Ring of Steall SkyRace

Winter Skills 2020

Fort William

After a week of awful weather and a rather bleak weekend forecast, members from all parts of Scotland started the long drive to Fort William. The reason for this journey, a weekend of fun in the mountains taking part in the annual winter skills event. In its third year, this event is a great opportunity for members of all abilities to come together for a weekend of socialising, walking and refining of new and exisiting skills. This years venue was the mighty Fort William, providing great access to a variety of mountains all on the doorstep.

After an evening of watching everyone trickle through the door of our accomodation , the local scout hall, and a quick review of the weather, it was decided Saturday was not a day for the hills. Instead it would be dedicated to the Fort William edition of the Danders Climbing series, along with a trip to the spa and a few drinks whilst watching the rugby. Fort William looked after us well but no ammount of impromptu gigging in pubs and ceilidh crashing was going to make up for not being in the hills. This was all going to change on Sunday though as the weather perked up massively.

As Sunday morning arrived, the group split in three. Our more experienced climbers made their way to Ben Nevis to tackle the Douglas Gap succesfully, topping out before lunch time. The intermediatte group headed up Buchaille Etive Beag, summiting Stob Coire Raineach. They endured every possible weather from the gale force winds whipping up the icy spindrift to the blue sky afternoon mentioned in the weather. The final group made their way to the iconic Buchaille Etive Beag to practice their ice axe arrests and crampon usage on the slopes of Glencoe's most famous mountain.

After a succesful day, everyone came together once again at the Clachaig Inn to enjoy some last refreshments before parting ways,

All in all another succesful Winter Skills event that made the best of the poor weather that has engulfed 2020 so far. A big thanks to all the organisers and roll on 2021!