Deep Chill and more to come

Thanks to Colin Reilly for his splendid pictures taken on the summit plateau of Ben Nevis today. Capital venue:-)
Top of Gardyloo Gully

Hi Alan

Yesterday Stevo and I had a plan to do White Line III, but when we got up into Coire na Ciste a lot of the routes on Raeburn’s Buttress, including White Line, looked thin and challenging. So because the III looked hard, we moderated our ambitions and went for a IV instead. 🙂 We romped up Comb Gully on magnificent neve in three pitches from the triangular rock on the right with the perfect nut-crack. Alternating leads meant Stevo led the crux, the short sharp icefall just above the triangular rock, on his first IV. The ice was beautiful all the way, but the second pitch did have some hollow bits and required a little care. The third pitch (Stevo’s again) was a walk-up, with no cornice to speak of.

A very busy day on the hill, although not everything was in condition– the first icefall on Green Gully is a lot harder than III,4 just now. And as your pictures show, the middle of Three Gully Buttress (where Diana and Aphrodite are supposed to be) isn’t really there at all, even though there is a monster cornice above it.

Incidentally, here’s my input on this global warming issue. There’s this curious idea going around that the only way to deal with global warming is by individuals making it a matter of personal responsibility to have less fun, travel less, and generally turn themselves into puritan miserabilist eco-fascists. Can’t think where this idea comes from, but it certainly shields the real culprits for global warming– the big oil companies and the politicians–from having to take effective action. Of course we should be careful what we do. But we should stop thinking that being green means we’re never allowed to have any fun (e.g. by flying to Rjukan!). And we should put more pressure on our so-called leaders to address our environmental problems effectively at the political level.

A pleasure to meet your dalmatian, by the way. What’s s/he called? And can you post a picture of the beastie? Yes Tim, the one you met is called Megan. The one in this shot is Cleo. Did Stevo walk off with a key to his room?



(Correction: “the first icefall on Green Gully is a lot harder than III,4 just now” should read “the first icefall on Glover’s Chimney is a lot harder than III,4 just now, and the start to Green Gully looks a bit gnarly too”.)