I arrive back in Chamonix at the start of October, practically frothing at the mouth at the prospect of being back in the mountains. I message everyone I know in the valley to find a partner, but no-one bites. Instead, I spend a frustrating day driving up and down the valley, scoping out conditions on […]

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The Spark

As I pour yet another cup of coffee and watch the clock inch inexorably closer to our arranged meeting time, my mind is a violent maelstrom of excuses. ‘Tell them you’ve got a last minute phone interview for a job!’ ‘How about you say you’ve lost your lift pass?’ ‘Claim you’ll slow them down too […]

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Ecrins Excursion

The last month or so hasn’t involved a whole lot of climbing. I’ve had a pretty indulgent time visiting Julia and my family, lounging by a pool in Turkey catching up on some reading and trying to sort out my stubborn alpinist tan lines. After a while, I was itching to get back to Chamonix […]

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Surviving an Alpine Heatwave

The meteorological theme for mid June was changeable weather: fair and sunny in the morning would give way to heavy cloud and storms in the afternoon. It helps your sense of urgency if every time you look outwards from a stance you see a wall of weather advancing towards you. After a couple of weeks, though, […]

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South Ridge, Aiguille de Moine

The alarm goes off like a bomb. Jack and I bolt upwards, out of the blankets and head downstairs, rubbing our eyes. The hut is a ghost-town this early, with everyone having seen the forecast and decided to sleep in. For better or for worse, we saw the forecast and figured we’d get amongst it […]

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