What a week we're having! After an incredible few weeks off on holiday in Mongolia, I arrived back in Fort William to wall to wall sunshine and a few days free to get out to play. On Tuesday Connor, Maddie and I went to hunt out some crags we hadn't visited before at our local spot at Polldubh, but this time made the longer walk in to Upper Polldubh. It takes about an hour to reach Saddle Crag and it's well worth the effort. Being high up there's a good breeze to take away the dreaded midge when they'll be swarming down below, and the rock is clean, unpolished and downright lovely! We climbed 'Gnork' then wandered across to Rounded Crag to climb 'Blue Lace' (amazing route!) and 'Omalegs'. Our very casual start meant we had to call it a day there and go and make a plan for Wednesday.
Again with Connor and Maddie, another day of sun took us down to Buachaille Etive Mor and we were aiming for 'North Face Route' on Central Buttress. What we actually did, however, is anyone's guess! Despite being off route we had six pitches of great climbing before descending Curved Ridge, and another excellent day out.
Yesterday I was working for Atlas Mountaineering and Stephen couldn't have picked a better day for CMD Arete and Ben Nevis. There was plenty of high cloud around in the morning for the climb but this was breaking up nicely as we reached the summit of Carn Dearg Meadhonach, and from Carn Mor Dearg it was clear all the way. The arete is completely clear of snow and with only a gentle breeze we were able to stick to the crest all the way along. A clear top, views out to Skye and a barrell-roll over the summit courtesy of the RAF made for a perfect day on the Ben. Here's hoping the rest of the summer continues like this!
Self reliance is a fundamental principle of mountaineering. By participating we accept this and take responsibility for the decisions we make. These blog posts and conditions reports are intended to help you make good decisions. They do not remove the need for you to make your own judgements when out in the hills.