Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Eastward for Easter

Up near Styx - amongst the greenery
We bailed out of the Ariège and cruised across France - a steady nine hours - for the evening boat out of St Malo - by lunch-time the following day we were back in Sheffield for a hectic five days.
Telendos from Massouri
A week after leaving Chez Arran and were established back in Kalymnos. The winter has been the worst in living memory according to the reports with lots of rain and near continuous northerly gales battering the island. In the week since we arrived we have had a couple of wet days but also some glorious sunshine. On the plus side the rain has meant that everything is looking really green, the flowers are out and there is a real feeling of spring every where. It may be a while before all the tufas dry out but I am sure we will cope.
Eastern Grit was finished and sent to the printers whilst we were in the UK - that should be in the shops in three weeks - just too late for Easter, but I expect demand will be high with the previous version having been out of print for three months.
I have time on my hands which is a rare thing -I am sure I will be able to find a project or two to keep me busy.

Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Into the Sunrise

Plateau de Beille: -6C and blowing a hoolie
Eleven weeks in the mountains and it is time to think about moving on - heading east to a small rocky Greek island. Last year we left at the end of March, parked up the car in Ariège and flew Carcasonne to Stansted to Kos for about £30 each. This year we will get the car home 1st and stick it in the garage - we might be in Greece for quite a while!
The weather this winter hasn't been quite a good as normal - much better than the UK of course, but not quite the settled warm spells of previous years. Despite that we have kept ourselves pretty busy and fit with lots of short walks up in the hills - as is usual around here we hardly ever see a soul.
Great views above Saurat
The book is being tied down now with less than two weeks until it goes of to the printers. Currently it is looking pretty good - 560 pages, (Rockfax's biggest ever book) 4000 route and 36 graded lists - that should keep most folks happy for years. 
We have six days in the UK then onwards to Kalymnos  - the winter there has been unusually unsettled too, cool, damp and very windy - I am sure it will sort itself out over the next two weeks.
Long-term friends Andy Nicholson and Colin Binks are coming out in April so I have a couple of weeks to get fit and grow some skin - can't wait!

A month in Switzerland

Gornergrat - rammed A month passed in Switzerland and it has been very pleasant, climbing, hiking, chilling and even doing a bit of to...