/ What to do on a climbing holiday rainy day
This last week a bunch of us went over to North Wales to hit a few routes. One of the days was a washout so somebody came up with the bright idea of scrambling a river/gorge. We have a few cheap wetsuits and used our helmets and some old trainers to rock up Afon Cwn Llan next to the Watkins path. Got to be honest, it ended up being one of the best days of the trip.
In the past we've gone for a hike, toured the big waterfalls or gone to a town. This got us wondering, what other wet day alternatives are we not seeing on a climbing holiday when the rock is off the menu?
I just got back from a meant-to-be-climbing holiday on Skye. The weather was pretty bad all weeks so I spent most of the days scrambling and spent half a day in Fort William - had a coffee and played jenga in the climbing centre and flicked through some guide books in a book shop.
In general, on a bad weekend I opt for caving instead of climbing.
Sleep all day, eat pies
Do an easy route. eg Ordinary Route Idwal Slabs, which becomes a stream. Very entertaining!
Or walk. Going up a mountain in bad weather and poor visibility is great for honing navigation skills.
Mine exploration = indoor mountaineering.
But don't those holes in the ground tend to fill up with water?
A july ascent of a Via Ferrata in a blizzard(dolomites obviously) was a highlight one year. Strangely entertaining, almost warranted a winter grade. Walked past the start later on that day after a fun navigational exercise to get off to find the the only other folk on it were more brits.
Coasteering, kayaking, whitewater rafting, all of which have instructors in north wales who can take you out and provide equipment. The nice thing about whitewater is that it is at is finest when it has been tipping it down the night before, so quite complementary with climbing.
Going round a castle - mist swirling around the battlements can add to the romantic charm. Plus there is often an indoor museum bit with suits of armour, handy if you have kids and they are getting cold and bored outside. Similarly, steam train rides, butterfly gardens and so on are good for kids in Wales.
Pick a lake on the map and go for a swim in it. Or why not try bog snorkelling? You’ll be wet and muddy anyway from the walk in.
> Do an easy route. eg Ordinary Route Idwal Slabs, which becomes a stream. Very entertaining!
Stream might be underselling it, more like a torrent once you've had enough rain
Surfing is also available near Llanwrst, but I don't think it's cheap.
Mountain biking! Great wet/damp activity.
A trip to the Alhambra on a total wash out day in El Chorro stands out for me.
Depending on who I'm with I like to have a long safety meeting, you can't take safety too seriously...
> But don't those holes in the ground tend to fill up with water?
Depends on the cave, there's plenty of fossil passages that don't flood, they are usually very muddy round the dales
Heavy drinking always kept us amused
Beat me too it
Is festering a lost art?
Interesting that caving has popped up. We also did 'Snakes and ladders' in the slate mines above Llanberis. It's all abseiling and steel ladder climbing so was ideal for a second wet day.
Mountain biking, used to do that but found I was spending too much time in ambulances and cleaning / maintaining the bike.
Sea level scramble. Go down at one access point and come up at another 2 hours later. You need to know it's possible though or you risk a proper chance of being killed to death.
> Heavy drinking always kept us amused
And Cob records for when the pubs were closed
Mountaineering Scotland has called for action to be taken against the growing issue of 'dirty camping', which sees irresponsible campers leaving rubbish, fire damage, toilet waste and even tents in their wake.