/ Dave McLeod new route
Holy moley! Thats quite steep!
Sorry Dave didn't mean to spell your name wrong! Should read "MacLeod"!
I think you've posted this in the wrong forum.
Is that a joke based on the ice build up or have the mods just moved it here?
Haha, it starts!
Appropriate name of venue considering the OPs name too :-)
> I think you've posted this in the wrong forum.
> Is that a joke based on the ice build up or have the mods just moved it here?
It was a joke. It's no good if it needs explaining!
I understand the joke. People do post stuff in the wrong forums and the clues to humour were as thin as the ice on the roof crack.
I expect Stevie will be commenting shortly
Now on Dave's blog: http://davemacleod.blogspot.com/2012/02/something-different.html
Humour isn't very good if you have to give clues!
Am I right in thinking that Dave wasn't wearing crampons?
Winter route or dry tooling route?
Not passing judgement, just making an observation.
He is wearing fruit-boots.
No it is not - it is continental mixed. If it were dry-tooling he would have suggested a D grade. He has suggested an M grade.
Would it be climbable without axes/crampons at this time of year in the conditions found? No.
It is an M graded winter route and thank god for that.
The time of year is irrelevant.
You take a break half way up for coffee and croissants.
He'll be trying to err 'leverage the minutea' out of it' (sic)
Hex is confused, there is no ice feature, he is dry tooling, it probably is a wee bit chilly, but the difference between this and North american dry tooling is the lack of bolts, not sure it would make a suitable summer climb (fingers V steel).
This is surely one of those routes that crosses the grey area between, dry tooling in a quarry and tooling on traditional crags, does it matter whether Jack frost has made an apearance?.
> No it is not - it is continental mixed. If it were dry-tooling he would have suggested a D grade. He has suggested an M grade.
> It is an M graded winter route and thank god for that.
Eh? If it's not dry tooling, why not use a Scottish grade? Just what is the use of an M rather than D or a Scottish grade supposed to tell us about the climbing? That it is a Scottish route in theory but which in prectice will never be in condition perhaps? I am genuinely a bit confused (though not really bothered!).
Thanks but I was aware of the type of boots he was wearing, it's just that there don't seem to be any crampons bolted onto the bottom of them.
So if he isn't using crampons, is this winter climbing without crampons or summer climbing with ice tools?
You can see the crampons in Andy Turners photo's.
No, I'm not.
It is a winter route with ice and frozen smears leading in to a very hard crux on hooks. That then continues into more traditional winter ground. It is not dry tooling.
And probably in with a shout for the hardest trad protected M route in the world.
Jeepers, it was incredibly bold, with ground fall potential, not your average M graded route.
Why on earth would he be wearing fruit-boots without the crampons attached. Have you bumped your head?
Fairy nuff, looks like dry tooling, but i guess a photograph can deceive, doesn't concern me, the chief merely pushing the boundaries yet again.
Your eyes deceive you. Dave talks about a couple of pegs that would barely hold body weight - he suggests the line across the roof would be A4 on aid. Then an unprotected Scottish grade 6 wall to finish after you've made it across the roof. Scary stuff!
Awesome stuff, good work Dave!
at that of climbing who gives a monkeys what its called.
insane effort that wont be pigeon-holed; bloody good stuff.
Not worth comparing with his other routes as they're completely different types of climbing. Otherwise the danger is implying that top end modern mixed is pretty much dry tooling.
For me though the top end style of climbing doesn't tie in with the traditional grading system as it is sooo different in size, style and approach above VII / VIII.
He's a top bloke and deserves all the plaudits he gets.
Think you and Ice.Solo are both a bit wrong here.
There is a point to comparing it and pigeon-holing it.
The point is that it is possibly the hardest tardded M route in the world.
For comparision the Swiss Machine has 'only' tradded M9 I believe.
This should not be seen as and esoteric diversion. It is a big deal.
> The time of year is irrelevant.
its a bloody big roof in the middle of winter. its never going to be 'in' if we listened to old farts like you and follow the SMC laws.
dave is taking scottish winter climbing forward here in leaps and bounds, no bolts, mountain crag. fair play to him.
What are these laws that you speak of? I have never seen any published by the SMC.
Would you be suprised to lean that Dave McLoed is in the SMC?
> It is a winter route with ice and frozen smears leading in to a very hard crux on hooks. That then continues into more traditional winter ground. It is not dry tooling.
Yeah, reading between the lines of the report and the crag description on UKC I'd guess that this would never be a summer line because once you're over the roof you'd be onto horrible turfy choss that's only climbable when it's frozen. I'd be interested if anyone who actually knows the area could comment...
> What are these laws that you speak of? I have never seen any published by the SMC.
Sorry James I meant the guidelines/ethics/code of conduct.
Dont get me wrong here i'm not saying in the slightest that we should be climbing routes that aren't in condition but at the same time, some form of common sense has to prevail if scottish winter climbing is going to be taken further.
surely this is mixed climbing? Ruth Taylors report on the ME blog suggests a tech 7 bottom section upto the roof and tech 6 with no protection after the roof. looking at the photos of the crag there is no question that its not white and wintery. Dave has linked the two sections by means of a 6m roof. thats mixed climbing isnt it?
