Sunday, 27 February 2011


After a damp, but snowy day up high yesterday and snow overnight the hills were looking pretty good this morning. John and I headed up Aonach Mor hoping for a little mixed action to save the last of my days off. I had my eye on Piranha VII,8, a pescod route from 2000. This climbs a technical wall and corner until a thin traverse across the left wall leads to slightly easier ground. The overnight weather had been kind and the route was lightly rimed with a good covering of snow on the ledges, game on. Considering this route had no stars in my guide and has been neglected, it is a superb route with outstanding climbing on it, well worthy of 2 stars at least. The steep, technical and thin nature of the climbing starts from the word go and continues all the way to the belay. I would highly recommend it.

Above: Me picking my way up the crux pitch

Below: John working his way through the crux traverse

Above: John happy to hit easier ground

We had planned to do Sterling bridge as well, but I have to be East this evening so opted for an easy second route. Gondola with the Wind fit the bill. Pleasent climbing led to an extreme cornice traverse to get out, John did well. The sun had come out as we were finishing our second route and stripped some of the steeper mixed lines.

There are plenty of routes in excellent condition, but the cornices are monsters. If you are there early and know where your route is, it might be worth kicking the top through (be 100% sure there are no folks down already).

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