Monday, 17 February 2014

Black Knight

Black Knight takes the chin from the other side
The Wainstones are one of the most well known and well-worked out crags on the Moors. Whilst most of the routes aren't particularly great, the rock is a great mix of iron and quartz that makes the climbing really cool.

Apart from the direct start to little bow peep, which is a pretty futuristic very highball, the only line that hasn't been done in its current condition is that of Black Knight. Put up in the 80s by Steve Brown, it tackles the chin of the sphinx via a class bit of compression and pinching.

Steve climbed it with some pegs in right by the crux (that went at about English 6c), which were later taken out. The resulting challenge is now not only fairly hard, but pretty bold. A lone small tricam in a distant pocket seems to be the only gear.

We popped up on Sunday, which turned out to be a brilliant sunny day. A cold start morphed into good conditions and I figured out the sequence. I'm not sure where the original line began, but the best climbing follows the groove of Terrorist to the pocket, where the tricam can be had, before traversing the lip of the roof on finger pockets to a fab sequence, with a top notch pinch or two and an apposing sidepull. Some high feet take the weight and then its a real launch up with the smears to allow the juggy break to be reached.

I would say that this sequence of moves certainly deserves three stars and it's going to be massively photogenic. Arguably seeking difficulty(?). Not sure of the grade, about H8 - a fall could be nasty.  It's a good thing to get on at the moment, when other stuff is a bit damp.


Dave 88 said...

Thought I recognised you! I was the bloke you spoke to trying to get some routes in before work. What an awesome day it turned out to be, gutted I had to leave. You got any plans for Australia Crack this year? Looks mega

Franco Cookson said...

Excellent! There was some serious motivation from you that morning. I lied around in my sleeping bag a bit longer before it warmed up. Do you mean the one at High Crag? Yeh, I'd like to see that get done one way or another. Let me know if you want to try it - I'll hold ya ropes!

Dave said...

I don't blame you, I shouldn't have started on the northern side it was freezing! Yeah that's the one, reckon it's about 5 grades too hard for me but I've not even had a chance to get a look at it yet, just seen photos and it looks amazing.