ML Training Final Day

Out on the lower slopes of The Glyders today looking at micro nav, coaching navigation, leadership and river crossings. A dry day (until the river) allowing us to enjoy the views for a a change.

Mountain Leader Training course

I am in North Wales working on the second half of a Mountain Leader Training Course. It was off onto the expedition phase yesterday morning out in the Carneddau. We traversed the summits and dropped down to camp by the two reservoirs on the east side. The weather was challenging at times but was had a great camp and a lovely evening for night nav training. Today we came back out over Carnedd Llewelyn and down via Yr Elen, headed back down to the bunkhouse for a debrief

Pool Lifeguard Assessment

I arrived back from France late on Tuesday night and have spent the rest of the week getting the yacht ready to go back on the water. This will be lifted in whilst I am away this coming week.

This morning was a quick visit to Brean Splash to do a Lifeguard Assessment for staff there and tomorrow I will be heading up to North Wales for a few days in the mountains.

Last Day in The Ardeche

Today we headed to the Pont d'Arc for a final river swim before and impressive afternoon thunderstorm. This afternoon was spent hiding from the rain and packing up camp with the exception of a couple of tents as we have an early start and a long drive tomorrow.

Although the week has been activity focussed, there has been a bigger educational value where all the boys wrote the menu, cooked a meal (and we have had some good food, in fact only one bad meal all week), took it in turns to go to the bakery and order the croissants, order their own ice creams and play an active part in managing themselves

More Ardeche Climbing

Another day up at Fontgarnide but nowhere near as hot today which improved things a lot. Some harder routes for the students and some challenges including blindfolded and restricted mobility climbing.

Overnight Ardeche Paddle

Yesterday and today we were out paddling the Ardeche Gorge in glorious sunshine and low wind. A great BBQ at the Bivouac de Gournier completed the trip. I am now looking after 7 very tired teenage boys so hoping for an early night.

Hot Hot Mountain Biking

Another croissant and pain au chocolat start followed by a very hot and sweaty ride up hill on mountain bikes. There was a small breeze for all of a minute or two just enough to keep us alive in the sweltering heat, before a great single track descent. A slightly less offensive uphill ride gave us the same track again before continuing down to the campsite for ice cream and drinks.

Warm Rock Climbing

Croissants, Pain au Chocolat and warm baguettes started the morning and then it was a day for warm rock in the sun at Fontgarnide.. All students did well climbing routes graded 4 - 6a before the early afternoon sun came over the crag and the temp rose very quickly causing us to down ropes and hit the river again for an afternoon swim. This may have to become the norm.

Fireworks on The Ardeche

Having left Plymouth on Saturday night and travelled through France we arrived at Vallon Pont D'Arc mid afternoon today. After setting up base camp we had a swim in the river before dinner and were treated to a firework display right by our tents (a bit too close at times). Activities start tomorrow but it is very hot and sunny here which is a good sign

Gold DofE in The Lake District

Balanced boulder above Thirlmere 

Following a long minibus journey up on Saturday, the last 4 days have been spent out on the hills in The Lake District supervising a Gold DofE Expedition. As the group choose to wild camp on a couple of nights, I was able to hike in and check on them before heading off for some wild camping of my own. I mixed the week up with some fell running during the day and then returning to the bus to grab over night gear and walking in to wild camp. A traverse of the Dodds, an ascent of Hellvellyn, 2 amazing wild camps and some good runs made for an enjoyable week. The boys did well and completed their expedition without any need for intervention from me. Some great weather and stunning views so a few more pictures than normal.