Lets get one thing clear, we havent seen a full picture of the route. The other bits might be well frozen, turfy and just the cabe bare.
I have missed Dave M this winter... amazing as usual.
Well, for all of you moaning conditions see the below.
"It might be safer if a crack near the lip wasn’t choked with ice and would yield a well positioned cam"
YOu can also see on the pics from his blogs that there are icicles driping down from the roof. Sure it isnt youre traditional scottish route but its not your average drytooling route either...
Humour also isn't any good if no one knows its a joke. In this case its also a very old and tired joke and I was (wrongly it seems) giving the originator the benefit of the doubt.
UKC is bloody depressing sometimes. One of the best climbers in the UK produces yet another spectacular effort and a lot of the response is dry tool jokes and sniping. If said to his face I'd have more respect for the lot of you... its not as if Dave is humourless or incapable of arguing his position.
> Sorry James I meant the guidelines/ethics/code of conduct.
I'd love to see these too! The only code of conduct i know of that the SMC has in its guidebooks feres to how to be 'nice' to land owners etc to preserve access and the like.
I'm not meaning to pick on you at all, and i usually dont contribute to these type of threads; i'm sure that we would share some views if we actually met.
But i must say that w.t.f. are people going on about? Why does owning a pair of axes and a computer make everyone think that their opinion is either interesting or important? And no mine is neither of these things before you ask.
On a more intersting and important note, lots of windslab on north to n.e crag tops in the fannachs this weekend but it will consolodate in the fluctuating temps this week. Less ice than i was expecting but it may well grow this week. There, surely that is more important and interesting!
There's definitely a list in the front of the fairly recent SMC Scottish Winter guide. It's got to be pretty much the definitive definition of whether or not something is in, provided it's an ordinary scottish winter I to IX or so. Don't have it to hand but it's fairly obvious stuff like 'all turf is frozen', 'no wet rock', 'easier to climb with tools than without' etc.
I think there's either a statement about the limitations to ordinary, traditional stuff or Andy Nisbet wrote something somewhere later about how the truly cutting edge stuff doesn't fall into the same simplistic rule-set designed to stop weekend warriors scraping up black, wet rock and soft turf.
Looks like Dave Macleod has just upped the anti once more.
Well done to that man!
Dave comes across as a really decent guy with tremendous talent and drive.
I am a little ashamed of his detractors on UKC. When the detractors man up and repeat his routes in equal or better style - then I will listen to them.
That has passed me by I'm afraid. I own nearly all the SMC guidebooks other than the selected winter one, is that where it is?
I should read it as a new route I climbed yesterday had some thawing ice on several of the pitches which ran over some rock making it wet so it might not be recordable then.
Anyway I will get my tongue out of my cheek and stand corrected.
Yeah, but what's he done on Grit?
> Yeah, but what's he done on Grit?
Blind Vision @ Froggatt
Ok, so some tired old jokes can be funny.
The question raised, is when does so called 'mixed continental' climbing, become 'dry tooling'?
And unfortunately, this is not a subject where you have to able to climb M11 in order to comment.
if this 'nettle' isn't grabbed hold of properly, and a candid, open and honest debate engaged in, then in 5 years time, every wannabe noddy trying to emulate the likes of Dave McLeod, will be 'continual mixed' climbing up Cemetery Gates, because it's January, and there's a 6 inch piece of ice just below the girdle ledge.
And hiding behind the argument that it will never happen, is just burying your head in the sand - I can remember 25 years ago when you'd be hard pushed to see chalk on anything less than E2, now most Diffs are plastered in the stuff!!!
Using the term 'continental mixed' climbing, is just refusing to see the elephant in the room!
And using the argument 'it won't
My opinion doesn't matter either way so no point offering it but I guess the only climber with a valid opinion as to its grade/ethic is the one with the cahoonies to get up there and repeat the route.
a fair point proven by the Milestone/Nicoll debarkle
> if this 'nettle' isn't grabbed hold of properly, and a candid, open and honest debate engaged in, then in 5 years time, every wannabe noddy trying to emulate the likes of Dave McLeod
you wont catch this noddy attempting to emulate Dave MacLeod pulling through a 6m roof with a downward pointing knifeblade to catch him!
For Cemetry Gates read Engineers Slab and it already happens regularly.
Embarassingly I also know someone who has effectively dry tooled up C Ordinary quite recently. You don't need to wait 5 years.
Without wishing to fan the flames or feed the troll or what ever the euphemism is...
People are going of topic on this thread and linking thingsthat are completely separate. I'm not aware of any current summer line that this new route ascends and that is a crucial difference and makes comparisons to Engineer's slab and the like facetious.
P.s I know it's ironic for me to point out that people are going off topic.
To be critical of the ascent is not to detract the man. It is an impressive looking route but it's still drytooling
> Blind Vision @ Froggatt
Not with tools he hasn't. Nevermind.
Gear looks scary - I can see an upside down BD pecker.
So what? That's like criticizing a route becuase "it may well be A5, but it's still aid climbing"
I thought the main issue with dry tooling is damaging established routes?
