Friday, 20 January 2012

A long slog for a change

Getting bored of the monotony of the Ski Centre car park and the same familiar coire, I went for Day 3 in 5 continuing my on-off-on routine. This time myself, Nik and Steve headed towards Glencoe with the promise of fine weather in the west. Upon arrival it was clear the only thing to retain any sign of winter was Stob Coire nan Lochan.

So we began the steep trek upwards in what felt like t-shirt weather. On route we visited my 'accident spot' from last season where I had a bath in the burn. (I have regular nightmares)


We made reasonable time, 1hr30 to the basin, only to find black buttresses (not surprised in the slightest), so we did what most were doing an aiming for a gully. Concerned about the consistency of the ice ramp on SC Gully, we went for Twisting Gully III,4. As a 3 star route, how could it be bad?!

Much blackness....
 Well, we should have known better. Snow was unconsolidated, what ice there was had water running down the back of it. Not particularly nice but I don't think we trashed the place getting up it. Would very much like to go back. Nik took the reigns for the crux....and damn pleased I was too!

Better stop taking photos now.

Seconding was interesting as everything kept ripping out. Some decent hooks saw us through it.

Too close for comfort
 Various faffing and generally slow progress saw us topping out a dusk. Not too much of an issue. Items lost to the the crag at this point numbered two: my mitten and Nik's camera. On the way down, Nik looked back into the coire and said, "I might go have a look". I said that I didn't have enough petrol money to come back and get him in three days time, so we headed down. 45mins to the car...not bad for knees three times my age!!

Climbing Ninja looking for his camera

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