UK Mountains Walking, Mountaineering and Equipment Reviews

UK Mountains

This website is dedicated to my personal Mountain Walking and Mountaineering experiences over very many years. There are numerous reports, not only from UK Mountains but also from many parts of the world that I have been lucky enough to visit. During those expeditions I have had the opportunity to test out all types of equipment and the Equipment Review page lists most of this gear along with my honest opinion. Hopefully that will be of use to anyone considering purchasing equipment. Also, I have my personal walking log and as a labour of love, I have listed all of the mountains over 2,000 feet in England and Wales along with the date of ascent. It is a work in progress and I hope one day to climb them all. Anyone who reads this and would like a copy of the Mountain Tables, get in touch and I'd be happy to provide it free of charge. In the meantime, have a look around the site, read the reviews and reports and let me know what you think.

About me

I've been enjoying the great outdoors since at the tender age of nine, my Uncle and Cousin took me on a Youth Hostelling weekend to the Forest of Dean in Gloucestershire where we stayed at St Briavels Castle, which is still a Youth Hostel. I've been walking and climbing in all areas of the UK and Europe from as far north as the Cuillin Ridge on the Isle of Skye through the Lake District, North Wales to Devon and Cornwall. Overseas I have organised and participated in successful expeditions to Switzerland, the French Alps and South America. In 2017 I was part of a team that climbed Kilimanjaro by the difficult Western Breach route. We also ascended Meru Peak as an aclimatisation route. 2018 saw me satisfy a lifetime ambition to visit Nepal and climb some well known peaks and passes. See the 'Previous Expeditions' for a full report of both of these expeditions.

In August of 2019 I made an attempt on Mount Elbrus (5,642m) which is the highest mountain in Europe, located in the Caucasus mountains in Southern Russia near the border with Georgia. It was a two week expedition but due to persistent bad weather we failed to summit, reaching a maximum altitude of 4,650m. A full report is on the Previous Expeditions (Europe) page.

Rock Climbing

I am an SPA Instructor and have climbed in many areas of the UK & abroad, particularly at Symonds Yat, North Wales, the Peak District, Mid-Wales, Cornwall & Scotland. I have many hundreds of logged climbs in my log book and during my time, have climbed many more than I have recorded.

Climbing the Hexenstein, Dolomites

Mountaineering

There are many beautiful mountain ranges in the world, many within easy reach of the UK. I am fortunate to have been to a large number of them. Below are the best.

Mountain (Range)Description
NepalOctober 2018. Trekking in the Himalaya to a maximum of 5,643m
KilimanjaroSeptember 2017. The highest mountain on the continent of Africa at 5,895m
Teide, TenerifeApril 2015. Highest Mountain in Spain (Tenerife) at 3,718m
Alesch GlacierAugust 2001. Including the Hexenstein in the Jungfrau region of Switzerland
AconcaguaJanuary 2001. Highest Mountain in South America at 6,960m
DolomitesAugust 2000. Northern Italys' most famous range.
MatterhornAugust 1997. Most famous Mountain in Switzerland at 4,405m
Mont BlancSeptember 1995. Highest Mountain in Western Europe at 4,807m
Pennine Way 1977

Walking

From single day to several weeks, I have walked many of Britains long distance footpaths. Below are some of the more well-known routes.

RouteDistanceDescription
Wysis Way55 milesApril 2022. From the Wye to the source of the Thames.
St Kenelms Way52 milesApril 2022. Clent Hills to Winchcombe
The Ridgeway87 milesSeptember 2019. Avebury to Ivinghoe Beacon
Three Choirs Way100 milesMarch 2019. Gloucester to Hereford to Worcester to Gloucester
Gloucestershire Way100 milesDecember 2018. From Chepstow to Tewkesbury
Severn Way210 milesAugust 2018. Following the River Severn
Winchcombe Way42 milesMay 2013. Around the Cotswolds
Limestone Way60 milesDecember 2012. Rocester to Castleton in Derbyshire
Welsh 3000s28 milesJuly 2000. All 3,000' mountains
Worcestershire Way38 milesJuly 1992, August 1992 and August 2004. Wyre Forest to Malverns
Cotswold Way96 milesAugust 1991. Bath to Chipping Campden
Coast to Coast192 milesAugust 1990. Robin Hoods Bay, Yorkshire to St Bees in Cumbria
6 Shropshire Peaks40 milesJuly 1990 and April 1992. East to West Shropshire
Lyke Wake Walk40 milesJuly 1983. Yorkshire Moors
Pennine Way270 milesAugust 1977. Edale to Kirk Yetholm (Scotland)
Cuillins Ridge, Skye

UK Mountains Blog 2022

Rohan update 14/11/2022
I was contacted by the Customer Services who offered to reproof my Fry Frontier Trousers, I declined, they then offered another identical pair, I declined. Finally they offered me a Gift Card refund. I discussed it. They claimed they could not offer me a full cash refund as I had worn them! How else can I determine their usefulness? I decided to take the Gift Card and maybe try another pair of overtrousers, this time from a shop so that I can take them back and demand a cash refund if (when) they don't function properly. I notice they no longer advertise Dry Frontier Trousers!

