/ NEWS: Ben Nevis Conditions Report and New Routes

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UKC News - on 16 Nov 2010
Paddy Cave on Cornucopia on Ben Nevis, 4 kbNews from Ben Nevis of some impressive early season ascents, including at least one hard new routes, in very challenging conditions. Steve Ashworth takes up the story.

TobyA on 16 Nov 2010
In reply to UKC News: Nice one on doing Militant Chimney! I remember noticing in the guidebook back in the 90s that it hadn't had a winter ascent, and thinking "Vdiff - how hard could that be in winter?" As ever, the Ben's answer seems to be - quite hard!

Watch out for the avalanches chaps! Early season enthusiasm can only help you jump so far.
Andy Nisbet - on 16 Nov 2010
In reply to TobyA:

This is from SMC Journal 2004:

Douglas Boulder:
Turf War 250m V,6. G.Hughes, J.Edwards. 21st December 2003.
Based on the summer line of Militant Chimney. Start at the middle of the lower tier.
1. 60m Climb up into a bay in the middle of the lower tier and head for a short V-groove in the second band. Climb the groove until a slant up right leads to overhangs.
2. 40m Move round to the right (avoiding the knobbly wall) and back left heading for the line of Militant Chimney. Go up this to a good thread on a ledge.
3. 30m Climb the Militant Chimney.
4. 50m Continue up and then teeter rightwards across slabs and go up a turfy right-facing corner to a huge block.
5. 60m Climb easier ground leftwards to a short overhanging chimney to reach a slab. Go up the corner to gain a ledge on the right. Move delicately left and climb the exposed arete (bold) until it is possible to step right and move up to gain a belay.
6. 10m Move up to reach easy ground leading to the summit of the Douglas Boulder.

Red Rover - on 16 Nov 2010
In reply to UKC News: Poor old Steve, snapping his tool must have been painfull!
The EpiCentre - on 16 Nov 2010
In reply to Andy Nisbet: Cheers Andy, As I was climbing the chimney I couldn't believe that such a classic feature so close to the hut would have been missed. I think I climbed a similar line to the one described, not a strong line apart from the chimney but a good mountaineering day out. How was Beinn Eighe?

James Edwards - on 16 Nov 2010
In reply to The EpiCentre:
Hi Steve
The line is pretty good isn't it. We climbed it because it was the closest safe new line to the hut as deep unstable snow that fell in the night meant that we couldn't get back high on the mountain. We also climbed a new couple of pitches on another existing line the next day on the douglas boulder that had probably never had a second ascent. We thought it suprising that such good climbing had been over looked. I guess that 2003 was nearer the start of the new wave mixed than now so low hanging fruit was the first to be picked. Or in this case none avalanche prone fruit.
Have a good winter
ross - on 17 Nov 2010
In reply to The EpiCentre: Apache looks great - good effort.

This is a long shot - did any of your team find a yellow torque nut on Cornucopia? We somehow lost ours on Saturday. Also I think one of your team found a hood which we dropped and left it outside the CIC. Thanks so much for that.

Cheers, Ross.
paddy cave - on 17 Nov 2010
In reply to ross: Hey Ross, no worries with hood, Chris and Mike picked it up. Did'nt find torque nut, sorry. Loads of fresh snow was blown about so may have been covered. I was on Apache by the way, you guys did'nt get any shots of Apache from where you were did you? if so it would be great to get hold of them. my email is cheers, nice one on Cornucopia, you ran up it! Paddy.
geezer - on 18 Nov 2010
In reply to paddy cave:

Nice one Paddy great effort. Hope to bump into you on the hill again soon it's been a while!

Neil Silver
ross - on 18 Nov 2010
In reply to paddy cave: Hi Paddy, no photos I'm afraid. The way the weather was I was struggling to see you atall, plus we didn't have a camera. Shame as on a clear day we'd have had a perfect view of you. Fingers crossed for some more good conditions,Ross.

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