Friday, July 29, 2011

Climbing by the sea

I have been out with John today who is on my trainee instructor mentor scheme. John has never been climbing outside before but is always up for a challenge and fancied a play on the sea cliffs so we headed to Castell Helen at Gogarth. His first outdoor route was Lighthouse Arete (VS 4c) which we climbed in 4 pitches and had John pushing his limits on the crux! We then moved across to Holyhead Mountain and climbed Stairs (S 4a) in 2 pitches. It has been dry and sunny all day and it was nice to be on warm rock in the sunshine. 

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Advanced Scrambling

I have been out with repeat client Rachel and her husband Pete today to celebrate their 21st wedding anniversary. We headed up the Milestone Buttress (3), Milestone Continuation (3), North Ridge of Tryfan and then down Little and North Gullies. We then had a play on Little Tryfan to finish a great days scrambling.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Are you up for a challenge?

If you like a challenge come and join us for the Welsh 3000 24 hour challenge on the 16th September. Check out the details here:

Friday, July 22, 2011

Cneifion Arete

For the final day of our classic scrambles course I took Alex and Julia up the magnificent Cneifion Arete (3). We took our time and looked at a variety of belay techniques and how to make progress efficiently and safely on this type of ground. It was cloudy all morning but the views improved as the day went on giving a great end to a great week. 

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Crib Goch

For the last two days of our week long scrambling course the ratio drops to 1:2 and Imogen and Gareth wanted to slay some demons on Crib Goch. We enjoyed a traverse with no wind on dry rock but with little views as the cloud was down low. The day brightened up though and stayed dry so no complaints! 

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Bristly Ridge and the Gribin

For day three of our Classic Scrambles course we headed up Bristly Ridge this morning and down the Gribin Ridge this afternoon, with the obligatory photo on the Cantilever Stone of course. We had a brief patch of cloud on the summit but otherwise some beautiful warm weather and sunshine, normal service has been resumed! Dad has been out with me today as well which has been a nice Birthday treat - thanks to all those that have sent me messages and cards.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The Gribin Ridge & over Lliwedd

It has been rather moist again today here in Snowdonia and there has been a steady wind all day too, this is a great combination at this time of year as it keeps away both midgies and sun burn! Today we headed up the Gribin Ridge from Pen Y Pass onto Y Lliwedd. This gave us a great ridge scramble in some exhilarating conditions which made up for the lack of views. The slightly slippery rock meant we could work on our footwork skills too.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Another satisfied customer...

Hi Rob, I couldn’t afford to go on one of your qualified courses but fancied getting in some practice for Nepal so I went with a different company called “budget mountain bodgits”. Nice people but I have to say their attention to detail was a little slack. I did have a slight issue with the climbing gear, especially the rope which to me looked a bit past it’s sell by date. I managed to top out but don’t remember the guy below making it, guess he lost his nerve and climbed back down. Funny though, he didn’t meet us in pub afterward either??

When we hit the snowy mountain top, Mr Bodgit had a very strange abseil technique, it was a bit like vertical glacading, just like hang you over the edge. Very exiting but it did hurt a bit. Anyway, I’ve decided I shall stick with your courses in future…a few pictures of my experience attached :-)


Classic Scrambles Week

I have been joined for the week by repeat clients Imogen and Gareth and by new clients Julia and Alex for a week of scrambling here in Snowdonia. It has been pretty wet and windy today, to make up for all of the stunning sunshine we have had of late! We went into Cwm Idwal and had a day of coaching on grade 1 ground, keeping out of the worst of the wind and getting slightly damp - lots of fun though and good company.

Friday, July 15, 2011

North Ridge of Tryfan

My three clients from Holland all purchased new waterproof jackets in readiness for their week in the mountains of Wales and up until lunch time today they had worked a treat - the very purchase of the jackets ensured the rain stayed away all week. We scrambled up the North Ridge of Tryfan, posing for photos on the Canon Stone and on Adam and Eve and started our descent as a couple of light showers passed over us. We looked at some emergency use of the rope and finished a great week with tea and cakes all round!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Happiness is...

