Your Mountain Training Stories

MT 200 Mountain Training celebrated its Fiftieth Anniversary in 2014 and since then we've been celebrating your experiences!

Over 143,000 people have registered for an award since 1964. Find out what some of them think of their journey in their own words.

(The stories scroll through every 5 seconds. To pause the scroll and read a story, just move your cursor over the story.)

Have you got a story to tell? Click here to find out how.

My Mountain Training Story :

Mike Ratcliffe

I am a full member of the Mountain Training Association, Canoe Wales, RYA, BMC and NEWSAR/NWMRA. I have over 20 years teaching experience teaching all five Key Stages in Mainstream and Special schools and have taught children with a very wide range of abilities, in various environments. Naturally I have a current DBS (update service), EWC registration - all documents and certificates are available immediately on request. 

My Mountain Training Story :

Chas Ward

Brought up to value the great outdoors by my parents I walked in the Yorkshire Dales, Lake District and N.Wales from an early age. I joined Cubs, Scouts & Ventures where I learned to rock climb and climbed with school friends. In 1990 I joined the T.A. & ran with the O.T.C. Mountain running squad. I was Reserve for the British Military Pentathlon Squad. In 1991, aged 20, I climbed the west face of the Eiger. I studied Geological Sciences at Leeds Uni, joined the Climbing Club & beyond, led E6 on Grit, F7b+ Limestone and E5 Slate across the UK & abroad with Winter Climbing grade IV in the Lakes & Snowdonia. I began to lead groups in the outdoors following graduation in 1994, first as Assistant Leader & Expedition Photographer in Arctic Norway for the British Schools Exploring Society. In 1998 I was joint Fire Leader for the BSES Indian Himalaya Expedition (Mountain Leader & Science Leader: Geology and Geomorph.) I first ran the Welsh 1000 m Peaks Race in 1989. After a serious accident and several operations I learned to walk again & run. I trained via the 2008 Snowdonia & Langdale marathons to rerun the W1k in 2009. I have since completed the CRO Challenge (Ingleborough Marathon) 4 times 2014-18 & am aiming for a W1k repeat. I began Archery in 2012 and volunteered to help translate for English speaking Archers in France each summer to 2016 including disabled. I trained as an Archery GB coach in 2017 and coached at local clubs, where I continue to shoot. I have spent many wonderful days & nights in mountain and wilderness environments and enjoy sharing my passion for flora, fauna and landscape with others. I am a firm believer in the “Nature Fix” as having the potential to bring wide-ranging benefits for many and varied issues to lots of different people. I believe that key to building individuals, group and teams’ confidence is shared values, challenge & stretching experience in a fun, engaging & active outdoor environment.

My Mountain Training Story :

Laura Comfort

Im Laura A geography teacher during the day an keen walking the rest of the time. I love being outside and walking - In most weather's-although I hate camping! I'm trying to log 40 quality mountain days in order to complete my Hill and Moorland assessment (I did the training when it was previously called Walking Group Leader). I'm qualified as a Bronze NNAS tutor, passed Gold NNAS (ML level navigation skills). I hold a BEL qualification, 16 hour Wilderness First Aid and I'm a DofE assessor. In my spare time I like finding and bagging trig points.

My Mountain Training Story :

Phill Sparks

In 2009 I started to help with climbing sessions at the local scout campsite and since then have worked hard to become a qualified climbing instructor and coach. I now hold the Climbing Wall Award, Single Pitch Award, Climbing Wall Leading Award and Foundation Coach Award. I've attended the first two FUNdamentals courses and look forward to the other courses. I am now starting my Development Coach journey and looking forward to the Rock Climbing Development Instructor being introduced.

My Mountain Training Story :

Derek Brown

I love the outdoors and climbed my first Munro in 1968. I have been climbing hills ever since and while I have not climbed every Munro I have climbed many of them more than once. I don't climb hills to tick a list. Been working with DofE for many years and completed the Gold Award myself in 1972 and immediately went to Iceland to supervise another Gold group from Glasgow. Love Rock climbing and Winter climbing and never really excelled although I did climb a 6b route in 1980. Being Scots there is a special attraction for me in Scottish Winter Mountaineering. I organised trips for years along the West Highland Way and run some navigation courses - more to get people involved in the outdoors and enjoy it safely. Been a member of Northumberland National Park Mountain Rescue team and currently provide support to the team in IT & Comms areas

My Mountain Training Story :

Patrick North

Enthusiastic amateur climber and hillwalker for decades, but since becoming a school teacher and getting involved in D of E and the school climbing club, have started the process of qualification (SPA so far, working on Summer ML). The process has improved my skills dramatically, and improved my confidence when supervising groups.

