BMC Alpine Meet – 2008

Many thanks to Rich for the following report:

This years BMC Alpine Meet took place in Arolla over two weeks starting on the 3rd August. The meet is now in its 3rd year and things have really gained momentum, with a good increase in numbers over last years Saas Fee event. Over 50 people attended over the 2 week period, either climbing independently with other meet goers or taking part in the different instructional courses managed once again by Alpine Guides.

We had a great team working over the 2 weeks including Rich, Jonny Baird, Matt Dickinson, Olly Allen, Owen Samuel, Willie Todd, Vic Chelton and Rachael Hinchliffe (the BMC rep/social sec) and a really fun and enthusiastic group of folk on the courses. This years courses included Alpine Walking, Alpine Intro Skills, and a more technical Alpine Mountaineering course, with the usual array of essential skills taught on each one. Cramming in the skills didn’t get in the way of climbing though – Pigne D’Arolla, La Luette, Mont Blanc de Cheillon, Traverse of the Quille, Point du Pas de Chevre, Couronne du Breona and the Maya Slab rock routes were all climbed in fine style over the 2 weeks of mainly good weather (apart from the snow to valley level during the final BBQ party!).

Many of the course folk stayed on during the second week to climb independently and mingle with the other meet goers, and between them ticked an impressive range of local classics including the traverse of L’Eveque, Points du Vouasson, West ridge of the Dent du Tsalion, traverse of the Dents du Veisivi etc – a fine testament to good teaching (we would like to think)! But the highlight of the trip had to be the great sense of team bonding, shared knowledge and plain good fun experienced by all – the guides agreed it all felt more like a holiday than work, so thanks to all who came and we hope to see you again! Also thanks to Jon and Rachael at the BMC for their hard work behind the scenes/BBQ. A few pics:

Crevasse rescue session.

Learning ice climbing skills.

Everyone say cheese…