I guess you’ve found my blog. And, if it’s still 25 February, it didn’t take you long!
Got this thing set up yesterday, linked into the site today, and now just waiting for everyone to discover it…
Nothing else to say right now, so leaving it at that for tonight. :-)
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On Sunday 22 February I climbed The White Line on Ben Nevis with Stephan Mors from Glasgow. An absolutely cracking route done in eight pitches of alternating leads, about half-and-half steepish ice and easier snow climbing, with two rope lengths of dripping icefall (freezing at 850m, aye right!) followed by two of snowfield, another two up a ‘chimney’ that’s maybe more of a groove leading to a gully with one very steep section, and another two of mostly easier (and much crisper) snow with some icy sections and no cornice to finish.
Have to say I got most of the best bits after Stephan chose to lead the first pitch, with the second icefall and steepest part of the upper gully (which both fell to me) providing the most sustained climbing. Now, that second icefall is *long* (60m ropes would have been better than our 50s here because we had to move together briefly to reach a decent belay above the second terrace), but the third just wasn’t there. However, since what we found seems to tally with Mike Pescod’s photo at http://www.abacusmountaineering.com/webpics2/bigwl1feb09.jpg and we took a very similar line (round the rocks above the second obvious terrace) to the one he’s marked, I’m guessing that this third icefall (‘sometimes difficult to start’) simply doesn’t form so readily? (Must ask Mike sometime!)
Overall, it was another great climb made all the more memorable by being snatched from another unpromising forecast. Might mention a slight whiff of possible sandbag at III in the conditions we found it in, but haven’t really done enough similar routes to be sure. However, I thought it was probably harder and certainly more sustained than Green Gully last weekend. No photos because the camera was intentionally left behind.
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And does it do what it says on the tin?
Well, it’s a blog, and to me that means a place for quick reporting of things that don’t necessarily merit a full webpage of their own. It’s not going to be a daily, blow-by-blow account of everything I say or do, but I’m still expecting to keep something a little closer to a diary of my various activities than the very selective write-ups I’ve done for the site in the past. And, while I toyed briefly with the idea of it taking over the role of my existing What’s New? page, it’s purposely been kept separate from the main site structure so I’ve always got the option of ditching it later (consigned, like the old ‘Flypaper’ forum, to oblivion?) without rocking the whole boat!
Anyway, I’ve started it with the intention of using it, so please do check in from time to time to see what I’ve been doing (or feel like telling the world about), leave me a comment if you like (NB admin approval currently required before publication) and we’ll see how it goes…
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