James has always been a good walker. Since he took his first steps at 10 and a half months, he’s not stopped and he’s been on the go ever since. Even when he was little he rarely asked for carries and would happily plod along on our daily dog walks. Ever since we moved to Scotland he’s been desperate to get out into the mountains, “proper ones, with their tops in the clouds”. So far, all our walks in the hill have failed to convince him and he was still left longing to head up a mountain. The boy was ready for his first Munro.
Articles in Category: Mountain High
The third day in the Peak District brought some cloud and strong wind. We would need somewhere sheltered and ideally – as we would have to pack-up by mid-afternoon for the drive home – somewhere quick to get to.
What do you do when you find yourself with a sudden free weekend before the new school term starts? Climb a mountain of course!
One day last Easter, when the weather really was too bad to contemplate doing anything outdoors with small children, we took them to a climbing wall for the first time. (See ‘Reach for the Sky’ link below)
The view of Stanage Edge is surely one of the iconic images of British climbing. Not for nothing is she known as the Queen of Grit. James tells me that he vividly remembers his first glimpse of Stanage. I vividly recall his reaction: as we approached from Hathersage and the Edge reared up out of the landscape, like the ramparts of a great castle, James’s jaw dropped. He spoke in soft, reverent tones: “Wow. Just wow. Are we going to climb there, Mummy?”
We could easily have gone back to Froggatt Edge for the second day of our trip to the Peak District but, since variety is the spice of life, we decided to take the boys to experience another crag.
We climbed a giant! Rising out of the plains of Hastings is Te Mata Peak, a glorious park with heaps of walking trails, forests, views and legends.
We recently had a little 3 day jaunt further west in Scotland, to Oban and Fort William and one of my key missions was to introduce Corwin to the wonderful invention of mountain gondolas.
When, a few years ago, we discovered Brean Down, we noticed another ‘interesting-looking’ promontory called Sand Point. Brean lies to the south of Weston-Super-Mare, while Sand Point lies to the north of it, near Kewstoke. The forecast for the New Year’s Day Bank Holiday was good, and Sand Point had the attraction of being a slightly shorter drive than Brean Down, so it was the perfect moment for a visit.
Since Easter, when James experienced real rock for the first time, he’s been desperate to go ‘proper’ climbing again. Given where we live, this can only really be achieved by making a weekend of it, which provided a great excuse to spend the May Bank Holiday weekend in the Peak District and catch-up with some friends who also climb.
In early March, we were really excited when we had the opportunity to spend a weekend in our old stomping ground of North Yorkshire. The big dilemma was to decide which of our many favourite haunts we would visit – there were so many great places that we knew it would be a hard choice.
We often talk about going mountain biking but we would definitely be in trouble with the trades description act, as it is not really what you’d class as mountain biking.