Monday, 30 December 2013

Best Reads of 2013

My reading diet this year was both broader in subject and more selective in quality than normal. Trekking and the Outdoors featured heavily, complementing the subject of my other day job (leadership consulting and executive coaching), and several classic works of fiction.

Trekking and the Outdoors

Monday, 16 December 2013

Thank you for helping "The Call of the Mountains" on its way

Thanks to distinguished reviewers and generous purchasers of  "The Call of the Mountains", helping it climb, at least on Amazon... 

"An interesting and worthwhile addition to the literature of the Munros and a book worth reading by anyone with an interest in the hills and hillwalking..." 
Chris Townsend, one of the world’s most experienced backpackers and outdoor writers November 2013 

Sunday, 15 December 2013

A Munro-baggers holiday: The Seven Hills of Rome

“See Rome and die!”

While Goethe's words were actually “see Naples and die,” Rome is undoubtedly the more beautiful city. Thus the chief threat to compleating a full round of her Seven Hills is the range of tempting photographic diversions and exquisite sights that the Imperial City offers.

View from the Aventine Hill


Onto last week’s business trip, I decided to tag a ‘continuous, unsupported, solo round’ of the hills, and started with the historical and topographic research that enhances any adventure. Several things readily become apparent:

Thursday, 12 December 2013

Munroists, Toppists, Furthists and more

[Charts corrected 13 December]
Having compleated the Munros last year and the Furth Munros last week, I was curious to know what company I was in. I turned to the SMC website and fired up my Excel spreadsheets. But I am a data fiend, so I quickly got drawn deeply into the world of Munroists, Toppists, Furthists and more.
Below I offer answers to such exciting questions as: how many people have climbed all the Furths? How many have climbed all the Furths and all the Corbetts? What is the typical gap in years between compleating the Munros and the Furths? Has anyone bagged all the SMC lists?
Of course there is the usual caveat that not everyone who compleats these lists necessarily logs the information with the SMC… And I also had to remove two Munroists before starting the analysis: #284 (the Unknown Munroist) and #666 with its blank data!

Overall popularity

Munros compleations grew rapidly during and after the 1980s and appear to have settled at around 250 per year Рwith 2001 and 2010 as notable dips, perhaps due to the impact of 9/11 and certainly due to the impact of the eruption of Eyjafjallajökull.