Friday, 13 July 2012

Ingleby Incline Prospecting- Physical Graffiti (E5 6c)

Mightly Thin Moves On An Unclimbed Line
Well, I'm well an truly done-in after today. Ingleby always promises a beasting and today was no exception. We were weighed down massively with gear and mats and arrived at a slightly damp crag in good, but exhausted spirits.

First off was the unclimbed direct start to Pepsi (HVS 5b). It's an obvious gap and looked like it might be alright, so off we tootled. I got high onsight, surprised by the difficult intricacies' quality and fairly gripped. We had a couple of mats, but the fall was untested and the hillside fairly steep. After the highly fingery start I ended up mid-wall, inching my way up higher on small crimps and poor feet. I popped out right to join Pepsi in its pocket, but it was slopey and damp: I retreated. I told Dave to watch me and then tried an alternative jump out left. The pocket looked the same and I didn't get it right- I was off. Down the hillside and the fall seemed alright, rather miffed to have fallen off what was probably the easier moves though. Dave then stepped forward and after a bit of trouble with the first start moves he was onto the crux. He looked a lot more composed than I felt and calmly repositioned his feet. A crucial foot stab in a pocket and he was reaching his way to glory and a sloping top-out. After quickly repeating Dave's line I turned my attentions to the arete to the left. This was fairly hard and extremely fingery. We didn't manage it. Fairly chuffed with our Pepsi direct though. It actually turned out to be an independent line and hence thought it deserved the name 'Pepsi Max'. It deserves a star, with a pleasant flake and intricacies up to english 6b. E2 we thought for the good landing.

A slab to the left then caught my eye and over we tootled. Dave wanted to save his tips, so I set about ascending first a bulge with a flake and a pocket (about font 6b and good) and then to the left of that an arete 'wonder' on two unique nubbins and some seriously poor feet. Font 6cish and 3 stars for the arete. I really thought that was perfect.

After a ham sandwich and a drink it was time to attack Hunter's Buttress. Home to the classic HVS 'Top Gun', it is also flanked to the left by the intimidating line of 'Love or Confusion' (E4 6b). Dave was keen for this and he quickly set out on lead after I abed and cleaned it. He romped up it with impressive ease (I had struggled with this a while ago) and got to the crux mantle. From here he really looked a bit flummoxed and slinked a metre right to finish. It's a shame this escape right is possible as it basically means the direct finish is slightly contrived. I seconded and managed the direct, with small crimps and a massive heel rockover. I felt the move I did was English 6c, but it could perhaps be properly mantled out at 6b. A big maybe though and the fall would be GRIM. The gear is alright, but it's well under your feet and it would be a scraper. Monty and Parker were strong climbers by all accounts, so I wouldn't be surprised if they did finish direct. Their grade of E4 6b is a bit laughable though if they did.

Trying Physical Graffiti As A Youth
After a quick ab down a more straightforward new route that should be alright, I turned my attentions to a long term project of mine. The 'Physical Graffiti' wall as I named it at the time was always something I couldn't do at all. I had always tried it ground up and had always ended up rolling down the hill. It is effectively a boulder problem up this wall, that just about manages to not be eliminate. It was always the sort of thing I didn't really think I could do as it was just so hard. Today I got Dave to ab and clean it and this obviously (along with vast increases in strength) made all the difference. It still took a fair few goes, but eventually I latched the small finger pocket. From here I was totally onsight and on unclimbed ground. A match, re-arrangement of feet and a span to a sloper then led to a very happy top out. It's the happiest I've been for a while really. No stars of course, but a good set of moves, with a brilliant micro thumb-press on the crux. Just my style and really nice. Grade? E5 6c I reckon, perhaps even E4 6c.  About font 7bish, perhaps harder if you're small.

After another sandwich and finishing off the drink it was on with more fun. Dave wanted to lead Time Captain, but it was a bit damp so he set out on 'Elise's Eliminate' (E3 5c). It was a bit lichenous, so I went on cleaning duty again, using the opportunity to check out a wild unclimbed line through a roof. The hard bit was on the lip of this roof, which seemed another Ingleby razor route with no feet. English 7a for my money, but after breaking a foothold and thence mangling my hands behind the rope I didn't really try it.

Dave lead Elise's and I was happy to second. I missed a crucial hold whilst cleaning, so he ended up using the old Moors lichen strength before romping to the top. I was pretty tired and without chalk at this point and only just scraped the onsight second- fairly happy with that one ;). A few more abs and some speculation about an airy right-hand finish to Time Captain completed a fairly busy day. That last one is going to be a right line!

Videos and Pictures to come.


Anonymous said...

Hi Franco, great to read about recent developments in the Moors and to see that a new generation is taking it forward! Keep it coming! Chris Shorter

Franco Cookson said...

Thank you, that means a lot. There's still so much to do. Fairly mind-boggling.

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