We got parked easily even though we set off late as my partner was whacked from wind-surfing surfeit on Saturday.
We only saw one other climbing pair, and then a guide(?)with 5-6 pupils below the crag, and that was it.
It was a great day.
The only thing that came to mind was that there may be bird restrictions(but no signs) as we saw corvidae nesting in Elder Crack and PMC 1.We climbed elsewhere.
Maybe it's a sign that the next generation is not going to follow on into traditional climbing.
Well sure enough there were some boulderers,but they don't count in this survey( :-} ). We went a fair way along and could see most of the edge.
I think part of it may be that the weather was supposed to be "grey", which it was for a short while,but generally it was better.
maybe a bit warm? not sure I'd have fancied grit today. opted for slimestone.
This was yesterday, when it was breezy and keeping the midges at bay.
Conditions were pretty good.Not too hot.
Maybe loads of people decided to stay away from the obvious honeypot crags on a sunny Bank Holiday weekend under the assumption that they would be rammed.
I like how you worked in the fact, into the OP, that you have a climbing partner who also windsurfs! How eclectic. And relevant! :-)
The relevance was that his arms were overcooked from the previous day and so did not climb as well as he might have.Still he could go climbing first next time..
Curbar rammed... so cute it should be the title of an album. Mind you there are bits of Stanage where almost no-one ever goes as well.
"Bah ram ewe"
"That'll do, pig - that'll do"
Ah! Overcooked arms! Now I see how it fits into there being surprisingly few people at Curbar! Thanks for explaining the relevance :-P
In other news I did not go climbing two Thursdays ago because I was freediving.
I wouldn't go that far. It is true that whilst the likes of Froggatt are heaving, 100 yards away, the left end of Curbar is deserted. But then Curbar doesn't have a huge amount of (good) low grade climbs which I guess is the draw for Froggatt. It is also quite a challenging venue with climbs feeling a lot harder for their grade. I have certainly been spanked more times than I like to admit by climbs at Curbar.
"To your breed, your fleece, your clan be true".
It has more good low grade routes than Froggatt (see the latest BMC guide our website for details). It did feel hard for the grade but not so much now and only really from VS
> It has more good low grade routes than Froggatt
46 at VS iirc :-)
> We only saw one other climbing pair, and then a guide(?)with 5-6 pupils below the crag, and that was it.
Sounds chocka. I was at Craig Arthur on Saturday and saw no other climbers. Relevant? Possibly.
Curbar has always been quiet relative to the ease of access and quality on offer. The middle grade routes tend to be a bit steep and uncompromising and this puts off many.
I'll say it again, the reputation puts people off, the routes are fine and come in all shapes and sizes.
I'm definitely put off by the reality, not the reputation. Plenty of the VSs there are horrendous - Baron's Wall, for example.
Crags were relatively empty as most students are currently revising for their exams!
Oh and there were 35 people on the cat walk on Saturday!
Also, people's sheep tendencies. I bet Froggatt was heaving.
Baron's Wall is top end for the grade and is a 4m 5b boulder problem into a VS crack climb. Its the second hardest technically on the edge (after Ling Wall) although not the most brutal (Little Innominate anyone?).
Equally there are loads of pleasant VS climbs, try any of the following:
Beech Buttres (still VS in Rockfax)
Owl's Arete (still VS in Rockfax)
Rock and Roll
Now beat that list with one from Froggatt.
Talking of sandbag crags I put up this thread partly for you and you didnt say owt?
Rock and Roll is terrifying! It's the only time I've seen "other Steve" actually swear uncontrollably on a route! And he climbs a few grades harder than VS
Been away climbing :)
Hard 5b moves at 4m with no gear does not a VS make.
Of those, I've only done Bel Ami, which was fine (and quite pleasant) and Owl's Arete (which is probably right at HS).
I've also had less then loads of fun on Grey Face, Calver Wall (although I thought Wall Climb was fine) and Cioch Crack, and Little Innominate looks horrendous. So that's something like 50% of the VSs I've done there which were vicious little buggers. I can't think of another Peak crag that comes close to that.
I don't think Froggatt's a terribly good place to go for the VS climber either, although at least they might get up the ones they try!
