/ Moyer's Buttress damage, Gardom's Edge

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I was out taking cragshots for Eastern Grit III today and noticed that someone has managed to remove the 'wobbly block' from Moyer's Buttress. I wonder if anyone knows who did this and what their justification was?

The damage: http://www.ukclimbing.com/images/dbpage.html?id=231857

The route is almost 60 years old and has had thousands of ascents, another bit of Peak history bites the dust!

The block being used: http://www.ukclimbing.com/images/dbpage.html?id=213831


Chris
Post edited at 16:30
lowersharpnose - on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

Crikey, yes - why did that happen?
The Pylon King on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

Doesn't that now makes it harder getting round onto the slab?
In reply to The Pylon King:

I suspect it will be harder, the block had a good jam (and runner!) on top of it and made a useful foothold for getting back round the arete,


Chris
The Pylon King on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

Oh yeah i remember now, getting round on the right.

Yeah will be hard to rest there now.
Offwidth - on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

Really sad to hear that... it must have been removed by a ' climber' on purpose.
Andy Say - on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

Looking at the logbooks it was there June/July.

Let's hope its removal didn't 'remove' a climber in the process....
Red Rover - on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

Theres been a few cases of this kind of thing happening, some do gooders took out the wobbly chock (that had survived 100 years of climbing) from that Diff at Crow Chin.
Gordon Stainforth - on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Offwidth:

It's surely possible that someone falling off the crux, with a thread behind the block, could have pulled it off?
Offwidth - on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Red Rover:

I saved that on at least 3 occasions. One person took some persuading: I had to quote the guidebook text about leaving it alone before they desisted.
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

I doubt it, it was well cammed in - have a look at that 2nd photo. It would have been a bugger to thread anyway as it was pretty big.

Chris
Gordon Stainforth - on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

It seems very peculiar for someone to trundle it i.e. to deliberately abseil in and do so.
Alex Ekins - on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

> It seems very peculiar for someone to trundle it i.e. to deliberately abseil in and do so.

Someone did do just that at Crow Chin
Phil Kelly - on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

What can you do though, unless you meet the perps in action?

Duncan Bourne - on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

So where is the block now? At the bottom of the crag or removed completely. I imagine it would make the climb significantly harder and less safe.
Offwidth - on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Phil Kelly:

Hopefully educate people to leave such blocks alone and contact the BMC or post here if they are worried.
mark20 - on 11 Dec 2013
It was still there about 3 weeks ago, and no more wobbly than it used to be. Thread was still there.
I think this route will be a fair bit harder now
In reply to Duncan Bourne:

> So where is the block now? At the bottom of the crag or removed completely. I imagine it would make the climb significantly harder and less safe.

At the bottom of the crag in bits,


Chris
Chris the Tall - on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

Anybody know Toby Dunn or Dave Rose, who've logged recent ascents of it
Anybody climb it in recent years care to report if the block was wobbling more than previously

I suppose it's possible that the block finally succumbed to wear and whoever was pulling on it at the time escaped but didn't want to admit it

It was the best E1 in the Peak, probably harder now
mark20 - on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris the Tall:

Just checked my dates, I was there on the 23rd Nov (later than any logged ascents on here) and the block was still there as it always was.
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Jon Stewart - on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

Wow, that must have taken a bit of effort. Can't imagine anyone could remove it by accident. What a strange and stupid thing to do, I imagine the route has been changed significantly.
davidalcock - on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

How strange. Someone's twisted idea of commemorating the Peak Rock book? An (the) iconic route changed forever. I expect there might be a queue tomorrow.

The block seemed very secure at the end of June, btw.
Somerset swede basher - on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris the Tall:

I know Dave. He wouldn't have pulled it out though.
Frank the Husky - on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs: This reminds me of the hoohaa over the Revelations tree at Raven Tor. There were lots of fingers being pointed, and many outraged people, but the deed is done. No one (apart from those who were there) know the truth of what happened so the rest of us might as well just move on and get on with our lives. After all, it's nearly Christmas.

