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November 2021

October 2021

outdoor activities lake district and training

October 2021 – ‘Biblical’ rain!

Scrambling Course

We kicked off with a four-day adventure Scrambling course: more information – Here

The work had come from a colleague who runs his own guiding business and this is sometimes how it goes in our industry. As well as running courses yourself, sometimes there is a limit of how many you can do time wise and physically wise as your on the go from the minute you meet the client until you get back into your car and head home.

The four-day scrambling course is a great opportunity to consolidate your learning. Firstly on day one there can be quite an overwhelming amount of information to take in. For example when to use the rope, and more importantly how to use it. So to have it spread over four days things start to sink in.  adventure


To add to the adventure of it all, the weather forecast for the week wasn’t great. In fact on two of the days there was ‘biblical’ rain forecast! Day one we were unable to cross the stream below Pavey Ark and so had to detour and consider an alternative to Jack’s Rake – A classic grade 1 scramble in the Lake District. Picture showing this above with Stickle tarn in the foreground. Indeed we did come back later in the week and get the tick when there was a break in the weather. It was the sort of weather where no waterproofs would be…waterproof if you know what I mean? But this adds to the realism and adventure of it all, and definitely makes you a stronger overall mountaineer.


Over the four days some ground was covered. I thought the weather was marginally looking better in the northern Lakes but this was too good to be true. But we did manage to climb the famous Cam Crag ridge, again a classic Lakeland scramble. As we topped out in the wild weather with visibility down to about ten metres, we covered some navigation tips and tricks, as this is an essential part of scrambling in the UK Mountains. It’s also equally important to be able to navigate to your start location too. As pin pointing exactly where a scramble starts can be very tricky. The second day wasn’t how I had planned it, but being the best weather of the week made it fit. Was an ascent of Middlefell Buttress in Langdale, quite probably one of the, if not thee best adventures and easy rock climbs in the valley. Furthermore it is topped off with a 40m abseil down the gully back to the start, a textbook way to end the scramble.

Scrambling Course – Rock Climbing Course

After the scrambling course, it was on to a four-day adventure rock climbing course. Fraser wanted to learn more about the art of climbing and how to go about doing things correctly. Again, the same as the scrambling course, this is super essential to get the grounding in so that you don’t learn bad habits that can stick with you for years.

For example I remember when I started, I was shown to make yourself safe at the top of a climb, you put a figure of eight in the rope on a bight and clipped it to your harness. Now although not unsafe, it’s just a time consuming knot to do in that situation. So therefore not appropriate. On the other hand, a clove hitch for example is adjustable, therefore saving time equalising yourself near the edge. adventure

Top roping/Bottom roping

Another topic he wanted to cover was bottom roping. This is where you rig a rope up at the top of a climb and belay your climbing partner at the base of the climb. Its advantages are the belayer can help the climber with tips and tricks on how to climb their chosen climb. We looked at some of the most common set up’s and ‘how to’ rig your ropes safely and efficiently.

Building belays

This skill was slowly feathered in over the four days. Belay building can be confusing so a slow build (no pun intended) I find is best. Every situation is different but if you know the main principles, you can then use it when building belays in different situations, and different types of rock.

Hill walking for confidence

The back end of October was a booking I had taken earlier on in the year. Andrea wanted to become more confident and independent in the hills, so she can have her own safe adventures. She had, had various aches and injuries over the years, which had knocked her confidence.

Originally we had planned a two-day course to cover various topics. For example, moving on steeper terrain. Crossing scree and lose rock. Light scrambling and techniques for this. Navigation for bad weather, were the main points to cover. Sadly we both decided to put the other day on ice and come back when better weather is here. In fact the day we postponed was again ‘biblical’ but this time caused many floods in the area, and some bridge damage! Definitely a good call to postpone. She was extremely grateful and although not the preferred option, sometimes it’s the best plan of attack, especially when you are trying to build confidence.


Scrambling advice/rack – Here 

Advice on Rock Climbing rack etc – Here 

September 2021

outdoor activities lake district and training

weissmies dri-hornli

family days

September 2021


The Weissmies

In September we had Deepan out with friend and business partner Neil. Neil is a British Mountain Guide who splits his time between the UK and the Alps. Neil guides for Rock n Ridge and heads up our alpine section of the company.

Deepan had six days and was on a mission to climb as much rock and peaks as possible! Of course there was some acclimatisation to do before climbing these high peaks.

The hike up to the Almageller hut is useful in a number of ways. Firstly it gets your head into the surroundings. Dri Hornli Secondly it’s great for fitness and training in preparation for the climbing of the Weissmies and climbs like the Dri Hornli, which was on the cards. And thirdly it’s all topping up your acclimatisation fitness. And fourthly it’s a warm, comfortable place to stay with food and beverage!  The hut sits at 2,894m, and the Weissmies stands at 4,017m, which as you can see is a good place to acclimatise.

The next day was the push for the summit and the picture above shows ‘Deeps’ on the summit of the Weissmies! Well-done lads.

