The Alpine Club, the world’s first mountaineering club, was founded in 1857.  For over 150 years, members have been at the leading edge of worldwide mountaineering development and exploration. 

With membership, experienced and aspiring alpinists benefit from a varied meets programme, regional lectures with notable guest speakers, reduced rates at many alpine huts, opportunity to apply for grants to support expeditions, significant discounts at many UK retailers, extensive networking contacts, access to the AC Library and maps - and more! 

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The "Southern Sandstone Weekend" was an informal open-to-all gathering to coincide with the AC's September Committee meeting held near Tunbridge Wells. For committee members this left a few hours on Saturday, on which to sample the delights of vertical or overhanging ball-bearings, and all day Sunday. For some it was an initiation test, for others it was revisiting venues that they'd been trying to forget about for years. The rest, wisely, paced themselves to cope with the Saturday night party.

Victor Saunders climbing like a lizard, and finding Bowles not at all slippery. (Photo Lindsay Griffin)

 

Local guru Mark Nicholls having to chaperone a duo nearly twice his age at Bowles. Here belaying Victor on a route that began from the carefully constructed chorten. (Photo Lindsay Griffin)

 

The president on one of the few routes he could get up at Bowles. (Photo by Victor Saunders)

 

The grand falaise of Bowles rises from a perfectly manicured lawn opposite five star loos and a swimming pool (visible in the background). (Photo by Victor Saunders)

 

"Come on the rest of you, we want to start". The meeting venue is a 16th century smoke bay. (Photo Lindsay Griffin)

 

Steve Goodwin reaches for............ugh......not much actually. Harrison Rocks. (Photo Lindsay Griffin)

 

Rounded gravelly laybacks. How wonderful and just what I've travelled 400 miles for.  Steve Goodwin at Harrison Rocks. (Photo Lindsay Griffin)