My Mountain Training Story :

Samantha Sowerby

I grew up in Cumbria where l spent time climbing fells, going on long walks and climbing trees - I guess this is when my love for being outdoors was born. My answer to "what do you want to do when you grow up?" was "a mountain climber" but I ended up joining the Army rather than pursuing that earlier childhood aspiration. During my time in the Army I took part in adventure training weeks which gave me a taste of doing the outdoor activities I find myself doing today. I learnt how to look after myself and those I was responsible for in the field as well as other essential skills such as navigation and battlefield first aid. After 5 years I left the Army and in 2010 found myself working in prehospital care and pursuing a career as a paramedic whilst climbing and mountain walking in my spare time. I qualified as paramedic in August 2014 and have worked for the NHS since. These days I work mostly as a paramedic in the autumn and early winter months. When winter arrives I head to Scotland and stay there until winter disappears. Throught the summer I do about 60% of my work as a paramedic, the rest as a freelance instructor. I have been working with young people since 2009. I have developed a passion for enabling and encouraging them to learn about themselves and the world, to grow and experience new things. This has often included the use of outdoor activities and I never cease to be amazed at what they can do for young people! Now, I find myself yearning to take them beyond the 2 hour sessions they have had in the past to spending days on the hills/mountains and crags - this is my primary motivation for undertaking the NGBs. I do, however, find it very rewarding to enable adults to do these things too - they may not have had opportunity as a young person and I feel there is a huge amount to be gained when discovering these activities as an adult.

My Mountain Training Story :

Al Hadnett

Al Hadnett is a very highly qualified and knowledgeable Mountain Instructor who holds the UK's highest climbing and mountaineering instructional award, the WMCI. He showcases a range of expertise in delivering a variety of Mountain Sports, throughout the UK and Abroad. He is a former Physical and Adventure Training Instructor in the Royal Air Force, where he was responsible for training future instructors on gruelling 10-month Outdoor Activity Courses, and delivered training to Elite UK and US Special Forces. Al continues to serve clients across the UK, delivering bespoke training packages to meet their exact requirements, whatever their level and personal goals. In addition, Al is also an expert Fitness Professional, specialising in Physical Performance, so he can blend his skills to meet your exact needs; handy if you're keen to be educated on how to prevent injuries, or learn how to train specifically for your mountain hobby... Check out his website: www.peakfusionuk.com and read his bio/testimonials for further review. Further personal info can also be found on his LinkedIn profile and Peak Fusion UK Facebook Page. Contact him directly for advice and to arrange a bespoke package just for you.

My Mountain Training Story :

Kerry O'Neill

Just quit the 9-5 having worked behind the scenes in the travel and adventure industry for a long time. Time to get out more! I've done seasons in Chamonix - winter and summer - and met some incredible people. Learned a lot about the expedition industry and its planning and logistics processes as well as meeting some phenomenal and very inspirational leaders, through working at Secret Compass for four years in Bristol. I've done long-distance solo-cycle touring and an amount of trekking and am currently registered for my Mountain Leader Assessment. Here we go! Keen to organise and go on QMD weekenders throughout spring and summer 2019 to maximise my experience and improve my skills and fitness across the board. I've also got an MSc in Tourism Management and am a chartered marketeer but plan to avoid desk work for the foreseeable...

My Mountain Training Story :

David Isherwood

Education costs money; but then so does ignorance - CLAUS MOSER .. I believe that motivation comes from enjoying what you do and I work hard to maintain a quality of life and ensure that I enjoy everything I do. I enjoy outdoor, active sports; hillwalking, skiing, sailing, climbing, cycling (on the road) and swimming in open water. I believe in education and work with young people in the outdoors - through the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme and supporting primary schools.

My Mountain Training Story :

John Figiel

I have got involved in the Mountain Training scheme, specifically the Hill and Moorland Leader course, for a couple of reasons. Firstly to improve my hill skills as a keen mountain and trail runner covering long and ultra distances and secondly to allow me to develop my dog walking business and expand it to leading guided walks and walking holidays with owners and their dogs. Most of my working day is spent in outdoor environments, predominantly lowland living in Norfolk, but through my running and a desire to guide our clients in the Peak District where I grew up.

