Friday, 2 January 2015

Eiger Sanction for mental health!

I've managed to persuade myself into going back on the Eiger but this time with John Churcher (visually impaired with 3% tunnel vision) and my best mate Colin Gourley.

It will be challenging but that was the point. It was born from a challenge supporting mental health

The Eiger can be dangerous as I know from personal experience and our plan is to climb the West Flank Route to the summit. Although the route is of moderate difficulty, climbing as part of a VI team will prove challenging and I expect the descent will prove the most difficult element when abseiling etc but I trust John has the resilience to deal with whatever we encounter. He's a tough person.

John and I at World Championships in Gijon

It's fantastic that my old mate Colin is joining us to assist. I've known and climbed with Colin since we were 13 years of age and trust him emphatically.

Although my last adventure was an amazing epic that involved helicopter rescues and an unplanned change of partners high on the wall to allow me to summit it ended sadly with Roger losing his sight in one eye with a detached retina from falling ice near the Traverse of the Gods on the North Face. So it seems there is a link to what we are doing and to have Colin on this journey with me is just great as he missed out on the last Eiger sanction!

Summit icefield on Nordwand. 
Bringing the injured Roger up to my belay.

Neil Boyd preparing to tackle the Spider on the North Face

Referrals from clients:

"...This training season I decided to get all the help I can to speed up my improvement. I needed guidance to work towards my goals in long term. I also needed more vision and opinions about my exercises and weak links. I am glad I can share my training with Mark..." (Ville Mustonen, Finland)

" I met Mark in Glen Nevis on his return to climbing to check out some lines he had in mind for me, I wasn't really training at this point but after a day or two talking and training with him I had a much more structured idea of what to do to improve and I did" (Kev Shields)