Self Belief is Everything

All words and pictures copyright Alastair Rose 2011

Thursday, February 28, 2013

New Website

Please now go to my website

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Courchevel to Mull

The last couple of weeks have as ever been a whirlwind of jumping all over the place.  Some of the less exciting things have been things like Duke of Edinburgh Scheme supervisor/assessor days and sitting my bus driving theory tests (for once i actually passed first time!) while the more exciting bits have been exactly that. First up a week in Courchevel with a massive group of friends who really looked after Hannah and I amazingly.  Iona was a star taking us too and from the airport and Adrian (and Tom Kenny) were very kind putting us up for the week.  Ailsa firmly organised our social calendar and it was great to catch up with all the extended island crew for the week at varios drinks, meals and music.
Looking towards Meribel and Val Thorens.
Birds playing in the snow at one of our lunch stops
Stu, Justin, Hannah and Sara tearing it up
A picture from Iona of me looking like a zombie after Hannah and I made our best effort at finishing off a raclette.

After a swift transition it was off to Oban to meet Hannah and Tony to head over to Mull and Ardachy Hotel.  
 Hannah on the bonnet of Bluebell the red landrover at the front of Ardachy house.  Hannah is house sitting Ardachy for the next couple of months in preparation of her dad Tony moving up there in April.  Ardachy (helpfully pronounced with the emphasis on the Ard and the chy) is in a spectactular place on the ross of mull overlooking Ardalanish bay.
 Ardalanish bay from the East
 Some locals not too impressed with the strong winds last week.
 Another shot of the beach
 The Ross of Mull is famous for many things - one of them is high quality single pitch climbing.  Hannah and David on the search for another crag on the nearby isle of Erraid
 Hannah with David belaying on "floyd" (HS 4b (5.8)) at pink walls.  You wouldn't believe its the start of February.  Shortly after this I was completely shut down on a VS 4c (5.8/5.9) to the right of this.  Might have to get better at crack climbing!
 Classic Mull road sign.  (pronounced "Fin-a-fort)
 Hannah on top of the asteroid in "asteroid chasm" another climbing area
Ardachy house (Left) and its view down to the bay.

Next up its time for some work before heading back to Mull for a couple of days before some winter climbing.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Rushing around everywhere.

I should currently be packing for a week skiing in France but love to procastinate with pictures so here is a quick set of photos from the last few weeks.  I have been rushing around everywhere doing a massive amount of driving, some kayaking, rock climbing, winter (mixed) climbing, walking, demolition (at bobs house) and some profesional development courses.
I spent a great day on Ben Nevis with Miles climbing Tower ridge (IV,3).  I got this shot on descent (it was dark when we walked in).  You can see the CIC hut on the far left of the image and how little snow was present.  We climbed Tower ridge pretty quick able to move on just rock for the first section and get crampons on at the little tower.
 Bob topping out of DT's Route at the Limekilns
 The day before going to the Ben I was at Limekilns with Miles, Hannah and Bob.  Bob told a story about how people go on ski trips every year thinking they can ski as well as the last day of their trip the year before and break their legs.  Then after not climbing for many months Bob jumped on the lead on "DT's Route" (VS 4c) which we later found out might be a little harder the way we all climbed it.
 Miles approaching the Eastern Traverse.  One of the reasons we were able to climb so quickly was the old footprints in the snow and the clear weather.

 Miles picking up coils shortly after dawn at the base of the little tower
 Anyone who has climbed with Miles knows this face - it says - please let me lead the next pitch, please!
Meanach Bothy (far right) on a rainy morning.  
After the day on Ben Nevis my van decided it needed a new alternator.  Luckily Fort william is a good place to break down and i decided to head into the mountains on my own till it was fixed.  This was in the middle of some atrocious weather but I found a few bothies to stay in!  I waded the river on the left in my underwear in the dark on the first night trying to find this one!
 Looking down upper Glen Nevis to Steal hut (the white dot just off centre)
Staineog Bothy
 Leacach Bothy (far left) at the base of Stob Ban.  I did a few Munros from this bothy but mainly just hid from the high winds and heavy snow.

