31/05/12 Creag Meagaidh

Out on Creag Meagaidh today with Isobel, Linda, David, Norrie, Tom and Vic form the Falkirk High Tops team. We started west of the Moy Burn and climbed Creag na Cailliche to follow the ridge to the summit. We then headed out to the top of Meall Coire Choille-rais before completing the circuit of the Moy Coire by heading to the top of An Cearcallach and then descending steeply south-west to the Moy Burn.

On the Creag Meagaidh plateau

The approach and return were quite rough and suprisingly boggy given the recent weather, but once on the ridges walking was easy on short grass and the odd remaining snow patch.

Approaching the An Cearcallach ridge

The weather was better than forecast with only light showers and the cloud did clear to give the odd view, however compass and pacing were definitely the order of the day on the plateau. Winds were only very light and the midges were out in force, so worth remembering midge nets/repellent.

30/05/12 The Hawcraig

Stevie and John above the sea at The Hawcraig.


John seconding Chimney Arete.

I have been climbing today with Stevie and John from the Falkirk High Tops Team at The Hawcraig, Fife. We did try to climb at Dunkeld but had to switch venue due to unforecasted heavy rain.

The Hawcraig stayed dry all day.

28/5/12 to 30/5/12 Bennybeg

The last three days I’ve been working for Falkirk Community Trust taking three groups from the same school climbing at Bennybeg near Crieff. The groups have been great and all progressed well through the day. The crag is dry and provided good climbing on all three days with Monday being almost too hot. Not something I complain about too often in Scotland.

29/05/12 Curved Ridge, Glencoe

Mike short roping near Rannoch Wall.


Euan and Alastair climbing Curved Ridge.

Mike, Ewan, Alastair and I have been out today climbing the classic Curved Ridge in Glencoe. The mountain (Buachaille Etive Mor) was quiet today with only one other team on Curved Ridge and one team on Rannoch Wall. No hill walkers were spotted on the mountain.

Lots or routes are very dry at the moment.

27/05/12 Glen Shee

Out today with Vic, Billy, Terry, Lorn and Alan from the Falkirk High Tops team. We parked at the Devil’s Elbow , crossed the burn and followed the ridge north-east to Meall Odhar on the way to Glas Maol. We then headed over Creag Leacach and pt. 943m before descending back to the road.

The team on the summit of Glas Maol looking north

Wall to wall sunshine with just the odd cloud today and a light south-east wind. There’s the odd patch of snow around and looking north to the higher Cairngorms there’s obviously still some wider cover and snow in some major gully lines.

On the ridge of Creag Leacach

26/05/12 Glen Clova

Out climbing in Glen Clova today with Tam and Jim from Falkirk Community Trust. The crags were quite busy for Glen Clova with people making the most of the glorious weather. However, the nature of the crag with lots of separate buttresses meant that it never felt crowded.

Tam about to make the awkward move to enter the cleft on High Level Traverse

We climbed The Beanstalk; Alder, which is an excellent VS with two very differing pitches and finished on the adventurous High Level Traverse and Direct Finish with Jim learning a new adjective…..thrutchy. It’s worth noting that there was a sizeable rockfall from inside the upper cleft of High Level Traverse, whilst I was leading it. I cleared all the large pieces and loose bits, so it should be fine now, but do take care on the route particularly near the top of the cleft. The crag was dry apart from very minor seepage on the cracks of Alder and in the back of the cleft on High Level Traverse.

Jim and Tam on the airy belay of High Level Traverse and Direct Finish

21st to 25th May 2012 The Cuillin, Skye

James on the approach to Sgurr Dearg and The In-Pinn.


Tom and Linda climbing Naismith's Route on the Bhasteir Tooth.


Tom and Linda on the summit of the Bhasteir Tooth.


Duncan climbing Pinnacle Ridge with the Bhasteir Gorge behind.


Duncan with the Inaccessible Pinnacle behind.


Climbers ascending Naismith's Route.

I have just had a brilliant five days on the Isle of Skye. The weather has been amazing all week with temperature highs of 28 degrees.

On Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday I was out with Paul, Linda, Tom, James and John from the Falkirk High Tops Team. On Monday we climbed Window Buttress in Coire Na Banachdich before continuing to Sgurr Dearg and Sgurr na Banachdich and returning to the Glenbrittle Youth Hostel.

We decided to go rock climbing on the Tuesday and had a great day out on the Western Buttress of Sron na Ciche. This crag gives adventurous rock climbs of around 1000 feet in length and some tricky route finding.

The team had to return home to Falkirk on Wednesday so we opted for a shorter day out by climbing Naismith’s Route to the summit of the Bhasteir Tooth before descending the dramatic Kings Cave Chimney abseil. This abseil is gained by climbing down through two holes between the Tooth and Am Basteir.

Duncan arrived on Wednesday evening allowing us the opportunity for a big day out on Thursday. We began the day by climbing Pinnacle Ridge to the summit of Sgurr nan Gillean. The day continued with a descent of the West Ridge of Gillean before an ascent of Am Basteir followed by the continuation to the Bhasteir Tooth and the descent down Kings Cave Chimney.

Yesterday, with Duncan, I returned to Coire na Banachdich. We opted for a later start before climbing Window Buttress. Our reasoning was that by having a later start and ascending this rock route we would arrive later at the In-Pinn and miss all the queues. The plan worked out and we jumped straight on the In-Pinn. Following the abseil descent we returned to Glenbrittle via the An Stac Screes.


22/5/12 to 24/5/12 Rosyth and Craigmore

I’ve been working in Rosyth Quarry for EICA Ratho/Port Edgar for the last few days and as reported on Monday all the routes on the West facing wall are dry. The routes behind the trees on the East facing wall are drying out and are now mostly climbable. Had an evening at Craigmore with Simon, Nettle and Calum yesterday. Inspiring to be outclimbed by the 13 year old Calum. The crag is dry and the midges, although biting aren’t too bad yet.

21/5/12 Rosyth Quarry

Working for EICA Ratho today in Rosyth Quarry. The routes on the West facing side of the quarry are completely dry now although a little dirty after the recent rain.

19/05/12 Traprain Law

Climbing on the East-Lothian trachyte crag of Traprain Law today with Bob, Patricia and Tam from the Falkirk Community Trust Outdoors team.

Tam working his feet hard on The Directissima

The Overhang Wall was suffering from a lot of seepage following the recent rain. However, we climbed circa 10 lines on the Lammer Wall. A few very light showers during the day, but the crag was generally drying up in the light breeze and some sunshine.

Patricia on Retard Arete