So its a long story, maybe 50 years of climbing so far, and with many attempts by mother nature, and my own daft ambition to kill me. I started climbing on loose undeveloped sea cliffs, soloing around, deep water soloing before the term was invented, this gave me a sense of autonomy that I took to the Alps at 16. I began developing and designing my own gear at this time, and from these humble beginings I have probably become even more humble, lots of my life is about getting more out of less.
Some of my best times were in North Wales doing new routes in the Slate quarries, and on Gogarth, in the late 70s and mid 80s. Concurrently visits to the alps in winter started my tally of solos of alpine routes to around 86 of TD grade and above, there has been a slow down as paranoia has crept in, or avalanched in. Anyway I moved to Chamonix for 20 years finally moving when I became badly smashed up due to a high speed snowboarding prang. Relocating to the Pyrenees, recovery were aided by two of my old loves, Caving and slooow hill running, these brought back some of the soul to my climbing after being a jaded 'Pro' for so long. It was also there slowly but surely that the lessons of a such a terribly long career finally bore fruit and I began to climb a little better, 9a arrived at the tender age of 52! Another good year was when I did the inaugural Tor de Geants 200 mile mountain race, a 9a, and some E8 first ascents. Hopefully I might have another good year.......
Highlights in this long pilgrimage thru rocks and snow and ice, might be Terminator first grade V111 in Britain, The Dervish classic slate rock route and Lost Castle 8a+ off-width. Big days at Tremadoc soloing 20 routes.
Alps, from clumsy winter ascent of Eiger in antique leather double boots in the snowiest winter on record to express ascents of Super couloir integral in 2 ½ hours. First winter solo of Walker Spur.
8c on bolts early on but too busy with ice axes and developing mixed climbing to M12, and freeing desert towers in the States.
Lately big, bigger and biggest roofs, King of Kings 70 meter span of roof. Slowly trying to up my grade etc.
- Refine the team by