Saturday, September 5, 2015

Harold Drasdo....A long day's journey into night.

Harold in the 1950's on Eagle Crag, The Lake District.
Thought I'd mention on here the sad news that Harold Drasdo died in hospital in Bangor, North Wales a couple of days ago. Harold was a contemporary of Brown and Whillans although his north of England allegiance was to the legendary 'Bradford Lads'. Creator of many classic routes in England, Wales and Ireland, Harold was professionally an educationalist who for many years ran The Towers Outdoor Education Centre in Snowdonia. Author of the highly influential, 'Education in the Outdoor Centes', co-editor with Michael Tobias of the anthology 'The Mountain Spirit' and his acclaimed autobiography, 'The Ordinary Route'. Harold was a brilliant essayist and regular contributor to UK magazines like 'High' and UK club journals.

A true intellectual,well versed in the classics,politics and philosophy, he was never the less, at heart a working class northern climber who until the end enjoyed a fag and a couple of pints at his local pub each night!
Ironically, it was a fall outside his local last Friday which led to complications setting in and the end came unexpectedly and all too soon on Thursday morning.

I was fortunate to have become a close friend after our paths crossed twenty years ago, through our mutual interest in the climbing and art history surrounding the south Snowdonia mountain of Arenig Fawr.....I'll miss him.

A full appreciation and obituary will appear on Footless Crow in the near future.

" We turned our backs finally to the hills and began to chatter: setting about to make our minds easy. But behind us, fighting their slow wars, the forces of nature also shifted steadily on'

Menlove Edwards: CCJ 1937

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