New years eve was a bit of a let down as no where in town was open. New Years day was spend on the sofa as everything was still closed and Alec was not well.
On the 2nd I drove up to Gaustablikk Ski centre. I hired some skis and headed out on to the piste for the day. I was going to slowly work up to the black runs but I took a long turn on the second run of the day and only released I when down the black route once at the bottom.
It was really good to be skiing again and felt confident on the piste. I did not fall once on piste which was really good, Bish’s sessions last year really helped. The snow was a decent depth and it was quite so the pistes kept in good condition all day.
Today we when to the popular Krokan, it was a really nice walk in but it was really cold about -9°c so had to be a little careful when touching metal.
The routes at Krokan were all fully formed and looked amazing. I climbed two WI4 routes which I was really pleased with. The walk down was nice as it was along the road.
This morning work up to clear skies which was a lot nicer, but this means that the temperature will drop a bit. Leaving the house the temperature was -6. We headed up to the lower gorge area, the nearer carpark was closed and full of snow so we when up to the car park near the Vemork Bridge and walked down the old railway track to Jungelboka, the snow was about a foot deep so it took a bit to break trail. We struggled up to the start of the route and racked up. Halfway though the first pitch found that the ice was pretty thin and not very good to protect. We backed off and down climbed to the railway track.
Arrived at Rukan in Norway at around 9pm, the house we are staying at is a traditional Norwegian house but we have one floor of it. The decor is really nice and it will be a good base.
First day climbing we drove up to Ozzimosis, we parked on the second hairpin bend. It was pretty warm (0 degrees) so it was slushy in parts.
With a couple of days holiday left to use I took a Friday off work. It was night to climb at Stanage during the week when there are no crowds. I walked in from Hooks carpark. I was a long walk down to the end of Plantation but it was a good warm up in the chilly wind.
I deferred the first route which was Dry Crack, ironically named it was pretty much a steam pouring down it. So my 100th route was Short Crack – Mod.
This part of Stanage is a broken so there is often a bit of a walk between routes, between this and the chilly wind I did not really get in to a flow climbing. I only did 23 routes today which is good but not as many as I have done.
Think I will walk in from the causeway carpark next time and walk in from there. It is nice to be on the last section of the crag. This is the the longest section but looking at the guide I think I might get this done in 2/3 days.
This week I found that Saturdays weather was looking good so I headed up to Peak district for a days climbing. Got to the bakery for 9.30am and the ground was a little wet, but after a bacon roll I drove up to Stanage. The walk in today was a bit longer as now as I have completed the popular end.
The first route of the day was Pal Joey (VD), it was nice to get back on the grit. Getting back in the flow I was soon ten routes ticked. In this part of Stanage the routes are harder in grade so there are less Mod to VS’s so made my way down the crag pretty quickly.
Some of the routes were shorter so it was easy to get a lot of them ticked off. It was soon 2.30pm and I was now down to Outlook Buttress. The next route was quite far down so I called it a day at Ladder Cracks (VD). I managed 37 routes which is the most I have done in one day. After 3 days climbing I have ticked 99 routes, it will be good to get in to triple digits.
Pal Joey (VD)
Ladder Cracks (VD)
This year we headed to Saas Grund to start the trip.
the first trip in to the mountains was a multi pitch route up Jegihorn, the next day we tackled Weissmies.
We then when up to the Mischabel Hutte, next day we took on the Nadelgrat. It was a very long day a 2.30am start and did not get back to the hut till 11pm, but still summited Dürrenhorn, Hohberghorn Stecknadelhorn, Ulrichhorn.
We then relocated to Pontresina. The first day out on the mountains we got half way to the hut but got rained off. We then took two days to dry out, and then when back up to the hut. With a 5am start we sumitted Piz Bernina 4048m.
Today my aim was to master the longer routes and nail them from top to bottom.
Started on the longer routes 11 and 11a, the snow was nice and made turns easy.
Started the day off on a easy slope and then worked up to the longer slopes. Then moved over to the longest route here. It was a long lift up and to my surprise the slopes were a lot less steep than the lower slopes. They were long but easy slopes. Stopped half way down for lunch which had an amazing view.
It was lovely and sunny but this meant the snow got sugary at about 3pm so I called it a day.
Tomorrow that I am thinking of going high and then try to do a circuit of the valley.
Got up for 8am and down for breakfast, typical European breakfast of cheese, ham and bread. Got ready for the slopes and was out the door at 9am. This time I did a bit of research and found the gentle blue slopes. It was shorter too. The first run when ok better than the day before but still struggled.
Over the next 3/4 runs I got better and better falling less and feeling more in control. It was run 5 where I got top to bottom with no problems it was a good feeling. Carried on in that run till I felt brave and then ventured off to another run. The next one was higher and longer, the problems crept back in but I kept getting back up. On this run there were a couple of sections which were a lot steeper, which I struggled on but I kept at it.
After lunch I when back to the first slope working on the steeper sections of it. Back on the big one. This time completed it fine, it was now 4pm. I managed to get another two clean runs in before 5pm when the lifts closed.
To the bar for a well needed beer. My ankles were killing me but nearly 6 hours of skiing would do that.
Tomorrow I will work on these couple of runs in the morning and then might venture to a higher one in the afternoon all going well.