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Monday, 14 September 2009

Searching for new routes in Knoydart

After a 12 h+ session on Saturday we drove to the end of loch Arkaig, camped and got up at 6.30 am in order to search for first ascents in Knoydart. On the walk in I spotted what seemed a decent crag high up (there is no lack of outcrops in Knoydart) and after more than half an hour of steep bogwalking we saw an unprotected, vegetated, short, uninspiring slab. So we carried on walking...

... higher up we spotted the Old Man of Knoy, two blocks of snappy rock and thought about a first ascent. But being old (40+), wise (a rescue would take probably over half a day) and a bit of a chicken we decided against an attempt. Soon after we passed a slightly overhanging, 10 m high crag. But when having a try a flake of a size of a fridge moved and all first ascent dreams were put on ice. Nice views though!

After hours and hours of walking we saw this 15 m high crackline and went to have a look. The right hand wall was soaking and the crack is two fists wide (we brought no gear for that) with a dodgy top out. Again, old and wise.

Finally the cliff that I had spotted on an earlier trip. Over 100 m wide, up to 30 m high, great lines but vegetated, crumbly, wet. Where is Mick Fowler when you need him? Or global warming?

Again, nice views. The Isle of Eigg in the Atlantic.

On the way down we passed a sizeable boulder and had to do something. We managed to get up a V0/1 boulder problem, termed the Knoydartonian. Here is the video on Youtube:

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