Sunday, 6 May 2007

Blustry Highand weather

We had a great end of the week climbing and got back to Aviemore in time to cast our votes. These photos show Kathy on Piggott's route on the Tripple Buttresses of Coire Mhic Fhearchair where we enjoyed magnificent weather while climbing this classic 270 meter route which was first climbed in 1922 by A. S Piggott and M. Wood. We finished by the VS which is another three star classic. Kathy and I went on to attend a local village dance where after some amazing piping and dancing Kathy won the local raffel which gave us entry into Inverewe gardens run by the National Trust for Scotland. Here the gulf stream sweeps past Scotland, bringng warmer tempratures where a variety of shrubs from all over the world flourish and blossom in splender. From the lovely gardens we drove to Gruinard area where we climbed the local test piece Anthrax Flake VS 4c on Jetty Buttress. Named after the anthrax germ warfare tests carried out many years ago on the isolated small island opposite the idilic sea bay. The Antrax is apparently gone now and sheep are now permitted to graze on the island, however it was an isolated place for many years!
Back in Avemore we had a BBQ giving us chance to catch up with friends and discuss the results and fiasco of so many lost votes in our Scottish Elections. As darkenss came you can see some of the elder SMC stalwarts cloacked in blankets. On Saturday we went new routing to yet another secret highland crag, but the weather had turned much colder and the mountain was shrouded in mist, that plus the creeping damp feeling, hollow sounding flakes of rock with very poor protection resulting in the leader being lowered off from an old piece of tape placed on a dull spike which was easily removed after a sucessful descent by flicking the rope. Aye, excitining times in the Scottish hills and crags, its windy and cold here today and snow is expected on the higher summits!

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