Rohans go back again 12/11/2022
Once again I am returning waterproofs! This time it is the Rohan Dry Frontier trousers. I returned them some time ago and Rohan reproofed them for me. On the recent Lake District trip they let me down quite badly so now they are going back for good. Nothing short of a refund will satisfy me and once again I am on the look out for new waterproofs.

Coniston once more 07/11/2022
Picked up the final peak in the Coniston loop. There is another (Harter Fell) but that is quite a way out so a separate walk. Today I did White Maiden (610m) in really bad conditions. Full reports on all three days will be in the Previous Expeds pages.

Coniston assault 06/11/2022
The plan was to do all of the peaks in the Coniston area, but due to fatigue and a mild sense of humour failure with the dreadful weather all day, one got missed, but I will get that tomorrow. Today was Wetherlam (762m), Black Sails (745m), Swirl How (802m), Great Carrs (785m), Grey Friar (770m), Brim Fell (796m), The Old Man (803m), Dow Crag (778m), Walna Scar (621m)

Helvellyn area 05/11/2022
Todays walk was from Rydal to Kirkstone. The weather was pretty dreadful all morning but improved in the afternoon. Seven plus two repeats (with Fairfield being done twice) because they were in the way and an after dark finish. Heron Pike (612m), Erne Crag (621m), Great Rigg (766m), Seat Sandal(736m), Fairfield(873m), Hart Crag(822m), Dove Crag(792m), Little Hart Crag(637m), Red Screes(776m)

Lakes again 24/10/2022
A cheeky trip to the Lake District in a couple of weeks time will see 2 1/2 days of walking bagging all of the Coniston Group (11 peaks) and 7 peaks in the Helvellyn range bringing my years total to 94! Lets not count our chickens before they hatch though!

Final Arans Peak done! 22/10/2022
Foel Hafod-fynydd was the final peak in the Arans and the whole of mid-Wales so I was keen to climb it. My route was to park above Lake Vyrnwy on the ridge, then walk out via Llechwedd Du which was tough going with heavy rain for the first hour, no real path and lots of boggy ground. The peak is quite isolated, requiring a huge drop down to a valley and then another huge climb to the summit which was so steep I could touch the ground in front of me! Return was the reverse so equally tough. A total of 10km in just under 3 hours.

Bleak day on Bleaklow 19/10/2022
Two peaks I ticked off many years ago, Bleaklow Head (633m) and Higher Shelf Stones(621m) warranted a repeat visit as I had no memory of doing them. A business trip by my partner to the area was too good a chance to miss as it would mean free transport, free hotel and free food!

It was a nice day out, although very windy, we did 11 miles from Manor Park in Glossop, over the peaks and back via Doctors Gate. I wasn’t sure whether to count them in this years total or not and standing on the summits, I couldn’t remember them, but given that the Pennine Way passes over the summit of Bleaklow Head, I must have done that at least, so decided to compromise and include Higher Shelf Stones only.


Watersmeet to Lynmouth 06/10/2022
This was a combination of walking along the river from Watersmeet and a section of the Coast Path into Lynmouth. Watersmeet is the confluence of the East Lyn River and Hoar Oak Water. Easy walking through Brandon on a good path and eventually up to the A39 then down to join the Coast Path, through woodland on a good, but thin track to finally emerge onto a hillside about 2-3 miles from Lynmouth which by now is just in sight. One final climb and it is mostly steadily downhill to the town, emerging on the far end of the beach. My meeting point was at the other end and with two minutes to spare on the 4pm meeting time, we reached the end. 20km walked.

Dartmoor in a day 03/10/2022
On a suberb day I conquered both two thousand foot peaks on Dartmoor. They are quite close together so I did a very roundabout route, firstly climbing from Meldon Reservoir to the higher High Willhays (621m), then headed out via Dinger Tor (550m), Okemont Hill (564m) to Hangingstone Hill (603m) for lunch, then returned passing close to Wild Tor, Steeperton Tor and East Mill Tor to ascent Yes Tor (619m) from the South and back down to the car park. 25km and 908m of ascent in five and a half hours.

Dartmoor 03/10/2022
Dartmoor


South West Coast Path 02/10/2022
The entire path runs for over 600 miles, starting in Minehead, North Devon. As a pre-cursor and warm up for my Dartmoor walk I thought I'd do a section to see what it is like. Tough is an understatement! I walked 22km but managed over 1,100m of climbing with a high point of just 316m. The ascent is not easy either, with descents into valleys and ascents to headlands being relatively short and very steep. I was blessed with excellent weather, being able to easily see South Wales across the water and even Lundy Island. My walk was from Lynmouth to Combe Martin. Dartmoor is tomorrow but I may be back later in the week for another section.