My Mountain Training Story :

James Vaughton

I am love being in the hills and mountains. Most of my experience is in Wales. I have been going to the hills for about ten years and over that time have walked alone for quiet, led groups of adults and young people and completed the Welsh 3000s, the Man vs Horse Marathon and National 3 Peaks Challenge. I have completed the Mountain Skills course and am a qualified Hill and Moorland Leader. I love introducing others to the hills and mountains and seeing their joy as they experience the awesome beauty of our small island!

My Mountain Training Story :

Anil Sud

Started out with a hill walking course....which led to a Mountain walking course....which has now led to signing up for the Mountain leader award. It seems all paths lead upwards?!

My Mountain Training Story :

Ben Westwood

I started working in the Outdoor sector in 2006 with little experience and through work and friends I quickly developed a passion for all things in the Outdoors. I worked up through the SPA, ML CWLA, and Mountaineering Instructor Award schemes. I now actively use my Awards for an Activity Centre company, providing Technical advice and Staff training and Development. I also work as a freelance MIA instructor in, the Peaks, Dales, Lakes, Snowdonia and occasionally Scotland when I can. It's not all about work though, I try to get out as often as possible personally and love getting out there, pushing myself, having adventures and just having fun in the outdoors.

My Mountain Training Story :

Zachary Odum

I feel at home in the mountains.

My Mountain Training Story :

Charles Fulford

Recent Goldsmiths graduate, enjoys climbing and loves social climbing activities.

My Mountain Training Story :

Robert Glaze

Cumbria based full time (seasonal) outdoor educational freelancer. Self Employed with insurance and portable DBS. Qualified teacher holding QTLS (Taught Design & Technology and Uniformed Public Services) and have spent many years in sales and business development roles across diverse industry. Lived in Snowdonia for 3 years. Other skills and coaching qualifications held in Watersports and Mountain-biking. D of E training and assessment / team-building. N.B. I was brought up in a walking and cycling family, I had walked most of the Lakes before I was 8 or 9 and only have limited memories of this! (and since I wasn't navigating they didn't count towards my QMD's which were all logged the old fashioned way in the pen and paper book!)

My Mountain Training Story :

Bryn Williams

My experience comes from over 20 years of working in the mountaineering sector in a variety of leadership and instruction roles. During this time I have worked through the Mountain Training qualification ladder to the top qualification of Mountaineering Instructor Certificate (MIC).

My Mountain Training Story :

Mike Howlett

I have been hiking since the late 80s and really got the bug for outdoor pursuits as a teenager. Living in a London borough, access to the UKs upland areas was not easy and i took up kayaking as my main hobby/sport. My love of the great outdoors started with a trip to the Lake District arranged by my Geography teachers. I then became really hooked following a course with Outward Bound at Rhownair, Wales. This was possible through a grant scheme that i was lucky enough to get, after applying to the local council and a subsequent interview process. I have found myself gravitating back to Wales again and again and love the changing scenery and colourful drama of the mountains and their nature, dependant on the time of year. The more you look the more see. In 2014 I become involved with the Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme. This regularly takes me to the great outdoors with the bonus of helping and sharing its wonders with a local youth group. I am a DofE Supervisor and Assessor and hold the Basic Expedition Leader award. I get involved in Bronze, Silver and Gold DofE awards and look forward to the expedition phases throughout the year. With good planning I can blend my role and responsibilities with personal hiking and extended walks. These regularly take me to the Lowland beauty of rural Essex and Kent, the New Forest, the moors and hills of the Peak District, the Yorkshire Dales and the Lake District. I am currently working on the Hill and Moorland Leader Award which has honed my personal hiking skills and opened my eyes even further to the nature that surrounds us on our hill walking. This has helped me gain a depth to my teaching to the youth groups. This should in turn enable me to emulate the instructors of my past and pass on greater knowledge and enjoyment to my groups during their expeditions as well as an understanding and affinity with their natural environment.

My Mountain Training Story :

Alexander Worth

- Developed a love of the outdoors growing up on the Isle of Purbeck. Inspired by a passion for the sublime Jurassic Coast and Philosophy. Initially set out bagging Munros with my father, I have since spent time walking throughout the British Isles, France and Kashmir. - A keen skier with 22 yrs of Alpine experience - notable backcountry and heli trips included. Most recently, I have taken up Nordic skiing (both Classic and Biathlon) in a desperate attempt to stay fit. - I hold qualifications in Skiing, rock climbing, mountaineering and sailing.

