The Twelve Days of Christmas.....
'The 12 days of Christmas is the period in Christian theology that marks the span between the birth of Christ and the coming of the three wise men. It begins on December 25 and runs through to January 6.'
As we settle down for the Christmas festivities and the chance to share time with family and friends, we thought we'd offer up some very special memories from 2019. It has been a year spent far away and close to home. On 2 wheels, 2 feet and 2 skis. On big mountains, snowy hills and sun kissed rock. A year filled with new opportunities, with clients of old and with many new faces. It has been a very special year.
So, we humbly offer up our version of the 12 days of Christmas. Each day, for the next 12, we'll add another photo from the many taken over 2019. A photo for each month to sum up that period of the year and share the kind of things we were getting up too. We hope it is interest......
The early part of the year is often spent in the Alps and this year we enjoyed great conditions, great company, great weather and, of course, great skiing. There is surely no better way to welcome in the new year?
February is always a month packed with Scottish winter adventures and any typical winter season north of the border has everything from blizzards to hurricane force winds to rain. Of course, sometimes all the stars align perfectly and you get blue skies, perfect temperatures and stella snow conditions. This mountaineering day was one of those.....
In March we always head for the beautiful Atlas Mountains of Morocco and this year we were welcomed both by unprecedented amounts of fresh snow and unusually stormy weather. This made for a great adventure, but meant the high summits were out of reach. No matter, we still stayed very busy learning winter skills and ice climbing, and this photo beautifully sums up the conditions we encountered.
In April we took our first expedition back to the Annapurna Region of Nepal. This is a stunning area to explore and our team trekked through damp and snowy early season conditions up to the fabled Annapurna Sanctuary. The photo we’ve chosen shows them, in the pre dawn glow, enroute to base camp with the majestic bulk of Machupachare in the background. A stunning start to an unforgettable day.
By the middle of the year the Peak Mountaineering world is all about our rock courses and we wanted to add a photo summing up the pleasure of dry rock, warm days and psyched clients. One of our most popular is our legendary Learn to Lead course and the selected photo, taken when Gary and Steve joined us, show's the unforgettable buzz of a successful ascent.
We wanted to show that our work isn't all about being in the mountains - sometimes it is about preparing people for managing the unexpected during their mountain adventures. Our first aid courses (run by our sister company Tor Lea Training) have got busier and busier and we are adding more for 2020. They cover a serious issue, but we still have a lot of fun too. Here's a smiley photo from a very wet course which really highlights the importance of insulating a casualty.
In July we were lucky enough to spend time in the Julian Alps of Slovenia. This is a place that has been on our hit list for some time and it really didn't disappoint - friendly locals, stunning cultural and natural beauty, efficient infrastructure and with many amazing adventures to be had. This photo shows the sun rising on another beautiful day as we summited Triglav.
In August we were back to Russia for our annual Mount Elbrus expedition. Russia is a fascinating place to visit and Elbrus is a great mountain to climb. It is tough, challenging, beautiful and has all the features of a great adventure. For this year the team enjoyed great weather and were such a fun and inspiring team to be away with. This photo shows the team on the last few steps before reaching the summit in stunning weather.
We really had to include a mountain biking photo in this selection. Biking is such an important part of our world and the Peak District just so happens to be a world class venue. The late summer/early autumn period is often the best time of year to enjoy it too - dry trails, still plenty of warmth in the air and evenings light enough to get a daylight ride even after work. This photo taken by one of the Peak Mountaineering juniors on one of those evenings sums it up perfectly.
October is the perfect time to head to the big mountains of Nepal and this year we had 3 itineraries running. We also got a lot of great photos (which isn't difficult in Nepal!). However, we knew this had to be our October photo. This was taken in the very early morning after an acclimatisation ascent of Gokyo Ri and shows team member Cath taking in the vista.....and what a vista! This surely has to be one of the most picturesque places on the planet.
For most of November we were still in Nepal, and so it's only reasonable that we sneak another Himalayan snap to reflect that. The fourth of our Nepal itineraries for 2019 was a trip up the stunning Langtang Valley and an ascent of the beautifully positioned Kjanjin Ri. This photo sums up that sheer pleasure of topping out on a beautiful day, in great company and in such a fantastic place.
And so to the last photo in our 12 Days of Christmas selection and we wanted to go out on a high. For the last 5 years we have run an end of the working year evening event for our friends at Rab and Lowe Alpine and this year a large group headed for a great evening traverse of the Peak District's iconic Great Ridge. Yep, and Santa even joined the fun! We wish everyone a peaceful and prosperous new year and we hope you enjoyed this little collection. Now, time to start making some new memories.......
Posted by Cal