Dartmoor beckons 22/09/2022
In just a couple of weeks time, I'll be on Dartmoor, completing the two Tors that reach the magic 2,000 feet. That will complete that section and bring me a bit closer to completing the English mountains, although there is a very long way to go!

Glyders completed 01/09/2022
On my way home from a motorbiking trip, I couldn't resist taking advantage of some very fine weather in the Ogwen Valley and bagging the two remaining peaks in the Glyders region, Y Foel-goch(805m) and Gallt yr Ogof(763m). Only 11 remaining in the whole of Wales!

Whats next? 13/08/2022
I'd aimed and planned for 50 peaks for 2022 and have succeeded in climbing 71 so far which I'm pleased with. I could relax and let the rest of the year go by, but with a holiday on Exmoor later in the year which is very close to Dartmoor where there are two 2,000' peaks and the opportunity of a cheeky day out in mid-Wales to complete the Arans and thereby the entire mid-Wales region it is unlikely that I'll be taking it easy any time soon!

Yorkshire Day 2 04/08/2022
Whernside(736m), the highest in the Ingleborough group, plus three peaks on the opposite side of the valley (Gragareth(627m), Green Hill(628m) and Great Coum(687m)) made four peaks for the day plus we explored Yordas cave which was fun.

Six peaks over the last two days increases the 2022 total to 71.


Yorkshire Day 1 03/08/2022
Todays walk was an ascent of Ingleborough which at 724m is one of the highest in the area. Great start to the day, but on the summit, the weather deteriorated so we had no view. Once off the summit of course, everything improved! Great day out and two peaks for the bag, the second being Simons Fell at 650m!

Ingleborough 03/08/2022
Ingleborough


The New Forest 23/07/2022
For the first time ever, I had the opportunity of a walk in the New Forest. It is a very pleasant place, but it is flat! Navigation is tricky because there are no features to aim at, no mountains to head towards and everywhere is very similar; a few trees, some wide dusty tracks, gorse and heather. Having said that, I enjoyed the walk and might be tempted again in the future.

Yorkshire Peaks 29/06/2022
I don't sit still for long and am now in the process of planning a few days walking in Yorkshire to pick off some of the peaks there. I'll be staying with my walking buddy Chris who knows the area well, so hopefully I'll come back with a big bag of new peaks!

Trip Reports 28/06/2022
I've been rearranging my trip reports to be slightly more logical. In the Welsh section, particularly Mid Wales, I've sorted the reports into regions as it makes more sense if someone wants to read about a particular mountain. Also the North Wales reports have been rearranged where possible. In some cases I've walked mountains in more than one region so it has not been possible. If you want to climb a particular mountain but are not sure which region it's in, take a look at the Mountain Log page which lists all the mountains and their regions, it can be sorted in many ways to make it easy.

Trip Statistics 24/06/2022
A very successful trip to mid Wales with glorious, if not a little too hot at times, weather saw me walking for four days, ascending 14 out of a possible 15 peaks - the Moelwyns big day proved to be too much and had to be split into two. I walked a total of 88.5km with 4,172m of ascent and a staggering (pun intended) 129,538 steps!

This brings my total to this year to 65 peaks which is impressive by any standards I think.


Mid Wales Day 4 23/06/2022
Final day of the trip saw me conquer Foel Penolau (2,014') and Moel Ysgyfarnogod (2,043') in the Rhinogs, then drive over to Bala and climb Foel Goch (2,004') in the Arenigs to complete all peaks in both of those areas. I now have just one peak in the whole of mid-Wales to climb!

Mid Wales Day 3 22/06/2022
Today I completed the Moelwyns group with ascents of Moel Penanmen (2,014’), Manod Mawr North Top (2,158’) and Manod Mawr (2,168’). I then went on to climb Y Garn (2,063’) in the Rhinogs.

Mid Wales Day 2 21/06/2022
A super hot day saw me climb four peaks in the Moelwyns region which were Craigysgafn (2,260’) Ysgafell Main (2,204’) North (2,194’) and Far North Tops (2,132’). Total for the year is now 58. I’d originally planned seven but a combination of the heat, route finding and distance meant I cut it short, but even so, did 12 miles so not a bad day out.

Moelwyns 21/06/2022
Moelwyns


Mid Wales Day 1 20/06/2022
Post Gwyn (2,181’) in the Berwyn completed which also completes the entire group. Then drove over to the Arenigs to climb Rhobell Fawr (2,408’) and Dduallt (2,165’) bringing my year total to 54.

Mid Wales assault 13/06/2022
Next week I'm off for a few days to mid-Wales again with the remaining 15 mountains firmly in my sights. It's ambitious (of course), but achievable I think. Good weather will help, bad weather might make all the difference between success and failure.

Berwyns almost complete! 11/06/2022
Two of the final three Berwyn Peaks completed! Cyrniau Nod (2,188') and Cefn Gwyntog (2,017') on a reasonable day. The visibility was excellent, but it was windy and there were showers of rain all day so the ground was wet, but it's done and there's only one more peak in the area and I'll have bagged the lot!

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