Duncan Bourne - on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

bugger!
deepsoup - on 11 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

How sad. :o(
asmith37 - on 12 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris the Tall:

I was there with dave and sgl0jd (not sure how they've logged different dates), but the block was definitely left intact. Although wobbly someone must have put some real effort to pull it, we used for runners!
robal - on 12 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

sad times, I climbed the route several times and was proud to have it as my first proper e1, the mind boggles as to the reasons why, I threaded the block when I climbed it and it always seemed safe... :(
bill briggs1 - on 12 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:
SHAME . I suppose there are two explanations , one the block came out as someone pulled on it as they climbed the route and had quite a shock. Two , it came 3/4 out during an ascent so was removed to be on the safe side.

Maybe a third, some wanker decided the route would be better without it.

Whatever happened I'm sure its a bit harder than before , not a lot as you can get gear in the crack on the right but the step up and left will be harder.( you can start up Bivens crack if the lower move right is too difficult )

Is the route better or worse , well it became disjointed with the introduction of Friends which tamed the top slab so I suppose it will be even more so in future.

Must do it again when next in the Peak.
Shame.
Post edited at 10:53
Jackwd - on 12 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs: Is it not the perfect knee bar sized gap now? Judging by your photo it looks that size.
Offwidth - on 12 Dec 2013
In reply to Jackwd:

It always was (in the niche).
Offwidth - on 12 Dec 2013
In reply to bill briggs1:

Biven's lost a block as well a few years back :-(
Ian Dunn - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to Frank the Husky: It was the Indecent / Body Machine tree Revelations never had a tree.


Frank the Husky - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to Ian Dunn:

Fair enough, but the point remains the same:- lots of fuss, no point in any of it.
Mark Collins - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to Frank the Husky:
> (In reply to Ian Dunn)
>
> Fair enough, but the point remains the same:- lots of fuss, no point in any of it.

It does send out a clear message to future potential trundlers to think long and hard about the reasons why, before taking any action.
Jonny2vests - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to Frank the Husky:

> This reminds me of the hoohaa over the Revelations tree at Raven Tor. There were lots of fingers being pointed, and many outraged people, but the deed is done. No one (apart from those who were there) know the truth of what happened so the rest of us might as well just move on and get on with our lives. After all, it's nearly Christmas.

What a bizarre thing to say. So because we didn't find out who chopped the tree, we shouldn't try and probe this mystery? Quite often a thread does end up shedding real light on some situation.
r0x0r.wolfo - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to Jonny2vests:

I didn't know this block. Are we sure this was deliberate. Or maybe someone genuinely thought it was dangerous.
paul__in_sheffield - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to r0x0r.wolfo: I first led it more than 30 years ago, and the description went something like 'go round the arête, and get established on the wobbly block' it was a bit of a Gardomd landmark even then

deepsoup - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to r0x0r.wolfo:
If someone "genuinely thought it was dangerous", it would still be deliberate, and wholly inappropriate.

There's no way it was removed by hand, and we don't need numpties with crowbars hacking at every "loose" block they think seems dodgy, even if in their misguided way they think they're doing folk a favour.
Jonny2vests - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to r0x0r.wolfo:

I've done the route and I'm not in any way convinced it was deliberate. In fact I think its far more likely to have wriggled out, no matter how much people think this impossible. I'm often surprised at granite blocks that somehow come out that seem like they ought to be keyed in forever, so no surprise this happens to grit. Most loose grit doesn't stay loose for long.
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r0x0r.wolfo - on 13 Dec 2013
In reply to deepsoup:

> If someone "genuinely thought it was dangerous", it would still be deliberate, and wholly inappropriate.

I think you missed the "or" in my post. If someone genuinely thought a rock was dangerous and trundled it, then I'm not with you on the witch hunt thing. Is there a code of conduct for this kind of thing? I genuinely do not know. Who know's, maybe it came out quite readily or was unsettled by someone to the point where it should have been removed.

