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It doesn't get tougher than this

It doesn't get tougher than this


Postby Fife Flyer » Wed Jun 29, 2016 7:56 pm

Route description: Sgurr nan Gillean

Munros included on this walk: Am Basteir, Sgurr nan Gillean

Date walked: 25/06/2016

Time taken: 8 hours

Distance: 12.5 km

Ascent: 1055m

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What a week this has been, 3 days on Knoydart, that I loved and yesterday was the hill that most non climbers dread the Inaccessible Pinnacle along with Sgurr Mhic Choinnich. Yes it was challenging, yes it got the adrenaline flowing and yes I kind of loved it. The walk report for that day was passed across to Pam (pamfox) as the In Pin was her very first Munro, can you believe that, has anyone else ever started the journey on the In Pin? 8)
We were lucky with the weather yesterday, especially as our guide Paddy did stress that there was a possibility of thunder later and if that did happen we would be off the hills pronto :( Thankfully the forecast bore no resemblance to the actual weather and todays was very similar.
Paddy did warn us that Gillean would be the hardest hill and he certainly wasn't wrong :wink: Not only was there more exposure, there was more rope work and definitely more hands on.
The plan was to meet at the layby in Sligachan at 9am and we were all early and were on our way at 9am. The hills couldn't be seen due to low cloud, there was little or no wind and it was very, very humid. It wasn't long before we were all leaking and Paddy was setting a good pace, the initial part of the walk has a very gradual incline but the humidity made it seem harder :lol:

Image Photo of my boots after yesterdays descent down the scree, lots of shades of grey

Image No blue sky - yet

Image Karen managed to persuade Paddy to stop so we could cool down for a second :lol:

Image Still a tad overcast, still going up

Image Looking back down

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Image

Image Getting steeper

Image Trying to brighten up

Image Harness & helmet time

Image Looks pretty scary to me

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Image

We have now reached the first of the rope ascents, this one is probably the longest but was fairly easy as it was up a chimney with plenty of hand and foot holds. As chief photographer I was snapping away like there was no tomorrow. I won't post all of the "climbing" photo's, hopefully the ones I select will give you a flavour of what to expect 8)

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Image Sorry Andy I seem to have lot's of your ascent :lol:

Image The faces say it all :lol:

Image Karen's turn

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Image On you go Simon

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Image

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I went up next sorry Pam & Jimmy, your turn will come :lol: :lol:

Image Every face tells a story?

Image It wasn't that difficult Simon :lol:

Image Starting to brighten up

Image Who is going to appear next?

The next manoeuvre was probably the hardest of the day, it involved working your way round a large rock that was in the way, sounds easy but if you look down there is a reminder that you are very exposed :roll: After getting round the rock you then have reach across another massive drop, place your hand on the rock opposite and then eventually get your feet across, before then trying to pull yourself up. Hopefully that describes it :lol:

Image Karen volunteered

Image Long legs make it easy

Image Unfortunately Jimmy is the only one with long legs :roll:

Image Nice view

Image Another awkward rock to negotiate

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Image Pam being supervised

Image Smiling at the moment

Image More hands on

Image Jimmy long legs

Image Andy pointing out a blade of grass

Image An easy bit

Image The way up

Image Bet you weren't expecting that?

Image Weather definitely improving

Image Still going up

Image Nice little window

Image Not far now

Image Happy summit faces

After a brief rest and a few photo's it was time to move on and head down, we knew it would be even harder descending as it usually is. Great care and concentration were required :wink:

Image Heading down

Image Down through the window

Image Hands on as it's a long way down

Image Rope time again, descending down the chimney. I volunteered to go first so that I could get some 'action' shots on the rope 8)

Image Pam next down

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Image Safely down

Image Looking down towards the Slig

Image Andy next

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Image Time for a smile

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Image Nearly there

Image I'll let Andy explain :lol: :lol: :lol:

Image Jimmy next

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Image Smile time

Image Down safely

Image Simon next

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Image Nearly down

Image And finally Karen

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Image Smile time

Image Showing off, one handed

Image Safely down

Image Time to move on

Image Going up for a few minutes

Image Looking back

Next photo's are of a very short rope descent, once again I volunteered to be heroic and go first :lol:

Image Simon

Image Jimmy

Image Karen

Image Pam

Image Andy

Image On the way up to Basteir

Image Summit of Am Basteir

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Now the long descent, we would of course have to climb back up the step using the rope again so get ready for the last few rope photo's 8) This time I would be last to ascend using the rope.

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Image Paddy about to romp up, showing us the hand & foot holds

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Image Paddy all ready for us to 'romp' up

Image Andy first

Image Karen

Image Pam

Image Simon

Image And finally Jimmy

Image The end of the ridge

Image Final descent

Image Long way down to the Slig

Image Above shot zoomed

Image Bit of catching up to do

The descent down was straight forward and we were back at the vehicles by 6pm, Jimmy was heading back home to Alnwick and was anticipating arriving home at about 2am. The rest of us were heading to the Slig (pub) for a well earned drink and a bite to eat 8)
After 2 really tough days on Skye we had achieved our goal of visiting all 12 summits, it had only taken us a year, we were really thankful that the weather finally had been kind to us :lol:
A massive thanks must go to Paddy, as without him none of us would have ever achieved our goal :clap: :clap:
Also thanks to my colleagues for all their support, we really did try and help each other, especially when we were all well out of our comfort zone :clap:
For me the journey is now nearing the end and what a journey it has been so far, my final Munro is Ben More on Mull. Unfortunately I have to wait until Saturday 13th August before I can compleat, naturally I want my children to share the special moment with me and that is the earliest date they can all make it :lol:
As the WH community have also been fantastic to me since I joined in May 2013 I would like to invite anyone who wishes to join me on Mull? If you fancy joining me, please PM me for the gory details :lol:
So this time the 'next' is obvious, but I will of course have to keep fit in between time, so the Borders will be back on the menu.
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Re: It doesn't get tougher than this

