Monday, 27 April 2009

Living For The Weekend

Another great day today, with only a brief spell of light rain which didn't put too much of a downer on the experience. In fact the afternoon was lovely at our chosen venue - Millstone.

I kicked of with a 'warm up' on Eros, which to my dismay became a bit too pumpy for a warm up and instead turned into a bit of a epic as I cursed, blew and farted my way up it.... followed by MarkD and SteveJ who bearly even grunted during their second. Harumph.

Andy and Mark made a rapid ascent of the great slab and subsequent ascents of the fine Covent Garden and Skywalk too. As well as a nip up Eartha, which was expertly photographed by David Bailey; aka Me. SteveJ waltzed up a poorly protected Lyons Corner House Direct and Snoop, sorry, Mark, dogged his way up Dexterity with fine climbing up the direct finish. Pumpppppy! Followed by Andy in good style to within a short distance of the top..... when he ran out of petrol.

I then climbed By-Pass up via damoclean blocks and a 'bold' traverse protected by a superb skyhook runner - Yes! - with a finish up the ace top corner Great North Road. Steve climbed Embankment 4.... In poor style I hasten to add:  didn't even swear. One is supposed to swear on that route - it's the law.
Erm, Snoop then climbed Embankment 3 in his usual style... admittedly with some very exciting climbing through the crux - check out the photo maaaan!
All in all a very good day. "

Others, out at the weekend included AndyP, GailK and AndyG who had a classic day out on the Idwals Slabs. Starting with Quartz Eliminate VS 4b, continuing up the remainder of Charity VDiff., then up Lazarus Sev., and finishing with Gail leading The Arete V.Diff., resulted in a guidbook length of 690 feet of climbing. All accomplished with no epics and not even the remotest chance of benightment.

SteM was also out in Wales and it looks like he had a fine day out exploring the Nantle Ridge.

Sunday, 19 April 2009

Climbing Report, 2009.

A brief report of activity over the weekend.

It all started on Friday 17th, when Jonah and MarkD went to Millstone in the Peak District. According to Jonah, "Didn't get too mangled today - just pumped stupid on Bond Street." However, MarkD experienced considerable difficulties and didn't complete a route which is most unusual for him.

After extensive e-mail correspondence, it was finally agreed that Mr. Buddle, SteveJ, MarkD, MarkC, Jonah, and possibly SteM would go up to The Lakes on Saturday 18th. Mr. Buddle, of Classic Rock fame, sent us this brief report:
"A good day was had by all in sunny Eskdale. The plan was to climb Gormenghast on Heron Crag, then on up to Esk Buttress, but due to time constraints we stayed and just ticked Heron Crag instead, with everyone getting up Gormenghast, Bellerophon and Side Track in a variety of styles and levels of fear. Good stuff."
Meanwhile, DaveC and AidW were in Wales having a proper traditional climbing experience, grappling with the delights of Monolith Crack on Clogwyn y Tarw. Although only graded "Severe," the guide book describes the route as:
"A unique and legendary climb that requires both strength and a particular fighting spirit to succeed."
The guide book also quotes A. J. J. Moulam describing it as:
"More speleology than rock climbing."

One notable absentee from the weekend's activities, was new member AndyO'B who has injured himself putting his child's buggy into the car. The details of his injury are too gruesome to relate here but we do hope that Andy realises that injuries involving buggies are also supposed to involve great speed and drunkeness. However, it is to his credit that he did not require a helicopter to get him to hospital.

Friday, 3 April 2009

April Sunshine, 2009.

Clogwyn Bochlwyd 2nd April, 2009.

AndyG and Pope Paul visited Ogwen early on Thursday. As they approached along the A5 through Bethesda, they did wonder if they had made the right choice of destination. Despite bright sunshine along the coast, and out across Anglesey, there were clouds on the mountain tops and layers of hill fog were clinging to the hillsides.

However, after a brief excursion along the old Nant Francon road in search of mobile phone reception, and a little exploration of the falls below Pont Pen-y-benglog, they set off up the hill to Clogwyn Bochlwyd.

Fortunately, by mid-morning, the cloud had cleared and the rest of the day was bright and sunny. They had the crag to themselves and saw no other climbers that day. There were just a few hillwalkers passing by on the main footpaths.

Although he has been climbing regularly indoors, this was Paul's first trip outside since his accident at Stanage. Also, Andy hadn't been out much since last year due to tendonitis, so both of them were looking for an easy day. They started with Arete and Slab 110ft Diff., followed by One Pitch Route 100ft HS, and finished off with Two Pitch Route 100ft Severe.

Then they packed up and drove to Rhyl in time for dinner and also to see the Tim Emmett lecture. This was most entertaining and covered rock climbing, mountaineering, BASE jumping and wingsuit flying, sometimes in combination. He also mentioned meeting a French parachutist who used a large block of concrete and three mobile cranes to catapult himself into the air. You can see more on this You Tube human catapult video.

All in all a good day out, good weather, pleasant climbing and an interesting evening's entertainment.