Also, every time I go to Curbar I'm beset by a nagging feeling that I should do Peapod, even though it looks terrifying.
> I'll say it again, the reputation puts people off, the routes are fine and come in all shapes and sizes.
In reply to victim of mathematics:
> I'm definitely put off by the reality, not the reputation. Plenty of the VSs there are horrendous - Baron's Wall, for example.
There is a reputation certainly, but this is not without foundation.
The hard 5b move is at 3m, your feet are little more than a metre up above a good landing and a good break arrives at 4m. Those four hard ones you list are honest brutes, only Two Pitch Route is a real sandbag these days. If you want to try other peak crags with a sub-set of hard starred VS climbs try Ramshaw, Gardoms, Hen Cload amongst others and for way harder try Kinder North. Peapod is ACE... chimney up to perfect jams and stay calm, resisting any urge to dive and mantel.
You would also love Tantalus I'm sure. Real adventure route (strong second advised) and was only severe until this guide.
Hen Cloud can be evil
> You would also love Tantalus I'm sure. Real adventure route (strong second advised) and was only severe until this guide.
I've always been quite keen to give it a go, but have never found a suitably enthusiastic second. Usually the mere mention of the words 'esoteric girdle traverse' are enough to send them packing...
The only one I've done was Hedgehog Crack, which didn't seem that bad. I know to be afraid of the HVSs!
Having done every VS at Curbar (in the old BMC guide), my feeling is that it definitely has more to offer than Froggatt. Perhaps the lack of crowds are due to it's (well deserved) reputation of having some shockingly punchy climbs, and also because it's not as laid out and accessible for the average punter. Some of the buttresses do take some hunting, but they are always worth it.
Lets go thorugh the starred routes in the current BMC and Rockfax shall we (all IMHO):
Victory (star in Rockfax) top end VS
Bantam HVS [Blizzard Buttress HVS IMHO (not described but was VS in the last but one definitive and always got a star)]
Main Crack Top of VS
Reunion Crack top of VS
Roof Climb top end VS
Central Climb Direct VS/HVS border if you can jam.
Central Climb HS now (high in the grade) but awkward
Arete Wall top end VS
Hedgehog just top half VS if you can jam
Rib Crack (starred in Rockfax) top end VS
Bachelor's Climb top end VS unless you avoid the finish when it's mid-grade (the Original)
Rainbow top half VS.
Right Twin Crack (star in Rockfax) top half VS
Just Thirteen top half VS
Pinnacle face VS/HVS border.
Still think that ? ;-)
I wasn't disagreeing, more claiming ignorance. I will be sure to gird my loins suitably before going anywhere near the place again.
Gird away, I loved every inch. Gotta finish off the starred HVS climbs now.
> I've always been quite keen to give it a go, but have never found a suitably enthusiastic second. Usually the mere mention of the words 'esoteric girdle traverse' are enough to send them packing...
I really enjoyed Tantalus! Night fell upon us whilst we were doing it and we watched a bike light (er, attached to a bike with a cyclist pedalling it) wend its way SLOWLY up the road. It's not that esoteric or adventurous, arguably one tentative step down near the start iirc. The climbing moves aren't that special really, but it is nice to be doing something a little different at the top of the crag. P3 is a one-move wonder with optional bonus exposure. It's hardly a girdle and it the reason it's 3 pitches is for ropework issues IMHO.
Strangely "But it's not that esoteric or girdly, honest" are still not that likely to induce enthusiasm in potential partners. Especially not when coming from me. I'll keep on trying though!
You've actually reminded me that I'd like to go and get some pics of someone on it!
It's as much the position at the top of that Eliminates wall. HS leaders don't belong their and and might wake up some ghosts. The route length was 18m in the old days so I found it interesting when the doubled rope ran out at 30m. A Lust Ant is a good way of experiencing the Tantalus finish without the traverse.... a memorable encore for Alpha.
> It's as much the position at the top of that Eliminates wall.
That's why we did it late on a Friday night :-)
I am sure you are right. But from my soloing days, they are pretty spread out and most VDiff / Severes that I can remember were grotty corners and anomalies. That said, I still don't really see why the hoards flock to Froggatt. It isn't that good in the sub-VS zone.
