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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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The International Mountaineering and Climbing Federation UIAA have produced an instructional video about ice climbing which they have posted on YouTube and is embedded below. It is called Basic Ice Climbing and is presented by four-time world champion ice climber Ines Papert. Considered the best female ice climber in the world, Ines Papert specialises in climbing frozen waterfalls, so she certainly has the necessary credentials for the ice climbing instruction.

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Swiss Alpinist and speed climber Ueli Steck is famous for his fast and lightweight approach to the world’s hardest and highest mountains. Sponsored by Petzl, Scarpa, Leki and Mountain Hardware, Ueli Steck has set the speed record for the Matterhorn (1 hour 56 minutes), Grandes Jorasses (2 hours 21 minutes) and the North Face of the Eiger (2 hours 47 minutes). Has has also summitted Gasherbrum II (8035m) and soloed Makalu west pillar (8463m).

The Matterhorn is one of the most famous Alpine Mountains

Speed climber Ueli Steck climbed the Matterhorn in 1 hour 56 minutes. Source: Flickr by Jeff Pang.

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The UIAA have announced the appointment of a new executive director. He is Ingo Nicolay, who is also the president of the Heilbronn Section of the DAV, the German alpine club.

Ingo Nicolay will be replacing former executive director, Judith Safford. UIAA stands for International Union of Alpine Associations, but the organisation is also known as the International Mountaineering and Climbing Federation.

At this time we must express our gratitude to Ingo’s predecessor, Judith Safford, for all of her hard work in the past and we wish her all the best in the future.

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At last the waiting is over and the Harrogate Climbing Wall is now open.

Get yourselves down here and get climbing.

Harrogate Climbing Centre (HCC) offers both indoor climbing and bouldering, as well indoor and outdoor climbing courses and qualifications. On offer are taster courses for people new to climbing, beginners courses and courses for climbers to develop their skills and even leader courses.

The Harrogate Climbing Centre's Indoor Climbing Wall

HCC's 14 meter multi-angled climbing wall.

The main indoor climbing wall is a whopping 14 meter multi-angled wall, designed by Entre-Prises. Climbing grades range from 3+ to 8a. There is also a bouldering section which features problems from V0 – V8, as well as a Fr7b stamina circuit.

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Mountaineering Ethics will help protect the Mountain Environment.

Mountaineering Ethics will help protect the Mountain Environment. Source: Flickr by dino_olivieri.

To coincide with International Mountain Day 2009, the UIAA International Mountaineering and Climbing Federation released their new code of Mountaineering and Climbing Ethics.

The UIAA’s bold summary encompasses the thinking behind the declaration:

Stretch Your Limits, Lift Your Spirits, Aim for the Top!

The mountaineering and climbing ethics code encompasses the following twelve points, which I have summarised below:

  1. Individual Responsibility – Be responsible for yourself, for others and for the environment.
  2. Team Spirit – Support and encourage your climbing team members.
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Tom Stewart, the owner of Rock Over Climbing, has announced that a new bouldering centre is coming to Manchester!

Rock over climbing bouldering centre

Rock over climbing announce new bouldering centre to open in Manchester City Centre

ROCK OVER CLIMBING will be situated in the city centre (somewhere within a 3 minute walk from Victoria station) and will open early in 2010. It will be the largest dedicated bouldering centre this side of the Pennines, with over 250 routes set for all abilities. There will be something for everyone including kids, beginners, everyday climbers and the best climbers in the country.

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Blackpool Tower: location of covert tower climb.

Blackpool Tower: location of covert tower climb. Source: Geograph. © Copyright Dave Green and licensed for reuse under the Creative Commons Licence.

First opened in 1894, Blackpool tower is a 158m high steel structure. Blackpool Tower was modelled on the Eiffel tower, however one of the main differences is that the Eiffel Tower is a free-standing structure and Blackpool Tower is not. This fact presents a large obstacle for anyone who wishes to climb Blackpool Tower without the owners permission, as tower climbers “Userscott” and “Stepping Lightly” know only too well. At the foot of Blackpool Tower is a building of about 6 stories that houses which hides the base of the tower.

It’s about our hundredth attempt at possibly one of the hardest ‘buildering‘ challenges in the UK that leads us to the base of the tower. For two years the challenge wasn’t even the tower – it was getting to the base of the tower

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UIAA Promotes Climbing and Mountaineering Internationally

UIAA Promotes Climbing and Mountaineering Internationally. Source: UIAA.

The UIAA is an international federation which represents climbers and mountaineers from across the globe. The acronym UIAA stands for Union internationale des associations d’alpinisme, which can be translated from French into International Union of Alpine Associations. However the the organisation is more widely known as the International Mountaineering and Climbing Federation.

The UIAA has 82 member associations worldwide, representing almost 1.3 million individual climbers and mountaineers. In UK there are two member associations of the UIAA, namely the British Mountaineering Council (BMC) and The Alpine Club (TAC).

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Responsible Climbers Protect Birds

The British Mountaineering Council (BMC) will be publishing a list of current and new climbing restrictions later this month. These are voluntary restrictions put in place to prevent nesting birds and their chicks from being disturbed.

The BMC asks all climbers to read up on the restrictions for the areas in which they climb. Climbers have an excellent record of respecting bird nesting restrictions and continued good will is important to develop and maintain good relations with landowners and conservation bodies.

Tony Ryan, the BMC.

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