Thursday, 7 April 2011

Dawn Patrol

Blair Fyffe on Yellow Wall at Laggan.

I'm back to the dawn patrol, surveying areas of Easter Ross for black grouse. I'd forgotten the amazing sense of privelage you get when you're out in the hills watching the horizon glow and grow with the day's new sun, and the peculiar evocative bubbles and cough calls these birds make as the males strut their stuff to show off for a mate. I'd also forgotten the soul-sinking feeling you get when your alarm whips you out of bed at 0400. Swings and roundabouts.

On the climbing front, the bouldering has been ticking over fine. I've just been visiting local crags between the showers. After the scrubbing I gave Burnside back in January it's looking spick and span. I managed the sit start to Gale Force at Laggan today with Blair Fyffe. I can't grade for toffee, but it bumps the grade up a notch from the standing start so depending on what that was it's now 7A or 7A+. I guess if it goes from a sitter you might as well do it. I had a day getting thrown off Primo at Am Fasgadh with Murdo a few weekends back, but otherwise I've not done much with a rope since the grit.

Gale Force going from the sitter. The stand start is great, but this makes for a much better problem.

And finally....

We were lucky enough to be invited down to Wales for Richie and Paula's wedding in Llechwedd Stale Caverns. A very cool place to get hitched and a really good day. Congratulations guys!

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