Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Black Ladders

I headed out with Baggy today to the Black Ladders on the Carneddau. The icefalls at the foot of the crag are impressive and we had a good pitch each up the ice at the foot of Central Gully (IV, 4). After a couple of mixed pitches we broke off right and climbed some IV (5) ground to the top of the crag. A great, adventurous day out. 

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Search Dog Training

Skye and I have have been out with SARDA Wales this weekend. It has been a stunning weekend here in Snowdonia with cold crisp days, the odd snow flurry and snow capped mountains. We spent the weekend working the dogs either side of Snowdon much to Skyes delight.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Vanishing Gully, Ben Nevis

Vanishing Gully

Teams on Orion Direct, Hadrians Wall Direct and Point Five

Descending Tower Ridge

Ben Nevis Blues
Bryn and I headed back onto the Ben today and enjoyed another amazing day, this time with blue skies and sunshine to compliment the great ice. We climbed Vanishing Gully (V, 5), descended the lower half of Tower Ridge and climbed Faulty Towers (II) before soaking up the sunshine and the atmosphere. It was pretty busy today with several teams on each of the big lines, word has spread!  

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Orion Direct, Ben Nevis

I have headed up to Scotland for a couple of days climbing with my friend Bryn. I had heard rumours that the ice on the Ben was fat, and it is! We walked in with an open mind and with teams on Point Five and Zero Gully we jumped on Orion Direct (V,5). The route gives 450m of continuously interesting climbing and today was in superb condition, a great day out.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Central Trinity & Crib Goch

It has been a stunning day here in Snowdonia. I took the dog for a walk this morning and headed up Central Trinity on Snowdon, enjoying bomber neve and then traversed Crib Goch under wonderful blue skies. Check out the video.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Rjukan Video

Here is a collection of video and photos from a brilliant week in Rjukan last week.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Norway Ice Week

This week has been spent in the Ice Climbing mecca of Rjukan for our annual water ice climbing course. The instructional team was made up of Huw Gilbert, Mark “Baggy” Richards, Alec Roberts and myself and we were joined by Sue, Andy, Paul, Brett, Martin and Mick. Its has been an amazing week of blue skies, consistently cold temperatures (around -12c each day) and fat ice. Between us we visited a whole host of venues, having a single pitch day at Ozzimosis on the first day and then multi pitch routes throughout the rest of the week. With 4 instructors we were able to tailor the routes each day to match the aspirations of the team and so climbed from WI2 to WI5 and the ice has been the best I have seen it in the 4 years that I have been visiting Rjukan. 

An amazing week, climbing hard and smiling hard, cheers all. 

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Snowshoe Expedition Video

Lavu Expedition

For the last two days of our snowshoe expedition here in Norway the team and I enjoyed an overnight in a Lavu. Supported by a team of Huskies we snowshoed a circular route over 2 days, taking in some 1200m summits along the way and enjoying stunning weather. It was minus 30 overnight, and -16 in the tent so glad of the warm sleeping bag. A cracking end to a stunning trip, thanks all!

The ice looks great for this weeks forthcoming ice climbing course in Rjukan so fingers crossed the sun stays put.

Thursday, February 07, 2013

Snow and Sunshine in Norway

We are enjoying some wonderful weather here in Norway with temperatures around -15c, clear skies and sunshine. We have spent the last couple of days exploring the local mountains, planting a summit flag(!), building a snow shelter, fishing through the ice and meeting the husky team. Last night was spent in the snow shelter whilst today the team have been learning how to mush and putting their new skills to action on the frozen lake. 

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Norwegian Snowshoe Expedition

I am in Norway now and we arrived with a good dump of fresh snow yesterday. We spent the first day climbing a beautiful nearby summit and enjoyed some lovely cold, crisp weather with no wind. 

Friday, February 01, 2013

Off to Norway

I have had a fairly relaxed week this week. I spent the weekend doing some Avalanche training for the Llanberis MRT and SARDA Wales and was then working with regular client Simon in the climbing wall on Monday. Tuesday was a wash out but Wednesday gave some nice light for some filming for a small film that I am putting together on a year in the mountains.

I am now off to Norway for 2 weeks so will report back as and when I get an internet connection.