Archive for ice-axe

The Pinnacle [by Hot Aches]

Posted in Books, Mountains, pictures, Travel with tags , , , , , , , , on February 22, 2014 by xi'an

Last night, I watched “The Pinnacle” on my computer. This film retraces the unworldly week of Jimmy Marshall and Robin Smith who climbed in Feb. 1960 six first winter ascents on Ben Nevis. This included the great routes Orion Face Direct and Point Five Gully. The film includes a detailed interview of Jimmy Marshall as well as the repeat, 50 years later, by Dave MacLeod and Andy Turner of the six routes that were first climbed over that 1960 week. This is terrific climbing and I also loved it for following so many climbing routes on the Ben! Following Steve Dean’s description, the “pinnacle” alludes to the feat of Marshall and Smith, who re-defined Scottish climbing, all this using old-style ice-axes and step-cutting rather than the soon to come front-pointed crampons and much more manageable shorter and doubled ice-axes… The film is available for free screening on Hot Aches website for a few more days! (I also learned at last the meaning of hot aches and screaming barfies from the movies. Handy for the next winter climb or run!)

spurned once again by Lady MacDonald [ridge]

Posted in Mountains, pictures, Travel with tags , , , , , , on March 24, 2012 by xi'an

Since the huge amount of snow on the ground (plus a lack of snowshoes and an avalanche warning) prevented us (Alex, Devin, and myself) from climbing Ha Ling peak (rightmost peak on the above) on Sunday as we had planned, we crossed the valley to check whether Lady MacDonald was more welcoming than last time. (Despite highly pessimistic and eventually misinformed warnings from the lady at the Canmore information centre.) There was just enough snow to make the first part of the climb easier than on dry terrain and we reached the eyesore of the teahouse ruins in early afternoon, meeting two groups that had turned around there. Continue reading