Reports from 2013

Bhutan Meet, October
Beer Meet, Devon, September
Solden Meet, Austria, September
Camping Alpine Meet, Zermatt Valley, July/August
Hotel Alpine Meet, Saas Almagell, Switzerland, July
Rhyd Ddu Meet, Wales, June
Peak District Meet, Derbyshire, May
Torridon Meet, Scotland, April
Locheil Meet, Scotland, March
Annual Dinner Meet, Lake District, February

Back to Bhutan, October

Once we had decided to sponsor a classroom at the Choki Traditional Art School in Alasdair’s memory, I knew that one day I would have to return to see it. A group of us from the ABMSAC had been to Bhutan in the spring of 2011 and had loved the country and its people. One of our visits had been to the school, a charitable foundation set up by the Choki family to give students from disadvantaged families the opportunity to learn the traditional craft skills which will enable them to earn a living, while at the same time preserving Bhutan’s unique traditions. We had been most impressed by the goals of the school, and the hard work and dedication of the students (

So when Alasdair died suddenly six months later, I approached the Fontana Foundation in Zurich, organisers for the fund-raising for the school, to see what we could do to help, in his memory. The most pressing need was a computer room, and with the help of those who had been on the 2011 meet and other friends and relatives, we soon had enough money to build the room itself and to equip it with tables, chairs and computers. Named the Alasdair Andrews Computer Room, there is a plaque at the front with a photo of Alasdair taken in Bhutan and a list of all those who assisted in the sponsorship.

Pam at the school
Pamela, Sonam and her husband with Alasdair’s plaque

Our visit was once again organised by Boonserm Tours and Travels, run by the younger sons of the Choki family, and on our second morning we were driven up to the school near Thimphu, the capital. Sonam, the Principal, is their sister, and she had organised a special morning at the school in honour of our visit, starting with morning assembly.

classroom After prayers, one of the students came forward to speak on the topic of his choice: the importance of hard work. Then the students went off to their different classes, and we had a tour of the classrooms, visiting the different levels of wood-carving and painting, thanka painting, weaving and embroidery.

At mid-morning all the students and teachers gathered in the meeting room for a special prayer session dedicated to Alasdair. His plaque had been moved to the platform at the front of the room, with 108 butter lamps. We were asked to light each of these and as we did so, to say a prayer for his soul. The students then commenced the Buddhist chants for the dead, after which tea and biscuits were passed round to all.

IT classroom

The students went back to work, and we continued our tour by visiting Alasdair’s classroom where we saw how much the students are benefiting from the computers, as well as enjoying using them. Classes are taught by Sonam’s husband, an IT expert, who has installed Graphic Design software to help the students with their artistic training. Sonam and all the students are extremely grateful for this facility, and the computer classes are eagerly looked forward to by the students.

Next door was the Bernina Room with four Bernina sewing machines donated by the Swiss through Mario Fontana’s fundraising efforts, and upstairs the Handicraft centre where the students’ work was displayed for sale, from the large brightly wooden coloured masks used in the Tsechu festivals to smaller decorative items for daily use. Our visit ended with a Bhutanese meal prepared by Sonam’s family, and as we said our goodbyes, I was profoundly thankful that I had made the effort to visit the school once again and to see how much our help was appreciated.

Tashi Namgay, who accompanied us in 2011, is now in Australia doing a Master’s degree and so was unable to be with us, though his elder brother Tashi Dorji met us on several occasions. Our guide this time was Chencho, whom some might remember as the Arsenal fan of our last trip. Everything ran smoothly, and we visited several dzongs, monasteries and temples in Paro, Thimphu, Phobjika and Punakha, as before. We walked the Nature trail to the winter grounds of the black-necked cranes, but this time we were too early for their arrival, and none had stayed behind for us.

masked dancers

We went further east to Trongsa and the Bumthang valley, a lovely fertile area with beautiful houses and enormous dzongs, where we participated in a Tsechu festival with spectacular masked dancers whirling around the courtyard of Jakar Dzong in brightly coloured costumes.

