UPDATE July 2015: Ken and Hannah are now running Scottish walking, mountaineering and climbing courses for West Coast Mountain Guides.
Today I was out with Mark, who has a forthcoming trip to Ama Dablam, and as part of his training, he was keen to climb Tower Ridge in winter. We certainly found winter on Tower Ridge today, as it was plastered from bottom to top in excellent neve and ice, enabling very swift progress with solid first time axe placements and even the opportunity to place an ice screw or two! We took in an icy groove low down, which gave a fun, steeper step of ice before continuing on the normal route.
What was just as amazing as the route, was that we were the only team on the ridge today, as it seemed that most teams had ventured into Observatory Gully to sample some of the classic ice routes, plus a few teams on various routes in Coire na Ciste (Garadh Gully, Raeburn’s Easy Route, Glover’s Chimney and Expert’s Choice). We descended a very snowed up Ledge Route, which added further interest to an already great day.