> There's no way it was removed by hand, and we don't need numpties with crowbars hacking at every "loose" block they think seems dodgy, even if in their misguided way they think they're doing folk a favour.

No one knows if a crowbar was used, steady on.

deepsoup - on 14 Dec 2013
In reply to r0x0r.wolfo:

> If someone genuinely thought a rock was dangerous and trundled it, then I'm not with you on the witch hunt thing.

What "witch hunt thing"?

> Is there a code of conduct for this kind of thing?

For starters, how about: don't deliberately trundle bloody great blocks out of ultra-classic routes that have been well known for having a loose/rocking/wobbly block for decades.

People's perception of what is dangerous varies a lot, and clearly some folk are either ridiculously risk-averse about such things or just really keen for an excuse to trundle something.

I'd much prefer it if they weren't the people making unilateral decisions to trundle every rocking block and damn the rest of us who may see that as unnecessary at best or wanton vandalism at worst.

At the very least, wannabe trundlers would do well to contact the BMC access rep to raise their concerns *before* they start their unilateral attempts to "improve" the situation. The Peak reps are very active and approachable.

> No one knows if a crowbar was used, steady on.

Somebody knows, but yes, obviously I don't. Based on the last time I was up there (earlier this year), it just doesn't seem likely to me that block was dislodged without some mechanical advantage. Entirely possible that I'm wrong, I hope I am actually.

In reply to Chris Craggs:

Nobody died.
Jon Stewart - on 14 Dec 2013
In reply to Submit to Gravity:

> Nobody died.

Not until they are hunted down and shot at dawn, no.
In reply to Jon Stewart:

Indeed!
deepsoup - on 14 Dec 2013
In reply to Jon Stewart:

Ha ha. If there was a "like" button... ;o)
r0x0r.wolfo - on 14 Dec 2013
In reply to deepsoup:

> What "witch hunt thing"?

The witch hunt jon stewart makes fun of of course.

I don't have a clue about the circumstances. I'm just stating possibilities that may have lead someone to do this. I'm just not ready to call this person(?) a selfish-crowbar-weilding-vandal until I know more,.Which is exactly what you're doing.
deepsoup - on 14 Dec 2013
In reply to r0x0r.wolfo:
You said you're not with me on "the witch hunt thing"? You were making assumptions, I haven't expressed an opinion about any kind of witch hunt thing.

"Makes fun" indeed - Jon was joking. You do understand that right? That nobody is actually going to be hunted down and shoot at dawn. (Probably.)

I don't really care that much about the perpetrator's motivation. Whether they're malicious, moronic or merely misguided the damage is done now and it's irreversible. Regardless of their intentions, if it was done deliberately it was the wrong thing to do. At least in the latter case there's a chance they might be persuaded not to do it again.
mozzer - on 14 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

That's really sad. I fell on a thread around that block several years back. Surely this is a much harder proposition now its gone?

:(
r0x0r.wolfo - on 14 Dec 2013
In reply to deepsoup:

> You said you're not with me on "the witch hunt thing"? You were making assumptions, I haven't expressed an opinion about any kind of witch hunt thing.

Of course. No one calls it a witch hunt. But you're going off on one accusing person 'X' of heinous crimes.

> "Makes fun" indeed - Jon was joking. You do understand that right? That nobody is actually going to be hunted down and shoot at dawn. (Probably.)

Yes making fun is joking.

> I don't really care that much about the perpetrator's motivation. Whether they're malicious, moronic or merely misguided the damage is done now and it's irreversible. Regardless of their intentions, if it was done deliberately it was the wrong thing to do. At least in the latter case there's a chance they might be persuaded not to do it again.