Dancing in the coutyard at Jakor Dzong

October is generally a good time to visit the Himalayas, and the weather for our first week was sunny and cloudless. We were blessed with marvellous views of the whole chain of the Himalayas on both flights between Kathmandu and Paro, and as we crossed the high passes on our journey eastwards, we could see all the 7000m peaks of Bhutan, their snow-covered summits sparkling in the sunshine. The colours were lovely too, with red rice being harvested in the fields, the trees changing colour, and the people in their brightly coloured ghos and kiras. Everyone was smiling and happy, and as we flew out of Paro past the dzong and watchtower for the last time, we reflected how lucky we were to have visited such an unspoilt country, and to have been able to help such deserving people.

Report by Pamela Harris-Andrews

Beer Meet East Devon 6-8 September

This was the eighth Beer Meet and to find a coastal path not done before we had to go the furthest that was sensible from base. We had a group meal on Friday night that was a mite disjointed because some had to travel far after a day’s work unlike the bulk who are retired and can take things more gently. So there was an early and a late sitting. On Saturday we drove to West Bay and met up with Mike Goodyer and managed to more or less stay together for the walk over the cliffs to Swyre where we convened at the pub. Afterwards different routes were chosen for the return leg. Either back by the coast or inland. The weather was kind and views good with plenty of ripe blackberries to keep up energy levels. We have now covered what is doable of the Jurassic Coast comfortably from Beer. Next year we will have to start again, which means repeats for some but less use of cars.

on the cliff path
On the cliff path beyond West Bay, photo by Ed Bramley

The weather forecast for Sunday was not good. A nearer walk from Lyme Legis encompassing the magnificent Cannington Viaduct, which pre Beeching carried the railway route from Axminster to Lyme Regis. We could only go underneath as it is unsafe to go over. There was a plan to get to the Ammonite Graveyard at the end of Monmouth Beach as the finale, but time and the promised downpour meant that that was completed by only four members of the meet. Those that made it were rewarded by yet another amazement quite disconnected from mountaineering. Don’t think that walking the coast is easy. Just come to the South West and find there is as much assent as on many a mountain day.

This was the best attended Beer Meet and over the weekend the following took part: Ed Bramley, Andy Burton, Sheila Coates, John Dempster, Heather Eddowes, Marj and John Foster, Mike Goodyer, Dinah Nicholls, Myles O’Reilly, John Percival, James and Belinda Baldwin

Report by Belinda Baldwin

Late Summer Camping Meet, Solden, Austria, September

This was a joint AC/CC/FRCC/ABMSAC Meet, sadly only 9 members from the four Clubs turned up. The campsite was excellent with a palatial loo block, nice flat grassy pitches and a comfy lounge area with its own climbing wall. The weather was generally good enough for rock climbing on valley crags and hill walking until the last couple of days.

Keith Lambley belaying, Kate Ross climbing, cow grazing

The climbers visited most of the crags in the Otztal Valley with mixed results, the grading seemed very inconsistent, not just between different crags but even on the same crag, leading to some confidence sapping incidents. Overall we thought it had been worth a visit but to get the best out of the climbing one would need to be leading F6a and above. Several of the via ferrate were enjoyed as a break from climbing. The hillwalking was good with many peaks accessible from the valley in a day. No one sampled the mountain biking but some did do a road ride or two and we admired the collection of very expensive road bikes in the sports shops.

Report by Jeff Harris

Camping Alpine meet, Attermenzen, Randa, Zermatt Valley, 20 July to 10 August

The meet was based at the Attermenzen camp site, just above Randa. While most of the attendees headed up to the top field some of the campervans and large tent owners opted for the flatter ground lower down (and nearer to the electric hook up and loos?). The camp site was never too busy and we had plenty of options for tent sites. There were around 60 members and guests attending the meet over the three week period.

The weather was pretty good over the meet, but heavy rain and thunderstorms on several days also put fresh snow on the tops. The rainy periods enabled us to have rest days and do valley walks to be ready for the hills when the weather was good.

