Festa in Via Ferrata

Via Ferrata Via Ferratas are common across Europe and give accessible adventures for those brave enough to try them. Dave Talbot gives us some pointers. Via Ferrata Introduction “via ferrata”, Italian for "iron paths" are found scattered across Europe and give access to a vertical mountain world, usually reserved for experienced climbers and mountaineers. A via ferrata is a series of ladders, metal staples and steps, attached into the cliff, with a long cable running along side. The adventurer clips into the cable, which provides some protection should they fall.    Simple mountain paths, with ladders and basic protection aids, have probably existed in the Alps for centuries. However, the via ferrata explosion is linked to the First World War when multiple via ferrata routes were created to aid the movement of troops and supplies across the Dolomite mountain range in Northern Italy.   Back in the early twentieth century the via ferratas were relatively basic. These days however, the via ferrata routes have become increasingly intricate and difficult. Via ferrata climbing is now considered a sport in its own right. Huge overhanging energy sapping sections, long wire bridges stretching across stomach churning voids and wildy exposed moves above dizzying heights are all to be found on modern, harder routes. Most of the European Alps have via ferratas dotted around each town and finding out route information can be sourced from a guide book, the internet or from the local tourist information centre. The routes themselves are usually free to use and are owned and maintained by the local government. You can use via ferrata routes on your own since you don’t need anyone holding your ropes, unlike [...]

By |2018-10-15T20:55:54+00:00October 15th, 2018|Blog|0 Comments

National Trails

Our National Trails I’ve had a certain love affair with our national trails. My first ultra marathon was on our national trails on the Cotswold Way. The plan was to run the 100 mile route in two days. That didn’t happen. Being the beginner I was at long distance running, I totally messed up my underwear choice. At mile 17 I was getting some serious chafing. At mile 40 it looked like an invisible horse had been put between my legs. At mile 46 I was flagging down a vehicle and asking for a lift. Fail. A little learning, some better choices and the correct underwear!! And off I went exploring again. Last year I ran the 180 mile Pembroke coast path in 5 and half days - which gave my muscles a story to tell.  Many fond memories have been logged exploring these trail treasures. But what are they and where can you find them? Our national trails are a collection of superb scenic marked routes around England and Wales. In Scotland the equivalent are called Scotland’s Great Trails. The popularity of walking in Britain during the early twentieth century gave rise to a desire to keep Britain “special” after WW2. Post-war development led to the establishment of National Parks, Areas of Outstanding National Beauty (AONBs) and Long Distance Routes (now called National Trails in England and Wales). Each trail has marked start and finish points and trail markers at every junction, making navigation simple. This allows you to enjoy the views and keep your map in your pocket. The routes vary in length from the Yorkshire Wolds Way, at a pleasant 79 miles to the whooping 630 mile South West Coast [...]

By |2018-06-08T09:37:53+00:00June 8th, 2018|Blog|0 Comments

6 Tip-Top Charity Fundraising Ideas For Your Company

6 Tip-Top Charity Fundraising Ideas For Your Company - Introduction Charity Fundraising Ideas - A lot of businesses have a dedicated charity that they donate to throughout the year, with money raised from events such as dress down Fridays or bake sales. Fundraising is a great way for a business to give back to the community — and it can also be a fun way for team members to bond in a more relaxed setting. But if you want to really ramp up your company’s charity events, why not try some of the ideas below? Charity Fundraising Ideas - Viral video challenges We can all name at least one viral video that’s stayed with us after watching it, from the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge to the Mannequin Challenge. They’re fun, interesting, and strangely addictive, but how can your company use it to raise money for charity? Crowdsource suitable ideas from your colleagues for a unique video that will get people talking. It could be a dance routine, or an amateur music video, or a challenge that other people can get involved with too. Nowadays, it’s super easy to record and share videos on our phones. Get all your co-workers, friends and families to get involved for maximum exposure. Keep it topical and relevant (think Movember in aid of prostate cancer), and most of all: don’t take yourselves too seriously! Charity Fundraising Ideas - Host a special event Nothing gets people donating like a special event. The glitz and glamour of a black-tie gala really gets people fired up about a cause, and they’ll be only too eager to donate. Profits from ticket sales [...]