Another day of beautiful sunshine, warm rock, a light breeze to keep the midgies at bay and a cool stream t dip our feet in at the end of the day - ah bliss! We headed over Crib Goch this morning via the North Ridge having parked in the Llanberis Pass. We then descended the North Ridge of Gyrn Las enjoying some stunning views back over our circuit. A stunning day out. Check out the panoramic photo here:

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Elidir Fawr and Y Garn

Today Marco, Erik, Ward, Jon and I started in Nant Peris and made our way onto Elidir Fawr and Y Garn to give a nice circular walk in some lovely sunshine. The boys planned the route and worked out the timings and then navigated the route for themselves. It was very warm and sunny all day making for a sweaty climb up to our first peak but giving some stunning views. A beautiful day out.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Navigation on the Carneddau

For the second day of our navigation and scrambling course we headed up Pen Yr Helgi Du, across to Carnedd Llewelyn and did some off the path navigation back around Cwm Llugwy. We practised the skills that we had covered yesterday in context with some low cloud on the tops for the early part of the day and then enjoyed the views as the sun burnt the cloud off this afternoon - perfect!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Navigation & Scrambling 5 day course in Snowdonia

Today was the first day of my five day navigation and scrambling course here in Snowdonia. I have been joined for the first two days by Kate, Martin, Jon, Ward, Marcos and Erik, the latter four are staying for the whole week and the latter three have travelled all the way from Holland for the course. We went up the Watkin Path on Snowdon and looked at the fundamental skills of mountain navigation and set out a structure for successful navigation on our hills and mountains. It stayed warm and dry all day and the pools were very tempting on the way down for an afternoon dip - tea and cakes won in the end though!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Norway Winter 2012

Norway Snowshoe Expedition 2012
I am now taking bookings for next years snow shoe expedition to Norway.
This is a br
illiant week on the largest mountain plateau in Norway doing a 5 day journey on snowshoes supported by a team of huskies.
Throughout the week you will:
Learn how to use snowshoes
Build on your knowledge of avalanche avoidance
Spend nights in a variety of different accommodation from lodge style hotel, remote huts, a snow hole and a Lavu (wigwam)
Trek across a beautiful unspoilt arctic wilderness
Have a chance to ride with the musher and the huskies
Experience temperatures that can be as low as -35 degrees c and beautiful starlit skies
Climb a couple of remote peaks
Have a trip of a lifetime!

The trip will be running from the 5th to the 11th February 2012 and costs £1450 per person.
There are 7 spaces remaining and the last trip sold out with a waiting list after 3 weeks so be quick!
You can get the full details here:

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Toubkal Preparation Day

In October this year I am running a trip to climb Toubkal, the highest mountain in Morocco. Today was a preparation day for the eight repeat clients that are joining me. We had a photo presentation this morning of the route and the places we will be visiting before heading out for a walk together on Moel Siabod. Throughout the day we discussed diet and hygiene, local customs, altitude sickness, kit for the trip and just generally got excited about the adventure ahead! It was a lovely sunny day and the forecast rain stayed away.

Friday, July 08, 2011

Advanced Scrambling Learn to Lead Day Three

It was rather soggy today as Chris, Andy and I climbed North West Face Route (2) in Cwm Idwal. The boys lead the whole route for themselves with me alongside before we descended Seniors Gully that had become a veritable waterfall! Glad of a hot shower tonight!

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Advanced Scrambling Learn to Lead Day Two

This morning Andy, Chris and I headed to Lion Rock and spent the morning getting the boys on the sharp end of the rope in a rock climbing setting. We got them placing wires and cams, building belays and managing the stances on a multi pitch route. After lunch we went to Nant Peris and climbed the rocky spur behind Bens Bunk House which allowed us to look at how we can tailor the skills we use as climbers to scrambling ground and where we can speed up the process. It has been a lovely day despite a poor forecast which is always the right way round!