Alan James - UKC and UKHukclimbing.com
I am the owner and director of UKClimbing Limited, the company that runs both UKClimbing.com and Rockfax. I have been involved with ROCKFAX guidebooks since authoring my first book in 1992, and with UKClimbing since its early days in the mid-90s. I am married with 3 children and I live in the longest house on Crookes Mountain in Sheffield. In a former career I used to draw the Pokketz cartoons for OTE, print T-shirts, make trousers and several other hair-brained self-employment ideas.
Best Climbing Experience
I have had many great climbing experiences over the years - early days on grit and in North Wales in the 80s, creeping up the grades; sport climbing in the early 90s in leafy Chee Dale and sunny France; holidays on the Spanish Costas in the mid 90s; and more recently with taking my children out for their first experiences. Probably the best climbing time I have had (so far) were the years I spent obsessed with Pembroke from 1987 to publishing the Pembroke Rockfax in 1995 - great climbs, great routes and great company in one of the most beautiful areas in the world for rock climbing. To pin point an actual moment would be difficult, so I'll choose three: sitting on top of Star Gate after cruising this peerless climb and experiencing "most of the Atlantic Ocean beneath my feet" on the final moves; finding Darkness at Noon in perfect conditions and grabbing an ascent late one day when we were expecting "just another Leap E5"; and clawing over the top of Trevallen after a tenuous ascent of Orange Robe Burning, forearms burning, eyes on stalks, friends waiting at the top.
Favourite Climbing-Related Discussion Topic
Guidebooks, the internet, UKC, Rockfax,... all a bit predictable really.
Articles by Alan James - UKC and UKH
- REVIEW: MSR Talus TR3 Walking Pole Apr/2015
- REVIEW: Y & Y Belay Glasses Apr/2015
- REVIEW: Camp Four Approach Shoe by 5.10 Dec/2014
- REVIEW: Scarpa Boostic Nov/2014
- COMPARISON REVIEW: Trad Quickdraws Sep/2014
- REVIEW: DMM Soft Goods - Rucksacks and Rope Bags Jun/2014
- Bouldering Try-out and Big Shakeout a Great Success Oct/2013
- UKC Readership Survey Results Jun/2013
- Mammut Montana Sleeping Bag Jun/2013
- Alpkit Bouldering Mats - Mujo and Project May/2013
- REVIEW / VIDEO: The Click-Up Belay Device Apr/2013
- UKC/UKH Mountain Photography Awards 2012 Mar/2013
- UKC/UKH Readership Survey - Prizes Feb/2013
- COMPARISON REVIEW: Lightweight Sport Climbing Ropes Dec/2012
- Winter Wall Special - UKC Climbing Wall Advertising Package Sep/2012
- Classic Peak Limestone Trad - VDIff to E2 Aug/2012
- VIDEO: Classic Almscliff Soloing Jun/2012
- Jobs, Jobs, Jobs - Opportunities for Climbers Apr/2012
- Funding Re-bolting - UKBoltFund.org Apr/2012
- Wild Country Bought by Salewa Feb/2012
- Kendal Mountain Festival - Last Few Tickets! Nov/2011
- Horscroft and Geldard in Kendal Festival Scandal Nov/2011
- Lightwave Trek Range of Tents Nov/2011
- COMPARISON REVIEW: Rope Bags for the Winter Oct/2011
- Kendal Mountain Festival 2011 - Who's There? Sep/2011
- OutDoor 2011 - Ropes Report Aug/2011
- REPORT: OutDoor 2011 - Rock Shoes Jul/2011
- Marmot ROM Jacket Mar/2011
- VIDEO: Assisted-braking Belay Devices Feb/2011
- Bolt Funds - www.ukboltfund.org Dec/2010
- Kendal Confessions 2010 Nov/2010
- Scarpa Vapour Velcro Jun/2010
- Marmot PreCip Kids Jacket Apr/2010
- ROCKFAX Assistant Editor Nov/2009
- In the Dutch Mountains May/2009
- ShAFF 2009 Mar/2009
- El Chorro Jan/2009
- Buying A Rack Of Climbing Gear Feb/2008
- UKC/UKH and Censorship Dec/2007
- Everything You Wanted to Know About Ropes Mar/2007
- Rock+Run Rope Bucket Mar/2007
- Berghaus 49 Zero Day Sack Feb/2007
- Climbing: 07 Calendar Dec/2006
- Masterclass DVD: Parts 1 and 2 Mar/2006
- Lakes 360 Calendar Dec/2005
- Calendars for 2005 Dec/2004
- Stars in guidebooks: yes or no? Oct/2003
Photo moderator, checking new photo submissions.
Moderator for 31 crags, checking missing climbs added to the logbooks: Stanage North, Stanage Popular, Stoney West, Ermita de Betlem, Santa Ponca, S'estret, Valldemossa, Sa Gubia, Fraguel, Port de Sóller, Ca'n Nyic, Es Queixal, Alaro, Les Perxes, La Creveta, Es Fumat, S'on Xanquete, Betlem (El Calo de Betlem), Cala Magraner, Can Ortigues, Gorg Blau, Indoor Climbing Wall, Morro Falqui, Watch House Crag, Cala Figuera, Es Grau des Ruc, The Woolpacks, Ploumanach, Orihuela, Callosa, Stanage Plantation
Interests Outside Climbing
Road biking especially ticking the big climbs of the Tour de France. I also have indulged in plenty of juggling over the years, and diabolo, although I do less now. I enjoy watching most sports, except ones involving horses, or boxing gloves, or both.
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