Winter Stories: Shredding, ice climbing and back on the rock

So, it seems the ski season is finally drawing to a close, well for me at least. I have dug out my rock shoes, booked a physio appointment, and girded my slightly snowy loins in preparation for the coming rock season.

A shoulder injury has kept me on the bench since last October, and I am hoping to come back to climbing next week in Catalunya, Spain. I have had a few days out on the rock (literally just a few) in the last couple of weeks and have managed to get back up to a reasonable standard pretty quick, so here’s to some 8th grade routes in Spain.

However the last few weeks have been really great in the mountains too, with a work trip to Cogne to hook up with Tim Emmett for some ice climbing being a lot of fun, ending in us simul-climbing a classic icefall after the photos and general work stuff had finished.

“I promise I won’t fall off mate!”

It was really motivating to hang out with Tim, and also the group of Guides working on this event, and gain some psyche for big projects.

Here’s a video I made of Tim whilst on the event:

Also resident in Chamonix was Hazel ‘The Pro’ Findlay. Hazel, being a professional climber, has some alpine ambitions and took it upon herself to improve her skiing so that she can access some mountain lines more easily. Needless to say within just a few days she was ‘totally killing it’ and could only be described as ‘the best skier on the mountain’.

Hazel Findlay Shredding the VB

Hazel and I did do some ski/ice combinations, but work, weather and psyche prevented us from getting a high mountain route done this time round. Perhaps later in the season.

Also on the ice front, I had a photo-shoot to do with legendary photographer Jon Griffith, which was done in minus 20 conditions, but still a lot of fun. Actually it was the first time I had put a rope on for about 4 months due to the shoulder, so I was bricking it!

Photos from the Ice Shoot:

Jack Geldard on a WI5+, Argentierre. Photo: Jon Griffith/Alpine Exposures
Jack Geldard on a WI5+, Argentierre. Photo: Jon Griffith/Alpine Exposures

And a couple of rock climbing photos from the recent warmer weather:

Mayan Smith-Gobat smashing in a few more routes at some crag in France that we were showed by a local climber. Pumpy!

Wish me luck in Spain, can I climb an 8b after only 6 days back on the rock? We shall see!! :-)

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