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Meet Reports

Pre-Christmas Meet

Saturday 15th to Sunday 16th of December, 2018.

Part 1 The Perth Climbing Wall on Saturday 15th About a dozen of us gathered at the Wall in the UHI Dept of Sport and Wellbeing in Perth. The Wall has proved to be very popular with PMC members and other climbers. The staff are very friendly and the route setting has become very good, providing interesting and varied climbs which are changed regularly. It was nice to see some of the members that can’t always make our regular Wednesday night sessions as well as many of the usual suspects. Routes of all grades from 4 to 6c were climbed, some top roped and some led. After a busy couple of hours a coffee break was enjoyed in the Students Union Cafeteria. Those in attendance were – Wendy, Tina, Dennis, John, Jeff and Julia, Hannah (with Angus and Callum), Alison, Paul G, Scott (with Freya), Kenny (without Catherine) and me. Sorry if I’ve missed anyone.
Part 2 Walking and biking at Glen Tarken, St Fillans on Sunday 16th Well that was the plan! But like many mountaineering plans the weather interfered. I’d been out driving back from the Dylan Project gig at Kinross on Sat night when the snow changed to rain, giving me the impression that road conditions wouldn’t be too bad on Sunday morning. After picking up Wendy, Karin and Wolfgang at Broxden we were driving towards Crieff when it became apparent that more snow had fallen west of Perth than I’d assumed. Messages from Dennis, Neil and the Botts informed us that the proposed rendezvous layby outside St Fillans was blocked by snow and so we met up in the snowy car park at Comrie. After a brief discussion we elected to just do a walk from Comrie up Glen Lednock past the Deil’s Cauldron and up to Lord Melville’s monument. It was very pretty and scenic though quite hard work in a couple of inches of soggy snow. We were surprised to meet five hardy young mountain bikers coming down the steep and gnarly path from the monument. Displaying skills well beyond our biking ability they put us to shame for deciding to leave bikes at home because of the snow.
The views from alongside the monument were dramatically lit by occasional sunbeams piercing the low cloud. Wendy reverted to teacher mode and built an excellent cat in the snow.
The Botts provided excellent hospitality on our way home, of particular note were the scrumptious freshly baked scones!
Those attending were – Wendy, Karin, Wolfgang, me, Neil, Betty and Richard. Dennis was foiled by unploughed roads on his way and I must apologise to Jim for not keeping him informed of the change of plans at short notice.

Moorings Hotel, Banavie

Saturday 17th to Saturday 17th of November, 2018.

