Why I don’t give a toss about the BMC renaming itself Climb Britain

Why I don’t give a toss about the BMC renaming itself Climb Britain

Last month Britain’s top mountaineering organisation, the British Mountaineering Council (BMC), puzzled its 80,000 members by announcing out of the blue that it would be changing its name to Climb Britain.

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Leo Houlding does his bit for the Sherpas

Leo Houlding does his bit for the Sherpas

Last week one of Britain’s top rock climbers did a lecture at the RGS in London. Rock climbing isn’t generally my thing, but this talk had an Everest theme, and one of its aims was to raise money for the families of the Sherpas who died in the 18 April avalanche.

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Top rock climber accuses sunbathers of cheating

Top rock climber accuses sunbathers of cheating

This week the Footsteps on the Mountain team caught up with champion rock climber Bill Scheidt, who has completed many first ascents on bold new routes. Bill is known for a very pure style of climbing, and over the years has become an outspoken critic of climbers who employ artificial aids to enable them to complete an ascent. But it’s not just use of pitons and supplementary oxygen that make his blood boil.

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Ueli Steck’s ridiculous mountaineering career

Ueli Steck’s ridiculous mountaineering career

If you read the title of this post and think I’m about to slag off the Swiss climbing superstar, famous for his speed ascents in the Alps and Himalayas, then you should know upfront that I’ll be doing precisely the

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A short history of Cerro Torre, the world’s most controversial mountain

A short history of Cerro Torre, the world’s most controversial mountain

Rising above the Southern Patagonian Ice Field on the border of Chile and Argentina is a narrow finger of rock 3128 metres in height that for over 50 years has been a source of controversy among the climbing community. Last

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Which is harder, the Second Seven Summits or the first one?

Which is harder, the Second Seven Summits or the first one?

Last month the Italian climber Hans Kammerlander became the first person to climb the Second Seven Summits, in other words the second highest peak on each continent. According to 7summits.com, 348 people had climbed the main Seven Summits, the highest

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Colombia’s glaciers will soon be gone

Colombia’s glaciers will soon be gone

The photograph on the wall in the farmhouse at La Esperanza where we stayed the night had been taken 15 years ago, but it looked very different from the place we had walked through earlier in the day. I use

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5 reasons Ecuador’s mountains are great for beginners

5 reasons Ecuador’s mountains are great for beginners

When the Victorian mountaineer Edward Whymper visited Ecuador in 1879 – ostensibly to study the effects of high altitude, but in reality to polish off a few first ascents in the High Andes – he was far from impressed. In

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