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Sharp Edge, mountain ridge in Cumbria

Sharp Edge ridge scramble

Taking on a scramble can be a very rewarding achievement. If you have a fear of heights you are inevitably going to be scared. You will have to push yourself, but that makes the challenge all the more rewarding.

So if you are scared of heights but you want to go scrambling you are likely to find yourself in a bit of a dilemma. That is to say, if you embark on a scramble are you going to end up on a mountain unable to proceed along your route and unable to retreat? Will you end up completely stuck and not able to move a muscle, i.e. cragfast?

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Mike Dunne at the bottom of a crag

Climber Mike Dunne

Regular followers of our blog will be familiar with Lake District climber Mike Dunne. If not, you can read about his climbing adventures and his perspective on climbing in our previous blog posts. For this post we caught up with Mike to find out what he’s been up during 2013.

Over to you to Mike…

This summer I spent a good chunk of time living in my van on the Cumbrian coast surfing.

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We all enjoy looking at pictures of climbers attempting dangerous moves high up cliff faces, but do we ever think about the person who took the picture or filmed the movie? Who has shot the image and how did they get into the right position to capture the action?

Matt Sharman and camera halfway down a cliff face

Adventure cameraman Matt Sharman in position to film climbers.

Adventure cameraman Matt Sharman is sponsored by outdoor gear company Jack Wolfskin and is one of the authors on the Jack Wolfskin Blog. He is a keen climber and mountaineer which enables him to get into the positions required to film and photograph professional climbers on their ascents.

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Tamara Lunger started competitive ski-touring in 2002 and, as a member of the Italian national team, won several major titles. These include Italian Champion in 2006 and 2008, winner of the Pierra Menta 2007 and Long Distance World Champion 2008. Following these successes Tamara has progressed onto mountaineering, becoming the youngest woman to climb Lhotse (8516m) in 2010. Now sponsored by The North Face, she is continually looking for new challenges in high alpine mountain terrain, the environment which gives her an almost indescribable feeling of happiness and contentment.

Mountaineer Tamara Lunger on Lhotse

Tamara Lunger is the youngest female mountaineer to summit Lhotse

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Alpine climber David Gottler is a professional mountain guide and cameraman. Having summitted four 8000m mountains his mountaineering skills are more than proven. He has also made impressive winter climbs of famous north faces such as the Eiger, Grand Jorasse and Matterhorn. Twice attempting a K2 summit and a new route on Ama Dablam, David has been thwarted when snow and ice conditions became too risky to continue.

David Gottler, in the mountainous Khumbu region of Nepal

The North Face Alpinist David Gottler, Khumbu, Nepal

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Mike Dunne stands at the base of a crag

Climber Mike Dunne

This time last year we were contacted by climber Mike Dunne in response to our blog post about raising the profile of up and coming athletes. Mike told us about the soloing that he’d been doing in the Lake District and we subsequently published a blog post about his climbing thoughts and experience. Mike has since moved away from the soloing and is now leading. Over the course of the year he has been very active climbing new routes and we are proud to announce that we are supporting Mike by promoting his climbs on our blog. Below Mike talks us through some recent Lake District climbs, which include Woden’s Wotsit, Samurai Jack, Rashòmon, Karma Kings and Ephliates, May you Live Forever.

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Snow covered mountains

Nanga Parbat (Killer Mountain)
Source: Flickr by Faisal.Saeed.

Whilst it is fairly true to say that health and safety regulations protect us from harm, injury and death in many circumstances, they can be a bureaucratic nightmare that end up stopping us from doing things that we enjoy. Some people believe that we live in a Nanny State that has taken health and safety so far that it is impinging upon our civil liberties.

Outdoor pursuits, such as hiking, climbing and mountaineering carry risks and as such health and safety must be considered, especially by companies that provide guiding services or by schools and other groups that take children on these activities. However, the inherent risk is one of the aspects of outdoor activities that makes them so rewarding. By placing health and safety restrictions on outdoor enthusiasts is our personal freedom being curtailed?

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Paul Roberts climbing a crag

Paul Roberts climbs Pitch 2 of the El (5.8.3)

Following on from our recent blog post, in which solo climber Mike Dunne talks about his loves and hates of the climbing in the Lake District, we are pleased to present a post written by a climber from the United States.

Paul Roberts is from New York state and has spent the past 3 years climbing in many parts of the USA, from New Hampshire to California. In June this year he’ll be launching a cross country/get to college/climbing trip that will take him climbing all over the country, ending in Prescott Arizona where he’ll be studying adventure education and environmental policy at college.

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Mountaineers wearing crampons cross a snow field

Snow traverse using crampons. Source: Flickr by ribekak.

If you are thinking going mountaineering then you will need to get some crampons, this may also mean buying new crampon compatible boots. But what if you’re thinking of going hill walking in the winter? There may only be small sections of the hike where there is hard snow and ice. You may feel that buying crampons and compatible boots is too expensive and unnecessary. Fortunately there is a solution! Winter hardware manufacturer Stubai have brought out 4 point and 6 point crampons which can be fitted onto most B0 boots.

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Mike Dunne tackles a bouldering problem

Mike Dunne on his bouldering problem 'Samson'
on the Isles of Scilly

We always enjoy hearing from you, our readers, about the adventures that you have been having in the great outdoors. Not only that, we like to give you the opportunity to use the CheapTents blog to promote yourselves if you’re looking for sponsorship. Recently we were contacted by Mike Dunne, who loves climbing in the Lake District. We asked him to tell us about his climbing experience, his thoughts on the climbing scene and who he rates as a climber.

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