Ivor and I had a very sunny afternoon climbing at Kirriehill, Kirriemuir, today. After warming up we spent most of the time working out the moves on a route we’re both trying to redpoint. Neither of us got it today, but it felt like it was getting closer, which made for a positive day.

Ivor warming up on Xmas Xcess, which has a tough start for the grade.

Ivor warming up on Xmas Xcess, which has a tough start for the grade.

Dundonnell and Torridon

The last couple of days I’ve been up in the Dundonnell and Torridon area enjoying some very hot and sunny weather. On Friday John and I started from Corriehallie and ascended Sail Liath and Stob Cadha Gobhlach before descending the Cadha Gobhlach to Loch Toll an Lochain and out via the Garbh Allt.

John descending Sail Liath.

John descending Sail Liath.

Yesterday, I went for an early start to be down before the forecast afternoon thunder storms and kept a keen eye on the clouds; big isolated hills aren’t a great place to be caught out in a lightening storm. I started from Coulags and headed up the very appropriately named Maol Chean-dearg (bald red head) before returning to the triple col and climbing An Ruadh-stac. The East ridge of the later very rocky hill gives delightful walking and easy scrambling up quartzite slabs and boulders.

Rob’s Reed and Elephant Rock

Ivor and I went to Rob’s Reed on Wednesday and Elephant Rock today.

The conditions were good at Robs Reed where we climbed a number of routes. The highlight of the day was Ivor’s redpoint ascent of Autobahn (F6C+). I really enjoyed the three star Climb and Punishment and would recommend this as a route for those climbing in the sevens.

Today Elephant Rock was in great condition being warm and dry (it was 21 degrees at the crag today). However, careful route choice is required as there are a number of Housemartins and Gulls nesting on the crag. There are still plenty of routes to do without nesting birds making it very hard to justify disturbing the locals!

The climbing at Elephant Rock was excellent. To fully enjoy it I would go on a warm, sunny day and aim to finish climbing early afternoon when the sun leaves the crag.

Ivor belaying at Elephant Rock.

Ivor belaying at Elephant Rock.

Staff and SPA Training

On Friday with the Falkirk Community Trust staff team I climbed at Craig More Crag near Crieff. The crag was dry and we had a great time at this pleasant venue.

This weekend I have been running an SPA Training course on behalf of EICA Ratho. Yesterday, we visited Rosyth Quarry in the torrential rain showers and today we climbed at The Hawcraig (Aberdour). Both venues dried quickly when the rain stopped and have very little seepage to worry about.

Craig climbing 'Pond Life'.

Craig climbing ‘Pond Life’.

Costeering and Bennybeg

The last two days I’ve been working on Falkirk Community Trust Outdoors Schools programme. On Wednesday I was coasteering at Elie with Steve and a group from Braes High School. Yesterday I was climbing at Bennybeg in the sunshine with a group from Windsor Park School.


Last Saturday through to Tuesday I was up on Skye with Chris and Louise. The weather wasn’t particularly favourable with rain and highish winds on a number of days, but we managed to take in Sgurr na Banachdaich, The Inaccessible Pinnacle and Sgurr MichCoinnich on the Staurday: Sgurr a’Ghreadaidh and Sgurr a’Mhadaidh on the Sunday and Bruach na Frithe, Am Basteir and Sgurr nan Gillean on the Tuesday with me taking myself off for a short leg stretch up Ben Aslak on the Sunday.

Louise and Chris climbing Tooth Groove and Arete on Sgurr nan Gillean.

Louise and Chris climbing Tooth Groove and Arete on Sgurr nan Gillean.

A successful few days in really good company.

Three Days on Skye

For the past three days I have been on Skye with Andy and Rob. We have had a successful trip climbing the following peaks; Sgurr nan Gillean, Am Bastier, Bhastier Tooth, Sgurr a’Mhadaidh, Sgurr a Ghreadaidh and Sgurr an Fheadain. The weather was mixed but Skye always provides memorable days out.

Rob and Andy down climbing Sgurr nan Gillean.

Rob and Andy down climbing Sgurr nan Gillean.

Craig More (Crieff)

Martin and I visited Craig More near Crieff today. This pleasant little crag provides nice trad routes from HS to E2. We climbed on the west wall. Currently it would be unadvisable to climb on the east wall as there are birds nesting.

Martin leading Pond Life.

Martin leading Pond Life.

Glen Lednock

Euan, Ivor and I were climbing in Glen Lednock near Comrie today. We visited the schist sport crag of Lower Lednock for a couple of routes to warm up before heading up the glen to the granite trad of Creag na h-Iolaire.

Euan leading Junior's Jinx at Creag na h-Iolaire.

Euan leading Junior’s Jinx at Creag na h-Iolaire.

Both venues gave good climbing in a beautiful setting.

Conic Hill

Out today with Fiona, Joe and an excellent group of kids from Grangemouth High School on Conic Hill above Balmaha. Another beautiful weather day with great views across Loch Lomond to The Luss Hills and Arrochar. Afraid I didn’t take any photos. The hills and crags are currently very dry in the area.