The 2018 Annual Dinner meet was held at The Moorings Hotel at Banavie near Fort William over the weekend of 17th & 18th November and was attended by 17 members as follows:
Dennis, Irene, Neil, Moira, Alastair, Pam, Wendy, Jeff H, Jeff B, Karin, Stephen, Janice, Ron, Alison, Susan, Hannah & Grahame.
Some members namely Alastair & Pam eager to increase Pam’s Munro count headed over to the hotel at Fort William on Thursday, and on Friday they went to the Glen Sheil and bagged a new hill there.
Irene & I arrived at the hotel on Friday evening where we met up with Pam & Alastair plus Neil, Moira, Wendy, Jeff H & Jeff B.
Saturday saw Wendy, Jeff, Karin & Myself head into Glen Etive to bag Glas Bheinn Mhor which increased my count to 247 Munros completed. Irene who had not been feeling well for several days had not improved overnight, so she decided to spend the day relaxing at the hotel and had a wander up Neptunes Staircase on the Caledonian canal.
Pam, Alastair, Neil & Moira went into Glen Nevis and scaled the heights of Sgurr Choinnich Mor.
Other members travelled to Fort William on the Saturday and explored the hills en-route. Hannah Blair travelled down from Aviemore and virtually ran around The Ring of Steall on the Mamores in 6 hours.
Grahame Nicoll climbed Creag Pitridh whilst travelling from Dunkeld. Janice & Ron who travelled up from Perth scaled 2 Corbetts, Sgurr Innse & Cruach Innse. Stephen Johnston climbed Stob a Choire Mheadhoin & Stob Coire Esan. Alison also decided on a Corbett and headed up the rugged Sgurr an Utha.
Jeff B decided on something completely different. In the morning he summited a Graham called Stob a Ghrianain in Glen Loy. In the afternoon he attended a gathering of members of The Scottish Arctic Club which was held in Fort William where he listened with interest to several presentations. Jeff is intending on going on his own Arctic explorations sometime in the near future.
All those who had been out on the hills reported having an excellent day with clear skies and distant views but also experienced some minor buffeting from a bitterly cold wind.
Susan Black who was staying very local with a family member joined us at the hotel in the evening for the club dinner.
The dinner was followed by the usual awards presentations, and congratulations go to the following members:
The Tom Rix Millennium Award was won by Steve.
The Photographic Award was won by Grahame.
The Boot Award was won by Wendy.
The Des Bassett Attendance Award was won by Wendy.
Sunday 18th was the traditional Presidents Walk. Cow Hill. This was attended by Ron & Janice, Neil & Moira, Grahame, Alison, Wendy, Karin, Jeff Banks, Stephen, Irene & The President. Alas Jeff Harris, Susan Black, Hannah Blair along with Alastair & Pam Dutton were unable to join us due to other engagements and commitments. Having consideration for those members who had travelled a fair distance and were not wanting a long day, I decided on a more unusual choice of hill. Standing at a meagre height of only 298mtrs / 978 ft it would not be every bodies choice of hill, but considering Irene’s ailment it proved to be a good option although It would appear that I mis-read the information and thought it would take a lot longer than it did, but having said that the initial steep ascent up what is called The Peat Track caught a few members by surprise. The route which starts at the Braveheart car park in Glen Nevis is mainly on a well made path, part of which is the West Highland Way. Departing the West Highland Way, we headed steeply up through the woods on the Peat Track which soon opened up into sunshine and blue skies giving distant views all around. At the summit of Cow Hill we sat around for a while taking in views of the back of Ben Nevis and Five Finger Gully. In the opposite direction we had very different views over Fort William and Loch Eil which looked like a mill pond and gave mirror like reflections of the surrounding hills. Whilst lingering at the top we saw a few runners who were taking part in a hill run event. They came running over Cow Hill passing between the group and we felt obliged to give them some support by applauding and cheering. From the summit we backtracked down the hill for a short distance to a point where we could complete a full circuit of the hill whilst at the same time, we had to keep a lookout behind us for some crazy runners skittering past us on the rough uneven track. Although a relatively short walk, it did allow for much leisurely conversation and laughter. Back at the car park we said goodbye to Grahame and Stephen who were needing to dash off whilst the rest of us headed up to the Pinemarten café at The Nevis Ski Range for some warming soup followed by tea, coffee & cakes.

Other photographs from the meet:

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Fylde Mountaineering Club Stair Hut, Lake District

Friday 19th to Sunday 21st of October, 2018.

