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nick@alphamountaineering.co.uk      +44 (0)7748 275825

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On this page we at Alpha Mountaineering will keep you up to date with news and the local conditions as we find them out on the hill. If this page has not been updated recently then check my Facebook or Twitter page as I can update those more easily when away from the office.

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Monday 16th May 2016

Mischief in Greenland by H.W.Tilman

Mischief in Greenland by H.W.Tilman

Vertebrate Publishing and Lodestar Books have teamed up for a project to publish all 16 of HW Tilman's books in single volumes. I've read some of the mountaineering books in the collected edition published in the 80's but it certainly was unwieldy. Vertebrate Publishing recently sent me a copy of ‘Mishchief in Greenland’ about Tilman's first 2 voyages across the North Atlantic.

It was so much more handy to have a 200 page copy rather than reading from a huge tome. Colin Putt, who sailed with him in 1970, writes a foreword (dated April 2015) which gives his personal view on Tilman ‘the man’ and tells us that he was not in fact “the fabled misogynist recluse” but in fact “the perfect gentleman”. Annie Hill's afterword is excellent in its honesty and attempts to “read between the lines” when it comes to his self-deprecation and “his misogynist persona”.

Having sailed across the North Sea last year in a 24 foot sail boat and then rock climbed in Jossingfjord before sailing home I was attracted by the oft quoted sentence of Tilman's; “Only a man in a devil of a hurry would wish to fly to his mountains, forgoing the lingering pleasure and mounting excitement of slow, arduous approach under his own exertions.” I really enjoyed Tilman's understatement and entertaining way with words. Reading of his sailing adventures reminded me of my own sailing experiences which have occasionally been undertakings with an unknown outcome. It is always good to be inspired by folk with a bold sense of adventure even in their 60's. Although the fact that that he disappeared in the South Atlantic in 1977 does make you think perhaps we should not follow wholly in his footsteps.


Sunday 8th May 2016

Andy on The One and Only

Sport climbing days off

The last couple of days I've managed to get a couple of days out climbing for myself. Friday I was up at Brin with Andy where it was almost too warm and unusually the cloud and wind were a welcome sight.

Yesterday I was over west climbing at Goat Crag with Lorraine. It was rather cool in comparison with Friday and the rain kept threatening but fortunately didn't amount to anything.

Lorraine climbing on the excellent Cabarfeidh at Goat Crag Lorraine climbing at Goat Crag

I have archived all previous conditions reports. Please click on the appropriate link below to view past reports.