/ Routes that exceeded expectations.
I will start the ball rolling with Christmas Retreat on Aran Faddwy. I was expecting slightly crappy rock in a great location. What I got was really sound rock and a highly enjoyable route in a great location.
With the GG theme from the other thread, this is a route I always bang on about, it's brilliant - like a mini Elegy!
This looks atrocious (and the upper part is, I suppose) but the first half of the route is sustained, well protected climbing with brilliant moves, the BMC guide is right to give it **.
I thought this would be good since it's a classic, but it's so brilliant that it totally blew away my expectations:
The only routes I like more are probably the Second Geo routes at Sheigra - my expectations of those were high and were still exceeded.
Low Man from Hopkinson's Cairn on Scafell crag. Did it yesterday.
It's rarely done, perhaps because it's only Diff and you have to climb Severe to get there, so most people choose one of the other Severe exists. It also gets no stars. And is badly described in the guidebook.
Anyway, it turned out to be a 2-star VDiff which made a fitting end to the weekend.
Smilarly: Concrete Chimney. I mean, clearly one goes on a three star HVS on Gogarth expecting it to be good, but I didn't expect it to be far and away the best route I had ever done at the grade.
Spring Bank on Gimmer was also quite a bit better than I expected from the one or two stars it had in the guidebook at the time: definitely one of the better single pitches I've ever done.
One that comes to mind is Route 1 at Wimberry, mainly because I hate grit and just did it cos it was 3 stars. But it turned out to be a treat to climb, made even better by my second trying to layback his way up with excessive exertion, all red faced and panting.
When I press submit I'll probably think of something else, too...
Good point. Sgurr Dubh Mor slabs. Best easy route in the UK. Lovely climbing in a stunning location.
Most recently two unstarred 'VD' climbs at Ravenstones: the impressive chimney of Mark II and the unapealing sounding Muddy Corner (both slightly sandbag graded); and on Tryfan east face the one star HS Crackerjack (the second pitch was especially impressive, as was the VS finish) and on Milestone Buttress Little Gully Wall the lovely HS up the southern wall of the descent gully that I can't beleive I've gone past so many times without noticing. Then finally an unnamed VS Moff spotted that went straight up from the graffitti on the right side of Bedstead Bay (might possible be Visions of the Emerald), on Lindly Moor Edge.
Something on the Wall VS (Limeslade Crag, Gower)
Birthday Treat 5+ (Winspit)
Winter Sun 6a (The Cuttings)
Agamemnon 6c (Wintour's Leap)
Sister Mary's Blessed Finger 6a (Three Sisters, Gower)
Stormy Weather HVS (Cornakey Cliff)
Wallaby Direct HVS (Roaches Upper)
Wessex Hangover VS (Cattle Troughs)
Had a few recommendations for this climb.
First route to jump to mind is Bachelors left hand at Hen cloud. Very stiff for HVS, and packs in virtually every sort of climbing, run out, hard cranking, bold and safe in different sections. Laybacks, finger locks and some thrutching at the top unless your offwidth and jamming technique is up to scratch.
Definately one of the best routes i've done.
As many people's view of a clear contender for the best HVS on grit I'm not quite sure how it could possibly exceed expectations (unless you hate grit ;-)
Did Western Slabs on Dinas Mot recently and thought it was worth 3 stars, much better than the more crowded and polished "classics" further left.
I did it years ago, and had no idea about it's reputation. Just another HVS i thought. But i'd definitely agree, certainly the best HVS i've done on grit. Possibly the best HVS i've done, apart from either maybe Centurion or Dream of white horses. But as a single pitch route. Hands down the winner.
Interesting. I personally didn't rate Western Slabs that highly but thought West Rib (with the Chain finish) was much better than Diagonal.
Auricle at Bamford, my first E2. Giant jugs and good gear but still tricky. Nails if you're short, mind.
Elsewhere on the site
Skiing Baffin’s couloirs has been on my to do list ever since I saw Andrew McLean and Brad Barlage’s inspirational... Read more
2014 has been a bumper year for climbing publications. Here's a few of the ones that we have either read, or ones that we... Read more
A product review by James Turnbull. James Turnbull at Outside recently took the new Osprey Mutant 38 on a rigorous test in the... Read more
Nick Livesey discovered the mountains of Snowdonia over a decade ago and finally moved there a year and a half ago, quitting a... Read more
WINTERFEST 2014 at Outside in Hathersage 6th and 7th December 2014 Outside's ever popular Winterfest event is back... Read more