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We had booked 21 places at the Fylde MC at Stair in the Lake District as they only take whole hut bookings. So it was a bit of a shame that only 6 members went. The forecast was for a cloudy but mainly dry Saturday and a wet Sunday. On Saturday five of us opted for a walk round the Coledale Horseshoe and one, having seen the low clouds opted for the round of the Newlands peaks as they are about 100m lower. The five of us ascended steeply up to Causey Pike and got into the cloud which was very damp and mizzly. As we progressed up to Crag Hill, which I know as Eel Crag the mizzle turned to drizzle and as the breeze picked up it went from drizzle to penetrating rain. There was no view to be had and it was rather unpleasant, especially for those not wearing overtrousers. So without needing much discussion we cut the walk short and went down Coledale stopping near the graphite mine for a brief lunch stop.
After lunch we carried on down into Braithwaite, it was now a pleasant stroll as it was hardly raining out of the cloud. We stopped for a cuppa and cakes at a nice little café which on chatting to the owner we discovered used to be the public convenience! We then walked back to the hut alongside Newlands Beck.
The lone walker had a successful day on the Newlands Fells returning to the hut a while after the rest of us.
The Saturday evening was very convivial, no one opted to go to the pub and we enjoyed a simplified version of Trivial Pursuit after dinner. As predicted Sunday was wet. Two opted to head home, two decided on a lowlevel walk round Buttermere and two of us had a nice time at the climbing wall in Keswick. On the way home three of us made a short detour to visit Aira Force which despite all the rain was pretty but not quite as spectacular as it can be in full flood.

Other photographs from the meet:

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Kalymnos

Wednesday 26th of September to Wednesday 10th of October, 2018.

Jeff B leading Phineas, 5c, 3 stars at Symplegades, Dennis belaying. Credit JFH.

Eleven go to Kalymnos

t was great to have so many members engaging in our ad hoc meet in Kalymnos this year and also to hear the enthusiasm for the trip and pledges made for a return trip. Though eleven members attended it was a flexible event with some travelling from Glasgow and Edinburgh and some staying one week or two as well as different accommodation being sampled. The island trip offers such choice and also has plenty to entertain non climbers with swimming, snorkelling and a ten day Kalymnos walking trail around the island where sections can be sampled independently.

This year as well as the usual climbing Jeff and Wendy sampled the island’s Via Ferrara which proved a worthwhile experience and opened up tremendous views out towards Telendos as well as allowing a traverse of a very high cave. The climbing festival overlapped with our stay which allowed some to take the chance of T shirts, water bottles, sun hats and a day boat trip to a neighbouring island for the small sum of 10 Euros. John and Wendy snorkelled and saw pipe fish and the sponges the island is famous for. An excursion was made by Jeff, Julia and Wendy to see Sikati Cave, an unusual natural and intriguing feature on the landscape. Star gazing was also appreciated that evening. Catherine and Kenny introduced us to the apres climb activities of pool, table football and darts! Jeff and Wendy also had an afternoon of site seeing taking in the peninsula of Telendos with its secret beach, the autumn flowering colchicum, the early Christian Bassilica and the beautifully positioned chapel on the rocks.

As for climbing well there was plenty of that too! And with the many crags and routes available new venues were visited and appreciated. Excursions were made to School, Afternoon, Geriakos, Ghost Kitchen, Symplegades, Lamda, Pallionissos Bay, Black Bhudda, Summertime and Belgian Chocolates. All of the fore mentioned being some of the elaborately named crags of the island. Climbing was enjoyed at all levels, from 4a to 7a, thanks to Graham Nicol doing the club proud and achieving this!

Tina must be congratulated firstly for being brave enough to decide to come with only a few days notice and also from graduating from novice to tackling her first leads in one week. Catherine and Kenny were delighted to complete their first 6B’s. Kenny also enjoyed his first multi pitch with Jeff and Wendy and the expression at the top was priceless. As said the climbing on Kalymnos allows for everyone personally to be challenged at their individual level and achieve the satisfaction that comes with it! A highlight was climbing a 6a route called Stars on Stage which though extremely intimidating on first sight proves to be a fantastic and varied route. It is not just the grades but the variety of rock and climbing styles required to complete routes that makes Kalymnos a place to draw you back.

And socialising well there was plenty of that too with the beautiful Greek food, fresh yoghurt, catch of the day, colourful salads washed down with Mykenos beer and red wine!

So come along next year folks and enjoy!

Other photographs from the meet:

Kalymnos 2018 1Kalymnos 2018 2Kalymnos 2018 3Kalymnos 2018 4Kalymnos 2018 5Kalymnos 2018 6Kalymnos 2018 7Kalymnos 2018 8Jeff B leading Phineas, 5c, 3 stars at Symplegades, Dennis belaying.  Credit JFH.

