Big fan of and entirely inspired by Rocky films I - VI. Co-author, with girlfriend, of Europe's High Points: Reaching the Summit of Every Country in Europe (Cicerone). Also with girlfriend, a Ken Wilson's Classic Rock completist. Co-author and route-checker of Hawkcliffe Crag chapter for forthcoming Yorkshire Grit guide (a dirty often scary job someone had to do!). Don't go to climbing walls and barely tolerate the tedious nature of bouldering. Love long traditional routes with their epic struggles, history, aura and views. Also like esoterica. Fully respect all climbing grades, the pioneers and especially the wise old men of the hills with their beards, pipes and all round gruff enthusiasm we meet so often and are the people I am most comfortable sharing stances with. Not at all a technically gifted climber, but like Balboa says, 'it's not how hard you can hit, it's how hard you can get hit and still keep moving forward.' Therefore warring ability is the trait I most respect in people. In my element in traditional old chimneys. Not overly keen nor comfortable on slabs. Above all I love the adventures and the struggles climbing brings.
Best Climbing Experience
Always the ones with Rachel. Climbing the Devil's Tower, Wyoming. Topping out of The Chasm on Buchailletive Mor after 11 hours. Wrestling up the great chimney, Great Gully, Craig yr Ysfa in the driving rain with big pack, litre flask of tea, pint of milk and pie or two. Climbing out of my skin up cliffs in the dark - sans headtorch - under mini-avalanches, spindrift and blizzard and doing a leap of faith in order to reach the salvation of the Gervasutti Hut, Frebouze glacier, Alps. Surprising myself with a sense of self-preservation by turning back in bad weather less than a rope's length from the summit of the Dent du Geant. Reaching the highest point of each country in Europe. Completing all the climbs in Classic Rock with Rachel. Getting back to the car for a nice cup of tea.
Favourite Climbing-Related Discussion Topic
How hard I find nearly everything!
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Moderator for 27 crags, checking missing climbs added to the logbooks: Black Shiver, Ingleborough, Yew Crags, Baildon Bank, Blea Water Crag, Scafell Shamrock, Half Dome Southwest Face, Cathedral Peak, City of Rocks, Tenaya Peak, Eichorn Pinnacle ... plus 17 more
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