It's been less than a month but I'm back out working in the Costa Blanca for www.rockandsun.com. It's nice to escape the winter weather in the UK and get some more favourable conditions here in the south. I have the pleasure of Jim's company on a six day "Learn to Lead Trad'" course. After picking him up at the airport, by midday we headed to Toix and went through some stuff on a three pitch route. Jim has quite a lot of climbing experience, so our first afternoon was just about checking the skills he has were in order - they were.
The following day I thought It'd be good to take Jim on an iconic Costa Blanca adventure up the Penon de Ifach. The weather had taken a turn for the worse and was predicted intermittent rain and sun. Knowing the Penon fairly well, we headed up Via Valencianos - as it's easy to bail from if the conditions get too grim. Conditions at times did get grim, but not too grim to sack it in. We gained the top and shared what was left of our sandwiches with the wild cats that seem to like living on the summit.
The following day we headed back to Toix and were joined by Sergi - a local climber that is training to become a climbing guide. He kindly helped with belaying duties as Jim climbed a moch lead and then his first real trad' lead, bringing up a second and lowering them down. Well done Jim and thanks a lot Sergi.
Echo Valley was our destination for Wednesday and Jim mock lead a harder climb and brought me up and lowered me back down. We then spent the rest of the afternoon drilling anchor set ups in a truly beautiful location. Where to go and what to do tomorrow...?