Sleeperzzz, Rogart

Friday 14th to Sunday 16th of September, 2018.

Cycling towards Seana Bhraigh

It was another fun filled weekend away for the PMC at the railway sleeper carriages at Rogart. Making the most of the weather conditions we set off road biking through rivers, scrambling on Seona Bhraigh, climbing on Creag Bheag exploring local paths around Golspie, visiting a waterfall, a castle, a broch then to Dennis’s delight bashing through shoulder high bracken.

Other photographs from the meet:

Cycling towards Seana BhraighDunrobin CastleRail TicketRogart Sleeperzzz

Glen Brittle Memorial Hut, Skye

Friday 29th to Saturday 30th of June, 2018.

Sgurr Alasdair South West Ridge Credit CJ and KC

Attendees: Wendy, Jeff, Paul G, Daile, Susan, Hannah, Tim, Grahame, Laura, Paul M, Dan, Karen, Karin, Catherine, Kenny C, Kenny F, Karelyn Jim and Tomasz.
The Club had a fantastic, well attended meet on Skye, all beneath blue skys and in baking heat – we took full advantage! Routes included two trips across the southern Cuillin (incorporating a direct attack on Sgurr Alasdair’s SW ridge, the Dubhs, the Inn Pinn and Sgurr Mhic Coinnich), two trips across the Clach Glas – Blaven traverse, The Klondyker (135m, E1 5b) on Sgurr Sgumain, the Direct Route (180m, Severe) on Eastern Buttress, Sron na Ciche and more hill walking on the central Cuillin and corbetts nearby.
Adventures along the way included a down climb to retrieve a dropped mobile phone, a piping hot cup of water (due to a late discovery of a lack of tea bags) and a case of heat exhaustion dealt with by a swim in Lochan Coire a Ghrunnda. We also celebrated a retirement with a case of fizz.

Other photographs from the meet:

An Stac Screes Credit CJ and KCAscending Coire a Ghrunnda Credit CJ and KCCatherine on Sgurr Alasdair Credit CJ and KCCatherine on Sgurr Dubh Mor Credit CJ and KCClach Glas Travere 2 Credit WGClach Glas Traverse 1 Credit WGClach Glas Traverse 3 Credit WGCoire a Ghrunnda from the Dubhs Credit WGDan on the In Pinn Credit TWSGetting in a Tangle on Sgurr Alasdair Credit CJ and KCIn PinnIn Pinn Selfie Credit KFKarin Descending Sgurr a GhreadaidhKenny on the Skye Cullin Credit CJ and KCLoch Coire a Ghrunnda Credit CJ and KCPaul on Skye Credit WGRock Dragon Skye Credit TWSSgurr Alasdair Credit CJ and KCSgurr Alasdair from Coire Laggan Credit CJ and KCSgurr Alasdair South West Ridge Credit CJ and KCSgurr dubh Mor 2 Credit CJ and KCsgurr dubh mor Credit CJ and KCSgurr Mhic Choinnich credit TWSSkye Cuillin Credit CJ and KCSkye Cuillin from Sgurr Dubh Mor Credit CJ and KCSkye Cuillin Panorama Credit CJ and KCTim on the inpinn Credit DTWendy on Skye Credit WG

Club Picnic Barbecue, North Berwick

Saturday 9th of June 2018.

Relaxing in the Sun, Club Picnic, North Berwick Law, 2018.