My Mountain Training Story :

Anna Wells

I love being in the mountains and sharing my passion with other people.

My Mountain Training Story :

Richard Hopkins-Durnford

I Have been rock climbing since the late 1980's, having learnt the basics from various friends whilst being unemployed in North Wales. My climbing education entailed being taken out on big cliffs, given the rack and being told to go up. I did the Single Pitch Award training Award way back in 1993 but never did the assessment. I have since travelled the world, always climbing along the way, in Australia, India, the Ukraine, the USA, Canada, the Middle East and all over Europe. I love all aspects of rock climbing but have to say I'm a fair weather climber - I never want to lose my fingers to frostbite! Highlights include climbing the Old Man of Hoy after a gig in Kirkwall with good friends, climbing big walls with my best friend in the Rocky Mountains and getting up Right Wall in the Llanberis pass after years of procrastination. More than twenty five years have past i and still loving climbing now as much as I did then I've decided to get my qualifications starting with the Climbing Wall Award which I did in November 2018.

My Mountain Training Story :

Emma Harrison

As well as running an award winning bunkhouse in Bwlch, I am a Brecon Beacons National Park, Fforest Fawr GeoPark, Mountain & Moorland and Dark Skies Ambassador, and a Volunteer for the Brecon Beacons National Park Authority. I am also a highly experienced walking group leader: I provide guided walks for bunkhouse guests, and occasionally freelance for other companies (past clients include A to Z Expeditions, Black Mountain Activities, Explorers Connect and Mountain & River Activities Ltd). I also lead walks on a voluntary basis for a charity group called Welsh Women Walking, and for local walking festivals such as Crickhowell, Monmouthshire & Forest of Dean, and Talgarth. I help organise our local annual walking & mountain biking challenge called 'Bwlch With Altitude', and I appeared on BBC1 Wales, leading Derek Brockway, presenter of 'Weatherman Walking', on a guided walk in the Black Mountains (Series 10, Episode 2).

My Mountain Training Story :

David Shea

I'm and ASC specialist teacher who has spent a lifetime working with Scouts and students. Although I have walked all over the Lake District from a young age, as well as climbed various trad routes there as well as Cheddar Gorge, and explored the Peak District with my own family, I had never thought about gaining awards to do anything with. This year I have started supporting my school with D of E and have shared a lot of my skills with the pupils, but to make it more official, I am now starting out with the lowland leader award and hope to carry on from there.

My Mountain Training Story :

Jamie Mark Langler

Jamie is the NICAS Course Director at Dart Rock Climbing Centre, Buckfastleigh, where he offers rock climbing activities, skill courses and coaching to climbers of all abilities. He also runs Climb Devon which offer summer hillwalking and navigation skills courses on Dartmoor National Park. Jamie is qualified as a Mountain Leader, Rock Climbing Instructor, Climbing Wall Development Instructor, Development Coach, and a UKAD Sports Anti-Doping Accredited Advisor. For climbing instruction email jamie@dartrock.co.uk, for hillwalking and navigation skills courses email info@climbdevon.com.

My Mountain Training Story :

michael caren

Like most people who climb their first mountain I quickly became addicted. My favorite mountain range is Snowdon massif as it was the most accessible for me. Whilst climbing mountains i also did a lot of ultra races and found myself involved with a company in the Brecon Beacons run by ex special forces called Avalanche Endurance Events. There main race they put on is called the Fandance a 15 mile race over Pen Y Fan twice which i am now a 4 x champion and also a part of the Mountain Support Team on this race and many others put on by AEE. The next step for me was to complete my Mountain Leader Award to be a more trusted member in the team and also to carry on and learn more about the mountains, climbing and outdoors. I have recently started a company called UKSUMMITEXPERIENCE where we take people out on walks, wild camp trips and set up challenges such as National 3 Peaks etc. MY passion is to get as many people off their phones even if it is just for a day or 2 while they reconnect with mother nature.

