Category Archives: Buachille Etive Mor

Winter

Finally now that winter is drawing to a close I have time to look at some of the photos from the last couple of months.  From my return to Scotland in early February the skiing and winter climbing seasons have been truly spectacular.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The themes for my winter have definitely been climbing routes that I never thought I would (for various reasons) and climbing routes that were only just in condition (while everyone else seemed to always be on routes in perfect condtions!).  Above a photo taken by Joe Rochford of me leading the big ice pitch of Raeburns Buttress direct a rarely climbed ice route to the right of Boomers Requiem.

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Climbing as a 4.  Very shortly after getting back Malcy, Chucky, Scott and I headed to the Bridge of Orchy Hills to climb “Farenheit 451”.  I mainly didnt think I would ever climb it because of how busy it gets.  Turns out if you climb it just after it forms on a bad weather day theres no queues.  This was also the start of another of my winter themes – Hot chocolate and chips in the Bridge of Orchy hotel.

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One of my funner weeks this winter was with Mel and Sharna who mainly sung songs from Frozen on the belays or their own special rendition of “If you like it then you should have put a sling on it”.  We had an amazing week getting to lots of different venues around Lochaber and reviewing the hot chocolates of a variety of hotels.

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Abseiling of the arch of Church Door buttress.  Church Door on Bidean Nam Bian is one of my favourite crags it was amazing to climb Crypt route with my clients on one of the stormiest days of the season.

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Brian on the second pitch of “Gully of the Gods” on Beinn Bhan.  We woke up on Skye this morning to heavy rain – funny when one of your dream routes becomes a consolation prize.

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Mark Chambers and Chucky soloing the first section of the infamous “Crab Crawl” on Creag Meagidh.  We had high hopes for this but again changed from one brilliant objective to another.  We only did the first 5th of Crab Crawl (400m!) before we decided to do “Smiths Route” instead.

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It wouldn’t be winter without the hot aches.  Rachel had just finished two weeks of nights as a doctor but still insisted we go and climb ice in the pouring rain.  She paid for it (as did I) with some pretty bad Hot Aches and a lot of wet kit.

Also posted in alastair rose, ali rose, Ben Nevis, Ben Nevis ice climbing, Climbing, Creag Meagidh, Creag Meagidh Ice Climbing, mountains to the sea, mountainstothesea, Scotland climbing, Torridon, Uncategorized Tagged , , , , , |

Big Changes

The last month has seen our numbers rise from twenty one to around seventy at Rothera.  The first aircraft were foreign planes heading to other Antarctic bases but these were soon followed by BAS’s “Dash 7” and “Twin Otters” loaded with staff for Rothera and Halley.  For the wintering team this means a lot of changes with base becoming a lot more vibrant with constantly coming planes and people as well as longer lunch queues.    I haven’t taken too many photos this month but have slowly got around to looking at some that had slipped through the net as well as processing a bit more of the timelapse I have shot over the winter.  Perhaps the random selection of photos for this month best reflects how work has felt over the last couple of weeks.  With it now not getting dark till 11pm it already seems like a long time since we had only a couple of hours of daylight.

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One that slipped through the net. The Milky Way over Ryder Bay and Mt Liotard. I think this was taken from a high bivy shortly after midwinter.

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The Dash 7 Landing at Rothera

img_8642After work beers on the veranda (yes that’s a T-shirt!) the week before the first plane arrived.

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The end result of a couple of hours work

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The digging continues – John making a start on the South door of the accommodation building.

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Another one that slipped through the net. Doc Tom about to do my midwinter dental checkup.

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Another big change! When your beard goes in your soup at morning smoko its time it went!

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Last days with the beard. Al took this of me on our winter trip – I was struggling to see my harness to tie my ropes on!

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Twin Otter facing North on the Apron. I have spent quite a bit of time recently on “fire cover” so lots of hanging around the hangar and apron.

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The start of Summer also means lots of training of new staff. Denzel – checking out an emergency shelter with the training tents in the background

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The new comms manager learning about emergency snow shelters (in this case a “snow-grave”)

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The arrival of the planes does mean some fresh fruit. My bag hanging of my peg in the bootroom. I think the Avocados have been the most popular.

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Busy times in the Hangar

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A very quiet Field Guide office with just Al on the computer. There will soon be thirteen Field guides based out of Rothera instead of just the four of us.

Also finally got around to putting some timelapse together.  A collection of stuff from around Adelaide Island post midwinter.  (Worth watching till the end for a laugh)

 

 

Also posted in alastair rose, ali rose, alligator, Antarctica, Ardnamurchan, Ardnamurchan climbing, Ardverikie wall, Arisaig, Arisaig Sport Climbing, Back of Keppoch, BAS, Belnahua, Ben Nevis, Ben Nevis ice climbing, Bioluminescence, bothy, British Antarctic Survey, Uncategorized

May Madness

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. IMG_4258 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.IMG_4307 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”IMG_2035Next up it was up to Thurso for 5 Star Sea training. Above – the first mornings launch site looking a bit full on!IMG_2036_2So 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.  IMG_2039_2Looking back at Dunnet Head.  Not really 5 star sea kayaking conditions!  We then headed out for a night paddle – belowIMG_2045IMG_4371After 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.IMG_4381Driving out to Reiff to meet Tim Hamlet I stopped to take a shot looking back East towards Stac Pollaidh.
IMG_4410 Tim at the very steep “Inverpollaidh Rock Gym”IMG_4431Me on the not so steep “Moon Jelly” at Reiff.  (courtesy of Tim Hamlet)
IMG_4477Somehow 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.IMG_4482Then 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.IMG_4483 Shelter from the storm!IMG_4504Ollie surfing with style on the FindhornIMG_4555Hannah cruising on the final rapid – quality facial expression!IMG_4571And 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.
IMG_4584Miles Cruising on the steep pitch (Vdiff!!!)IMG_4585Miles making another inappropriate derogatory comment about my climbing/belaying.

Mays  not over but things are about go get busy.  More photos coming soon………

Also posted in agags groove, alastair rose, ali rose, canoe, Climbing, Kayaking, mountains to the sea, mountainstothesea, Reiff Climbing, scotland, Scotland climbing, Scottish Kayaking, Stac Pollaidg