Attendees: Tim and family, Richard, Dennis , Wendy, Craig, Paul, Karin, Scott, Keith, Jim, Kirsty and Adam.
Planning for the club barbecue and picnic began hastily in late May, driven by several factors. First, the rock tigers in the club wanted a climbing venue. Second, we needed to include a hill or other worthwhile walk to satisfy those who were accompanied by younger ‘prospective’ members. Finally, we needed to ensure good weather, so it was important to avoid any dates that were proposed by me. We settled on North Berwick on the 9th June, as it is easily reachable from Perth, has interesting single pitch sport and trad climbing, a nice short walk up the Law and (I’m assured) a practically middle-eastern climate.
The careful planning played out well and we were able to combine a good attendance with excellent weather and great fun. More or less by accident, we all arrived at the car park at about the same time mid-morning, with the exception of Karin, who had arrived a little earlier and gone for an exploration around the base of the hill. The group immediately divided its efforts, with the party containing younger attendees heading up onto the hill, while the rock tigers headed off to tick their first routes. The second party spent the morning on the sport climbs nearest to the car park, where the rock was already warm and the routes enjoyed. From what I can tell from the guide book, many of the routes have names that aren’t really fit for repetition amongst a refined audience such as the club membership, so no further details will be shared. The first party climbed to the summit of the hill, enjoying good, if somewhat hazy views of the sea and surrounding flats.
Around 1pm it seemed sensible to break for lunch, with a multitude of routes being completed during the session. Craig broke out his barbecue and took up the role of chef, even permitting vegetarian food to be cooked. We also appear to all have had the same idea and decimated the Perth area stock of strawberries.
After lunch, the climbing was resumed on the trad slabs further along the crag. The somewhat bare nature of the protection meant that I ended up more or less soloing up one route, whilst others were more sensible and setup a top rope. By this time, we needed to depart with the children and left the climbers to their fun. More climbs were completed in our absence, before a second attempt on the summit was made, again enjoying good views. The last party from the club left the crag at around 10pm after a thoroughly enjoyable day in great company.

Other photographs from the meet:

Horses on North Berwick Law (Credit DU).Sport Climbers in Action, North Berwick Law, 2018.Club Barbecue, North Berwick Law, 2018.At the Summit of North Berwick Law, Club Picnic, 2018.Dennis below the Whale Bone, Club Picnic and Barbecue, 2018.Summit, North Berwick Law (RB).Credit RB).Relaxing in the Sun, Club Picnic, North Berwick Law, 2018.North Berwick Law Summit, Club Picnic, 2018.

An Teallach Mountaineering Club Hut, Strawberry Cottage, Glen Affric

Friday 18th to Sunday 20th of May, 2018.

Strawberry Cottage Meet, 2018.

10 PMC members headed up to the delightfully located Strawberry Cottage in Glen Affric. The weather forecast was favourable so a few travelled up on the Thursday and did some Munro’s in the Glen on the Friday to get the weekend off to a good start.
Most cycled in up the 5 miles of rough track from the car park at the end of Glen Affric whilst Jeff drove kindly taking everybody’s luggage. Saturday morning was a bit cloudier than predicted but looked promising so all set off a roughly 8am on their various walks. 3 walks were undertaken, the 2 Munro’s of Mullach Fraoch-Choire & A Chralaig to the south. The 3 Munro’s of Sgurr nan Ceathramhnan and Mullach na Dheiragain & An Socach and the 3 Munro’s of Mam Sodhail, Carn Eighe & Beinn Fhionnlaidh plus a couple of tops on the way.
Plenty of food and drink was consumed on the Saturday night (as nobody wanted to carry anything back out) and some enjoyable chat was had.
Sunday morning bought a marked increase in the wind strength and it was agreed that this wouldn’t be pleasurable on top and that most of us were happy enough with the previous day’s efforts. With that agreed a long breakfast was enjoyed before cycling back out to the car park (luckily with the wind behind us).

Other photographs from the meet:

Strawberry Cottage Meet, 2018.Strawberry Cottage Meet, 2018.Strawberry Cottage Meet, 2018.Strawberry Cottage Meet, 2018.Strawberry Cottage Meet, 2018/Strawberry Cottage Meet, 2018.Strawberry Cottage Meet, 2018.