My Mountain Training Story :

Mark Garland

I first got into climbing at an early age when my Uncle took me on forays to Baggy Point and Portland. Then after a few other encounters with great people on fantastic routes got heavily into it. I have climbed and mountaineered all over the world ever since. I have a passion for all areas of climbing from bouldering to altitude trekking and love the solitude and camaraderie of the Mountains. I am a provider for Mountain Training and run the Rock Climbing Instructor award (RCI), Climbing Wall Instructor award (CWI), Climbing Wall Development Instructor (CWDI), Rock Climbing Development Instructor, Hill/Mountain skills, Lowland Leader, Hill and Moorland Leader, Mountain Leader courses and the Coaching Scemes, I also work for the BMC and provide FUNdamental courses, and MIAS and run level one and two Mountain Biking courses. I am also a keen surfer, snowboarder and photographer. I run many courses for many activities and as well as my climbing work I run a coasteering business.

My Mountain Training Story :

Victoria Wilkinson

I am an Alpine Mountain Runner and founder of Runtirol www.alpinerunning.co.uk. Established in 2010, Runtirol provides specialist guiding and tuition to independent mountain runners and walkers. An active freelance ML, I have a broad range of partners and provide services from large group management and multi-day logistics to specialist 1-1 coaching and devising bespoke events for client groups. I have detailed route finding knowledge across all UK mountain areas and the European Alps, with specialist local knowledge of the English Lakes and Swiss canton Valais. A fell runner since 1995, my experience includes competition at national level, long distance endurance running, orienteering, solo and night running. In 1998, I began running in the Alps/Dolomites, and regularly undertake run ascents of peaks and high passes above 2500m, and up to 3500m. I also compete in adventure x gravel bike racing and and a keen sekayaker. A British Mountaineering Council, Member since 1998, I worked with BMC’s Summit magazine to write the first articles on alpine mountain running, “Race for the Summit” published in Summit magazine Summer 2007. I have been a writer contributor on subsequent articles : Alpine running route guide “Running High” Summer 2009 and “Top 10 Fearsome Fell Runs” Autumn 2012. I have a specialism in mountain culture and heritage and am a Trustee of the Mountain Heritage Trust. Since 2003, have provided Consultancy services to the National Trust in the Lake District, delivery learning and engagement programmes exploring our mountain heritage across the newly designated UNESCO World Heritage Site.

My Mountain Training Story :

Murray Wilson

Bitten by the outdoors bug as a young boy, learning to navigate as a Cub Scout and experiencing my first wild camp in Glen Tilt, I've spent all my life being in the wild land of Scotland. I have over 30 years experience of hill walking, Munro bagging, hiking, trekking, backpacking and mountaineering in the United Kingdom. I have a real passion for the wild lands of Scotland. A qualified Mountain Leader, outdoor emergency First Aid (appropriate to the Mountain and Outdoor Environment) certificate holder, Level 3 Award in Education and Training, NNAS accredited navigation instructor to Gold level, First Aid trainer, Mountain Safety Advisor to the BBC and fully insured to give you peace of mind. I specialise in long distance, self sufficient backpacking trips through remote wilderness areas of Scotland. These can be multi-day trips on recognised trails, such as the West Highland Way, the Skye Trail or a more random collection of drove roads, deerstalker tracks, coffin routes or old rights of way. I'm here to help you learn to navigate, tackle that challenging route, develop your camp craft, teach you new skills and above all, to have fun and a great day in the hills. Contact me at www.kingdomguides.co.uk

My Mountain Training Story :

Peter Coleman

Currently a lecturer at Coleg Gwent, I am enjoying my relatively new found love of the outdoors and outdoor courses! I believe I have a varied skill set, originally doing Art & Design in college & then HND Multimedia at the University of Glamorgan, graduating with a BSc (Hons) in Multimedia Computing. During this time, I worked part time at various retail outlets. I also worked abroad for three years in 2002, 2003 and 2005 in Ocean City, Maryland, where my role was primarily a lifeguard. I have also travelled across the US & visited numerous states. I have also been a member of the Royal Artillery since 1999, completing overseas stints over the years in Canada, Cyprus, Germany, Austria & California. The military also allowed me to complete my C (HGV) and D1 (minibus) driving licenses. I worked for several years in event and nightclub security. I also worked for the charity, SCOPE, as an IT Tutor, then decided to complete a PGCE with the University of Wales, Newport. My placement was with Coleg Gwent, and I have been there ever since, now starting my 10th year at Ebbw Vale. Initially working in the ICT department, I gradually moved across to Public Services/Outdoor Education, getting involved with adventurous activities. Coleg Gwent kindly upped my driving qualifications to include minibus and trailer (D1+E) then coach (D). I funded my own CPC driving qualification & tachograph & I am fully up to date with these driving qualifications. I then began building my outdoor qualification skills base with the HML training and qualifier, then ML training, thanks to expert instruction delivered by Pete Goldsmith and his team. I now look forward to my Mountain Leader (ML) qualifier.