'Perpetrator'. That says it all. Maybe it was the coyote trying to squash the roadrunner. Think if we look we will find some some evidence of TNT used.
davidalcock - on 14 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

I don't think anyone is hunting witches. There could be any number of explanations, the most likely of which is someone did it on purpose. It was wedged solid in the summer. No-one's saying it couldn't have been an accident. I don't know if anyone's been there to repeat it yet?
Jonny2vests - on 15 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

More likely to be a wizard hunt.
Adam Long - on 15 Dec 2013
In reply to davidalcock:

Just to posit an alternative explanation, I noticed a lot of trees blown down at Froggatt today, even well within the woods. The week before last we had a windstorm with the highest windspeeds recorded just north of Sheffield, the wind coming from just west of north. The timing would fit but would any wind be enough to move such a block?
Gordon Stainforth - on 15 Dec 2013
In reply to Adam Long:

At first sight the suggestion seems absurd … but then, on second thoughts, maybe not. If there was a mega blast/gust of about 80 mph round that arete, possibly speeded up by the 'venturi' effect of the slot the block was situated in, between horizontal break and overhang - and if the shape of the block was slightly convex (was it?) so as to act a kind of airfoil section, causing low pressure on the outside - and if the slot behind it narrowed slightly towards the eastern side to cause high pressure on the inside - could it have caused it to barndoor outwards slightly? It would then present a facet facing directly into the wind so that further very fierce blasts would hinge it out still further, until its centre of gravity was outside the ledge and so it toppled? A question for the scientists.

The idea of someone going to all that trouble to trundle it seems almost as far fetched. The only other possibility remains a rather unusual fall scenario, with a sling round the top of the block, maybe.
Gordon Stainforth - on 15 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

Of course, the crowbar scenario is plausible if someone had got a very expensive large cam irretrievably jammed behind the block. If the block was very difficult to move one can imagine a person learning out on the end of the crowbar on an abseil rope - well away from the block, both for safety and for maximum leverage, with one of both feet on the rock to one side - and suddenly the whole block hinged out and fell. ? ?
Chris the Tall - on 15 Dec 2013
In reply to davidalcock:

> . It was wedged solid in the summer.

Was it ? A couple of people had put comments in the logbook that it was very wobbly.

I don't think it was moving significantly when I did it, but that was 14 years ago, and the number of ascents will have speeded up the natural weathering process. It was a square block in a square niche, both made from relatively soft rock.
r0x0r.wolfo - on 15 Dec 2013

I blame deepsoup and all everyone who has climbed it and accelerated the erosion of the block. Burn them all ;).

Honey-pot crags and all that.
Post edited at 22:50
kyaizawa - on 15 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

Yes the block has moved. Fact. Beyond that, this argument seems entirely speculative.

Has anyone actually had a look at the scarring?? Surely if a crowbar (or other "mechanical advantage") was used that would leave very distinctive tool marks on the grit, in both the void left on route, and also on the block fragments. A few observations would be more useful than accusations or scientific (im/)possibilities... sadly I'm ~200 miles away from Gardoms...
davidalcock - on 15 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris the Tall:

I was expecting it to wobble and was surprised it felt solid. Then again, knowing it was supposed to be loose I wasn't yanking wildly on it. That was beginning of June. Perhaps it was in a better configuration that day.
Frank the Husky - on 16 Dec 2013
In reply to everyone: Jeez. I can't believe you lot are still going on about this! Noone knowns what happened, such events are vanishingly rare and the deed is done. You're all just wasting your time speculating over something to which there'll almost certainly never be an answer. The only thing we need to know that is of any use or relevance is "How hard is the route now?" That's it.

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deepsoup - on 16 Dec 2013
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:
> At first sight the suggestion seems absurd … ...A question for the scientists.

I'm not one of those scientists, but for what it's worth I really can't see it at all. It seems about as likely to me as Higgar Tor being blown over.

> The idea of someone going to all that trouble to trundle it seems almost as far fetched.

It'd be nice to think so, but it's been done often enough before. There are examples mentioned up the thread, though it isn't clear whether they were misguided do-gooders or out & out vandals.

