A dip into the Club Journals – 1913 – ‘A Tramper’s Easter Soliloquy’ by HS Porter

The final Dip into the Club Journals for 2023 [in the nick of time!] takes us back to 1913 and what a Journal this was. It was, of course, the last to be published before the start of World War I and it is full of classic writing making it difficult to choose just one!

Initially, the article on the first Club Hut [in Cwm Eigiau] appealed, but this was highlighted in the earlier “Classic Article” series (available here)…no need to repeat given the quality to be found in the Journal . I have gone for ‘A Tramper’s Easter Soliloquy’, a relatively short but pithily humorous essay in which HS Porter laments the fact that a peaceful and well-earned rest after a good tramp and scramble can be transformed into a hideous nightmare by the “Ultra Cragsmen” who are as ‘fresh as paint and no wonder…it’s motors for them, to the foot of the crags’! This may have been uncomfortably close to his true feelings as in A Short History of The Rucksack Club 1902-1939 [Page 16] there is reference to an altercation in a 1911 Committee Meeting where an angry Laycock [he of Central Climb on Hen Cloud, also the subject of an article in the 1913 Journal] was convinced that the ‘pusillanimous behaviour of committee members around their withdrawal of support [for a Club climbing guide] had been dictated by such of its members – for example, Corbett – who were “mere walkers”’ and he then resigned from the Club! Such resentments are, of course, long since gone.

If you fancy looking at the whole Journal on these long dark nights, click here…and so to 2024…and a happy New Year! 

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