Guided 3 Peak Challenge with The North Face #1

 

On Sunday, we were working for our friends over at Highpoint who had an epic job on their hands. 80+ clients had travelled over from The Netherlands from companies including The North Face, Suunto and Bever Outdoor & Travel. The North Face also brought a few of their ultra-fit sponsored athletes, military like logistics, inflatables and set up a veritable ‘village’ in Swirls car park for the afternoon’s ascent of Helvellyn.┬áThis was badged by TNF as a 3 Peak Challenge, but with two of the peaks being in the Lakes, due to the still-very-wintery conditions high on Ben Nevis.

Team Lakeland Ascents (aka Team 11) were first off the blocks, with a group of 8 girls from Bever, who battled strong winds, driving rain and very poor visibility to climb Helvellyn and get back down in about 3.5 hours. Not bad considering that one of our group had a mild asthma attack (which then turned into a panic attack). Add to that having to deal with a few ‘lost’ clients from other groups and a chap with a dodgy knee… Team 11 quickly swelled from 8 to 14! However, all I can say is that we’re glad we didn’t get the group with the sponsored athletes in, who managed the ascent and back in under 1.5 hours. Ouch!

This was no ordinary corporate walk though – the North Face moved their village to the Langdale valley and at 9pm we were off again, for a night ascent of Bowfell and Esk Pike. This time our group was about 30 strong, but fortunately shared with a couple of other guides. The asthma/panic attack thing happened again high on The Band, but despite this and couple of folk needing escorting back down due to various injuries and niggles, a tired but enthusiastic group summited Bowfell at about midnight, returning to Great Langdale by about 3am to board their fleet of mini-busses and travel to Wales to climb Snowdon.

A great couple of walks. Well done to all involved and cheers to Joe at Highpoint for getting us involved. We’re looking forward to working with you on Round 2 when the whole thing is repeated on Sunday with another 80 clients!

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