Motivated Individuals – Great Teams

Getting up at 4:30am in the morning on your holiday may seem like a bit of a daft thing to be doing; in the end holidays are meant to be relaxing and a time to unwind.  Some people enjoy lazing on a beach.  Unfortunately, that’s not my idea of a holiday – my ideal holiday is cramming as much “stuff” in to the shortest possible time.  “Stuff” is defined as ski touring (where I’ve been), ice climbing, rock climbing, skiing.

So what’s the reason for getting up so early and how does this relate to anything at all!!!

Well the reason for getting up early (especially in huts) – is because the hut guardians generally want you on the hill early so you can be back early.  The reasons are probably three fold:

  • In winter the afternoons bring a greater chance of avalanches.
  • In summer the afternoon brings the possibility of thunderstorms.
  • It also gives you the most amount of time to achieve your goal – i.e. go up a hill/mountain!

I’m not one for getting up early, however, on holiday it seems even easier to get up than it does on a work day.  It is quite simple go to bed a lot earlier than normal so that you can ensure that you are fresh in the morning – there is also not much to do in a hut after dinner!

When you get up in the morning at “silly o’clock”, there is an enviable buzz around the hut – people are psyched for the day ahead.  This energy is really amazing, you can feel it flowing through the building. 

This is the perfect example of building teams around motivated individuals (read principle 5), if a software team had the same buzz as my fellow mountaineers/hut goers then it would probably build kick-ass software.  Quite assumptive I know!

My mind now ponders at how to get this motivation flowing through everyone in a team; is getting people up at 4:30am in the morning reasonable!!!

Having a shared goal would be a good start, and finding out what motivates each individual in the team…

The Joy of Post Holing

We had a really magnificent week away in Italy – this was all part of my dad’s rehabilation after he broke his ankle/leg in Switzerland on the Piz Trubinesca. You may know about this if you’ve chatted to me – if you don’t you can read the over media hyped version @ you can see it here!

We stayed in Livigno in the Picolo Tibet – which is run by Ercole (I think that’s how you spell it!) – he was a fellow patient in the St Moritz hospital that my dad spent 20 days in following the accident.

We spent the first part of the week skiing – it’s really good swishing down the slopes on the skis. I changed to snowboarding a couple of years back, but have since gone back to skiing. Due to a damaged board after a big gust in Scotland slightly damaged the board, and also I’ve got the gear for ski mountaineering now!

The second part of the week was spent ice climbing. The approaches where pretty awkward due to the depth of the snow – not having snow shoes really tells. Post holing as the “yanks” call it is really exhausting and time consuming when approaching routes. It seems to take a quarter of the time to get down after the route! It may well be time to invest in some snow shoes – the only problem is that they need to be easy to carry and collapsible – it seems that there is already a patent pending!

The first ice route was a WI 4+ it took about an hour and half to get to the bottom of the route the guide book time for the approach was half an hour! The Joy of Post Holing! It was really interesting climbing the top pitch the ice must have been half a metre thick sheet of ice. It kept thudding as you placed the axes and crampons. Quite interesting really – I didn’t put much protection because the ice wasn’t that thick!!! Both pitches where fantastic.

The second ice route was a WI 5 the guidebook says it is only a 90 metre route. It ended up being more like a 200 metre route. The gully was quite long to get to the main pitch which is a really nice sustained 5 pitch. The ice was just good enough to climb on the left – the centre was all rotten out – it had been in the sun too long and was really mushy!!! It was a really good route to do on the final day before travelling back to Zurich. Something to get the arms pumped!!!

A really good trip and a good place for my dad to continue his rehabilitation – to quote after the WI 4+ – “That’s the hardest thing I’ve been on since the accident!”.

Hopefully Scotland will stay/get in nick again so we can get up there for some more ice climbing in the coming weeks. Back to training & work for now!

Busy Climbing Time

I’ve been really busy climbing. So whats been happening, did I just sum it up in 1 sentence?

Yes I think I did, been climbing loads, Fairhead was awesome with some very interesting company… Really good climbing for 2 days should really have climbed on the 3rd day as well but hey ho… Other things to note that Pex Hill is the new Brownstones!!! Or rather Pex Hill is really good, although we’ve known this for a little time… New traverses at Brownstones have been keeping me busy as well though…

Not alot else really just been doing the normal crag hopping that happens during summer… However I have this to note, with relation to two spots I’ve recently visited namely being Hobson Moor and Witches… I know this is going to end up being, well they can choose what they do etc… But I have to say I am slightly concerned at the continuing trend towards top roping and general “wall” behaviour at crags…

For example at Witches I saw someone belaying about 10 metres away from the wall, they obviously do not know that this would rip nearly all the gear because of the different force that is being placed on it… Solution?

Hobson Moor just seemed to be a top rope feast, however, I kinda understand the reasons for this. Although the erosion at the top of the crag should always be considered otherwise the issues at Anglezark might arise at other quarries too!!!

Anyhow, thats about it, will post the links to some pictures when I’ve uploaded them…


Well not really the whole summary, but hey just some pics… Well in fact only these mmm 4 pics… Will write a full report once I’ve slept… Oh and more pictures as soon as myspace decide to let me upload anymore… Wow look I even posted “Devon” not “Cornwall” am such a dumbass…

Oh can I just say this computer sucks…

Outdoor climbing…

Well what a great day, been out bouldering in Yorkshire at Bridestones for about 4 hrs… First time I’ve been outdoors climbing for about 8 weeks. It was as good as I can remember it is!!! Anyhow, the picture is of Johnboy my climbing partner and well just general fat ass… Although he did a 6b this afternoon which was pretty impressive!!! Me, I was restricted to my typical gritstone type of climbing which was squirm everything and be a short ass who can’t reach pebbles!!!

Maybe its time to kill some Germans. No I don’t mean real life – Call of Duty 2…


I often wonder how much programming would be done without the use of caffeine I mean even thinkgeek sell caffeine… We got limited to decaff in work for about 2 weeks and it was murder… I mean whats the point of having coffee without the most essential ingredient???

What else, well back to training last night for my up coming trip to Conya in Italy for Ice Climbing, can’t wait for the trip. My first ever time ice climbing, this might lead to me aiming for real mountaineering – after reading Andy Cave’s book it did inspire me to do a few really big mountains. However, I do think I would have the fear of loosing fingers for rock climbing through frost bite. Ahhh well, gotta wait and see if I can ice climb first!!!

Oh yes, training so 31 and a bit laps of Preston wall not a bad start for a short arse like me. Hopefully next year (climbing wise) I can achieve some of my big ticks (and push my grade) – Cream at Tremadog, Resurrection at Cromlech, The Axe at Cloggy and many more…