Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Working Out Routes: Pinnacle Crag

Yesterday was a first for me although it reminded me of planning a weekends hillwalking from a few years ago. I wanted to sort out our first outdoor climb. I started on the UK Climbing website  forum and asked about decent top roping locations nearby.
I then purchased Highland Outcrops and 'studied the form' looking for locations with some easier graded climbs.

 Pinnacle Crag near Loch Duntelchaig fitted the bill. Yesterday I went on a reccy just to make sure of decent anchor points at the top. I then took several photos including these two:

Which I then had to do some work on. I consulted the guidebook and had to work out the routes from the descriptions given. It was my first time doing this and it was really interesting. Unlike some route guides I have seen I didn't go the whole hog and draw dotted lines up the crag. I may do this when I have climbed them and worked out exactly where the lines should go !
I then 'stitched' the two pictures together using Hugin. Here is the result.

I must admit that on first inspection it looked quite difficult, but when reading the guide the routes seem to appear out of the rock. Time will tell if this is the case :) I personally want to try number six which is called Tapered Groove and graded Very Difficult in British Trad Grading,

Here itis on the right of this photo:

 There was a decent amount of boulders at the top for anchors and further back someone had planted a stake. Hope the weather is good at the weekend.

Monday, April 05, 2010


The kids went climbing at Extreme Dream a few years ago and enjoyed it so we always expected to give it another go one day. Finally last October I decided to do an induction course at Extreme Dream to learn how to belay.

We then used out Highlife Cards ( a monthly payment to the council ) at the Inverness Leisure Centre and used their indoor climbing wall and bouldering facilities.

Before going away to Gran Canaria at Christmas we visited EICA the worlds largest indoor climbing arena.

 Oh boy is it big, and cold. We were there just when the cold weather was really taking hold in scotland and we bought those wee hand warmers in the Tiso shop !

The big boulders were off limits awaiting new crash mats, but the 30m tower was there beckoning the unweary, I declined.

Oh, we had also had a look at Tom Riach but it was far too cold wet and mossy.

We have just completed our most audacious expedition, a visit to the Ruthven boulder south of Inverness. We actually stopped in Tiso Inverness on the way down to buy the excellent stone country guidebook.

We didn't get the sun which was forecast, but we were ready to give it a go.

After a warm up on the 'Baby Bunnet' we moved over to the Bunnet Stane proper. After checking the guidebook we totally disregarded it and just mucked about trying out everything all the way around.

 This is Sol trying to find somewhere to put his fett under 'Barry Manilow'.

 Molly having a go.

 And me getting into a knot !

 Sol laying back but not relaxing :)

 I did have several goes at a traverse, but only because there were nice big hand holds.

It was good crack, but wet and cold. As the drizzle grew heavier we decided to make our escape.

 After one or two more wee goes that is.

 Bye now !