Most people made good use of the high level walks in the Zermatt and Saas valleys to help with their acclimatisation, although care had to be taken on the route of the Europa Weg, as a big section of the walk had vanished and a large bridge was down. The via Ferrata course just above Zermatt provided a half day sport for many!

A hard core of attendees had day trips to the “local crags” for multi pitch rock climbing. Some of the grading caused some interesting trips. The 4000ers in the Zermatt and Saas Valleys were tackled by many groups. While the majority of people stayed in the huts there were a couple of folks who moved their campervan off the site and back backed their camping gear up the valley.

The end of the meet saw some thirty of us at the Camp site restaurant for a celebratory meal, complete with Swiss flag ice cream. Many thanks to Mike Pinney for a successful meet with plenty achieved and new friends made.

Report by Mike Pinney/Mike Goodyer

Hotel Alpine Meet, Saas Almagell, Switzerland, 6 -20 July

Since 2014 was the 150th anniversary of the Swiss Alpine Club, it seemed appropriate that the summer hotel meet should be in Switzerland, and so arrangements were made to stay in the Hotel Monte Moro in Saas-Almagell as we had done for our centenary meet in 2009. Annette once again made us very welcome, and this time there was the added bonus that all cable-cars and buses in the entire Saas valley were included in the hotel price.

The group at CERN On the day prior to the meet, Niels Doble had arranged a guided visit to CERN, just outside Geneva. We met for lunch on the terrace of the cafeteria and had time to enjoy 'The Universe of Particles' son-et-lumière show in the wooden Globe of Discovery before joining the 3 1/2 hour tour in the afternoon. This was led by Mark Tyrrell who gave an enthusiastic introduction. Visits followed to the Magnet-Assembly building to see the inside of the super-conducting magnets guiding the protons around the 27 km LHC (Large Hadron Collider) ring and down the 100 metre-deep pit to the CMS (Compact Muon Solenoid) detector, which was instrumental in the Higgs Boson discovery in 2012.

The group at CERN. Photo by Rick Saynor

After this exciting start thirty of us gathered for the first week of the meet, with more AC members than usual. This made for a good mix socially, and resulted in more big mountains being climbed than has been the case for some years. The combination of daily sunshine and the free lift pass enabled us to get high every day, although the snow was still low after a long winter and cold spring, and both the Monte Moro and the Antrona passes remained closed for the duration of our stay.

towards the Btriannia Hut But this was an advantage for some trips, and the shorter winter route to the Britannia Hut was still open. For many the visit to the hut was the highlight of the meet, and a large group of 16 of us went there on a perfect day of brilliant sunshine, as on the visits celebrating our centenary in 2009 and the hut’s centenary in 2012.

Egginerjoch. Photo by Rick Saynor

We were able to inspect the solar panels donated by the Association in 2012, with the accompanying plaque, and we were made a big fuss of by Dario, the guardian’s son who is to take over his mother’s position as guardian himself next year.

Dario with Pam and the group
ABMSAC group with Dario, photo by hut staff

Most of us wandered up the Klein Allalin from the hut for even better views of the surrounding peaks, and I marvelled how I had ever climbed the Rimpfischhorn back in 1969.

Mark showing ridge I returned to the hut a few days later, and Mark Davison was able to point out his route on our centenary meet in 2009 when he and Tony Arkley made a 28 hour non-stop ridge climb along the five kilometers of the Cresta di Saas, taking in 17 different tops.

Mark showing ridge. Photo by Jeff Russell

Ascents were made by mixed groups of AC and ABMSAC members, and the Allalinhorn was climbed in the first week by Roland Jackson, David Watts and Bill Westermeyer, and in the second by Howard Telford and Oliver Cooper, both teams using the Alpine Metro to start as high as possible.

summit ridge
Allalinhorn summit, photo by Howard Telford

The same five also climbed the Almagellerhorn from the top of the Heidbodme chairlift above Saas-Almagell, and the Mittaghorn from Saas-Almagell itself, Jeff Russell, Howard and Oliver by the north-west ridge, partly a via ferrata. After a night in the Hohsaas dortoir, Howard and Oliver climbed the Weissmies, and Mark Davison and Jeff Russell attempted the Lagginhorn. After making a recce of the route the previous day, they were thwarted by the weather suddenly breaking, although Jeff was able to return to climb it while on the Camping Meet the following week.

