Dolomite Wanderings (pt I)

So just before departing for the Dolomites, I got the news that Davide, my old friend from Scotland and local of the Dolomites, had been landed with some short-notice work overseas. He would have to leave soon, and be very busy finishing up reports-due before departure (he’s a geologist). Maybe he would have time for a day’s climb, but perhaps not. So again I was adrift awhile in a huge expanse of unknown rock. Time to solo some classics, I guess! Continue reading “Dolomite Wanderings (pt I)”

The Loneliness (or not) of the Long-Distance Soloist

So by some hefty slab of irony, I found myself in the most densely climber-populated area of my trip so far, and yet without a partner. Ailefroide is a busy, commericalised climbing area in the Ecrins, with most of the visible valley floor taken by a huge campsite. It has the scale of a festival, but without any music. Continue reading “The Loneliness (or not) of the Long-Distance Soloist”

A Soggy Start

So while I waited for Seb to arrive, I took a drive down into the fringes of the Picos de Europa. I had only a little information on the climbs there, but I found myself accidentally parked up at Lebena, underneath the impressive prow of Cueto Agero, which was one of the few valley-based routes that I had a description for. Took a walk up to look, and scrambled up the back to scope the decent route and take in the view. Continue reading “A Soggy Start”

Scotland, warming up

The final prong of the preparation fork (weird metaphor, dunno where that came from) was just getting out and climbing big routes. I had a list. I didnt make it very far down that list, because again life intruded. Work, weather and family obligations combined in unfortunate ways. I did manage a few significant outings, though, which deserve mention. Continue reading “Scotland, warming up”