Tuesday, 14 July 2009

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.

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