Finally on the Snow!

Well the crampons and axe got used for their first winter route this season. Neil and I headed down to Glencoe to do the Aonagh Eagach Ridge we picked a good day because the weather was stunning.
The snow up high is very powdery and is in need of some consolidation, some more wouldn't hurt either. Lets hope this is the shape of things to come
Jamie Hageman got a great picture of us

Looking over to Ben Nevis

Looking back along the ridge

Plenty of snow in Stob Coire Nan Lochan


Etive and Allt a' Chaoruinn

While everywhere was showing as a scrape on the water gauges at the moment. Alan and I headed down to meet other paddlers and hit the Etive. It was at a medium flow which meant it was quite trip down.
We took the boats up and hit Allt a' Chaoruinn which is always a laugh. It been a while since I have been on the rivers so it was good to jog the memory.

Plenty of snow and people

With all that snow the river was a bit chilly

Alan on Rock Slide


Bump and Scrape

After looking at the water gauges we thought that Nevis would have enough water. It wasn't as high as we had hoped but we still had a blast on it. We portaged Scimitar Gorge and got back in after the supply bridge. The river was quite technical and hard to spot a line most of the time but good fun.
As there is more and more snow on the hills I think the paddle will have to get put away for a while.

Plenty of snow on the hills
Dead Sheep Falls


Fresh Snow

That will be why the rivers are a tad chilly. I was out with Nevis Canoe Club, the orginal plan was to go to the Orchy, but with so much water around we decided to stay local and head to the Roy. We weren't the only ones to think the Roy would be a good idea, when we arrived we met Edinburgh Kayak Club.

Plenty of Safety
Keith B


More Assessments

I was out with West Highland College again today, although we spent the entire day in canoes. Going through lots of different paddle strokes. The weather wasn't the warmest but everyone did well to keep going throughout the day.
A couple of them were doing there two star assessment's which ment they had to take a dip! It's fair to say I didn't envy them but they did pass their two star.


2 Star Assessment

I was over at Loch Eil running a two star assessment at Outward Bound for the West Highland College. We went over the fundamentals and the basic skills ranging from forward paddling to capsizing.  A well done to all the candidates and I hope to see them on the water soon.

 John doing a T rescue
3 men and a boat


Moderate Water Assessment

Today we started at JJ's Cafe (opposite farmfoods) with coffee and bacon rolls alround. All the rivers had emptied over the weekend so Claire chose the Arkaig for Tom and I to do our assessment on.
Roger, Paul and Lewis were our guinea pigs to guide and coach down the river. We were lucky because they turned out to be very capable and rose to every little challenge we set.

Paul trying some surf
After swimming in the main event (Grade 4) and running the rest of the river, I was awarded with my Moderate Water Endorsement.


Back on the Spean

With even more water falling through last night we had to change plans from the Lower Roy back to the Middle Spean. Which was fine because it was like paddling on a different river compared to yesterday. There was plenty of us on the river, from West Highland College. Although I was just working with Keith and Dan going over three star skills.


Middle Spean

On the river again today, this time it was the middle Spean we were on, with students from the West Highland College.
There was plenty of us on the river which was pretty high. We focused on the foundation paddle skills while running the river and did a lot of peer coaching. Just before the day finished this section of the river gives one last piece of excitement which was a good way to end the day.

Mike Martin 

Ben Thomas



I was out with some of the West Highland College students and Jim Gibson. We went to the end of the Nevis to practice using throw bags and went over some rescues.

Recuing a pinned paddler
Ben going for a swim
The Nevis empties quick and I didn't want to miss out on the oppotortunity to this when it is nice and high so Dan and I came back and ran it before it got dark.

It went rather well


Nae Water

Keith and I decided to head out and find some water but unfortunenatly there wasn't much to be had. We tried the Roy first but had to head to the Spean which was also low but we managed to find our way down.