Marmot Walks were taken in all directions, and with the Saastal surrounded by 4000 metre peaks, the views were always magnificent. A favourite walk for all the group was the easy shelf walk up to Saas Fee, past the café with the dromedary, and at Saas Fee itself a happy hour was spent on more than one occasion watching the tame marmots.

Photo by Carol Saynor

From Saas Fee the more energetic walked up Hannig, Mellig and Gibidum, while others enjoyed a gourmet lunch at the restaurant at Spielboden or went up the Alpine Metro to the revolving restaurant and Ice Palace.

Gemsweg On one occasion a large group of us planned to take the lift to Plattjen and walk along the ‘Gemsweg’ to Hannig, and it was only when we were half way up the lift that we realised that we were, in fact, on the lift going up to Spielboden. With free lift passes this seemed unimportant, and we simply took the lift down to go up on the right one for a lovely long contour path round the entire arena of peaks.

Photo by Carol Saynor

Saas Grund and the lift to Kreuzboden were not far away, and were visited by most of the group on several occasions. Undoubtedly the most popular walk from here was the lovely ‘Blumenweg’ or Flower Walk, with 240 boards identifying each flower. After a long cold winter the flowers were more prolific than usual, and we found alpine rhododendron, edelweiss, gentians, black vanilla orchids, yellow pulsatillas, a tiny white rock jasmine (Androsace de Vandelli), the bright blue flowers of the rare King of the Alps (Eritrichium nanum) and many others blooming in great profusion.

From Saas Fee the more energetic walked up Hannig, Mellig and Gibidum, while others enjoyed a gourmet lunch at the restaurant at Spielboden or went up the Alpine Metro to the revolving restaurant and Ice Palace.

Jasmine The Flower Walk could be taken down to Saas Grund or, after crossing a narrow rocky outcrop, along a balcony path high above the valley all the way to Almagelleralp, giving splendid views across to the Strahlhorn and Rimpfischhorn, and south to Mattmark and the Monte Moro pass.

Androsace de Vandelli. Photo by Carol Saynor

Hohsaas, the station above Kreuzboden, was on our visits still snow-bound, and from here there was a spectacular ‘Theme Walk’ of one hour, with boards enumerating each of the surrounding 4000 metre peaks that could be seen, 14 in total.

With the chairlift now operating up to Heidbodme we were able to explore the new track up to the panorama viewpoint at the foot of the Almagellerhorn, though the onward path to the Antrona Pass was still snowed under, as was the path from Mattmark to the Monte Moro Pass when we attempted that. But there was plenty to do, and we all agreed that the Saastal had once again proved an excellent centre for a meet.

Participants: Pamela Andrews, Ann Arturo, Geoff Bone, Derek Buckley & Ann Alari, Geoff & Pauline Causey, Oliver Cooper, Mark Davison, John Dempster & Dinah Nichols, Niels & Guni Doble, Richard & Katherine Heery, Roland & Nicola Jackson, Roger Newson, Jeff Russell, Rick & Carol Saynor, Terry Shaw, Les & Barbara Swindin, Howard Telford, Caroline Thonger, Jay Turner, David Watts, Tony Welling, Elizabeth Wells, Bill & Rosie Westermeyer.

Report by Pamela Harris-Andrews

Rhyd Ddu Meet, 7-9 June

At last - a break in the fickle British weather brought a weekend of sunshine, and people were able to take full advantage of it.