My Mountain Training Story :

Aaron Braddy

- Medical Doctor - Adult Volunteer with RAF Air Cadets, I'm Officer Commanding 1159 (Edmonton) Sqn in North London - Holder of LLA & Exped Skills Module - DofE Expedition Assessor - Keen Walker with most of my experience being in the Peak District and North Wales

My Mountain Training Story :

Donna McBrearty

I was brought to owey island for my first climbing experience almost 9 years ago. Ian Miller was taking a group of us out to do the sea stacks among other things that weekend. I was then taken to culdaff not long after that and back to cruit then . That was my 1st year of climbing. I was blown away. My 1st born started with the hanging rockers then and I soon joined him and then my 2nd son , I then started to get onto the coaching end of it. I've been an assistant coach for a few years now at gortatole. And gave had many amazing outdoor climbing experiences around Ireland climbing rock and trees among other hobbies . I'm grateful for the folk that have had the patience yo coach me and drag me along with them.. I love all the adventures climbing brings me too. As Ireland is my most favourite place in the world. Scotland a close 2nd . The club took me along as an assistant coach to el chorro Spain with 11 children sort climbing. The experience is only sinking in 5 months later. I was mind blown. I'm always willing to learn and get better at the things I love doing. Climbing is one.

My Mountain Training Story :

Paul Williams

Pyrenees Mountain Adventure specialises in organising and leading multi day, hut to hut, treks along World War 2 escape and evasion routes across the Pyrenees. They were used by those in Nazi occupied Europe, suffering persecution/in danger to escape from France to 'neutral' Spain. The most popular trek is the Chemin de la Liberté/Freedom Trail.

My Mountain Training Story :

Elis Nuttall

My name is Elis and I’ve been hiking and mountaineering since childhood and have a keen interest in the outdoors and environmental conservation. My main interest is mountain walking with vast experience of summer mountaineering throughout England and Wales. In August 2016 I completed my Summer ML training and am continually building up my experience of leading with university groups with the intention of completing the Summer ML assessment in the near future. Currently ticking off the Welsh Nuttalls (no relation to John and Anne).

My Mountain Training Story :

Tim Shieff

Got into running in 2012 and soon discovered trail running that helped me discover my love for the mountains. Did a 100km race from London to Brighton and also the Welsh 3000s in a race (V3k) in just under 12 hours. Slowed things down this year with some Long distance multiple day walks planned (Pennine Way first).

My Mountain Training Story :

Cath Lee

After a 23 year career in banking and then policy development I felt ready for a complete lifestyle change and decided that I needed to spend more time in the great outdoors. Having gained first my Walking Group Leader then Mountain leader qualification, I set up my business Peak Walking Adventures. My objective was simple - it was to share my love of the beautiful mountain and moorland landscapes of Britain with others, and to introduce them to the joys of hill walking. Over the years doing this, I've met the most wonderful people, had the most rewarding experiences and had a load of fun. I would never consider going back to my old life in an office!

My Mountain Training Story :

James Hage

I got into climbing (very late) through Scouting thanks to a couple of friends. I'm a very casual climber due to time commitments from other things, but do enjoy going out, supporting other Scouts and also going and learning new experiences. Never done any awards like NICAS but always willing (and love) to learn. Currently hold an Artificial Top Rope Leadership permit and Terrain 1 Permit for Scouts to support the DofE awards. Also love to ski, holding the European Bronze (ESF) 3 Star Award, which I thought was just a basic award but turns out is a bit closer to UK instructor. I also like to Scuba Dive, being a BSAC Sports Diver.

