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Next Meet

"Wild Camping"

1st - 3rd March 2013

Next Social

AGM. Portland D136.

Thursday 14th March
8.00 pm

If you don't want this for a time, please comment it-Fabian !Next Ice Climb

Manchester Indoor Ice Wall
Friday 1st December at 8:30am

If you don't want this for a time, please comment it-Fabian !Next Climb

First stop at Glen Nevis YH, some Glenfinnan hills then to Mallaig and the ferry to Rhum, where we set up camp on the grass by the beach. This turned out to be the ultimate midge nightmare (yes, worse than Glen Brittle). One evening we retreated to the end of the pier to cook supper, lighting a baricade of green, smoking, midge coils across the pier to cut it off from land. We all did a full traverse of the Rhum Cuillins, with spectacular views of summits amongst the cloud, and out to Eigg, then a long walk-out round the coast path. The next day some walked up a small hill, while the climbers, led by Mad Martin set off round the coast to put up some new routes on the low cliffs, which were later submitted to a guide book (who knows any more details??)

Next we set sail for Eigg. After landing at a tiny key we walked off round the bay to set up camp by the beach, and a party set off to find the shop which was said to be on the pass joining the two tiny villages on opposite sides of the island. Sure enough there it was, pretty much alone in a long, old hut with just a red teleophone box for company, and it was closed.

We tried phoning round the locals, and soon found out who was in charge, and promised a booming business bonanza, (on an Eiggian scale, after all our arrival had probably nearly doubled the population, at least in terms of appetite) if he was prepared to come out and open up. He was, and we soon found a pile of reduced beer (no one asked why it was reduced), which we bought, along with a token bit of food, and off we set back down the road.

There was a vague plan to head up onto the Sgurr (the island's spectacular 1200ft volcanic plug) for some kind of party, and Mad Martin seemed especially keen to persuade us to go straight up with the beer now, while Simon and Chris insisted on a return for a civilised supper, and to get some gear for a night do. Mad must have known of a dastardly plot that we did not, for meanwhile, back at camp, some joker had thought it a spiffing wheeze to resight Chris and Simon's tent (a bright orange Vango borrowed form the uni stores) some way out to what would soon be sea as the tide came in. It was in fact just the flysheet and poles, but was plenty convincing enough to arouse the interest of the locals, one of whom jumped into this landrover and sped round the track to warn us stupid landlocked Nottingham intellectuals of the midnight watery fate awaiting us. The intended culmination of this tale had been designed as follows.... while merry on top of the Sgurr, someone would have suddnely 'noticed' a strange orange tent-like object, clearly visible from far, far above, just about to be engulfed by the waves, followed by Chris and Simon tearing dementedly down the mountain to snatch their entire kit and sleeping bags from the jaws of a watery grave, unknowing that it was, in fact, all safely stored out of sight up the beach.

Anyway, the dastardly plot failed, and after a solid supper (do never drink on an empty stomach while tackling one of Britain's most fearful mountains!) we headed up to the crag-lined crest that trailed off the back of the monolith towering above the moorland behind our bay. It was dusk as we reached the top and set to partying. Simon entertained himself getting the others worried each time he swayed off unannounced into the darkness in the direction of the 700ft vertical plunge, for a pee. The lighthouses set to work all around on a lovely, calm night. Some went back down and we watched their Petzl lights right back down to the beach. The last remnants waited for first light before heading home.

Next stop Glen Brittle, YH and then campsite. A big group of us went for the Coire Lagan round in beautiful weather. Andy Relf (a.k.a. Randy Elf, Ramsoc VP) is hillarious all the way round, sitting down and bum-shuffeling along for the sharp bits of ridge. Coming off Sgurr Mhic Choinnich Andy got in a bit of a flap and refused to go down the key step (a 3m slightly exposed climby bit)with the rest of us, instead finding his own route nearby but overlooking the main corrie. He threw his rucksack down one section, losing Rupertís water bottle which heíd borrowed, which rattled down onto the scree slopes far below. Coming up to the In Pinn, Simon slipped off the back of the group, to take on the long SE ridge alone, and was sitting waiting on top as Rupert appeared, leading the climbing paty on the NW face (thankfully for Simon, who would otherwise have had no rope to abseil down). Eventually Andy arrived on top, scrabbling desparately onto the summit and immediately shuffling off backwards to jam himself between the rocks like Gollum cowering before the Balrock. He was utterly speachless (for probably the first time in his life) except for a stream of muttering noises something like 'uhf ffu aahp pfup ufk uck....' On the way back down through Coire Lagan Andy went off to search the scree slopes for Rupertís water bottle in a futile fit of determination not to appear incompetent, never mind incontinent.

Other parts of the ridge, plus Bla Bheinn and Garbh-bheinn followed, with the weather staying kind to us.

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