I then spent a few days at Bob and Clares in Glasgow helping demolish a shed and getting a quick days climbing in Glen Coe with Bob
 Bob seconding up the 1st pitch of Inglis Clark Ridge (III) on Stob Criese.  This pitch was meant to be a nice water ice pitch but instead was a little water ice, no gear and some frozen turf - great fun.
 Bob leading off up the second pitch.  The route then takes a swing up the face of the buttress/ridge for two pitches
Classic shot of Black Rock cottage with the Buachille behind from where we parked to walk into the Inglis clark ridge.
 Glen Etive from the top of the ridge.  This was a great day but lots of slogging through loose snow was pretty time consuming!

Now its off to france for some more snow!

Friday, January 4, 2013

Hogmanay 2013

Well the Yellow Heiffer(my van) is currently packed with Kayaking gear and I am about to drive south to the Lake district for a couple of days of kayaking.  At one stage this seemed like complete madness but it is currently very warm in Scotland with the majority of the snow stripped of the mountains so now seems like quite a good option.

In May last year Wee Ben and I chatted about doing a big hogmmany in a bothy in the middle of nowhere and as the months progressed I realised that I should organise it.  I was a little more organised than usual (in that I actually invited other people) and the turn out was brilliant with some people driving for days just to be there and even an American!

A large group of us walked in on the 30th with heavy packs full of food, drink, coal and warm clothes with more arriving the next day.  On the 31st we woke up to horizontal rain and some warm temperatures so had a very short day wandering up the glen and up to a good view point and then the party started.....

In the main room of the bothy on the first night planning the next day.
 The bothy with rainbow on the last morning as we were packing up to leave.
 There was a lot of old coal in the fire so when we did finally get it going it got a little too hot!  This was actually a little worrying as the whole thing started to sparkle!
 A very wet wander up the Glen.  Miles showing great technique on a river crossing
 Getting near the head of the glen as squalls of snow/rain/sleet hit us.  Ruaridh leading the way.
 Finally it cleared enough for a snowball fight with the remaining snow.
 Ali C very happy with his jacket.
 Scott and Miles back at the bothy on the 31st.  The drinking started about 1430 and ended 12 hrs later when Scott and I checked that we had in fact drank everything!
 The main room of the bothy all set up for party games and lots of food - Dinner was massive involving Haggis on oat cakes, samosas, onion bhajis, chicken fajitas, cheese balls, pizza, christmas cake, cheese and biscuits and chocolate.

 When it did clear on the 31st it was amazing.  Ruaridh (far right) looking down the glen back to the bothy.
HDR shot of the sandstone slabs running with water under a heavy sky.

Thanks to all who showed up, it was an amazing couple of days in a brilliant place.  Same again next year?

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Yangshou Post 3 (Climbing etc)

 And finally the climbing...
 Giles going for it on "Eggstatic"(6b+/5.11a) at "the Egg" on the second day.
 Giles trying to stay on the same route
 Hannah entering the crux of "Eggstreme Exposure" (6a/5.10b)
 Hannah above the rice fields on the same route
 Miles "I'm in Hufflepuff" Mconville
 Hannah, Miles and Giles on top of Jeremys Jiji (they are on there if you look closely!)
 Eben making things hard for himself on "Les Echo des Montagnes" (5/5.8) Low mountain
 A crowded abseil station on Low mountain.  L-R Eben, Miles and Hannah sporting some colourful tights
 Miles abseiling from low mountain.
Not climbing but I thought I should include one shot of the food which was amazing the whole time.  Miles sampling a local delicacy of pork stuffed snails.  You can just make out the dish to the left (Szechuan beef).  This was probably my favourite meal the whole trip!

Yanshou - Post 2 (Landscape etc)

I have been to Yangshuo a few times and it never fails to impress with amazing scenery.  Below are some of the better shots I got over the week.
 Celebrating the end of the world on one of our first evenings.  I have never seen so many fireworks released at once.
 It wouldn't be a trip to China without at least one picture of bamboo!
 The Li River with the Karst Landscape of Yangshuo - Taken from the top of Low Mountain
 Black and white reflections taken near "the egg"
 Another view from low mountain
 Down by the river with some traditional rafts
Me, Hannah, Miles and Giles on top of "Jeremys Jiji" on Giles last day.