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Monday, 16 January 2012

Aonach Eagach

The forecast for the weekend was good and bad because on the one hand the sun would shine but on the other hand only some ice routes on the Ben and maybe Braeriach would be in decent condition. So Robbie and I opted for a short-ish and sharp-ish training session over the Aonach Eagach. This Glen Coe ridge is a scramble and a grade II in winter route and was first climbed in 1895 by A.R. Wilson, A.W. Russell and A. Fraser. We expected and found spring conditions with some snow on the Northern apects whilst there was spring on the Southern side.

Here is a video of our Aonach Eagach traverse, showing some of the best scrambles.

We parked in the small car park near Allt-na-reigh and ascended often with a heart rate of around 160 bpm (yes, I took a heart rate monitor) to the summit of the Munro Am Bodach. Here I am half way up with Stob Coire nan Lochain and Bidean nam Bian on the Southern side of Glen Coe.

Some good neve higher up but overall very little snow for January.

Here is Robbie tackling the ridge proper whilst I did some interval training: take a photo and then sprint to catch up with Robbie.

Soon the first descent: a steep drop of about 20 m but all on big holds with some snow. We descended quickly but did neither break records nor bones. Here is Robbie also wearing crampons for the only time.

Some easier sections and here I am catching up with Robbie once again.

Good views and easy progress...

... and easy, in places wintry scrambling.

Finally the highlight of the ridge, the crazy pinnacles. Unfortunately no snow here.

After us team red demonstrating the eposure of this section and also the winter-spring contrast.

After the pinnacles the ridge is easier with a final rise to Sgorr nam Fiannaidh, the second Munro. Here we descended directly and then eastwards...

... to reach the car after 4 h 59 min. A good training day but not the climbing we wanted to do mid January!

1 comment:

james franklin said...

that's one crazy beard you've got going there robbie.