This was many years ago when I was young and bold. My friend Jonny and I had done many solo ascents of classic ice climbs. Most of the classic grade V climbs were already done and we were talking about what would be next. Mega Route X seemed to be the obvious choice but a competitive element crept into our discussions. It became a bit of a race to see which of us would be the first to solo the climb.
A couple of weeks later, having worked through all this and having lost the competitive edge with Jonny I went back and climbed it. My wife Louise was waiting in the coire and we went to climb Curtain Rail afterwards. It felt really good that day.
It does make the point that we should be very careful with our route choices and make sure the reasons for taking on a climb are good reasons. We do like to challenge ourselves but we should do a careful risk assessment before we go climbing. Are you good enough and strong enough? Is the climb in good condition? Is the weather good enough? We should not feel pressured into climbing anything because we want to show others how good we are, because it is so rarely possible or even because we are guiding and our clients want to do it.
Today felt like fun. Hard work and scary but fun as well! Mega Route X is a brilliant climb and it always lives up to its name!