The Highest accolade...
As some of you know, I have always enjoyed a good ale and I was recently asked to write a little piece for a fantastic company called Beerbods. Their aim is quite simple, they search the UK for good independent brewers, discovering great beers, sharing them with us and just promoting good quality beer. Forget walking, climbing magazines or companies, this out trumps them all....
This is the full article here and if you fancy sampling some fine ales, then get in touch with them
(ps - If you've been out with me on the hill, then Beerbods will offer you a little discount on your 1st purchase so get in touch with me for the magic code...)
Who are you and what do you do?
I’d always enjoyed being in the open countryside on family walks, there was just something refreshing, challenging and invigorating about such a simple act especially with a large hound in tow or actually one dragging me along….
I kind of flunked college and spent a couple of years wandering before someone mentioned working in the mountains. After nearly 25 years of working full time in the Outdoor Industry I have run my own mountaineering company based in North Wales for almost 10 years. I spend over 200 days of the year walking, climbing and scrambling in the the mountains of Snowdonia, Skye, The Highlands, stunning locations like the High Atlas, Morocco in winter and the Greater Ranges of the Himalaya. It’s quite simple, I’m passionate about being in the mountains and just want to share this with folks. Every day is an adventure!
How do you manage to drink beer and stay fit?
I come from an era where big days in the mountains were rewarded by copious pints of ale and some tall stories in the smokey pub at the end of the day! These days I have to actively plan drinking beer around my work as I don’t generally have an ale on a work night, I often miss the Thursday night get togethers because of it, recently I was 4 weeks behind! I have the best job in the world….obviously, but it has a serious side to it at times and I’ve had to adapt over the years as funnily enough lots of beer and mountains just don’t mix. I’ve become more aware of how balancing things like diet, a decent nights sleep, stretching and fitness aid me in my job every day. Sometimes I might have to go several weeks without supping on the latest beer in the house, I actually love the fact that I can do this as it just makes that bottle or pint taste like nectar every time. Beer is my reward for a good job done…
What's your 'Desert Island beer' or beer style and where and when would you like to drink it?
A few years ago this would have been a ‘light ale’, these days having been challenged by BeerBods a number of times with beers that I would never have tried like Porters, Gose and Sours, I’ve become a little partial to a good Saison, perhaps Brew By Numbers 01 being a particular favourite. Where is almost impossible to answer, I’ve been to so many amazing places whilst sharing beers with others , maybe somewhere in the mountains overlooking an ocean, 2 of the worlds greatest environments, how cool would that be?
Any memorable 'climbing beers'?
Too many! Any good climbers pub should have a decent local ale, but one I grew up on whilst ‘learning the ropes’ was Horndeans Special Bitter (HSB), boy did that pack some taste from the barrel!