Showing posts from April, 2011

Three Cliffs - Gower

We had another fantastic weather forecast today so we headed back over the the Gower to do some climbing at Three Cliffs. It was a bit of a blast from the past as the last time I was there was nearly thirty years ago. The tide wasn't quite right but we managed to climb 4 routes before the sea came in. We climbed : Scavenger (VS 4c - 26m) Inverted V (HVS 4c - 16m) Joggled Wall (VD - solo) Joggled Wall Direct (HS 4a - 18m) Gareth also soloed Left Corner II (Diff) and Bulge (VD). What a fantastic end to a perfect week of climbing.

Penallta and Cwmaman

We went over to a natural sandstone crag by Penallta this morning and climbed a couple of routes just to get a taste for the place. We climbed Devils in Hell (VD - 25m) and Alley Oop (S 4a - 18m). The biggest problem was the amount of broken beer bottles all around us so we had to careful with the ropes. There was evidence of a fire from the day before but the park ranger warned us to be vigilant in case other fires were lit deliberately by local youngsters whilst we were climbing. An experience! We also went over to Cwmaman in the afternoon to do some sport climbing on the very hard, compact sandstone quarry above the village. We climbed Evil Ways (F6a - 15m) and Yank the Plank (F6a -15m). These routes were well worth doing and were recently re equipped with new bolts and lower offs.

Fall Bay

We went over to Fall Bay today on the Gower and climbed on King Wall and Lewes Castle. The climbing was terrific with routes of all grades and steepness available. The weather was overcast and a bit breezy but perfect for climbing. We climbed the following routes: Fafnir HS 4b Sweyn HS 4b Ragnarok HS 4a (below) Frigg VS 4b Balder VS 5a Osiris VS 4c (left) It was really quiet today with only one other party turning up later in the afternoon. A fantastic days climbing.

Taffs Well Main - Pine Tree (VD - 73m)

I arrived in Cardiff this afternoon to be picked up by my mate Gareth and was surprised that he wanted to go cragging straight away so off we went to do Pine Tree at Taffs Well for a bit of an adventure in my glad rags. I hadn't climbed here before and I will never complain about the traffic at Tremadog again as the noise at Taffs Well was deafening. Nice route but not a lot of gear.

Lon Eifion


Fachwen nature

 Forget me not Ivy-leaved Toadflax

Milestone Buttress Part 2

It was Gruffudd's turn to experience the delights of multi pitch climbing today. The weather looked perfect but a bit overcast at times so we ventured up to Dyffryn Ogwen to have a climb on the Milestone Buttress. Gruffudd was keen to do the same route his older brother had done previously so after a quick reminder of the safety rules we started up Pulpit Route (V Diff). Gruffudd was really fired up by the whole experience and is very keen to do some more routes like this one.

Marin trail - Betws y Coed

Another day in the office!

Tryfan Bach

I've just spent the last couple of days running rock climbing activities for a group from London. We spent both days at Tryfan Bach with lots of bottom top ropes (not all at the same time I may add!) to suit all abilities. The weather has been stunning here in Snowdonia and it looks like its set to be good for the weekend as well. Fantastic.

AMI Teaching Multi Pitch Climbing

We decided to try and avoid the crowds by going to the Milestone Buttress today.. and it worked. There was only one party on the crag when we arrived at about 10 o'clock. I was joined by Mike again today as well as Denny and Jim and we looked at a whole load of issues regarding teaching multi pitch climbing with clients which included parallel climbing, stance management, rope management, descents, protecting the leader and protecting the clients. Photo: Mike, Jim and Denny just about to top out on Rowen Route.

AMI Trainee workshop

I was running a scrambling workshop for the Association of Mountaineering Instructors today. I was joined by Mike, Mat and Mark and they opted to go over to the Main Cliff of Glyder Fach and climb Sharks Buttress with a descent of Bristly Ridge via the steeper east side. We looked at route finding, carrying coils, locking off body coils, managing stances, belays, lowering two people at the same time and counter balance abseils. The weather was a bit mixed with a warm walk into the mist and quite a chilly ascent to the top of Glyder Fach. All the best for your pending assessment guys.

ML Assessment Exped

Had a great time on the ML assessment 3 day expedition. Weather was perfect for assessing ML with poor visibility for most of the three days and very wet and windy on the first day. As the weather was coming from the south west I opted to conduct the expedition in the Carneddau to get some shelter from the worst of the weather. This is what we did: Day 1:    Cwm Eigiau - Foel Grach - Carnedd Llywelyn - Yr Elen and camp by Ffynnon Caseg. Day 2:    Yr Elen - Cwm Llafar - Crib Lem - Carnedd Dafydd - Carnedd Llywelyn - Ffynnon Llyffant. Day 3:    Ffynnon Llyffant - Cwm Eigiau We covered a total of 27kms (17miles) and ascended over 2035m (6677 feet)

WGL Training

In order for the ML assessment guys to see another assessor I handed the day over to Glyn for the Mountain day and I worked on the second day of a Walking Group Leader training course. The weather was a lot better today but cold in the wind. We covered navigation, fauna and flora, geology and geography as well as emergency procedures. We went for a walk to the south east of the Pen y Gwryd and up as far as Nant y Llys before turning back to look at some steep ground. I'm back with the ML assessment tomorrow for a 3 day expedition into the mountains. I hope the weather forecast is wrong and that it stays dry until Friday. ;-(

ML Assessment

I'm directing a Mountain Leader assessment this week for Blue Peris. Today was the first day of the 5 day course - we covered micro navigation using 1:25,000 maps around Cwm Dyli and over the Horns and then down the PYG track back to Pen y Pass. The weather was grim and very wet in the morning but it cleared up by 11.30 and it turned out to be a glorious afternoon.

AMI Trainer workshop

The  Association of Mountaineering Instructors offer workshops for trainees who are progressing through their Mountain Instructors Award . The workshops run from April to October and cover topics such as short roping, teaching multi pitch climbing, personal climbing skills and improvised rescue techniques. To kick off the new season I and a number of AMI trainers got together for a meeting at Plas y Brenin today to discuss issues that have arisen from previous workshops and to discuss how the MIA scheme is delivered at the centre all the way through from registration to assessment. We were helped throughout the day by Carlo and Keith who did a great job in filling us in with how the MIA scheme is currently delivered and the problems that some trainee's encounter during training and assessment courses.

In house assessments - Coventry

What a glorious day but, unfortunately, I had to spend most of it in the car as I had some in house assessments to carry out over in Coventry for a sport development company. I conducted the climbing wall assessments in the afternoon and I'm glad to say that everyone passed so well done everyone.

Carnedd y Filiast (821m)

Not much of a view today. I was hoping, with a combination of high pressure building and low cloud, that the tops would be out of the cloud. Unfortunately, I didn't get even a glimmer of the sun and in fact the weather got worse as I got higher with the light drizzle turning to proper rain on the summit. I was down by late morning and by the afternoon it was lovely - ah well!!!!