Tip of the Month
Since I’ve been doing this a lot this season, here’s a tip on storing slings while climbing that makes a huge difference in winter but is equally useful in summer too.
One way of carrying slings is to have them clipped to a karabiner on your harness, with the sling twisted round several times like a tourniquet. This is great for general purpose use and in particular it’s ideal if you are carrying rope coils around the body.
However, when actually lead climbing it can be handy to have slings more accessible than this. One very common way is to double the sling up and put it over your head and one shoulder. This is fine up to a point, but inevitably means that to deploy the sling it has to be taken back up over your head/ shoulder, usually while you are hanging precariously from the very arm that the sling must come off.
Instead, try passing one end of the sling around the back of the shoulder and then joining the two ends of the sling together with a karabiner at the chest. The sling now lies in the same position as the ‘over the head and shoulder’ method, but when you need it you simply unclip the karabiner and pull, ninja-like, to make the sling whip out ready to be used. Much quicker!
Quote of the Month
“If you’ve climbed the first 140 meters it doesn’t mean that you’ve succeeded; you are going to succeed by climbing the last 10 meters.”
Route of the Month
A couple of days ago I took myself off to Torridon to start ticking off some of the routes in the excellent new book by Garry Smith, “Scotland’s Winter Mountains with One Axe”. Unsurprisingly, Garry has included several routes from the Torridon range, which are some of the most spectacular mountains in the UK.
The route I’m going to mention was, to me, an unknown gem. All of the difficulties (not actually that hard) are concentrated in a short ridge of only a few hundred metres known as the Black Carls. What’s more, it’s quite a short day out really. A lot of adventure in a very short space of time – The Black Carls on Beinn Eighe.
Photo of the Month
This month’s photo is slightly unusual – it’s really an image file of a pen/ink drawing of the Welsh 3000s route. Full size prints of the amazing drawing are available throughthis link: http://etsy.me/2FDY4eb
- 7-8 April 2018. Two-day mountain navigation course based in North Wales. Everything you need to know to get you up, and down, the mountain safely.
- 14-15 April 2018. Advanced scrambling course in North Wales, tackling some of the classic Grade 2 and Grade 3 routes. Fully booked but I can schedule further similar courses.
- 21 April. One day introduction to multi-pitch rock climbing in the Lake District.
- 22 April 2018. Yorkshire 3 Peaks Challenge Walk.
- 5-6 May 2018. Rock climbing for beginners, in the Peak District.
- 23 June 2018. Welsh 3000s 24 Hour Challenge Walk.
- 12 October-4 November 2018. Mera Peak (6476m) – Nepal’s highest ‘trekking peak’.
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