Tuesday 14 July 2009


June saw Iain doing more of the usual bread & butter work with young people attending residential multi-activity weekends and days but in addition to that we did have several weekends of scrambling courses (see above left) and some climbing weekends booked and as usual, these were a great success.

With the weather getting really quite hot, people were also keen to have a go at ghyll scrambling - just to cool off (See above right) and we were also involved with a number of Kayaking days on Lake Windermere.
And on that note I'm going to sign off for today. Bloggers obviously had enough because its refused to put either of the above pictures down the right hand side of the page as I've asked it to. Obviously, its in need of a rest and so am I for that matter. But I'll bring you all an update another time soon.



And in May

May was a busy month. As well as Iain working on a number of residentail multi-activity courses for young people, we also ran a number of private courses for people wishing to learn to rock climb out of doors .

The pictures show some of the people we worked with during this month - all clearly having fun and learning lots. If you fancy having a go at climbing view our climbing page at http://kendalmountaineeringservices.co.uk/pages/climbing.php and our climbing gallery at http://kendalmountaineeringservices.co.uk/index/galleries/climbing.php

These are both pictures from some of the climbing sites we use in Langdale in The Lake District. However, it doesn't matter where you want to base yourself, there are climbing venues in every valley here and we will come to you. Again, if you want us to meet you for some climbing in North Wales or Scotland then we will happily do this for you.

Later in May, we returned to the Isle of Skye to run the annual Skye trip. This consists of a week of self catering accomodation and the option of being guided on a complete traverse of the Cuillin Ridge as well as doing other classic scrambles in the area.

This picture shows the view from the entrance to our cottage and is looking across Loch Bracadale to McLeod's Tables on the peninsular of Duirinish.

This year on Skye, the weather was a bit mixed with some wet weather but also lots of sunny spell allowing us plenty of opportunities to climb in the mountains.

Helping our clients increase their confidence in any situation they choose to be in, is what we are all about here at Kendal Mountaineering Services.

On this particular day Sandy & I chose to have a go at the North West ridge of Bruach Na Frithe - a nice steady grade 2. The views were fantastic and the weather at first, good, but then later it chose to rain with disastrous consequences for one member of a party climbing an adjacent peak. On that note, when tackling mountains such as the Cuillins for the first time, its well worth hiring the services of a mountaineering instructor such as myself.

My final day in the Cuillins this year was taking two clients to have a go at a route called The Dubh Slabs - fantastic! 1000 metres of scrambling and moderate rock climbing in one of the remotest settings in the Cuillins and taking you up into the heart of the mountains.

This route I did with Chris & Adam who have been very good clients and have become, as people often do - friends. This was a very long day starting at Elgol at 9am and getting an exhilarating ride on a large and very fast RIB in to the Coruisk Memorial Hut. Having traversed the route, we didn't get back to Chris's car at Glen Brittle til 7pm. A long one, but what a day!

We'll be going back again next year and if you want to join our adventure have a look at the webpage at http://www.kendalmountaineeringservices.co.uk/pages/cuillinridge.php and from that page you can view further pictures on the skye gallery.

We hope to see you there.

what happened next

So, having run the annual winter skills course, I came back here to the Lake District. I spent most of March just resting and getting some treatment for my back at the nearby osteo practice which seemed to help, then work started picking up and I was off!

Since then I've done a whole range of work with primary & secondary school pupils. We've been climbing, ghyll scrambling, canoeing & kayaking, hill walking amongst other things and I ran a navigation course for a bunch of people at the end of April . The picture on the right shows two of them getting stuck in.

Everyone attending the course agreed that they had learnt a lot from the weekend and were much more confident about their map reading abilities. They were all looking forward to venturing into the hills again and were hoping for some poor visibility conditions in order that they could put their improved skills to the test. If you would like to learn more about map reading, then check out our navigation skills courses page at www.kendalmountaineeringservices.co.uk/navigation and give us a call if you see anything you would like to do.

Welcome to the Kendal Mountaineering Services blog

Hi Folks.

Welcome to the Kendal Mountaineering Service blog. We run an outdoor pursuits business here in the Lake District and the idea is to keep you all updated with what I do and where & when I do it.

So, where do I begin? Well, I'll not bother with the life history, you can view that on the website. Probably best to start with what I've been up to this year and that's going to be something of a mammoth task - anyway!

At the start of this year I went to Scotland to get ready for my Mountain Instructor's Certificate (MIC) assessment which was booked to be taken at Glenmore Lodge in March. One snag was I left here with raging backache, with my youthful optimism I thought it would go away, it didn't! I worked on through January and in to February taking people winter climbing in areas such as Ben Nevis (the UK's highest peak), Aonach Mor, The cairngorms and Glen Coe - some of the best mountaineering areas the UK has to offer.

It was an interesting time. The winter weather blew hot and cold (literally). Sometimes the winter routes were in nick and sometimes not. It was all quite physical work (all winter climbing requires you to be fit due to the quite long walk in's and all the gear you'll be carrying in that rucksac!), however, I got to meet and work with some great people and real characters and that's the great thing about going into the mountains. I taught a lot of people a lot of new skills and increased their confidence in doing winter climbing. A lot of people from the UKclimbing website helped me out and I'm most grateful to them for that.

Anyway, mid-February, I had to admit defeat and pack it all in. With the back problem flaring up quite badly from time to time causing me to take time off work and seek osteopath treatment, I was advised that all I was doing was making myself worse and that to pack up and maybe come back next winter was the best option. It was a great shame and maybe I will return to have a crack at the assessment again next winter. we'll see! Thanks to all of you who helped me and I'm truly sorry to those of you whom I had to let down.

Before I left to return here to the Lake District, there was one thing I was definitely not going to miss and that was the annual OM Winter Skills course that was happening on the last weekend of February. If you want to know about our winter skills courses check out our website. They offer amazing value for money & you'll have a fantastic time. A typical picture from one of our courses is added at the top right hand side of this post.
We had two days of reasonable winter conditions in the Cairngorms. On of them was spent on Braeriach, very close to where we were staying and the other in Coire an Lochain. Everyone had great fun and learnt lots and all have been back since for other courses. And that can be the subject of my next post.

Friday 10 July 2009

Welcome to the Blog ...

I am hoping to keep you up to date with all the events at Kendal Mountaineering Services, the summer is shaping up nicely and looking forward to being outside a lot in the coming weeks!