/ Praying Mantis / DDT

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Rick Graham on 08 Jul 2013
Did these two classic routes ( again ) last week.

To me DDT felt a grade harder (again).

I cannot see why PM gets E1. I must have done it a dozen times over the last 40 odd years and do the slippy crack bit the same method each time.

Beta alert.

High right hand jam thumb up.
High right foot outside edge.
Good wire above head (except when soloing ).
High left handjam thumb down.
Face right and use good footholds for right foot.

There are a lot harder 5a moves around in Borrowdale.

The slab section above as described in the recent guides is harder.
However, last week, I carried on straight up after the crack and stepped down and left to the belay.
I was surprised to find good holds and runners, maybe VS 4c.
No holds to clean so must have been done a lot for years by climbers with good route sense.

Any body agree with the above comments?

DDT E1-? PM hvs + ?

Al Randall on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Rick Graham: Hi Rick. Is PM E1? It was HVS when I did it back in the 70's with Angela Soper or Angela Faller as she was back then and that felt about right.

Al
Rick Graham on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Al Randall:
Grade creep, Al, grade creep.
johncoxmysteriously - on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Rick Graham:

Agreed - I did PM thirty years ago but even so I know it's standard HVS unless you're a wall rat who can't jam. The slab is the crux.

jcm
Greenbanks - on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to johncoxmysteriously:
I must be one of the chosen few - who has been up to Goat several times and each time come away without my prize (PM); failed each time on P1...and done a couple of harder routes thereabouts too.

Another Lakes bogey is the one I have mentioned on here before (Slab & Groove I think on Scafell...twice there & nothing to show!)
a lakeland climber on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Rick Graham:

I think the crack is a lot easier than people make out but the moves on the slab at the top of the crack feel hard and tenuous.

Not done DDT so can't comment on that or how it relates to PM.

ALC
Rick Graham on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to a lakeland climber:

Not done DDT ?? ! !

I think a change of poster name is required.
Martin Bennett - on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Al Randall:
> (In reply to Rick Graham) Hi Rick. Is PM E1? It was HVS when I did it back in the 70's with Angela Soper or Angela Faller as she was back then and that felt about right.
>
> Al

Hello Al & Rick. My diary reveals I did Praying Mantis in July '72, and goes on to say I seconded the first pitch and found it hard for the grade (HVS) - but then, in common with many, I never climb at my best seconding. Furthermore, picking up on Rick's tongue in cheek comment, I probably couldn't jam by then - didn't discover grit till later! I've always thought of it as HVS; that's what it gets in Hard Rock.

Incidentally even at a distance of 40 years I well remember the thumb down jam you mention.

Maybe it's time for a repeat - tomorrow? No - it'll be too hot - have to go high tomorrow.



Rick Graham on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Martin Bennett:
Cool in the shade on Saturday.

I think jcm made the tongue in cheek comment.

While you are there check out the VS 4c variant on the OP and compare to the slab on P1. The guide also implies you move right to a groove between the two, a lot of people keep left and find it hard.
JDal - on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Rick Graham: I think I agree, except I do like the E1 tick. Did it on a dank September day in 1969, and did the first pitch all wrong (laybacked it - pic at http://www.flickr.com/photos/johndal/9242418116/ ) and got naff all gear in. Looking back at my log I found it hard for the grade but easier than NCE which I did in better conditions a year later.
Mick Ward - on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Rick Graham:

I remember climbing with Andy Parkin on Great End one scorching Sunday in '76. On Goat, Big Ron was doing the second ascent of Footless. Gommie (the highly underrated Pete Gommersall) was doing the third ascent of Bitter Oasis. Both were largely operating in a steely silence (although there may have been the occasional, "Watch me!")

Meanwhile a team of five (or six?) were on PM. Technical grades of aforesaid five (or six?) varied from 4c to (hard) 6b. But they all had one fatal flaw in common; they were accustomed to seconding, not leading.

Everybody fell off - usually several times. No pitch was successfully led by the original aspirant. As the afternoon wore on and height was (slowly) gained, weariness set in and tempers grew ever more frayed. The sound of raised voices carried straight across the valley.

"It's your turn to lead!" "No, it's your bloody turn!!" etc, etc.

I wryly grinned at Andy. He shrugged and grinned back in sympathy.

Crazy days.

Mick
Rick Graham on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Mick Ward:

Off thread but I don't think Pete G was ever underrated.

I remember his profile on a Troll catalogue, next to grade climbed it said "any".
Mick Ward - on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Rick Graham:

We he certainly wasn't underrated by people active in the 70's Yorkshire/Lakes scene - we all knew how good he was. And yes, "any" grade pretty well sums it/him up!

But he didn't get the national recognition that I think he once craved. For instance, his Blue Scar routes were pretty cutting edge for their time. But, of course, they were 'oop in Yorkshire somewhere, not near Sheffield...'

My feeling (caveat: I may entirely wrong about this!) is that, much like Iain Edwards, he finally accepted he wasn't going to get his rightful due, thought, "F*ck it, might as well just enjoy my climbing." Got more laid back. Got much nicer. And continued to climb brilliantly.