By |2018-06-07T18:07:03+00:00June 7th, 2018|Blog|0 Comments

Marrakesh Essential Information

MARRAKESH ESSENTIAL INFORMATION INTRODUCTION Marrakesh Essential Information. The following will help (hopefully) if you wish to stay longer in Marrakesh at the start or end of  one of our expeditions. It will also be useful if you are visiting as a tourist. You will have an afternoon and an evening in the Marrakesh old town on your expedition with us.  You and your guide will enjoy the hustle and bustle of city life.  Some people, however, might enjoy more time in this famous city. Marrakesh is famous as a huge market town. Getting lost in the Souks is all part of a trip. The shopping here is vast and diverse. Make sure you have left a few kilos spare in your luggage for souvenirs. ACCOMMODATION There are plenty of places to stay and is a great resource for finding accommodation. That said, here is a list of places that we have stayed over the years - I hope it helps and offers some advice that might be useful. The old town, known as the Medina is where the markets / souks / history / culture is centred. This is a traditional Moroccan old town and most bars and Riads (hotels) don’t sell alcohol. There is plenty to see and do and the local street food served by the vendors at the marketplace is second to none. You can spend a few days in the Medina regardless of whether you are on an expedition - so it’s a perfect place to meet partners for an extension of your expedition. - Absolutely the closest place to stay near the centre of the Medina. A rooftop terrace overlooking the market. Reasonably priced. [...]

By |2018-01-05T11:03:47+00:00January 5th, 2018|Blog|0 Comments

Top 5 Fundraising Events

Top 5 Fundraising Event Ideas Introduction Here are my top 5 fundraising event ideas for charities. The list is derived from my personal experience from over 12 years working in and running fundraising events across the UK and Europe. For choosing any event you need to consider your aim and reason for choosing that particular activity. How you choose to fund that particular event is another topic and I've written an article about that here:   With any fundraising event knowing your target audience and how that capitalises on your aim - usually amount of money raised, combined with awareness for your cause. This narrows your choice and gives you a defined search area.   Examples: If this is your first fundraising event then doing a 5 day cycle challenge might not be for you. Consider instead a single day, minimum commitment event like an abseil. If your based in Surrey then a one day mountain challenge might not work due to your nearest mountain range being 4 hours away. Consider instead a one day or multi day cycle due to the number of keen cyclists living in that area and therefore capatilising on your local target audience. You get the idea. I am always more than happy to talk through fundraising event ideas that are specific to your area and your target audience.   Fundraising events are a great way of combining an activity / journey / expedition that is on most people's bucket list and raising money for a charity - it's a win win situation for all involved.   Here is a list of our top 5 fundraising event ideas. No 1 - Charity Abseil Low cost. Low risk. Maximum [...]

By |2017-12-04T16:00:57+00:00August 8th, 2017|Blog|0 Comments

Snakes and Ladders

Snakes and Ladders is a classic and unforgettable journey around the Llanberis slate quarries. It's scale, proportions and epic qualities leave even the hardcore adventurer breathless and in awe. This route is not for the faint hearted but can be accomplished by a novice climber with a competent guide.  However – you need to go prepared. A competent leader is a must!!! The knowledge of abseiling - is a given and the ability to judge serious situations should not be over looked. Much of the information I had found in the past had been confusing and had been difficult to follow. I want this to be 'guide book style' information, for free – for others to follow. The topo will help link the description with what's on the ground. I hope that the following will shed some light and help those wanting an adventure, to go and take an amazing journey around Snakes and Ladders!! Here goes: Snakes and Ladders Parking Spot Snakes and Ladders Description From the car park at Dinorwig walk towards the main slate quarries on the large track. Go past the large disused building on your left and take the gate on the left hand side leading towards the long staircase going up hill. The main track now bends around to the right – follow this and on your left there is a quarry with a pool at the bottom – Dali's Hole. Head into Dali's Hole and head across to the large tunnel visible on the other side. Walk through the tunnel via a tricky step around a boulder to a path, right around another quarry. Head through the next tunnel. This leads [...]

By |2017-12-04T16:00:38+00:00October 5th, 2016|Blog|0 Comments

Pembroke Coast Path

Pembrokeshire Coast Path Run Pembroke Coast Path - I never really liked running when I was younger.  I did it but that was mainly to get away from something or someone. As I've gotten older and I can put on weight just by looking at a chocolate bar then it seems that running is a good way of staying fit and trim....ish. . I've done more and more running and I've begun to realise my enjoyment of the sport. The ease of which you can grab your running shoes and head out the door on a micro adventure, is great.  Running it seems is a quick fix to break the day up and give my brain a sprig of fresh air. I love climbing, don't get me wrong but you do spend a lot of time hanging around... and waiting. Maybe it's why I've enjoyed climbing challenges (usually involving speed climbing) and mountaineering more so in recent years with the main focus being on continual movement rather than 'what's the smallest hold you can stick'. I have many loops and circuits that I know and run regularly around my local area and it was only about 4 years ago I went fell running in the Breacon Beacons and with some sense of amazement I realised I could do it. However the idea of journeying and embarking on an adventure still holds its draw and I am passionate about it. Attempting a challenge is magnificent, the hours spent planning (or not as the case maybe) and the great sense of reward one gets from finishing them - 'the bigger the challenge, the bigger reward' - perhaps. I ran my first ultra distance earlier in 2015 running [...]