The advance party of Ed, Andy and Steve ventured to Cnicht on the Friday (knight in English), and up onto the classic ridge which gives the mountain its nickname of the Matterhorn of Wales. A straightforward ascent, which brought great views over to both the Snowdon range, and out to sea. Traversing round the head of the valley opened up vistas towards Blaenau and Dolwyddelan. The descent took us past the same slate quarry village we had come across last year, and on down via a number of tracks back into Croesor. We had travelled fast enough to be able to call in at Beddgelert for the first of the weekends ice creams.

New technology (Steve) meets old technology (Ed) on Cnicht, photo by Andy Burton

Saturday saw a wide range of activities taking place, befitting of such a grand day. Some people took the long walk in to Cwm Silyn to then climb Kirkus's route, whilst others were scrambling on a number of ridges in the area, including sentinel route on the Sunday. Another team made the long traverse past Foel Goch to Llanberis (allegedly for a cream tea), before the long trek back past the halfway house, and a second tea stop. Lastly, Mike O'Dwyer and myself ascended part of the Rhyd Ddu path, to then drop down to the Watkin path, over Lliwedd, down to Pen Y Pass cafe for midday fuel, before pulling up the Pyg track to the top of Snowdon, and then descending the Snowdon Ranger path and back past the quarries to the cottage. This was a very popular day for ascending Snowdon. We counted several blocks of over 50 people either ascending or descending the more popular routes. It was only by our timely intervention that we prevented one eastern European descending the Ranger path, thinking it was the main track to Llanberis.

For the Saturday evening meal we were joined by Terry Shaw and Dick Yorke for the usual communal meal. There was a partly Italian them this year with tricolore of mozzarella, tomato and basil for starters, with spaghetti and meat balls for mains, followed by a variety of summer desserts. The conversation waxed long and lyrical into the night, helped on by the balmy summer weather.

Snowdon from yr Arran, photo by Mike Goodyer

Sunday adventures followed a similar theme, with one team making the ascent of yr Arran, before descending some poorly marked paths into Beddgelert. The return journey was by a new set of paths that link the railway stations at Beddgelert and Rhyd Ddu, and are suitable for either walking or biking. Well worth using, and form a great link with the train, if required. The last touches of the path are still going in, but the restored causeway by Lyn y Gader is a particularly fine feature.

A great weekend, with great views and memories.

Participants: Ed Bramley, Andy Burton, Steve Caulton, Mike Goodyer, Natasha Geere, Don Hodge, Steve Hunt, Mike O'Dwyer, Marian Parsons, Mike Parsons, Mike Pinney, Judy Renshaw, Terry Shaw, Paul Stock, Dick Yorke

Meet Report by Ed Bramley Meet photos.

Derbyshire Meet 3-6 May

On Friday four early arrivals gathered for the joint AC/ABMSAC meet at the Royal Oak.

Heather and Mary made their rendez-vous in Buxton and got to the bunkhouse at the Royal Oak in enough time to find a bed, unload and meet up with the meet leader and others in the bar.

So, off to the Fish and Chip shop/café in Longnor with its gingham table cloths to wait our turn to be served. Andy, Myles, Mary and Heather enjoyed a traditional fish n chip meal with tea and bread & butter before they all adjourned to the Packhorse Inn in Crodecote en route back to Sparklow and the Royal Oak to meet up with the rest of the meet’s participants.

Andy supporting the local brew

After breakfast on the Saturday and with the weather forecast good the team went to their various activities. The biking contingent split up into two groups with Ed and Mike O’Dwyer deciding on an energetic 60K ride. The other group, Mary, Heather, Andy B (leader), Myles and Andy H, set off at a steady rate south on the Pennine Bridleway, off through Hartington and on to the Manifold Valley bridleway to the The Hamps bridleway to Waterhouse and up through the hillside to the village of Cauldon. An amazing pub was set here on the corner – The Yew Tree. In it was a fantastic collection of ancient (3000 BC) or simply old (decades or even centuries) things. Well worth a visit…
After a welcome drink here we headed back, along the same route, to our first port of call Wetton Mill. One or two folks were beginning to feel a little saddle sore but we pressed on through the delightful countryside of towering crags and then open Peak views with a quick look at the old Signal Box near Hartington on the trail. The evening meal was taken in the Royal Oak, who as before looked after us very well.

