Welsh Winter Stuff

Well, for the last three days I have been out on the hill. Wednesday I headed up Pen Yr Ole Wen, with a group from Bangor University for the Conway Centre. Volunteering my time to get some days in charge of a group in Winter, in order to be able to register on my MIC (Next piece of paper in the qualifications ladder after doing my Winter ML last year). A great day out, and we managed to get them to have a go at using Ice Axes and Crampons for the first time.

The next day I headed up to Glyder Fach, with Lakey, and climbed Arch Gully a great V,6. Really good climbing, but like many people not all turf was frozen. I lead the first pitch, and simon lead the last two. As I am relatively rusty with my mixed climbing, still a good day out, the second and third pitches are classic, I had to take an easier line on the first pitch as I couldn’t commit to getting on the large flake. Well worth three stars. We did extend the second pitch to belay on good spikes at the base of the pinnalces, making it about 30m. Seemed like a better place to belay than the guide suggests, and the tata on the belay, makes you think someone had a hard time on the pitch above.

The final pitch has some excellent hooking and torquing to gain a small roof. Wild moves over this lead to another torquing crack. Lovely stuff.

Then today I was back out doing some voluntary work for the University again. This time with the second or third years. One of them had done reade’s rotue the day before. We headed up to below Cryn Las, and played about all day on the ice, which is much more my winter cup of tea. Eventually getting about half way up Sargents Gully, before we escaped off left and back down to the minibus. Great day out, they seemed to be buzzing, and hopefully learnt a little bit as well.

I have some pictures, just need to upload them, probably tomorrow as I am goosed. A massive thanks to the Conway Centre for letting me get some of my post Winter ML assessment days in, so I can register on my MIC. Sadly the big thaw looks set to come through this weekend. So maybe that was it, maybe it will freeze again next week though?!

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