> The only other possibility remains a rather unusual fall scenario, with a sling round the top of the block, maybe.

The climber would probably deck, with the block (which weighs/weighed what? - at least a quarter of a tonne) right behind them.

I imagine we might have heard something about that - either as a tale of a miraculous escape, or of someone being hurt or worse. (As we did when that large flake came away from the top of Valkyrie a few years back: the climber was probably quite lucky to end up no serious injuries beyond a broken arm and the whole story came out straight away.)

e2a:
http://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/t.php?t=366422
https://www.thebmc.co.uk/loose-rock-at-the-roaches
Post edited at 01:58
deepsoup - on 16 Dec 2013
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:
> Of course, the crowbar scenario is plausible if someone had got a very expensive large cam irretrievably jammed behind the block.

I think the traditional weapon of choice in that case would have been a car jack wouldn't it? ;o)
deepsoup - on 16 Dec 2013
In reply to davidalcock:

> I was expecting it to wobble and was surprised it felt solid. Then again, knowing it was supposed to be loose I wasn't yanking wildly on it. That was beginning of June. Perhaps it was in a better configuration that day.

Same here, yet there are comments in the logbook about it's wobbliness at just that time. Maybe it's more to do with those expectations than anything else? Perhaps it just felt wobbly to those expecting it to be solid, and solid to those expecting it to be wobbly.
jkarran - on 16 Dec 2013
In reply to r0x0r.wolfo:

> Are we sure this was deliberate. Or maybe someone genuinely thought it was dangerous.

That's most likely but it's hard to get wound up about someone acting in good faith, easier to imagine the worst.

jk
Dave Garnett - on 16 Dec 2013
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:
> (In reply to Adam Long)
>
> At first sight the suggestion seems absurd ¡K but then, on second thoughts, maybe not. If there was a mega blast/gust of about 80 mph round that arete, possibly speeded up by the 'venturi' effect of the slot the block was situated in, between horizontal break and overhang - and if the shape of the block was slightly convex (was it?) so as to act a kind of airfoil section, causing low pressure on the outside - and if the slot behind it narrowed slightly towards the eastern side to cause high pressure on the inside - could it have caused it to barndoor outwards slightly? It would then present a facet facing directly into the wind so that further very fierce blasts would hinge it out still further, until its centre of gravity was outside the ledge and so it toppled? A question for the scientists.


My god, you're right. If the wind reached 88mph it could generate the 1.21 Gigawatts of energy required to accelerate the flake into some possible future in which it had already fallen out! No-one witnessed it fall because the actual event didn't occur in our timestream. It's so simple once you see it!
>

> The idea of someone going to all that trouble to trundle it seems almost as far fetched.

Not really.
Gordon Stainforth - on 16 Dec 2013
In reply to deepsoup:

> Same here, yet there are comments in the logbook about it's wobbliness at just that time.

Yes, although it's been mentioned, no one's actually quoted what people said about it that implied that the block had become much looser this year (and was probably treated v carefully by most leaders):

>disturbed a midge nest, then the loose block put the wind up me. did one move above then reversed to the ground.
Daniel Heath - Solo dnf - 22/Jul/13

>What an amazing route lovely balancy moves, dont pull too hard on the chockstone though it moves! 
Bloke on a Rope - Lead O/S - 05/Jun/13 with Matt

>careful of wobbly block just beneath the committing move onto the slab - it spat out my nut when it shifted!
thomb - Lead β - 26/May/13 with Jess
Gordon Stainforth - on 16 Dec 2013
In reply to deepsoup:

(Not that it matters too much, but it is an interesting 'puzzle') Surely the most likely explanations (given the looseness of the block) are, in order of likeliness:

1. Came off when pulled on or fallen on (i.e onto runner behind block)

2. Result of use of crowbar to remove jammed friend (not v likely because someone has already said the block 'spat out' a friend when it moved)

