I'm not usually one for sappy sentiments. But after spending four sunny days climbing in the north west highlands, following a flush of winter routes in the most spectacular of settings, it is easy to understand why people are compelled to explore, to discover inspiration, and perhaps difficult to understand why people are not. Interesting then, that climbing should so often be identified with drama and jeopardy; with bands of mercenary masochists and far flung ego's rather than with romance, desire and fun.
Of course, I am not inferring my invulnerability, and in light of recent event's it is perhaps not surprising that many reconsider the value of the risk's they take. But having learnt and progressed, having risked a little, thought, done, left and still to desire so that I can sleep under the stars, sit by the sea, be with friends and try something new is a gift.
A wise man called Tom, who's very nature is a cryptogram within puzzle, once said there is a climber within everyone, and I think he is right.
Morning on Stac Pollaidh
Stepping out to an unexpected rock blade!
The superb final pitch of Jack the Ripper
Sam, pressing on through the intimidating wall on Expecting to Fly
A pre-second snap before the light began to fade..
World class bouldering in a magical situation. Haven on the cubes epitomises technical sandstone climbing and is the best boulder problem I've done.
Rory firing all cyclinders, On the Western Skyline
Me, making as elegant a mantle as is possible, on Tunnel Vision (Photo by Marcus)
The Grit Geezer, otherwise known as Tom, turns steep routes to staircases
Me, getting closer to the Tunnel (Photo by Marcus)
The view south, ambling in to Reiff
Appleby and Blando on The Razors Edge
Sam, stepping through on Diamond Back
Incase your having trouble with the last letter, i'ts a G..
Some more pictures from Marcus's wee picture blog: http://foxesandfairlies.tumblr.com/