Alps – Vir-ti-gi-nous

Weird, I always, thought that the word Virtiginous meant “Steeply sloped,” as in: “That’s a nasty virtiginous broken-bottle-strewn 10 foot drop, you wouldn’t want to fall down that. Dave.”

But actually: vertiginous \vur-TIJ-uh-nuhs\, adjective: … 2. Causing or tending to cause dizziness. 3. Turning round; whirling; revolving…

So, as one might feel having whirled, say, 15 times, clockwise, around a vertically-held paddle, as part of a race? Or executing three perfect backward tumble-rolls, all in a strictly downward direction, then landing carefully wedged in a tree?


Some games are obviously best left to the professionals.

the professionals


Alps: Splash

Click to make a splash:

Splish Splash

Photos by Sara

Alps – a raft report

ghost castleChateau Queyras is a beautiful gorge snaking around a castle hill. Its a special place, which can only really be seen from a boat, or by negotiating the via ferrata (wired climbing route). Based on my excellent head for heights (er, not), and rather “plateaud” kayak abilities, I’m pretty much never going to be able to see it… except that, as luck would have it, a mad raft company called Queyraft run a trip through Chateau Queyras Gorge and Guardian Angel gorge and Triple step! (Pics Helen and Sara)

ghost castleCQcastle


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St Davids – tent championships report – more pictures

Another report about recent May bank holiday at St Davids.

 Tent racing conditions were highly favourable, with gusts of up to 86mph and strong contenders in the form of Will’s tent (snapped) and Sue’s tent (pictured). However, the winning tent (not pictured, for obvious reasons) was Gillian’s – would anyone passing near Ramsey island kindly collect it. Sue and Sara have posted more pictures of the weekend surfing, socials and Porth Clais trip here (Sue’s facebook album), and here (Sara’s album) enjoy, xxh

Andy Helena surfingAndyporth clais to solvaSolvaSues tent not a happy tentcliffs

Jenny L – Tyne Bridge jump – Swaziland appeal

Here’s a picture of Jenny Lees abseiling off Tyne bridge. Fool. Here are pictures of her friends in Tyneside and in Swaziland – all of them are scouts involved in an annual summer programme of works, to both improve clinic infrastructure and provide sports facilities and activities to young people living with HIV Aids in the Hhohho district of Swaziland.

Jenny and coJenny Lees checking her harness

International ScoutsCampingSunny day

Please read on to learn about the work they will be doing at the scoutcamp this summer. At the moment, the scouts are busy fund-raising (hence the close encounter with the river Tyne) – big thanks to all those who have sponsored Jenny!

How to donate:

If you would like to donate money towards clinic improvements, that would be great , please write a cheque to 19th Newcastle Scout Group and mark the back of the cheque Swaziland and send it to: Jenny Lees, 7 Tintern Court, Perton, Wolverhampton, WV6 7XG. Please indicate whether you are a UK tax payer, as tax we reclaim can make your money go further. Alternatively, you can give money to Helen H, and she will pass it on. Any donation large or small will help, thanks.

Gathering water for cementSiftingJenny, put your back in to it

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Alps – links to photos

Of our 8 day trip to the French Alps, there are only 14 seconds which are not documented in some way in pictures or film. Unfortunately, those 14 seconds were the whole of Wookie’s swim down Chateau Queras, quel dommage.

Nevertheless, there are many lovely pics to look at, a selection of your albums are linked here. Please tell me addresses of any more albums – if they have a publicly-accessible address, so much the better. (Most of the following require facebook login, which is free). 

Looking forward to reading any reports on the Alps or anything else you’ve been up to. xxh

Andy B's pics of CQ via ferrata on facebook  Andy B’s CQ via Ferrata pics on Facebook

Kev's Alps pics on facebookKev's Alps pics on facebook

Kev's Alps pics on facebook  Kev’s Alps pics on facebook

Helen's CQ rafting pics   Helen’s rafting pics

Lloyd and andy climbing Lindsays Alps pics

Sara Alps pics Sara’s Alps pictures on facebook

Review: First Aid Manual (BCU Lifeguards)

This slim volume complements and reinforces the material in the Aquatic First Aid award, and is supplied with that course. It was developed by BCU lifeguards.

Aquatic first aid booklet

Its a lot shorter than the St John’s / Red Cross book which is the alternative course book. This multiplies by 8 the chance I will read it immediately upon finishing the course, as opposed to just putting it on the “to do” pile and meaning to read it. Good.

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