Mick

Rick Graham on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Rick Graham:
> Did these two classic routes ( again ) last week.
>
> To me DDT felt a grade harder (again).
>
> I cannot see why PM gets E1. I must have done it a dozen times over the last 40 odd years and do the slippy crack bit the same method each time.
>
> Beta alert.
>
> High right hand jam thumb up.
> High right foot outside edge.
> Good wire above head (except when soloing ).
> High left handjam thumb down.
> Face right and use good footholds for right foot.
>
> There are a lot harder 5a moves around in Borrowdale.
>
> The slab section above as described in the recent guides is harder.
> However, last week, I carried on straight up after the crack and stepped down and left to the belay.
> I was surprised to find good holds and runners, maybe VS 4c.
> No holds to clean so must have been done a lot for years by climbers with good route sense.
>
> Any body agree with the above comments?
>
> DDT E1-? PM hvs + ?

Nice to chat but need to bump up the original post.
Misha - on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Rick Graham:
Haven't done PM but seconded DDT recently and thought the first pitch was hard for HVS, as did the leader. Perhaps not quite E1 but certainly hard HVS. Mind you, I can think of easier E1s, so... I was suffering from cold fingers, which obviously didn't help, but thought it would have been hard anyway.
Colin Moody - on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Rick Graham:

> I cannot see why PM gets E1. I must have done it a dozen times over the last 40 odd years and do the slippy crack bit the same method each time.
>


I think the grade should be decided by people climbing it for the first time.

A guy I was climbing with backed off the start about 30 years ago and I didn't try it.
lithos on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to Rick Graham:

did it at BBQ meet a few weeks back for the 1st time (actually 2nd'd it about 5 years ago
in the rain before we bailed) and i thought HVS, but i climb in yorks a bit and hard
jamming cracks are common. the slabby bit was technical but not strenuous (it's a slab)
and a couple of good wires. I thought the crack strenuous and fall-off-able but solid
HVS+. With a few repeated laps to get the moves it'd not be so pumpy,

Didnt manage DDT, after we failed to fnd ab and walked off !
JDal - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to Colin Moody:
> (In reply to Rick Graham)
>
> [...]
>
>
> I think the grade should be decided by people climbing it for the first time.
>
Indeed, which means it's HVS ;)

Colin Moody - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to JDal:

Maybe, not many votes for HVS.

http://www.ukclimbing.com/logbook/c.php?i=4238
johncoxmysteriously - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to Mick Ward:

Names, Mick, names!

jcm
ads.ukclimbing.com
Al Randall on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to Rick Graham: I have only done it the once and we had no prior information other than the guidebook description. It said HVS and I don't recall thinking it wasn't so for me it's HVS.
keith sanders - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to Rick Graham: I agree with you Rick as I did them last year just before the BBQ meet DDT felt harder good pro in the corner but hard move up.
I first did them in the early 70's and found them easier with less gear but more flexability, maybe over 60's can't jugde grade's anymore?

Rick Graham on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to keith sanders:
Maybe we can get a grade for post and pre BBQ.

Having helped write a few guides I can assure readers that grades are for on sight leaders.
It is virtually impossible though to get on sight grades from climbers who can grade accurately ( at the grade). Put out a list for comments and all you get back is upgrades for a few popular routes. I am afraid you lot out there just have to trust the authors and guidebook team.
No replies please from anybody who has not actually authored a guide.
jon on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to Rick Graham:

I've authored a guide and I've done the routes though can't remember anything at all about them. Perfectly qualified, I'd say...

> Put out a list for comments and all you get back is upgrades for a few popular routes. I am afraid you lot out there just have to trust the authors and guidebook team.

Well yes, this is the problem when trying to get a consensus. I believe that in theory it's best if one person can grade all the routes for consistency sake. In reality of course this is virtually impossible. At the other end of the scale you get websites like Chumptochump that are systematically destroying guidebooks with their online topos. The problem being that ANYONE can contribute to the site and so we see the often incredibly inaccurate route info being hoovered up by the consumuers - sorry, I mean climbers. Talk about cutting your own throat. Rant over.
Rick Graham on 09 Jul 2013
Not looked too closely at the posters but it seems CC members are more interested in this thread than the FRCC.

Rick ( foot in both camps)
jon on 10 Jul 2013
In reply to Rick Graham:

I see Praying Mantis gets into Kendal Wall's 100 best routes in the Lakes at E1. Now then Rick, how many of those 100 routes have you done? Without going through all my old guidebooks, I'm scraping in at about 58... I'm assuming your ticklist will start with a 9. Or even a 1...
matt pigden - on 10 Jul 2013
In reply to Rick Graham: I climbed PM (Direct) a few weeks ago and then went to Gimmer and climbed Intern. Intern felt a lot harder than PM.
a lakeland climber on 10 Jul 2013
In reply to jon:

On first scanning I got 71 but there's a few (about 4 or 5) that I can't remember if I've done.

Oh and why isn't Bloodhound on Gouther Crag not on the list (Pike!)?

To Matt Pdgen:

Intern harder than PM? Really? I remember Intern as basically being a VS with one balancey move round the rib.

ALC
Rick Graham on 10 Jul 2013
In reply to jon:

Off topic, but 84. I have tried some others but just aint good enough.

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