Sunday, 6 January 2008
At long Last- The Rain Retreats- A Fine F.A -Achilles Last Stand
After a Winter of awful weather, it came. Many-a-good forecast had been made, but non had been proven to be right. Again a possitive weather window was forecast. I felt doubtful, but still determined to climb some good grades I made arrangements with Dave 'Dooge' Warburton to go climbing. On arrival it was windy, but lack of rain and the appearance of the Sun made a smile on even dooge's knarled face.
We started by attempting the direct start to mowgli. It was unclear from the guide whether it had been climbed before and it looked like a good opportunity for balancy, fingery climbing- our speciality. The first moves were bold and technical, and reechy meaning I was forced to retreat from the solo. After various attempts we rigged up a top rope (or Tope- as we say). It felt easy on the top rope, but unclear as to how much help from the rope I was getting, I ordered Dooge to give me a lot of slack. I found It not too difficult the second time, so I went for the solo once more. The first move i had struggled on went easily, but rather scary. Then the second reech came. Some good footwork dispached this, but then came the crux.
High above the boulders that would be my gate to valhalla if a fall occured, I stood. A Leg at near-chest height and then pressure steadily applied pushed me to reach the joyous crimp. My hands- numb with cold- riggled along to find a better hold. Then the last biscuit of energy was summound to reach the safety of the larger holds. I was pleased with myself as I hadn't wasted the first good day of winter. We found out later that we were the first people to climb Achilles Last Stand.
We then procceded to climb Pessimist Variation Finish, bold and scary, but not the epic of Achilles Last Stand. It had been on Dave's ticklist for sometime- as had mowgli been on mine. It was getting dark and we wished to investigate our mate, Luke Hunt's Boulder (NOS Boulder). We found it easily, then tried some of the boulder problems. We were impressed with the quality and the similarity to grit and enjoyed our selves for around an hour. A fine outing and A good one of the New Year.
Posted by Franco Cookson Written Sunday, January 06, 2008