3. Deliberate removal, from an abseil rope?, because deemed dangerous.

4. The result of recent exceptionally strong wind, as suggested by Adam Long. Maybe not quite as crazy an idea as it first sounds (see earlier comments)
Simon Caldwell - on 16 Dec 2013
In reply to Frank the Husky:

> Jeez. I can't believe you lot are still going on about this! Noone knowns what happened

You express disbelief and then give the exact reason for it. If we knew what had happened then it would have been forgotten (or at least forgiven) by now, particularly if the culprit were a top climber ;-)
Offwidth - on 16 Dec 2013
In reply to Frank the Husky:

Whats more odd Frank is you getting upset about others getting upset. I've seen you waste hours happily chasing your tail ( or someone elses). Mourning is a process that can generate odd emotional reactions and despite gritstone perhaps being overrated at times this was a route that was worth it.
Jimbo C - on 16 Dec 2013
In reply to Adam Long:

> would any wind be enough to move such a block?

It does seem far fetched, but then the wind was very powerful that day. I work in a certain tall building in Sheffield which often causes a wind tunnel effect on the path next to it. On the day of the storm, the path was closed since people were being blown over. One exposed corner of the building was damaged - a piece of aluminium trim was ripped off. This is on a façade that was designed and tested to withstand hurricane force winds.

So it's not totally out of the question for the wind to dislodge a loose block high up on an exposed arête.

What I want to know is whether it's still E1, since it's high on my wishlist.
Adam Long - on 16 Dec 2013
In reply to Jimbo C:

I went and had a look at the Moyer's today. Despite the general dampness, the lower arete was pretty dry, so I soloed up to the niche. There is very little mess in the niche - just a couple of worn points on the base, where the block must have rested. I couldn't see any marks from a tool like a crowbar or a jack, though the pivot point is a bit scuffed. No marks on the edge, almost as if the block had been lifted out.

I can't remember much about the moves past the block, but you can tuck in a good kneebar in the niche, and there is a good friend slot in the back which may have been obscured before - doesn't seem worn (looking at the photo in the OP, both look accessible). The move out on to the arete might well be harder now, as your feet are 18" lower, and you can't see into the break above easily.

The block itself is obviously in a worse state, but seems intact if someone wanted to put it back. Again, I couldn't see any obvious tool marks, and I scuffed the corners a bit more turning it over. There are a couple of other broken blocks in the area, but no obvious impact point. Again this suggests it might have been lifted down, if it had fallen you would expect it to have smashed.

Couldn't see much to add credence to the wind hypothesis - there is no damage to any trees hereabouts (save some old snow damage to a tree right in front), and the niche didn't seem particularly exposed to a Northerly.
Offwidth - on 17 Dec 2013
In reply to Adam Long:

Cheers Adam.

I've trundled similar sized blocks from a crag top before that didnt break (most do) but you would see impact marks.

Adam Long - on 17 Dec 2013
In reply to Offwidth:

Bloody vandal. I hope you consulted properly first.
Gordon Stainforth - on 17 Dec 2013
In reply to Adam Long:

The mystery deepens if anything :)
a lakeland climber on 17 Dec 2013
In reply to Offwidth:

From Chris's dimensions (comment on the first photo link at the top of this thread) then the block weighs nearly 300Kg. I'd expect that to make some impact mark, even quite small blocks (say 20Kg) do quite a bit of damage when they hit things.

If it was a natural event then I'd expect to see scratches on the lower lip of the slot where it once resided as it slid out. If it was a straight trundle then you'd also see such marks, so from Adam's description it does seem to have been lifted out. The photo also shows a couple of smaller blocks that look fresh - it would be interesting to know if they match up to any part of the large block.

The only time I've been to Gardom's edge was back in 1981 so I've virtually no memory of the area whatsoever.