Dri Hornli

The Dri Hornli / Dri Hornli traverse is a classic AD ridge on the south ridge of the Weissmies. It’s a ½ / ¾ day rock climb, which is roped, of course to keep you safe at all times. The traverse is exposed in places and the climbing equates to about a 4a/4b rock climb in the UK. The pictures show ‘Deeps’ on the ridge of the Dri Hornli, with the ‘classic’ picture just below the crest of the mountain.


In addition to the fantastic adventures that were going on in the Alps. Someone has to hold the fort back home, and September was a busy month here. Lot’s of Canyoning and Ghyll Scrambling, but some interesting multi pitch climbing work came in. The family wanted some rock climbing up near or around Edinburgh. After scouring the climbing guidebooks for a while, I came up with a place called Traprain Law. I’ve never heard, or been here but when I arrived the day before to check things out it looked promising.  Dri Hornli Weissmies

The weather was mega for their day luckily. So we made full use of this and got to work climbing as much as possible. The kids were great, and were keen. After all of the climbs they got to abseil off the rock back down to the ground, which is always a buzz for new climbers. Rock Climbing courses Here


In addition to climbing in Scotland, there were people wanting days out in the Lakes. Jack and friend Olly were two climbers – Olly being relatively new to the sport but keen. Jack had done a fair share of climbing before but wanted to progress and take it further. He had climbed out in the Alps before, and so was telling him about the Dri Hornli and the Weissmies trips that were happening. The Dri Hornli is one that he had always wanted to do so that lit the fire for inspiration and alpine dreaming! Besides lots of rock climbing, equally important is looking at the safety side of things. So building belays, anchor selection, stance management and simple rescue scenarios were covered throughout their day. Jack’s words were ‘massively beneficial’ to his learning so that felt good.

Alpine Courses

If you require any further information on any of our courses, please get in touch. Besides the Dri Hornli and the Weissmies, Rock n Ridge covers ANY peak in the Alps and can sort out a custom trip out for individuals/small groups.

There will be more info about the Alps section soon, and eventually will be revamping this side as it’s a side of the business not many clients know about, but the conversation often gets around to the Alps and trips etc.

You can find more information on our alpine section Here


Preparing for the Alps booklet – Here 




June 2021

outdoor activities lake district and training

June 2021


Kids climbing days

June was a cracking month weather wise. Combined with the holidays there were lots of kids climbing days out.

Kids climbing is always fun as you just never know how the day will ‘pan’ out. I normally find that once you light the touch paper – climbing, or scrambling or anything else outdoor orientated, then the activity comes alive. Of course the kids need to be on board with it too to make it work. Likewise with many years of working for the Outward Bound trust, it can be like herding cats. 😉 You can find some more information on our climbing days here.

Activities kids climbing

Andy’s family made a couple of visits to the Lakes. They too were looking for some adventure days out. One of the activities had to be some climbing with his kids – Harry, Thomas and Elsie. As they sometimes say ‘it’s a small world’ and I too use to live in Otley a good few years back. I was actually brought up about 5 miles away so know the area very well.

We had done some Canyoning before with them, which they loved, so this time I had decided for some Scrambling followed by some Rock Climbing.

Andy also wanted to look at some rope work so that in the future, he may use it to safe guard the kids whilst scrambling amongst the rocks and outcrops, possibly back in his home town of Otley in Yorkshire.  More on Otley later…kids climbing

The finest crag on the planet

Besides kids climbing, I made a short trip to see family and nip into one if not thee, finest bouldering crags known – IMO – That is Caley crags. Caley is situated above the market town of Otley. A large and steep hill called Pool Bank leads you up to the top (use to cycle and run this a lot in the past) From there it’s a short walk to some amazing problems* situated in beautiful surroundings. This is probably the nearest thing we have to Fontainebleau, which sits outside of Paris, and too is utterly amazing.

On the government-climbing grant, I spent many days and what would turn into many years bouldering and climbing on the rocks.  The picture in the gallery is called one step above the clouds, and is a super problem that carries on up the wall above where I am and tops out in the clouds! I’ve probably climbed this 40/50 times over the years and actually remember a foggy wintery day topping out into mist…which felt like clouds 😉

  • Problems – To a boulderer each piece of rock or stone may have as many as 10 to fifteen ways up it. Therefore each boulder is unique and individual. So we call each way up a ‘problem’

Group days kids climbing

The reconnaissance of the Snowdon horseshoe by Deepan and myself the month before was the plan for the group we had arranged to meet and do a two day activity training weekend in preparation for their upcoming Alps trip with Rock n Ridge. Sadly in the end this did not go ahead due to Covid. Nevertheless no training is wasted and we made full use of the weekend. Crib Goch and Snowdon on day one. And Rock Climbing on day two. The weather was scorching and finding some shade was the tricky part! In contrast to kids climbing, these days can be more competitive. One person climbs a route and of course their friend has to do it. It’s all great fun and morale was high and the support from the group was strong.

After the climbing day we all said farewell and it was back up to the Lakes for me as in a day or two there was a family wanting a Canoe session followed by some ‘kids climbing’!

Now then, will it be touch paper, or cats…?



UKC – A list showing virtually all the climbing routes and ‘problems’ at Caley crags – Here

Beginners guide to bouldering – Here 

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