For any one planning a mountaineering trip, good advice is essential. Our experts have a wide range of knowledge and experience about the mountains in the UK and beyond, so have a look at the bios below and visit a store near you to get ideas about the right equipment, clothing, footwear and survival essentials.

OUR MOUNTAINEERING

EXPERTS

  • Dave Lowell

    Climbing & Mountaineering Expert

    Store: AVIEMORE

    Climbing and Mountaineering Expert Dave is a great person to know if you’re curious about ascending Scotland’s rugged peaks. Dave has been climbing since his teens, was the president of his University’s mountaineering club, and with over a decade of climbing experience under his belt, (4 years of which he has spent as an instructor), Dave’s climbing knowledge is irrefutably vast. In Glencoe he climbed his first multi pitch route with his brother. Working it out he has been climbing 16 years. All over Scotland from NE sea cliffs, NW sandstone and locally Cairngorm granite. he climbs year round and lives under the Cairngorms famous for great winter climbing and all that comes with it.

    He has taught all over Scotland, both indoor and trad, is SPA trained, and is a specialist when it comes to the real details such as tensile strengths, fall factors and rope dynamics.


    Dave is hoping to scale Mont Blanc within the next couple of years, drawn to Continental Europe’s highest mountain by the prestige and its rich history.

    Favourite Destination:

    Braerich, Cairngorms. "This mountain is virtually as big as Ben Nevis (it’s the third highest in the UK after Ben Nevis and Ben Macdui), but it’s really remote. A great climb."

  • Nathan Humphries

    Mountaineering Expert

    Store: MANCHESTER 130 DEANSGATE

    Nathan is Deansgate's UK mountaineering professional. A fully qualified Mountain Leader, 3 Peaks Challenge guide, single pitch and Vertical Chill Ice Wall instructor, there aren't many that can surpass his knowledge of the skills and equipment needed to tackle winter conditions on British mountains.

    Nathan began his love of the hills at infancy and by 6 years old had already conquered Ben Nevis. "Summiting Ben Nevis at such an young age is something I will never forget", says Nathan, though he has since gone on two completing the 3 Peaks Challenge twice in one week!

    He is planning to go deep water soloing in Thailand, before spending as much of the coming winter in Scottish Highlands as he can.

    Favourite Place/Resort:

    Snowdonia, North Wales. "I love it for its changable weather forecast and it's ease of accessibility from Manchester!"

  • Rhys Jones

    Climbing & Mountaineering Expert

    Store: CHESTER

    Mountaineering and climbing expert Rhys tries to get out to the walls two to three times a week, and into the mountains at least twice a month. Well-versed in all aspects of the sport including indoor, trad, sport, bouldering, dry-tooling and winter climbing, it's safe to say Rhys is a font of knowledge when it comes to heading upwards.

    Rhys's climbing has had its highs and lows. He has completed a Three Peaks Challenge in full winter conditions; fallen on a pitch on Ben Nevis's Douglas Boulder (and gone on to finish the route in the dark) but on other climbs has known when to turn back, having had to abandon an attempt on Thunderbolt in Glencoe.

    Favourite Place/Resort:

    Scottish Highlands and Snowdonia."I love Glencoe and Torridon, but the Glyders and Carneddau are my favourites closer to home. Pete's Eats in Llanberis is a great place after a long day in the hills - it does awesome food and hot chocolate!

  • Ceire Booth

    Climbing & Mountaineering Expert

    Store: CHELMSFORD

    How long have you been climbing?

    "I've been mountaineering for as long as I can remember, and climbing for the last 7 years."

    What makes you an 'expert'?

    "Being on the committee of my university climbing club for a few years, I have led large groups in the mountains, taught navigation, and instructed at our indoor and outdoor climbing sessions. On my many trips to Snowdonia, I’ve tackled some of the UK's most unforgiving weather conditions, there's no experience quite like it!"

    Any unbelievable anecdotes?

    "I always pack my climbing shoes on any backpacking trip. So far, it's paid off every time. In Belize, a friend and I took a wrong bus and wound up in small village quite far off the beaten track, whilst there we just so happened to start-up conversation with a man who described himself as 'the only man in Belize with an interest in climbing'. We spent the next three days deep in the rainforest, accepting fully the risk of flesh eating flies, so that we could sample our new friend's best recommended climbs.

    "Another stand-out find was the little-known bolted sport climbing routes in Vinales, Cuba. Just beware - it's still technically illegal!"

    What's your favourite destination/resort/challenge to carry out your expert activity? Why?

    "Impossible to pick a favourite! Trad climbing on the Pembrokeshire coast is something quite special, with the waves crashing underneath, the seabirds circling all around, and the fresh sea-air in your lungs, it’s an extremely atmospheric spot for climbing. However, given the right conditions, nothing beats a bit of exploratory deep-water solo climbing on a nice stretch of river or coast in a warm country."

    What are your aims this season?

    "With the arrival of winter I’m looking to get into ice climbing, and move towards alpine mountaineering, big mountain days are high on the agenda!"