/ First seasion winter climbing help

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JamesWilliams - on 29 Dec 2012
I'm off to Scotland in February for a week with a friend who is fairly new but pretty good at climbing (i've been climbing for over a year now) it will be our first winter climbing season and I have solo'd a couple of grade 2's and seconded some 3's in Snowdonia and was wandering what sort of grade it would be safe to go up to? Was hoping to do something like Observatory buttress or minus 3 gully?
skarabrae - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to JamesWilliams: you`ll need to take some mince pies for the TROLLS ;-)
MarkRoe - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to JamesWilliams:

Is there no good ice below that bridge you live under?
JamesWilliams - on 29 Dec 2012
Here we go
JamesWilliams - on 29 Dec 2012
Do have winter mountain experience too and was on the big winter climb at the Brenin this year so not going blind
Jamie B - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to JamesWilliams:

The routes you mention are both grade V. It would be normal to first lead some easier routes to build up experience, maybe around grade II/III initially. If these feel too easy, try something harder, and so on.

Also note that Ben Nevis routes can be quite long, there is something to be said for getting started on shorter routes (such as those in the Northern Corries) while you get more efficient at managing your day.
Milesy - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to JamesWilliams:
> I have solo'd a couple of grade 2's and seconded some 3's in Snowdonia and was wandering what sort of grade it would be safe to go up to?

Assuming this is real I wouldnt try to compare anything with routes on The Ben. The approach is longer and more serious as are the routes and the weather.
JamesWilliams - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to Jamie Bankhead: thanks Jamie, can you suggest any good shorter routes at grade III or some slightly long grade II's in the Ben nevis/ glen coe area to get going on?
Milesy - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to JamesWilliams:

Glencoe:

Twisting Gully (III), Curved Ridge (II/III), or the classic but long Aonach Eagach (II). Avalanche risk and daylight hours to be considered :)
highclimber - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to Milesy:
> (In reply to JamesWilliams)
>
> Glencoe:
>
> Twisting Gully (III), Curved Ridge (II/III), or the classic but long Aonach Eagach (II). Avalanche risk and daylight hours to be considered :)

Not to mention the ability to navigate, especially on the top of Ben Nevis!
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Jamie B - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to JamesWilliams:

I'm wary of making recommendations which may get you into trouble, when I know little or nothing about your and your partner's experience or preparedness. It's not as simple as just ticking off routes, if you want to have a long and successful life in the snow there are a great number of things to get to grips with, not all of which involve a rope!

As a priority, think about winter navigation, avalanche awareness and confident movement on unroped but consequential terrain. There is much to be said for becoming a winter walker first and then a climber. Apologies if you have done this already and all this is condescending, but has your partner? If not then looking after him is a whole new skill-area in itself.

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