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The Dauphine Alps in the Massif des Ecrins

A Climbing Guide by Terry Wright  1963

In 1963 Terry Wright and Bill Cheverst together with a climber called Jack Parker went to France in Bill's Mini to climb in The Dauphine Alps.

At the time, all the guide books were in French, so Terry attempted to translate the guides as they went along using a French / English dictionary, a smattering of schoolboy French and knowledge of climbing terminology. Apparently, there was a lot of guesswork and innovation involved.

Terry lost his rucksack down a glacier and had to return home. He hitchhiked as far as Frankfurt and had to concede defeat and go to the British Consulate and was repatriated. But that's another story.

On his return he decided to write up a climbing guide based on his experiences and the routes that they had climbed so that the Pegasus lads could more easily do the climbs in 1964 when they had finished the Berger expedition, noting useful information about bivvy sites, water sources, difficult descents and so on.

He gave this to Pete Watkinson who then lived at 141, Wendover Road, Aspley, Nottingham.

Barbara Wright

After the 1964 Berger Expedition a small group of expedition members traveled to La Bérarde with the Landrover and trailer belonging to Paul Thompson. They were Melvin Batchford, Cheg Chester, Alan Harrison, Ian Curphy and Paul Thompson. Another member, Pete Nicholson joined us there with a friend of Bob Dakin's called Trevor Penton. Terry's handwritten guide book was consulted and proved to be invaluable in giving us information to climb to the top of Pic Coolidge at 3774m which was completed in two days.

Cheg Chester

Pic Coolidge Hut_JPG.webp

Pic Coolidge. The 'Refuge' hut at 3250m 1964


A view of La Bérarde in 1964

The guide

The original scans give a better presentation of the guide and can be viewed here  'Terry's Climbing Guide'

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