Like many schoolkids without talent for team sports at school, Wednesday afternoons meant cross country runs. The course through the local woods saw me dropping of the pack to climb trees and later to climb rocks on the Derbyshire crags. By 6th form I was packing my 120ft, No.3 rope and No.1 sling with chrome vanadium karabiner into my leather briefcase and catching a bus from near the school gate out onto the grit. A school exercise book listed my adventures.
I never let a lack of ability to get in the way of passion and climbed throughout the British Isles in the 60’s and 70’s. At the advanced age of 21, I spent five weeks camping at Montenvers. I had found my spiritual home.
After several false starts, I landed a job as a nuclear safeguards inspector for the European Commission. The next 30 years were dedicated to building Europe, raising a family and, of course, world peace!
When the opportunity to retire early presented itself, Chamonix was the obvious choice. I moved here 10 years ago. Without ambition or illusion, I listed objectives that were both feasible and fun. The funalps .com site grew from these lists. Translating the route descriptions into English on the camptocamp.org site became my late night mental exercise, (better than Sudoko!)
If at least a few people use the information in this site to have a good day out in the mountains around Chamonix then I am happy. I have done the majority of the routes in the lists but there are still a lot left for me to do. Better still, at 66yo, I can now use age as an excuse for my lack of natural climbing ability.
Enjoy the mountains and stay safe.