My Mountain Training Story :

David Greer

I was born and raised in Scotland and went on to serve around the world as a Scottish infantry officer, gaining considerable experience of operating in the outdoors over a decade long career. On leaving the military I realised a long held dream to move to the Scottish Highlands (and to grow a beard). I consider myself hugely fortunate to live and work in the Cairngorms National Park, and relish the opportunity to share my knowledge of it. I am a qualified mountain leader and a full member of the Mountain Training Association, which includes a commitment to continuous professional development and ensures that I am kept informed of the latest developments in industry practice. I also hold the British Cycling Level 2 Mountain Bike Leadership Award and the Canadian Ski Instructors’ Alliance Level 2 Instructor qualification. I am a Leave No Trace trainer and National Navigation Award Scheme tutor, as well as holding outdoor first aid and mental health first aid qualifications, civil liability insurance and an enhanced disclosure and barring service check. I am also a Cairngorms National Park Volunteer Ranger. Whilst never compromising on safety, I like to take a relaxed approach to time spent in the hills; appreciating the whole experience, rather than rushing to simply bag the summits. I love the simplicity offered by the routine of the mountains, and the space for thought which is generated.

My Mountain Training Story :

Vassilis Katsoulis

I started when i was 16 years old with mountain bike activity and every year i was adding more and more mountain river and canyon activities in my life. I started mountain bike competitions in 1999. I stoped in 2012 so the next step was to organizing bike trips around in Greece. In 2005 i met sport climbing. I was so excited about that activity. My highest difficulty was in French grade 7b. Along with the sport climbing i did Alpine climbing in Greece at the most popular climbing crags in rock and mixted field routes. In 2008 i start joining a series of mountain and river trainings for beginners and advanced. I become i river guide with a lot experience with clients. At the same period i am starting two years Mountain Leader school. Till now adays i am working as Mountain Leader all over the Greece and i am leading people and Mountainneering Groups as qualified from the minimum level of difficulty till the maximum for hiking or trekking routes. In 2014 i joinged Mountain Leader Summer training in Wales by Mountain Training Body. The goal is some day to become an International Mountain Leader. My backround is full of explorations/expeditions in surface of mountains or underground for new paths or caving cartography purposes. Deepest expedition/exploration that i have done is in Crete in almost -700m for 15 days wild camping and 30 participants all over Balcan Peninsula. Also i am cave trainner for beginners and quilified mountain rescuer (Greek Mountain Guides), river rescuer (Rescue 3 International) and cave rescuer (Creek and Bulgarian cave Federation). Another activity who won my heart is alpine skiing (Training at French ?lps Advance level by Greek Mountain Guide). I always looking for training opportunities t? have a serious reason to be on the mountain and giving my time, knowleges, help and smile to everyboby who needed. I am finaly running on the mountain for you and then for me. Thanks a lot for your time. I hope to see you at the highest peaks.

My Mountain Training Story :

Sam Marsland

I hold a BA Hons degree in Outdoor Leadership from the University of Cumbria. I am associate member of Mountain Training and hold the summer mountain leader award and the rock climbing instructors award (formerly SPA) and I am a trainee in the winter mountain leader scheme. I am also a trainee member of the Association of Mountaineering Instructors and I am progressing towards completing the newly names rock climbing and mountaineering instructor award.

My Mountain Training Story :

Graeme nimmo

I started hiking seriously in 2016 and quickly realised that it was in the mountains that i felt most at home and most alive. After not a long time at all i realised that this was something that i wanted to do professionally and i began to pursue my goals with focused effort. To not only gain my Mountain Leader qualification but also to pursue all of the higher qualifications in hill-walking and mountaineering. I set myself a 5 year target to work through the qualifications and transition my life to one working in the outdoors. At the point of writing this (April 2019) i am one year into that plan and hopefully on target to achieve my goals.

My Mountain Training Story :

Simon Stokes

I’ve climbed and trekked throughout the whole of the UK, The Alps, The Himalayas & Borneo. I work from The Peak District which is my base & where I spend most of my time but I also spend a considerable amount of time in The Lakes, Snowdonia & Scotland. Trekking, Trad climbing, bouldering, walking, Mountain Biking and mountaineering are my main passsions and I’ve consolidated my 15 years experience with the Mounainer Leader & Rock Climbing Instructor Awards, ive also completed my Winter Mountain Leader Training. I am available for all UK and overseas Mounain Leader & Rock Climbing Instructor opportunities and can support and lead a group of people, one to one or business groups anywhere in the UK and overseas. I also work freelance for the same activities and areas as well as Duke of Edinburgh Awards.

My Mountain Training Story :

Alex Hithersay

I'm a 28 year old climber who loves to train hard get outside and share my experience, knowledge and psych with coaches and climbers a like. I am part off the amazing coaching team at the climbing works Sheffield where I'm working in a development coaching role. I have Boulder and sport climbed all over the UK, Europe and North American.

