30th June 2012 Pointe Percee, Les Aravis


Photo 1. Rosie high on the Arete du Doigt.

Photo 2. Ibex on the approach to the route.

Photo 3. The descent from Combe de Verts with the Pointe Percee behind.

Photo 4. Pointe Percee from the approach. The Arete du Doigt is the left hand skyline

Photo 5. Rosie below the Arete du Doigt.

From the balcony of our appartment, we have an excellent view of the group of mountains named Les Aravis. The highest of these is Pointe Percee at 2750 metres. Last season we did not have the chance to climb this mountain so with a good weather forecast we thought we would do it this weekend.

The mountain can be accessed from the Refuge Grammusset. We climbed the classic Arete du Doigt and descended by the Cheminee Sallanches and the Combe des Verts. We opted for this descent as the Voie Normale is currently still holding a lot of snow and requires ice axe and crampons. A topo for the route can be found in the guidebook Plaisir West by Jurg von Kanel.


29th June 2012 Plateau D’Assy Via Ferrata

Tim crossing one of the obstacles on the Via Ferrata.

I have been out today with Andy, Tim and Mountain Guide Owain Jones on the Plateau D’Assay Via Ferrata above Passy which is located twenty minutes from Chamonix. The weather once more was fantastic with temperatures peaking at 35 degress centigrade.


28/6/12 Beinn Iutahrn Mhor and Carn an Righ

Out with a Falkirk Community Trust High Tops team of Anne, Norrie, Tom and Vic. We took bikes to access these two remote Munros and cycled approximately 8km from Spittal of Glensee up Gleann Taitneach to the Allt Elrig stream junction.

Anne on the ride in

Having left the bikes we climbed up to Loch nan Eun and into the thick cloud that would shroud us for most of the day. We followed the main inflow of the loch and then traversed around to the head of the Allt Beinn Iutharn before climbing to the large summit cairn of Beinn Iutharn Mhor. After returning to the bealach and finding some shelter from the wind and heavy showers that were now picking up we headed around to Carn an Righ.

The team, just about visible from 5m, on the summit of Carn an Righ

We’d originally been considering taking in Glas Tulaichean as well, but given conditions and the possibility of a difficult river crossing we decided to return to Loch nan Eun and descend the path on the east bank of Allt Easgaidh to return to the bikes. All in all a great day despite the challenging conditions and I’m only slightly jealous of Euan’s photo from the same day.

28th June 2012 Col Du Montet

I had a few hours spare today so went to the Col Du Montet for a quick bouldering session. Beautiful weather once more in the Mont Blanc Massif.

The Aiguille Verte and Les Drus from the Col Du Montet bouldering area.

24th to 27th June 2012 Saas Grund and Chamonix

Robbo and Dosh on the summit of Mont Blanc Du Tacul.

Sun and blue sky above the Chamonix peaks.



Descending Mont Blanc Du Tacul with the Aiguille Du Midi behind.

On Monday I travelled through to Saas Grund to meet Mountain Guides Owain Jones and Kevin O’Neale and Kevin’s team of seven climbers. We used the Saas Grund system to access the Triftgletscher and look at some Ecole De Glace skills. We stayed at the Hosaas Hut overnight with the intention of climbing the Weissmeis on Tuesday. Unfortunately, poor weather meant this was not an option. When the weather cleared late morning we climbed the Jagihorn.On Wednesday, we used the Aiguille Du Midi lift system to access the Midi Arete and the Cosmiques Hut. Today, we climbed Mont Blanc Du Tacul. The summit rocks were very Scottish, with a good covering of rime and a few mixed moves to gain the summit cross.

Approaching the summit of Mont Blanc Du Tacul.


The lads with Mont Maudit behind

26/06/12 Kirrie Hill

Alec, Tam and Wilson on “the mound” with some typical Kirrie Hill climbing behind

Out for a crag day with Alec, Tam and Wilson from Falkirk Community Trust today. We headed up to the sandstone sport crag of Kirrie Hill at Kirriemuir, which gave a pleasant day with lots of routes climbed between F3 and F6a. The weather held dry whilst we were there, but we drove in to rain as we headed back to Falkirk.

25/6/12 Climbing and Sea Kayaking in the Central Belt

Last week I was working for Falkirk Community Trust with climbing sessions on a nice little group crag near Aberfoyle. Midge nets/repellent were a must on the less windy days. David and I also had a pleasant evening climbing at Rosyth Quarry before heavy rain reached the Central Belt of Scotland on Thursday and Friday.

The Bass Rock

The weekend was unsettled, but Monday turned in to a fine day with low winds and Jen and I had an excellent trip out in sea kayaks from North Berwick with George from Dun Eideann Sea Kayaking. We visited The Bass Rock, which is currently teaming with gannets and guillemots before heading to the beach at Seacliff for a relaxed lunch and then back along the coast. The seals around The Bass Rock were incredibly inquisitive with one of the larger ones following us for nearly 3km and playing with both boats and paddles.

A young seal coming up to the front of the kayak to check it out

22nd and 23rd June 2012 Bouldering and Rock Climbing near Saint Gervais

Rosie bouldering at Col Du Montet.

For the past couple of days I have been doing a little bit of bouldering and rock climbing with Rosie. Yesterday, we visited the Col Du Montet bouldering area near Chamonix. Today, we visited a crag called ‘Lady’ near Megeve. The routes here are quite short and pack a punch! They do not receive much sunshine so may be a good option on a hot summers day.

21st June 2012 Traverse of the Grand Perron.

I have been out today with Bruce Goodlad on a British Mountain Guides training day.We drove from Chamonix to Lac D’Emosson and completed the traverse of the Grand Perron. This is a brilliant AD route which traverses a number of summits which can be seen in the photograph. Good snow made the approach and descent easier. We did not see any other climbers all day.

On the traverse of the Grand Perron. Photo taken by Bruce Goodlad.

14/06/12 Creag Mhor

Out in The Forest of Mamlorn today with Sharon, Alec, Billy, Norrie and Vic from the Falkirk High Tops Team.

On the ridge above Sron nan Eun

We climbed Creag Mhor starting from Kenknock and following the river to Batavaime before heading up Sron nan Eun and along the ridge to the summit. We descended steeply north-east from the summit and followed the Allt Batavaim to the higher of the two tracks returning to the start.

A happy team on the summit of Creag Mhor

There was a cool easterly wind and the cloud rose to above all but the highest summits giving excellent views northwards as far as Ben Nevis and south to Arrochar.