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Autumn 23, Equator and Scottish winter coming

Out of the void on a sunny North West day with Kai

We have had a busy few weeks in the Highlands. Its definitely had a shift in seasons in the last week with the leaves turning and the weather getting a bit cooler and more wet and windy. Autumn feels to have arrived. We’ve had a string of rock climbing days with clients along with a few hill days which almost brings us to the end of the season here, although not the end of the rock courses as we will be heading off to East Africa to deliver some climbing courses.

Kai enjoying warm rock at the idyllic Reiff in the North West Highlands

We had a great day out with Kai who was back with us having been on an introduction to rock climbing course earlier in the summer. Its great when people come back and perhaps a good sign we are doing good things. Its also nice to be able to see someones progression in the sport and have a hand in that development. What are sparkling day it was to with clear blue skies and hot temperatures, summers last blast. When the weather is that good then it needs a venue to match, Reiff which lies on the sea cliffs in the North West Highlands makes for a very good one. We had a great day in the sun ticking various routes and looking at anchors and gear placements. This led us to Kais first lead as the last route of the day.

Rosie and Aurelia enjoying the last of the summer in Glen Nevis

We also had the final intro to rock course which we provide to members of the Austrian Alpine Clubs UK section. A trip into Glen Nevis and quite a contrasting two days of weather

with warm sunshine on day one which meant we where able to get plenty of pitches in with Rosie and Aurealia working our way up from Pinnacle to the Gutter. The course was very much geared towards them becoming competent seconds. Something I have noted this season has been that people who have been coming through on our intro rock courses are not actually being introduced to climbing at all. Many peoples way into the sport now is via a climbing wall which gives us a great head start on a course with participants being able to belay tie in and climb with good technique. Also many have the starting skills for belaying a leading climber which means we can get straight into things. Day 2 though Autumn began with wet and windy weather blowing through. We looked at various things including self managed abseils, gear placements and then a variety of anchor building skills as we worked our way up Scimatar ridge.

We are pleased to say that we will be delivering more of these courses next year I have produced a dedicated page on the site (view here). As yet we have not published the dates but we will be doing that in the next fortnight. Although these courses are for members of the AACUK where we have spaces we will put the word out as non members are also welcome. There are considerable savings if you are a member though and worth thinking about joining. We will be delivering some rock, scrambling and hillwalking courses.

Descending the mountain track on Ben Nevis

We have had a few days on the Ben with groups hillwalking but it certainly is starting to feel considerably more autumnal in the hills at the moment, in fact as I type we have snow forecast to fall across the highest tops as a storm blows through.

Last light on the Skye Ridge

As the summer draws to a close in the Highlands we will be doing the last few days out before we finish for the summer climbing season. At least for here we will be doing our usual Autumn run to East Africa and Kenya where we will be delivering some rock foundation courses along with some other things. Also hopefully with some time to explore and climb in the sunshine. So the rock season is not quite over for us. Look out for a few blogs on these exploits as we go. We will also be publishing regular pics and posts of the socials, Facebook and Instagram. We have also put out a new reel for Wild Path below as the seasons turn.

We will be returning at the start of December for the winter season. Hopefully it will be as it was when we arrived back last year with freezing temperatures and ice all over, but we want it to last through the season this time as it was a low snowfall season last year. We have a range of courses on and have given the website a fresh coating of winter. Have a look around and get in touch with enquiries and ideas. We have some bookings in already so get in touch to get your slot on our skills and summits courses throughout the winter.

The road to winter, the wonderful North West Highlands in the evening light

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