Spring is an awesome time of year in Scotland with a lot going on and the tourist season kicking off. With not too much work booked in for the start of May I decided to get some professional development done as well as a bit of climbing. I had planned on a Cuillin Traverse with James to reacquaint myself before the Skye work season kicks off but the weather decided not to play ball. Instead we headed out to Neist for some climbing in the sun. I’m still waiting to get the shot of Neist Lighthouse that I want but this sunset was awesome at the end of a good days cragging. James is currently breaking into the “VS” grade so what better place to do it where all the routes are big and steep! James leading the classic “Shocks and Stares”Next up it was up to Thurso for 5 Star Sea training. Above – the first mornings launch site looking a bit full on!So we headed to much calmer water! We had planned to paddle round Duncansby Head (John o’ Groats) but moved further west to paddle round Dunnet Head – the most northerly point on the British mainland. Looking back at Dunnet Head. Not really 5 star sea kayaking conditions! We then headed out for a night paddle – belowAfter leaving Thurso I drove down to Sheigra – an area I have never been too. I headed out in the evening to one of the climbing areas to find waves breaking over the wall which is 30m high. Above – stormy seas as the sun sets.Driving out to Reiff to meet Tim Hamlet I stopped to take a shot looking back East towards Stac Pollaidh.
Tim at the very steep “Inverpollaidh Rock Gym”Me on the not so steep “Moon Jelly” at Reiff. (courtesy of Tim Hamlet)
Somehow I convinced Tim to have a shot at the worst looking route at Reiff. “Stop… Go”. Tim stopping and going! Turns out its a bit harder than the guidebook suggests.Then it was time for more training – this time 4 Star Canoe. I am not known for my ability in a canoe but this was a lot of fun learning some of the dark arts of open boating. Shelter from the storm!Ollie surfing with style on the FindhornHannah cruising on the final rapid – quality facial expression!And finally back home for a couple of days. I spent a day working on the Aonach Eagach and then met up with Hannah and Miles to go climb the classic “Agags Groove” on the Buachille. Above – Hannah and Miles checking out the Buachilles Glacier.
Miles Cruising on the steep pitch (Vdiff!!!)Miles making another inappropriate derogatory comment about my climbing/belaying.
Mays not over but things are about go get busy. More photos coming soon………