You mean hordes.
I think it is not so much due to the quality of routes, but because Froggatt is a nice setting. Lots of separated little open spaces for sitting around with your picnic etc.
I'll put up a list later, I'm amazed you couldn't see more of the better climbs.
> At VS?
> The only one I've done was Hedgehog Crack, which didn't seem that bad.
That's the easiest one there!
Ok my list of Good and worthwhile VDiffs and Severes with the latest BMC grades at Curbar:
Pillar Slab. VD 4a* Nice padding and a fun wall above.
Short Chimney (HVD 4a), Short Crack (S 4b), the Arete (S 4b), Reynards chimney a worthwhile quadruplet of quick tests.
Slack Crack VD* pleasant crack work
CB variant S Hows your teetering traverse skills?
Cioch Wall S 4a* impressive wall climbing
Bulldog Crack (HVD 4a*) Derwent Groove (S 4a*) Derwent Groove variant (VD 4a*) a lovely triplet of trad crack routes.
Amphitheatre Crack HVD* trad chimneying... walk the ramp up and left to add to the fun.
Dogleg Crack S 4b* perfect jamming practice, Straight Crack (VD) round to the left is OK as well
Buckles Sister HVD 4a* juggy fun.
Clarks Buttress S 4b overlooked in the past, Dawsons Crack (VD) and Toilet Corner (VD) are OK as well.
Overtaking on the Inside (S 4a) and Overtaking on the Outside (S 4a) are both worthwhile.
Right Triplet Gully VD* back and foot practicen zone
Little Layback S 4a as the name says
Flying Buttress S 4a* a memorable tester by the right or the left variant. UFO (S 4a) is also Ok just right
Amy S 4b* short and sweet
Slab Route S 4a* feeling bold and delicate?
Shallow Chimney VD* the chimney is the easy bit: fun getting in and out
Alpha S 4b* tests your ability to move up to HS
Exposed VD good fun filler
Quarry Climb S 4a one for the experinced as rock needs care, good positions though; Crack and Face 9S) over to the right is OK as well
Cheeky S 4a name sums it up!
Roadover HVD 4a* lovely crack climbing and next door Little Rocker (HVD 4a) is almost as good.
No mega classics but this gives a few good days out.
People don't have time to wonder aimlessly along the bottom of crags these days. They need a quick fix, which is why the likes of Stanage and Froggatt are so popular. Not that it bothers me to much because that leaves places like Curbar deserted for the ultimate in secluded climbing experiences.
That's utter bobbins. People have no less time than they did back in the day. They're just lazier.
Perhaps, but why make life hard for yourself when you can achieve the same outcome by an easier path?
It is a very stiff-upper-lip British attitude that somehow people who do something the hard way are better than those who don't. Whilst Scott was man-handling his sledges to the south pole, Amundsen was being pulled by dog sled.
Anyway - I am off home. Have a fab weekend!
How about a similar-length list for Froggatt that doesn't involve walking the length of the crag?
Not true, they're deliberatly clumped in 4 sections that make a good easy day out at the grade with very little walking or two very long days without that much walking.
There is also lots of really good lower grade bouldering. 'Offwidth' details a week's worth of extra stuff for explorers here:
Forgot to add there are also the following worthwhile warm-ups in the same areas:
Beech Gully M
Short Measure (D) or Heron Wall (D) if clean.
Easy bouldering above and left of Moon Buttress area.
Calver Chimney, D
Matt Black, D
The Mod slab right of Quarry face
Diff Flakes, D
Albino Arete, D
Easier problems in Quarry Bouldering
Late Start Gully, HD
Elsewhere on the site
F ounded in 1993, Mountain Hardwear are a pretty young mountaineering clothing and equipment manufacturer but are also one of... Read more
The release of Peter Jackson's new film The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies on 12th December may not appear to link to... Read more
Steve Dunning has made what is likely the tenth ascent of The New Statesman, the classic and bold gritstone arete at the Cow... Read more
This years ROCfest will be slightly different. We've decided to run a Climbing Festival, not just a competition! Over... Read more
Climbing Technology’s range of winter hardware continues to grow and for winter 2014 they have a crampon in the range to... Read more