Creative peak bagging is the way forward

Creative peak bagging is the way forward

Last year was an unusual one for me. There were few real plans, and my travels ended up evolving out of necessity and opportunity, but I kind of liked it that way and I believe a combination of loose planning and going with the flow is the way forward in travel.

Read more

Climbing Sapitwa Peak, Mulanje, the highest peak in Malawi

Climbing Sapitwa Peak, Mulanje, the highest peak in Malawi

Not only does the Mulanje Massif in southern Malawi contain some of the loveliest trekking you will find anywhere, but to climb its highest point, 3002m Sapitwa Peak, involves a very unusual scramble indeed. Here’s my account of our ascent.

Read more

Mafinga South and Mafinga Central: the highest peaks in Zambia

Mafinga South and Mafinga Central: the highest peaks in Zambia

A couple of weeks ago I reported from Africa on my mission to find, measure, ascend and name the highest point in Zambia, and how identifying which peak to climb wasn’t as straightforward as you might think. This is the story of our quest.

Read more

Climbing Kilimanjaro: a taster from my forthcoming book

Climbing Kilimanjaro: a taster from my forthcoming book

I promised to provide an update on where I’m at with the book I’ve been threatening to publish about my journey from lowly hill walker to Everest summiteer. Here it is, along with a short teaser from the book in the hope that you might be tempted to buy it when it comes out.

Read more

Finding the highest points in Zambia and Malawi

Finding the highest points in Zambia and Malawi

You would think in this age of satellite mapping and websites like Google Earth the highest point in every country has been calculated by a machine, and you can just look it up somewhere. This isn’t the case, as I discovered when I tried to find the highest peak in Zambia.

Read more

The Eighth Summit: the highest mountain in Central America

The Eighth Summit: the highest mountain in Central America

I thought my ascent of the highest mountain in Central America, an extinct 4220m volcano in Guatemala called Volcán Tajumulco, was going to be little more than a tick in the box, but that was far from being the case. Its summit was a real surprise, with a view as fine as any mountain I’ve climbed.

Read more

Do we really need more 8000m peaks?

Do we really need more 8000m peaks?

The International Mountaineering and Climbing Federation (UIAA) is considering a request from Nepal to reclassify five peaks within the country, and another in Pakistan, as 8000m peaks. But are they worthy of the name, and is there any point? Let’s have a look at the peaks in question.

Read more

Peak bagging in Central America

Peak bagging in Central America

I hate it when people do things just to tick boxes and say they’ve done it. Travelling’s all about enjoying the moment, whether it’s gazing upon a glorious view or immersing yourself in an unusual, unique experience. I hate it

Read more

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

Read more

How to measure the height of a mountain

How to measure the height of a mountain

An idiot’s guide to topographic prominence Once upon a time paid employees of the British Empire went to extraordinary lengths to calculate the height of the Himalayas. It’s quite widely known that the highest point on the planet is named

Read more