Sunday dawned with the weather set fair and members dispersed to their various activities. Ed, Andy and Myles setting off for Frogatt so that Myles could try his hand at rock climbing. With thanks to Ed and Andy pointing the hand and foot holds and with a good deal of encouragement Myles managed to scramble his way up various routes without falling off.
Routes completed that day, Slab Recess – diff; Heather Wall – severe; Nursery Slab – moderate; Trapeze – V Diff ; Sunset Crack – VS and Sunset Slab – VS
The afternoon climbing was the highlight of the weekend for Myles who is off to buy a guide book and tick a few more routes off!

The cycling team were down to two – Mary and Heather. Off to Parsley Hay, across the main A515 and back into the gentle hills along the Long Rake road to Bakewell. They then negotiated the busy town up to the beginning of the Monsal Trail and pedalled up the gentle incline, through the various tunnels to the junction of Rocks Dale and Wye Dale (3 miles short of Buxton) where they pushed their bikes up the steep Pennine Bridleway, bypassing Blackwell and Chelmorton and continued south to cross the A515 and so rejoin the northern end of the old railway (Tissington Trail) and back to Sparklow.

cycling in the Peak, photo by Mary Eddowes

On returning to the Royal Oak the flysheet was erected, salad cut up and chairs out and the BBQ lit. Andy was off – non stop sausages and burgers for all to eat and eat and eat. An excellent finish to yet another dry sunny day.

Monday arrived warm and sunny and a number of the attendees made their way home, the Sunday cycling team left after breakfast as Mary (the newest ABM recruit) was heading back to Kent. Heather and Mary both thoroughly enjoyed our active weekend. Big thanks to Andy for organising it all. This left the four remaining attendees to set off for an end of meet walk, stopping at Hartington for an ice cream before ending up at the Pack Horse in Crodecote for a final pint. The team then split up to make their various way home.

Another great Derbyshire Meet.

Report by Heather Eddowes and Miles O' Reiley

Torridon Meet, 20 - 27 April

The accommodation was a grand well appointed house on the shore of Loch Torridon, the only house in the village between the road and the loch. We arrived and settled in on the Saturday with a less than optimistic forecast for the weeks weather. A new member to the Scottish meets David Hern (ABM veteran) joined us for the week staying in the Torridon Inn along the road from the house.

dinner time
Dinner at the house

On Sunday a circular route was planned to the east of Beinn Damh. This however proved impossible as we were unable to ford the stream at either of the usual possible points. What had been a dry river bed the previous week was now a raging torrent. We beat the retreat to the road in heavy rain with the intention of reversing the route as the main road bridged the river. However with no let up in the downpour we decided to head for the shelter of the Torridon Inn. Not a good start to the week.

The weather on Monday was no better so we drove over to the Inverue gardens only to find them closed due to high winds! After a coffee break they decided to let us in. After a walk in the gardens and a visit to an Art Gallery we had some good views of Slioch (981m) on the return journey to Torridon.

On Tuesday we did a fairly strenuous coastal walk to Diabeg with a steep scrambling decent to the village, before returning via the circuitous inland road. As Peter Farrington arrived Tuesday evening, both Peters set out on Wednesday morning to do Beinn Liath Mhor, the rest of us ascended Beinn Damh (902m).

the group en route
Margaret, John D and Fred on Beinn Damh

The summits were snow covered and the sky slate grey for most of the day with odd glimpses of the sun. Great views were to be had looking north to Beinn Alligin and Liathach.

Vice President
Vice President on summit of Beinn Damh

On Thursday Peter Farrington did Sgorr Ruadh. John D, Fred S, Peter G, Jim and I walked in to Corrie Mhic Fhearchair on Beinn Eighe hoping to ascend over the top returning via the shorter route. However on reaching the corrie it was raining stair rods and we took shelter under a boulder and watched intrepid Peter Goodwin (only one with crampons) set off up the snow filled gully into the mist towards the summit. The rest of us retreated in continuously heavy rain to the car park. Peter eventually joining us for dinner some hours later after having summited Ruadh-stac Mor.
David Hern meantime did a circular walk in towards Beinn Alligin with similar weather.