My Mountain Training Story :

Alex Fradley

https://www.mountain-training.org/membership/mountain-training-association/about/member-stories/alex-fradley

My Mountain Training Story :

Irene Richardson

I grew up on the edge of Balerno, and looked out of my bedroom window at Black Hill in the Pentlands. My father was an obsessed Munro bagger and I accompanied him on hill walks as far back as I can remember. The Pentland hills were much quieter in those days, as outdoor pursuits were not yet so popular - I still find it hard to believe how many people I see around Harlaw Reservoir area these days. Most of our family holidays were either around the Torridon/Assynt area, or in Speyside, and we had regular trips into Perthshire. Walking was always a feature of my young life and doing the expedition to gain the Gold Duke of Edinburgh Award at 18 was a major landmark, but also somehow just a natural extension of what I'd always done. I studied languages at university and have also lived in Germany, Austria and France, for a year each. I chose to live in or near the Alps on all of these occasions and just love the mountains and the walking. One of the most amazing experiences of my life was a 3 week hike in the Annapurna mountain range in Nepal in 1990. I now live in Portobello, and do coastal walks and walks in the hills nearly every weekend. I am a teacher and have become increasingly involved in running expedition training for Bronze and Silver Duke of Edinburgh expeditions and I accompany the school hillwalking club. I also take part in the annual school outdoor education trip. I can't imagine not being able to get out and about walking, and a weekend without a good walk is disappointing. I have taught my own three children to walk, and now that they are each gradually leaving the nest, I want to be able to get more involved in encouraging more young people to get outdoors - to gain an appreciation of the fantastic natural outdoor environment on our doorsteps. It is so important for physical and mental health to enjoy the great outdoors, and young people who appreciate the natural world are more likely to help look after it in whatever they do in life.

My Mountain Training Story :

Lynn Moir

I am undertaking a Msc in Outdoor Education. I am a canoe coach, an avid camper and love multi day expeditions. I am working towards my lowland leader award to for DofE.

My Mountain Training Story :

Mal Thomas

I started mountaineering and climbing 20-odd years ago when I was invited on an expedition to Skye. From there, I was hooked! Since then, I have become an accomplished instructor in my own right where I hold the Mountain Training qualifications of MLS, SPA and CWLA as well as the military adventurous training qualifications of Advanced Mountain Leader, Alpine Mountain Leader and Rock Climbing Instructor (not to be confused with the new MT RCI!). I have led expeditions to Nepal, Spain, New Zealand, European Alps (many times), Peru and Slovenia; to date, my greatest achievement was being the technical lead on the first UK military expedition to the Tavan Bogd National Park in Mongolia where I was the sole Alpine trainer, spending 18 days instructing glacier and mountaineering skills, and qualifying 8 personnel with the Alpine Mountaineering Foundation qualification. I have recently complete the International Mountain Leader scheme and am working through the, Winter ML and the UK Canyon Guides Scheme.

My Mountain Training Story :

Daniel Rose

I'm Dan, I work in a scout activity centre, I get away whenever I can, one day I would love to get more qualifications and head away leading groups across many different disciplines and areas, I hope one day to be guiding not just for fun but to have that job where you always want to get up in the morning.

My Mountain Training Story :

Ross McGregor

Level 1ISA surf coach since March 2017 when I also did my SLSGB beach lifeguard course. Since qualifying I have been working as a surf instructor for The Surf Experience based in Lagos Portugal.

My Mountain Training Story :

Claire Williams

I got into rock climbing at Uni, in my 20s I tried outdoor climbing. I'm enthusiastic climber with no extreme skills to talk about but I loved the outdoors environment so I started the ML scheme. My 30s were spent in UK mountains climbing and walking in Scotland, Wales, and England (ML in 2011) and then in the year of my 40th birthday I reached IML standard and attained the International Mountain Leader Award (IML March 2016) having worked as an expedition leader in Peru, Himalayas, Morocco and trekking in other mountains. I found doing international expeditions took up all my spare time and energy so sadly I never managed to find time for the assessments for SPA (2013) / WML (2014) but I did the training and have put the skills to good use. Now with a ski studio in the French Alps near Geneva I'm often found in Le Petit Bornand (walking, skiing, snow shoeing, climbing) and I love UK climbing so continue climbing here too when I can, I think UK offers the finest variety of experiences for any rock enthusiast and I hope to continue my love affair with UK rock too however elementary the level.


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