Tuesday, 8 December 2009

A weekend with Rob Jones and Co.

One month ago I got a call from a Mr Rob Jones. He had a plan - to climb up Mt Blanc with a few off his mates then paraglide off the top! He also told me that none of his crew had done much in the way of mountaineering or rock climbing and he was the only one who could paraglide - he wanted me to help out.
Now I always like someone with a bit of ambition so I booked him and his team on a weekend to introduce them to the scrambling and the mountaineering skills they would need to ascend Mt. Blanc - I'm leaving the paragliding to them though!
So they arrived in Snowdonia late Friday night/Saturday morning and pitched up in the campsite despite torrential rain and gale force winds. Thankfully the weather had relented by the morning and we made our way the North Ridge of Tryfan, practicing various rope techniques as we went. As we summitted the weather came in a way so we bailed down western gully and got back to the car park by 4pm.

Rob posing on the Cannon, Tryfan North Ridge

With another poor forecast for the next day and another wild nights camping for Rob and the team (they could not be persuaded to stay in a bunkhouse!) we headed to Lion Rock at the end of Llyn Padarn. This is a great little venues for teaching rope skills and we covered abseiling, gear placement, building belays and then they all had a go a leading and ascending to the top of Lion Rock using a variety of climbing and scrambling techniques.

Daz on his first lead

We finished off, as all good days should do, with a pint of Guinness in the local. It was an excellent weekend and it is always a pleasure to teach and coach an enthusiastic and quick learning group. Rob and his team have booked on to a winter skills course and I will see them again in the Spring for more climbing and scrambling action - lets get some more rubber on the rock team!