2 guys 1 boat

Dan and myself were stuck with one boat between the two of us. We thought that we should be able to run the Etive with the one boat so we went to try it out.
After a quick game of rock paper scissors to see who went first. Dan did very well until the last fall, which is exactly how I did. After this we decided that maybe running the whole river wasn't going to be possible so we headed back to Kinlocleven to play there.

I couldn't upload this as one video. So I had to split it in half.

This is another video of me and dan getting owned. Watch out for my kayak going into reverse.


Lower Roy

Jamie and I headed to the Etive today. After checking the water levels last night, the reports said that everything was a scrape or low. This wasn't the case, so we headed back up to the Roy to do the lower section instead. The river was pretty high, which made it a lot of fun with nothing too technical or hard.


Red Gully

It was my last day in Kingussie, so it had to be a short one. Steve and I headed to fluted buttress and climbed 'Red Gully'(II/III). The wind ensured that it was much colder today. Luckily we were the first to reach the Coire because the route had three teams on it when we left.

Steve Boistelle climbing Red Gully

Steve Boistelle
Strathclyde Police Mountain Rescue Team members Gary, Adam, Gordon and Gareth. On Fiaciall Buttress, Invernookie (III,4).



The conditions were a slighty better today. We decided to go in to Coire an Lochain to climb 'the vent'. However we could see the into Coire An-t-Sneachda and thought that we might be able to find Invernookie.
The conditions were brilliant, lots of good hard snow. This however made gear placements hard to find and the route was probably in grade III condition.

Me on the last pitch

Steve Boistelle on the second pitch
Alasdair Drummond and Steve Boistelle on the second pitch



I met up with my Dad last night in Kingussie. For the next few days I was going to be staying with him and the Strathpol Mountain Rescue Team.
Today Steve (my Dad), Alasdair and I decided to go and do Invernookie (III,4**) on Fiaciall Buttress.
This is how the day went.
"Is this the car park?"
"Should be."
"Where is Coire an-t-sneachda?"
"Where is the Car Park?"
"We must be getting closer to Fiaciall Buttress."
"Excuse me do you know where the mess of pottage is?"
"I think we are under Fiaciall Buttress, so the Mess of Pottage is on the other side of the Coire."
"Where is Invernookie?"
"Where is Fiaciall Buttress?"
"Lets just go up here."
"What route are you guys on?"
"Dunno, What are you on?"
"Don't Know!"
"Is this the way down?"
"Its a way down."

Fiaciall Ridge

Walking in

Steve and Alasdair walking off


Roy and Spean

After yesterday I was actually glad that Jamie, Chris, Gerry and I had decided to go kayaking today. The water levels were reasonably low so we decided to have a look at the Lower Roy and Middle Spean. A good time was had and only a couple of swims, which was fine because all the ice had melted so the water was quite warm. Not really it was absolutely freezing.

Time for a montage


Crest Route

Yesterday Guy was keen for getting on something a little spicy. I was keen for climbing a route above grade IV, something I have never done before. So today we headed into Stob Coire Nan Lochain to have a look at Crest Route (V,6 that's what the guide book said).
The first pitch was a pleasant grade III which felt like a warm up for things to come. Guy started on the second pitch and took his time, I could tell from watching him that this wasn't going to be a walk in the park. Once I started climbing (using the term 'climbing' loosely) I quickly realized that I was well out of my league. This is the most scared I have ever been on any route and I even had a rope above me!
Once I arrived at the belay (which consisted of a frozen in piece of gear and Guy's axes) I didn't feel much safer. When Guy started climbing again and I had to hang my whole body weight off the frozen bit of gear, fun times.
After some more hanging around Guy eventually came to the conclusion that this is a bit desperate!
We bailed and later found out that the route has been upgraded to a VI,6.

Guy Steven Working his way up the route


What Happens When Ice Melts?


This is Jamie at the same waterfall a week later.

Me trying to stay warm on the river

The walk home

I travelled down to Dundee at the weekend because of the thaw that was forecast. So when I arrived home today Jamie informed that the Nevis was up due to the thaw. Being full of the cold and tired from the early drive up the road I decided that it would be a good idea to go check it out.
This is the second time I have contemplated going off the lower falls and the second time I have chickened out, I need my trusty crash test dummy Mr Orr to go off this to make sure its okay.


A pleasent end to a bad week

Guy Steven leading The Screen (IV)

This past week has had a distinct lack of climbing. I tried to put an end to this yesterday when I went to go and climb No. 6 Gully on Aonach Dubh, not realizing that I left my boots at home.
So today Guy, Dan and myself headed to Aonach Dubh to climb the screen. I was feeling pretty terrible on the walk in, by the time we arrived at the bottom of the route I was for going home. With some persuasion from Dan and Guy I was tying in and getting on the route. 
Guy completed the route in one pitch then we abseiled off and slid back to the car. 
The weather is going to 'crap out' this weekend so hopefully I will have rid myself of the cold by then.


Steal and Lower Falls

After a late drive home last night I wasn't to keen on an early start luckily this suited my course lecturor Pete. So we left the house at 11 and headed up Glen Nevis. Lower Falls looked good so we had a quick play their then headed up to Steal Falls.
Since we left it so late to get to the route most of the teams had left, so we were the last team on the route and we had it to ourselves.

Lower Falls
River Nevis
Pete on the Second Pitch


Steal Falls

Topping out

Soloing Steal Falls

First Ascent of Nothing else to do
On finding out that Steal Falls had finally come into condition me and Lorenzo made plans to climb it before he had to go to work that day. So another 5a.m. start was planned so that Lorenzo would have enough time left to get to work. Lorenzo didn't make it because I had the wrong phone number for him but Jason, Bob, Guy and myself did.
The hardest part of the day was keeping the car on the road, especially when it was moving with nobody inside.
We soloed the route and abseiled off to meet lots of people queuing at the bottom we then headed to lots of different waterfalls to see if any were in condition.
To see the route in summer click here.
Off to London for a few days with Anne so I won't be out for a few days.