Friday, July 31, 2009

Cneifion Arete

I have been out with regular client Monica today and 3 of her family. They have all done some climbing this week and wanted an adventurous scrambling day so we went and climbed the Cneifion Arete. It stayed dry for us all day and we had a lovely day out. It was great to be back in the mountains after a week off and many thanks to all of the people that have sent messages of congratulation.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Its a boy!

For those that have been out with me recently whilst I have been regularly checking the phone - its a boy! Charlie was born last night weighing 7Ib 13. Kate & Charlie are doing great and coming home this afternoon to see his 3 older brothers! The champagne is on ice!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Rock Climbing at Tremadog

I have been joined for the day by returning clients Steve & Charlotte. We headed to Tremadog and Steve lead Boo Boo (Diff) and I lead them both up Poor Mans Peutrey (Severe). We worked on multi pitch climbing skills, problem solving and abseiling and had a lovely dry day in the sunshine. It has been a busy week for the Llanberis Mountain Rescue Team with 11 callouts since Saturday including a big search.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

SARDA Weekend & Helicopter Training

I have been with SARDA Wales this weekend on a training weekend. Yesterday was spent on Anglesey whilst today we were in the Llanberis Pass. We were joined today by the BBC who made a short piece for "The One Show" so keep your eyes peeled over the next few weeks. The video tells the story.

Thursday, July 16, 2009


Paul and I headed to Gogarth today to avoid the rain that was falling over the mountains. This morning we climbed Britamartis which is a great 2 pitch HVS at Wen Zawn. The route is steep but on big juggy holds straight up from the sea with an exciting hanging belay at the halfway point. This afternoon we dodged showers and climbed King Bee Crack at Holyhead Mountain which is a viscous route at HVS 5a, steep and thuggy and slightly damp!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Climbing at Tremadog

Paul and I headed to Tremadog today for a day of climbing in the sunshine. We had a great day and ticked off One Step in the Clouds (VS 4b, 4c, 4a), The Fang (HVS 5a, 5a) and Striptease (VS 5a) including a couple of big abseil descents. It stayed warm and dry all day and midge free! 

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Clogwyn Y Person Arete & North Ridge of Crib Goch

Today we were shower dodging so decided on a mountaineering day. We headed up the Clogwyn Y Person Arete, a great grade 3 scramble, along Crib Goch and the down the North Ridge. We had one heavy downpour but otherwise fine views and a lovely crisp light. 

Monday, July 13, 2009

Rock Climbing at Gogarth

I have been joined for the week by Paul who is a regular client and friend for a week of rock climbing and mountaineering here in Snowdonia. We decided on a cragging day today and in search of the sunshine escaped the rain in the mountains by heading to Anglesey. We climbed Lighthouse Arete (Vs 4a, 4c, 4a) at Gogarth this morning and then dodged showers at Holyhead Mountain to climb Black & Tan (VS4c) and Tension (VS 4b) before the rain really set in. My eldest son Josh is working at Plas y Brenin all week - on work experience! He had a great day climbing this morning and canoeing this afternoon with the very friendly staff at the National Mountain Centre. 

Friday, July 10, 2009

Rock Climbing at Gogarth

Kurtis and I spent the morning with our heads in our computer screens this morning! I have put together a new website for him for his navigation courses in the Lake District - you can have a look here. Kurtis is on my mentor scheme and is working towards his MIA training. Having done the boring stuff we then headed to Gogarth and climbed Lighthouse Arete (VS 4c) in 3 pitches. It was a glorious afternoon and we even saw the resident seal. 

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Lliwedd - West Peak via Bilberry Terrace

I am running an advanced scrambling course today and tomorrow here in Snowdonia. Unfortunately 1 client had to cancel this morning leaving Kurtis (as some of you may recognise from my Mentor scheme) to benefit from 1:1 instruction for the duration. (Perhaps I am flattering myself by calling it a benefit, poor Kurtis had no one but me to talk to all day!) We decided that we could afford ourselves the luxury of a long route and chose Bilberry Terrace on Lliwedd. It is described in the scrambling guide as the best of the most difficult scrambles and is graded 3 with 3 stars. It was a great route in fine architecture but with a slightly loose top section. It finished on the very summit of the mountain though and we had fine views all day.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Rock Climbing & Scrambling with Bill

I was joined for the last two days by regular client Bill who made the trip from Scarborough for a couple of days of rock climbing here in Snowdonia. Yesterday the weather had other ideas so we had a great day out doing some grade 2 scrambling, sharing the leading in Cwm Idwal. Today we headed to Anglesey leaving the rain behind over the mountains and enjoying a day of climbing in the sunshine. We climbed a variety of routes from V Diff to Hard Severe and it was great to see Bill again.

Sunday, July 05, 2009

AMI Workshop - Improvised Rescue Day

The MIA trainees and I headed to Anglesey today to practice improvised multi pitch crag rescues in the sunshine. It was a real contrast to yesterday with bright sunny skies all day. We practiced a wide range of problems that got ever more complex as the day progressed with some great acting skills along the way! 

Saturday, July 04, 2009

AMI Workshop for MIA Trainees

I have been working with a group of 5 trainee instructors today who are preparing for there MIA assessments. The workshop weekend is run by the Association of Mountaineering Instructors (AMI) and I have been working for them. Today the trainees wanted to look at short roping, looking after clients on grade 2 and 3 scrambles. We headed into Cwm Idwal and looked at ascents, traverses and descents on grade 2 ground in continual lashing rain! Nevertheless a great day was had with a good deal of information exchange taking place all round. 

Friday, July 03, 2009

The wheelie big rescue on Snowdon

Tonight we have bin out on a wheelie important but rubbish job on Snowdon. The Llanberis Mountain Rescue Team were asked to recover a Wheelie bin that had wheeled itself off the summit of Snowdon from the new cafe and ended up several hundred feet below at the bottom of a very steep cliff! We walked up, carried the bin to the railway and had great fun recreating the exploits of Joe Brown and chums sliding down the railway on slates, only for us it was in a wheelie bin! Thats not a claim everyone can make! 

Rock Climbing & Scrambling

I have spent the last two days with Steve & Charlotte who booked me for some private guiding  to do some rock climbing and  some advanced scrambling. We spent the day yesterday at Anglesey in beautiful sunshine and a fresh Easterly wind. We climbed Stairs (S) and New Boots and Panties (S 4a) in two pitches each looking at multi pitch climbing skills. We also did some multi pitch abseiling and spent our time looking at the skills needed for them both to lead for themselves. Today we headed into Cwm Cneifion and climbed the Cneifion Arete with Steve & Charlotte leading whilst I was alongside offer tips and advice. A lovely couple of days culminating in two self sufficient mountaineers. 

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Craig Cwm Trwsgl

I teamed up with friend Andy today for a days cragging. Neither of us had been into Cwm Pennant before so headed over there. The crag is fairly isolated at the head of the Cwm Pennant valley with nice views of the South side of Snowdon and the Nantle Ridge. We climbed The Exterminating Angel (E3 5c, 5b) and Efnisien (E1 5b). The crag offers superb solid rock and great slab climbing and we even found a mountain pool to have a swim in on the way home - much to my dogs delight! 
Thanks to Andy for the photos show that show me working hard to second the crux 5c pitch and Skye enjoying the belay with Andy whilst I climb Efnisien!