures in case of an incident
- Choice and use of equipment

Today we headed up onto Moel Berfedd behind the PYG Hotel and had a mixture of sunshine and showers. It looks set to be brighter tomorrow so fingers crossed!

Friday, July 11, 2008


For the last day of our 5 day learn to lead course we headed to Tremadog to try and avoid the heavy rain that was hanging over the mountains today. We had a mixture of sunshine and showers and Kirsty and Ruth lead Boo Boo and Oberon in good style!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

The sun always shines on Anglesey

Yesterday was pretty wet here in Wales. We headed up the Idwal slabs and climbed Hope with Kirsty leading the first two pitches in the dry and then I took over as the rain set in. We looked at self protecting an abseil off the top and then squelched back to the car.
Today we headed to Holyhead Mountain on Anglesey and enjoyed a day of bright sunshine and a good breeze to dry the ropes out from yesterday. Kirsty and Ruth both lead all day and we were climbing Severe grade climbs.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Llanberis Pass - Flying Buttress

We headed into the Llanberis Pass today and enjoyed a dry day climbing Flying Buttress. This is a 6 pitch V Diff that climbs the right hand side of Dinas Cromlech and although it is polished it is a cracking line in a superb position. We then headed over the other side of the pass to look at abseiling and to summarise the work that we had been doing on building belays.

Monday, July 07, 2008

5 day learn to lead rock climbing course

I have been joined for the week by Ruth & Kirsty for a 5 day learn to lead climbing course. We headed to Tremadog today and got very wet this morning but dried off in the afternoon sunshine. We climbed Poor Mans Peutrey in 4 pitches and then headed back to the RAC boulders for a spot of bouldering to finish the day off with some movement coaching. I'm afraid the camera stayed in the rucksack so no photos today. Have a look at the course details here:

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Rock Climbing on Anglesey

We headed over the Menai Straits to Anglesey today to go climbing at Holyhead Mountain and escape the rain that was falling over the mountains. We had a great day with lots of sunshine and no rain at all and climbed a variety of routes from V Diff to Very Severe including my favorite route name of New Boots & Panties.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Intro to Climbing Course

It has been another showery day in Snowdonia but better than forecast and we have had a good day of rock climbing at the Upper Tier, Tremadog. We managed to avoid the showers by ducking under the trees and Matthew, Alice and David had their first taste of rock climbing and abseiling with some lovely views over Porthmadog.

Friday, July 04, 2008

Advanced Scrambling Course

Steve & Paul took it in turns on the sharp end of the rope this morning on the Direct Approach to Seniors Ridge. This is a grade 2 scramble up the side of the Idwal slabs. This gave them the chance to look at building belays, both direct and indirect and placing runners to protect the leader and to learn how to take coils. After lunch I took us up the Cneifion Arete before a spot of sunbathing at the top. A beautiful day with no rain at all!

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Advanced Scrambling Course

I headed up onto the East Face of Tryfan today with Steve & Paul on an advanced scrambling course. We climbed Bastow Buttress Variant - a grade 2/3 scramble and then headed up the North Ridge for a quick blast to the summit. It was pretty damp today and some very atmospheric clouds were swirling around us.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Intro to Navigation

Having moved house this weekend it was very nice to get out into the mountains today. I was joined by Dawn and Gillian and assisted by my oldest son Josh! We headed up towards Y Foel Goch from Capel Curig and had a mixture of sunshine and some heavy showers which looks set to be the weather pattern for the next few days.