Saturday, 22 September 2007

The Battle With Extreme

E2 is the grade of my focus at the moment, despite that on some days i cant even climb HVS. I did my first E2 with Ian Jackson, It was Triermain Eliminate at Castle rock in the lake district. After a good season i felt experienced and good at climbing. We went to Castle rock and ventured up this E2. I was seconding, but it was still scary- one move involved your hand and foot holds being on the same loose flake. It was a Don Whillans route and i was proud. Ian onsighted it with ease. We then moved left and attempted Rigor Mortis, Ian struggled on this Hard E2 and so did I (only seconding).
I had lead the first pitch- at 4b or something daft and was reasonably tired , by the second i was exhausted, this bold traverse was a nightmare, with a stuck nut i hung on a layback (knowing if i got the nut out and then fell i would have a nice big swing in to a wall- thinking of Doug Scott on the Ogre). I couldn't get it out so i uncliped and took my own line up the rock. We abseiled down for it later.
My first E2 lead (onsight) was at Oak Crag- Hungry Heart. It was bold but easy, an HVS really. Since this i've done various sandbaged 'E1s' and some proper E2s. Hope to do some E3s (E4 maybe) next year.

Tuesday, 11 September 2007

Eve- Scugdale

I approached it with confidence. Luke and Ian had been talking about the Grading of it. I heard Ian say, “I’d like ta see an Hard VS Climba Do tat”.

So I though ‘let’s see if one can’

It was a solo as there wasn’t any gear. It was Probably the boldest thing I’ve done in my life. The initial scramble to the crux was easy, but then a crimp and a one-finger pocket led to a big, balancy reach to a good hold. Exhilaration and merriment filled my Blood Stream as the High-ball (unprotectable with a Boldering Mat) ordeal was over. I reached the top with praise and surprise from Luke- This fool had climbed a 'hard' HVS. I'm still yet to do the unprotectable E2 on the right hand side of the arete.

Monday, 3 September 2007

Ling Arete- Wainstones - Our First Good FA

Me and Dave Warburton had had a season of chossy first ascents and we were keen to Climb something half-decsent. We had gone to Park nab to 'have a ganda', but there was not an inch of rock left unclimbed, so we made our way to the Wainstones. I was under an illusion that it would be posible to climb the Arete of summit buttress, but an illusion is what it was. The over-hanging roof turned into a featureless arete- i doubt Dave Macleod could have climbed it. So we walked round untill we saw another arete, so obvious, why had we not climbed it before? it looked easy, but something about the Strata of the rock made it not so.
We set up a top rope as this was harder than anything we had done before. It felt hard top roping- i wasn't looking forward to a lead. We lead it with pre-placed gear, then wittled it down untill we placed every piece. I was the first to do so, then dave repeated it.
I have never Worked a Climb so much, but an onsight, for us, would have proved imposible. I'm yet to hear of a repeat, but would be glad to hear if the HVS grade was Accurate.
(have recently tried to solo it with Ian and we both failed)