Postby dav2930 » Wed Jun 29, 2016 9:11 pm

Good effort all :clap:
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Re: It doesn't get tougher than this

Postby PeteR » Wed Jun 29, 2016 9:36 pm

Paddy sets a fair pace doesn't he Martin :shock:

Some great shots of the climbing on Gillean. Definitely the toughest on the ridge I would say. At least you got some relatively good weather for it.........rained all the time the day I did these two hills :(
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Re: It doesn't get tougher than this

Postby martin.h » Wed Jun 29, 2016 9:41 pm

Nice one Martin, well done sir :clap: it looks like you all had a great day :D, many happy faces.
Good luck for 13/8, I hope all goes according to plan :D
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Re: It doesn't get tougher than this

Postby AJNicholls » Wed Jun 29, 2016 9:48 pm

Cracking report once again Martin. Thanks. Great time on a pair of awesome pointy hills.

Trip home ended up taking me 12 hours after a fuel diversion in Perth and a couple of stops for naps around Penrith and Birmingham.

Fife Flyer wrote:(pic)

I'll let Andy explain :lol: :lol: :lol:


Erm, not sure I can explain what's going on in that photo and keep the forum within the realms of a "PG" rating. 8) People are welcome to ask me at your compleation if they're desperate to know!
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Re: It doesn't get tougher than this

Postby pamfox » Wed Jun 29, 2016 9:53 pm

Your report brought it all back to me Martin. The detail and photos are great. Thanks for the loan of your sticks too
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Re: It doesn't get tougher than this

Postby simon-b » Wed Jun 29, 2016 11:23 pm

You told it just like it was, Martin. The exposed bit on Gillean was just a little hairy. A mixture of elation and relief that 5 of us finally finished the Skye Munros, I think. And what a first 4 for Pam over the 2 days!

Good luck with your own final island Munro.
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Re: It doesn't get tougher than this

Postby kmai1961 » Thu Jun 30, 2016 8:25 am

Thanks, Martin (and everyone else). The memories of our two days on Skye will linger for a very long time. I spent a lot of time being scared spitless, but wouldn't trade the experience for anything. I think it's taken until today for the adrenalin to start to ebb away.

K.
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Re: It doesn't get tougher than this

Postby Borderhugh » Thu Jun 30, 2016 10:01 am

Thats fantastic Martin. :clap:

Having read about your exploits and efforts, I am feeling a lot more confident about taking on the Cuillin.
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Re: It doesn't get tougher than this

Postby John Hassall » Fri Jul 01, 2016 10:06 am

Congratulations on a great day and your forthcoming compleation.
Your opening paragraph question "has anyone else ever started the journey on the Inn Pinn?" prompted this reply.
I climbed the Inn Pinn at Easter 1979 on my first visit to Scotland - never having heard of "The Munros"!
I remember the day vividly.
After an icy and "entertaining" ascent of The Cioch on Sron na Ciche we traversed across the snow slopes of upper Coire Lagan to find the Inn Pinn plastered in snow. We soloed the East Ridge, brushing the snow off the holds with our hands and down the snow free West Face.

And thereby started the next 37 years (to date) of Scottish mountain climbing!
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Re: It doesn't get tougher than this

Postby Jaxter » Sat Jul 02, 2016 8:55 am

This is fantastic - well done all of you! :clap: :clap: Looks like you enjoyed it as well :D
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Re: It doesn't get tougher than this

Postby kmai1961 » Sat Jul 02, 2016 10:31 am

AJNicholls wrote:
Fife Flyer wrote:(pic)

I'll let Andy explain :lol: :lol: :lol:


Erm, not sure I can explain what's going on in that photo and keep the forum within the realms of a "PG" rating. 8)


Dunno, Andy, seems to me that you could just say "Aw nuts, that was really fun" leaving punctuation, emphasis, and accompanying noises up to individual interpretation / imagination. :lol: :lol:
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Re: It doesn't get tougher than this

Postby AJNicholls » Sat Jul 02, 2016 11:50 pm

kmai1961 wrote:
AJNicholls wrote:
Fife Flyer wrote:(pic)

I'll let Andy explain :lol: :lol: :lol:


Erm, not sure I can explain what's going on in that photo and keep the forum within the realms of a "PG" rating. 8)


Dunno, Andy, seems to me that you could just say "Aw nuts, that was really fun" leaving punctuation, emphasis, and accompanying noises up to individual interpretation / imagination. :lol: :lol:


Nice one Karen, you creative wordsmith ;) Guess you've done it for me. :lol:
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Re: It doesn't get tougher than this

Postby Silverhill » Sun Jul 03, 2016 5:16 pm

Well done and good luck for the last one! :D
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Re: It doesn't get tougher than this

Postby Scotjamie » Sun Jul 03, 2016 8:29 pm

Just brilliant Martin
and Karen as well!
Like Hugh, I may think again about tackling SnG
Give my apols for the 13th - (you and Polly the same weekend!) but have a well deserved celebration.
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