Fearing another wet day on the Friday, we headed for Applecross on the coast. Stopping where the road crosses Bealach na Ba we noted there was considerably more snow on the summits with accompanying high winds. We therefore did another good coast walk in the sunshine with views across to Staffin on Skye ending with late lunch at the Applecross Inn. Peter Goodwin walked in to the north of Liathach to do Beinn Dearg (914m) in very poor conditions.
With David Hern joining us we dined either in house or at the Inn. Good company and good food made for an enjoyable week with only the poor weather curtailing outdoor activity.

Those Present: Margaret & Jim Strachan, John Dempster, Fred Semple, Peter Goodwin, David Hern, with John and Marj Foster and Peter Farrinton part week.

Meet Report by Margaret Strachan

Locheil Meet, 1-4 March

The meet was based at Fassfern House, which is reputedly where Bonnie Prince Charlie stayed in 1745 after raising his standard at Glenfinnan. He had good taste, because it is large and comfortable and very well appointed.

We were quite fortunate too with the weather. High pressure was sitting over Scotland, and although we had a good deal of cloud there was no significant rain. Although there was a lot of good snow on the high Munros they were mostly shrouded in cloud so the meet tended to concentrate on Corbetts, which are often as strenuous as Munros, particularly when, as here, they are climbed from sea level.
In all 6 were climbed, by different parties. The sole Munro climbed was Gulvain, a long route, climbed by an enthusiastic party on the first day, which reduced Peter F’s unclimbed score to a mere 20. On the last day some went to Loch Morar, some to Glen Roy, while the two Peters found good snow conditions on Rois Bheinn.

Peter Goodwin en route to Rois Bheinn with Moidart behind
Photo by Peter Farrington

All in all an enjoyable and successful weekend, and there is already talk of returning to Fassfern next year.

Attended: Peter Farrington, John and Marj Foster, Peter Goodwin, Phil Hands, Roger James, David Seddon, Jim and Margaret Strachan, John Dempster.

Meet Report by John Dempster. Meet photos.

Annual Dinner Meet, Lake District, 1 - 3 February

As this is my 40th Annual Dinner report, I feel like I'm starting to run out of originality in describing them. To cut to the detail, it was at the usual place - Glenridding hotel, usual time - early February - even another earlier meet leader was there - Tony Strawther who led the meets from 1969 to 1971 and very good they were too. This year the weather was kind, Saturday especially so, sunny and virtually cloudless, but the wind was cold. There was snow in the gullies but Brooke relied on the bar descriptions of our 'younger' contingent to fill in the blanks for him. Mike Parsons, Natasha and Steve went up to the gullies above Red Tarn.

Snow was down to low levels on Helvellyn and the surrounding fells, and a large contingent took a long walk up past the Greenside mines, wending up onto Whiteside, before reaching the top of Helvellyn.
There were great views across all the Lakes and away into the distance of Morecambe Bay. T hen along the long whaleback ridge to Dollywagon Pike, before descending to Grisedale and a long leg back to the hut for a late afternoon cuppa.

Fifty four sat down to dinner and the Hotel and Staff did us proud. Our guest was Alan Hinkes, who was staying with Mike and Marian Parsons and joined us on the top table. Alan is the first, and only British climber to have climbed all fourteen 8,000 metre peaks. At dinner, Alan gave a very frank and candid account of his experiences as a mountaineer, as is only to be expected from a fellow Yorkshireman. After dinner, there was a mass exodus to the conference room where Alan showed highlights of videos he had shot of those ascents, including working out his limited odds of survival when ascending one particularly unstable snow face solo. A convivial and extended evening that was enjoyed by all.

Meet report by Brooke Midgley and Ed Bramley Meet photos.