That's just ridiculous.
I reckon Ivy Sepulchre would be fair game though.
> So what? That's like criticizing a route becuase "it may well be A5, but it's still aid climbing"
It's not a scottish winter route or a winter testpiece its a drytooling route
> It's not a scottish winter route or a winter testpiece its a drytooling route
What's the difference?
So if I discovered a new crag covered in potential fantastic three star classic rock climbs, would it be considered ok for me to drytool them all?
No, Savage Slit and Fallout Corner get no more damaged by "drytooling" ascents than by ascents when snow and rime have to be cleared first. In my opinion this argument is just cover for the real issue which is that people have their ego dented by others claiming bigger numbers than themselves without the inconvenience of scraping the white stuff off.
> So if I discovered a new crag covered in potential fantastic three star classic rock climbs, would it be considered ok for me to drytool them all?
If the ramp above the roof is "lumps of frozen turf" at the moment, and it's on a crag which currently, according to the UKC logbooks, sports a single solitary HS which noone has ever logged, the odds that it's a three star classic summer climb in waiting seem pretty long...
There's a VS on the crag also. I've climbed the Hard Severe, which is good but quite a walk for a short route.
I think if this had been graded as a trad M10+/11 and left at that then maybe there wouldn't have been the controversy. Maybe these sorts of climbs do not convert well to a Scottish grade given that they inherently will not get rime or snow and obviously not hold turf. WI grades generally have a top end practical grade (with odd exceptions like Spray On), maybe Scottish grades should have a practical upper limit also, after which a mixed grade is better used in order to better reflect the conditions and style of climbing? Just putting the idea out there!
Everybody is just talking about the crux as if that's the route. Dave says above it is turf climbing and you can see in the pictures ice smears and turf in the corner up to the roof. Routes like Crazy Sorrow cross roofs, I'm sure when that was repeated there was less hoar under the roof than below and above. Hardly surprising Sure, the crux is obviously the very hard bit, but it's not the whole route. Look at the overall crag shots, you can't even make out the roof clearly - 90% of the route looks just like any other Scottish mixed line.
Maybe Scottish grades should have a practical upper limit also, after which a mixed grade is better used in order to better reflect the conditions and style of climbing?
Is this analagous to the trend for assigning French grades to top end rock climbs, since it is often felt that this gives more useful information or at least complements the UK adjectival plus tech system. (Indeed, is an M grade an overall "physical" grade analagous to a French grade?)
Hi James, I'm replying on this thread rather than the 'official' news thread because I think it is a valid place to broaden the discussion.
I think you misinterpret what I and others are saying about routes like engineers slabs - of course this new route is nothing like it. However what this new route does do is reinforce and legitimise in many peoples minds the climbing of dry rock with ice tools. As a climbing community we need to decide, like the use of new pegs on seacliffs, whether this is a trend we are happy with. What we can't do IMO is bury our heads in the sand and pretend it isn't happening - it is.
Perhaps you are right; i am very aware of the massive difference as i would say that i am an informed agent in the matter. I do take your inferance that people who can not tell the (to me obvious) difference may see amazing lines such as this as a green light to climb crack lines at millstone. In the pre internet days the whole game was different and it is changing a lot, perhaps in a similar way to the introduction of the bolt to the uk in the 80's and chalk on hard routes.
I really don't know what the answer is to 'new' trend, i don't like it but i think that Dave McLeod's line is very impressive and not the same thing as tooling up embankment wall as you agree. You and i are not the problem (and i'm not strong enough to be the problem!)
The grade perhaps, but not the ethic surely?
Anyway, my own armchair opinion as a bumbly punter: From the reports it seems clear that this was a route that was mainly a normal winter route, but with one very hard section that would have been safer with less ice. None of which seems that controversial to me, it's not as though he bolted it.
just out of curiousity.....
if there had been a curtain of ice hanging off the lip of the roof/cave, would that have negated the need for the is it/isnt it fair game discussion? Obviously he would still have had to tool through the roof to get to the ice.
I'm not sure whether anyone is disputing whether this particular case is 'fair game' are they ?
I've met Dave when he's been up to try a roof somewhere else, and come down because it wasn't wintry enough, so I think we should take his word for it. This isn't a crag which rimes readily.
> I'm not sure whether anyone is disputing whether this particular case is 'fair game' are they ?
my mistake then Graham. looking through I got the feeling a lot of people were unhappy with that nature of the route?
just to confirm I think its a cracking climb. I was just curious to know what peoples major issues were with the line e.g. lack of major ice feature, not white enough etc etc.
Technically it's a Scottish mixed route as it sounds like it involved snow, rock and frozen turf in sections. Of course calling it thus is rather a misnomer as the main feature is of course the huge roof which is a dry-tooling challenge (on poor gear). And there's nothing wrong with that.
Come on, it's pretty unique as Scottish trad winter routes go. All it does is add another ingredient into the mix, pun intended!
But what's he dry-tooled on grit?
Sorry, couldn't resist... Route looks really nails though!
An interesting account and some more photos here which show how wintry the crag was:
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