By |2017-03-03T19:43:53+00:00June 30th, 2016|Blog|Comments Off on Pembroke Coast Path

How To Fund A Charity Event

How To Fund A Charity Event Introduction As a charity, you want and need to raise funds for the cause that you're supporting. In today's world, there are so many ways of doing this. Having people walking around the streets and holding buckets is very much out of fashion. Holding buckets in the street still works (on some level) but there are other ways. Adventure Events are far more creative, lead to more money being raised and have better media exposure and marketing. Challenges and adventure events are becoming more and more popular. People from all walks of life are getting involved. Charity events and challenges vary from single day, to weekend and even longer adventures and challenges. Some people do it for personal reasons, others do it because the charity is dear to them in some way, and yet others do it for the feeling of finishing a challenge and the sense of achievement. The bigger the challenge, the bigger reward..... Challenge events have therefore become more and more popular. Running marathons will always be popular, but people have started to want that little bit extra from their time away from work. Climbing mountains, cycling from city to city, obstacle races, and crossing countries are all some of the events that combine that little bit extra in the same weekend or week. For the charity or company organising an event like this, it can seem like a daunting project to arrange all of these logistics but that's what we can do for you. We ran an event last year that made £70,000 for a charity from a single day and it didn't cost the charity anything - not even a penny. How is this [...]

By |2018-03-21T10:54:29+00:00May 22nd, 2016|Blog|0 Comments

Triglav North Face

Triglav North Face I first saw the north face of Triglav in a book, 'The Big Walls' by Reinhold Messner, when I was about 19 years old. The mountain and the face has fascinated me ever since. In the book, it gave an account of the first ascent with a large colour photo of the mighty north face of Triglav. It quoted “Few climbs have left such a lasting impression on me as this one. Of the three biggest faces in the Eastern Alps, the Triglav Wall seems to me to be the most difficult.” - Ludwig Sinek. The grade given for this route however, is only IV+ (UK grade of around Hard Severe). So, with a rock wall as tall as El Cap in Yosemite but with a far more reasonable grade, it seemed like a very good idea to book some flights to go and check it out. The plane touched down into Slovenia's capital – Ljubljana. We hired a super cheap car and made the short drive to the picturesque town of Bled – where we were staying for a few days in order to attempt to climb Triglav via the north face. Bled is a tourist town, and rightly so – it's beautiful. The town is situated on a huge, crystal-clear lake, with steep limestone cliffs at its edges and castles rising from the rolling forests. It really is a fairy tale of a place. It's also cheaper than other European destinations. We were paying just 17 euros a night for our B and B; so it's a perfect base to start your adventure. On our first day, I drove with Robyn my climbing partner to the town of [...]

By |2018-03-21T11:01:22+00:00February 25th, 2016|Blog|0 Comments

Welsh 3000’s Challenge

Climb the Welsh 3000's challenge on the 6th and 7th August 2016. The Welsh 3000's challenge is a classic of the UK and of Snowdonia National Park. In order to complete the Welsh 3000s Challenge you are required to have been at the top of all 15 of the mountains over 3000 ft in Wales. Some people try and complete this in 24 hours and this is a serious and very long day out. A better way of doing it, is to complete it over a two day period – that is what we are doing. The length is about 26 miles, but the walks to the start point and down from the finish point can take it to over 32 miles in total. The walk is also known as "The 14 Peaks" (although there are officially 15 peaks, or possibly 16).There is more information on the challenge on these links - and CONTACT US FOR YOUR INFORMATION PACK Price - £125 pp The Mountains Snowdon - 3559 ft (1,085 m) Crib y Ddysgl - 494 ft (1,065 m) Crib Goch - 3028 ft (923 m) Elidir Fawr - 3031 ft (924 m) Y Garn - 3106 ft (947 m) Glyder Fawr - 3284 ft (1,001 m) Castell y Gwynt - 3188 ft (972m) — if included Glyder Fach - 3261 ft (994 m) Tryfan - 3011 ft (918 m) Pen yr Ole Wen - 3208 ft (978 m) Carnedd Dafydd - 3425 ft (1,044 m) Carnedd Llewelyn - 3490 ft (1,064 m) Yr Elen - 3156 ft (962 m) Foel Grach - 3202 ft (976 m) Garnedd Uchaf - 3038 ft (926 m) Foel-fras - [...]

By |2017-02-17T16:14:53+00:00January 28th, 2016|Blog|0 Comments