ALC
Gordon Stainforth - on 17 Dec 2013
In reply to a lakeland climber:

Are you seriously suggesting it was lifted out in some cradle of ropes or placed in a net or something, and then gently lowered to the ground?
a lakeland climber on 17 Dec 2013
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

> Are you seriously suggesting it was lifted out in some cradle of ropes or placed in a net or something, and then gently lowered to the ground?

Well, if Adam's report of "no obvious impact point" is correct then it is possible. Without seeing a shot of the ground around the block and a decent set of close up shots of the block it's not easy to be sure.

From the photo, I'd guess that the block was maybe 8 metres above the ground so 300Kg of rock falling that distance, the height of a house gable, is going to make some impression (sic). Gritstone is also likely to crumble around the impact area so that sort of damage should be visible. Concrete building blocks behave similarly and if you dropped one of those from 8 metres then it should be pretty obvious where it struck.

ALC
Offwidth - on 17 Dec 2013
In reply to Adam Long:
Nearly all of my grit block trundles were insecure and exposed at the top of crags in eroding ground or sitting open and precarious on ledges (and those in obscure venues):... I don't see why anyone would ask about such? On more established routes I have dropped biggish bits I pulled off and couldn't hold and push back in (ie no chance to check status) but that's mainly on limestone; I could see how this could have happened in this case but would have expected someone to have gossiped, if not web posted somewhere or contacted the BMC.
Post edited at 13:41
r0x0r.wolfo - on 17 Dec 2013

I find it far more incredible that the rock was gently lifted to the ground. How did it come out without using tools? If it is infact that heavy. Then some sort of net or system of ropes were used to lower the block down via a pulley system or some other mechanical advantage. I think it's more likely someone borrowed a cherry picker for the day! What's the grade now adam?

All this is making me think the wind explanation is more likely! With such a block being 'lifted out' and slowed down hitting the ground. The plot thickens.
Post edited at 14:37
In reply to r0x0r.wolfo:

Not wanting to contradict Adam, but I though the block was broken into several pieces some of which had marks that could have been made by a crowbar. I was on a bit of a mission to beat the setting sun or would have spent a bit more time checking it out,


Chris
Adam Long - on 17 Dec 2013
In reply to a lakeland climber and Craggs:

I would estimate the weight of the block at about 50-60 kgs, I rolled it over easily enough but would have struggled to pick it up. To me it looked intact, though I agree the that in the photo it looks bigger when in situ. There were two cobble sized freshly broken blocks next to it. At first I assumed they had come off the main block, but I couldn't find any matching broken surfaces on the main block.

I agree it being lifted out seems unlikely, but as I said there is surprisingly little mess. I'd imagine a single long sling, lark's-footed around the block, would be sufficient.
In reply to Adam Long:

I think the block in the break was more like 500+kg - see 2nd photo in OP.


Chris
Adam Long - on 17 Dec 2013
In reply to Offwidth:

Just winding you up!

I suspect the whole section might be a bit harder now, though I doubt it would add a grade. To get across the ledge you now have the choice of a rather awkward belly-flop, or a hand traverse with a flat ledge for hands and poor feet.
r0x0r.wolfo - on 17 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

What's the block in your picture then Chris? The one on the floor that looks fresh? It looks to be the one adam is talking about, which is going to be nowhere near 500kg
Adam Long - on 17 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:
Hmm, it does look bigger in situ but nothing like 500kg. I didn't have the photo or a memory to refer to at the time, but the block on the floor is covered in chalk, and is about the same size on top as in the route photo, but perhaps not as deep. I can only think it might have split horizontally into two layers , but as I said there didn't appear to be any freshly broken surfaces. Does anyone remember a weathered split round the back?
Post edited at 19:43
Doug Kerr - on 17 Dec 2013
In reply to Adam Long:
Does anyone remember a weathered split round the back?

