Neil’s passion for the sport has taken him worldwide to some truly fantastic venues, but he still rates Scotland, in particular the isles, highest of all. He has climbed, made first ascents of routes and contributed to guidebooks in regions as diverse and unusual as Orkney and the Middle East. As one of the few instructors to climb all of the major sea-stacks in the UK, and an all-rounder with a love for all disciplines of the sport; you will be inspired by Neil’s enthusiasm and knowledge of this wonderful sport. You will be in the safest of hands: Neil holds the qualification of Mountaineering and Climbing Instructor, or MCI (formerly MIA); the highest rock climbing and mountaineering qualification in the UK. He has climbed: Trad: E6 | Sport: 7c+ | Bouldering: V10 | Winter: Scottish VI:7 / WI: 7
Neil is also passionate about spreading knowledge, imparting skills and confidence and enabling you to achieve more than you thought possible. From indoor to outdoor climbing, sport to trad, single to multipitch, classic to modern, Dubh Mor specialises in developing your climbing by guiding and instruction.
Guiding: giving you memories that last forever…
Instruction: giving you skills that will keep you safe for life…
All climbing days are bespoke and tailored to your personal aims and objectives and will always be staffed by myself.
a keen indoor climber who wants to venture outdoors?
unsure about how to safely make the transition to lead climbing?
interested in traditional climbing but unsure about using and placing your own gear?
looking to up your climbing grade?
keen to learn how to look after yourself, set up ropes and belay safely at a crag?
interested in ticking off some of Scotland’s great routes?
From the Highlands and Islands to the Central Belt; experience the best of:
+ Accessible single pitch crags
+ Soaring sea cliffs and iconic sea stacks
+ Classic long mountaineering routes
Scotland has a rich climbing heritage and some of the best classic and modern rock routes in the world. A lifetime spent exploring these wonders has left me with a vast depth of knowledge and experience to ensure you get the most out of a guided ascent.
neil's qualifications explained
Hover over each section to find out more
Understanding Scrambling Grades
A Brief Explanation of UK Traditional Climbing Grades
THE FOLLOWING TABLE HERE SHOWS HOW THE GRADES RELATE TO EACH OTHER
|Scrambling Grades||Basic Traditional Climbing Grades|
Grade 1 – easy scrambling, often exposed ridgelines. Good movement and confidence other than a protected climb. Hands may be used for balance occasionally but rarely for upward progress. e.g: CMD arete
Grade 2 – more complex and exposed scrambling, often with more complex route-finding. Less confident/experienced parties will want the reassurance of a rope. Hands will be used for balance and upward progress. e.g: Liathach
|Easy: there are actually very few ‘Easy’ graded rock climbs, as most have been subsumed within the newer scrambling grades. e.g: Ledge Route (direct)|
|Moderate: often classed as a ‘mountaineering route’. Commonly climbed in big boots not rock shoes but employing the use of a rope and simple climbing techniques. Expect difficulties to be short lived and not sustained, but potentially very exposed. Abseiling possible. e.g: Curved Ridge or In Pinn|
Grade 3 – moving into the realms of rock-climbing, often involving short sections of steep, complex and exposed ground. Some rock climbing up to Moderate standard. Only experienced climbers will feel confident without a rope. The ability to retreat/descend via abseil may be useful. Hands will be used for upward progress. Downclimbing my also be involved. e.g: Curved Ridge. most sections of the Cuillin RIdge
|Difficult: actually considered to be rather ‘easy’(!) in the modern climbing context. Big boots will still be worn.Expect the holds to still be good, but the angle steeper and the use of a rope more common and continuous. Abseiling likely. e.g: Tower Ridge / Clach Glas-Blaven Traverse|
|Very Difficult: firmly in the realms of rock climbing, but short sections may be encountered on big mountaineering routes. Still do-able in big boots and still good handholds, albeit steep. Expect exposure, more complex climbing techniques and continuous use of a rope in ascent and descent. e.g: Pinnacle Ridge (Skye), Agag’s Groove|
|Severe, Very Severe, etc upwards: Definitely rock climbing. Expect to wear climbing shoes unless very experienced, and to require continuous use of rope and advanced climbing techniques|