We've all got one of those surely? Sometimes comes in handy on the forums.


a lakeland climber on 17 Dec 2013
In reply to Adam Long:

Chris gave the size as approximately 60cm x 60cm x 40cm. This is 0.6m x 0.6m x0.4m = 0.144 m3. I'd worked on a density of 2000Kg/m3 to get the 300Kg value

A quick Google shows that Millstone Grit has a density of approximately 2400Kg/m3 so:

0.144 * 2400 = 345Kg

Adjust as necessary for the actual size of the block.

ALC
Jimbo C - on 17 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

On your photo of the block and smaller fragments on the ground it looks a lot less deep than the photo of it in the break. Suggests that it cleaved along its bedding plane upon impact and smaller pieces may be scattered down the hill. Just speculating of course, but I'd say that it hit the ground hard.
steveb2006 - on 18 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

A possible motive for someone wanting to shift the block is if they got a cam stuck in it. Not done it for a while but seem to remember placing gear (cams) between the top of the block and the niche. I think Right Unconquerable was also damaged by someone using a crowbar or car jack to remove a jammed friend. (Sorry if this has already been mentioned - not read every single entry). The wind theory is interesting - some big trees did get blown down in the peak on 6th Dec I think.
Coel Hellier - on 18 Dec 2013
In reply to steveb2006:

> I think Right Unconquerable was also damaged by someone using a crowbar or car jack to remove a jammed friend.

Not true, that story is an oft-repeated invention. The true story is that a leader fell on the cam and the flake snapped (the people involved posted on UKC about this).
krikoman - on 18 Dec 2013
In reply to Jimbo C:

> On your photo of the block and smaller fragments on the ground it looks a lot less deep than the photo of it in the break. Suggests that it cleaved along its bedding plane upon impact and smaller pieces may be scattered down the hill. Just speculating of course, but I'd say that it hit the ground hard.

I'd like to suggest that the block was about 1,000kg which once it fell out / was removed from it's protected environment, sublimated in the strong wind and all that is left is the hard inner core.
Jimbo C - on 18 Dec 2013
In reply to krikoman:

That is by far the most probable explanation so far ;-)
gritstone7 - on 18 Dec 2013
In reply to Coel Hellier:
I'm glad you said that. I also thought that the 'car jack to retrieve a cam' story was true. I heard it years ago and the idea of a climber doing that has annoyed me ever since!
Post edited at 21:44
Graeme Hammond - on 18 Dec 2013
In reply to Coel Hellier:

> Not true, that story is an oft-repeated invention. The true story is that a leader fell on the cam and the flake snapped (the people involved posted on UKC about this).

wasn't this only the most recent dammage in the last few years, it had a larger section broken off previously which is the often quoted car jack story. Look at the photo of Joe Brown on the first ascent and the photo in the 2008 guide and you can see the sharp corner of the flake is missing
Graeme Hammond - on 18 Dec 2013
In reply to Coel Hellier:

this photo http://www.ukclimbing.com/images/dbpage.html?id=228601 shows the old section that broke off, just to the right of this guys first runner (in this photo),

the latest section to break of is just below his last runner and is the smaller of the two dark triangle patches of shadows which there was a UKC thred about.
Graeme Hammond - on 18 Dec 2013
In reply to Coel Hellier:

just found this which explains/shows it better http://www.ukclimbing.com/news/item.php?id=50009
Coel Hellier - on 18 Dec 2013
In reply to Graeme Hammond:

> ... it had a larger section broken off previously which is the often quoted car jack story.

Yes, it was the "old damage" on the first bit of the flake about which the car-jack story was told. However, the car-jack story originated in a UKC thread as pure speculation about how it might have occurred -- that speculation came to be treated as fact, and the story has been repeated ever since.

Shortly afterwards, the belayer of the incident posted on UKC and explained that it had simply been a leader fall onto the cam, snapping the flake, which narrowly missed the belayer, with the leader held by a lower runner.

Anyhow, that's how I recall the whole affair (though I've not gone back and searched the UKC archives).
Gordon Stainforth - on 18 Dec 2013
In reply to gritstone7:

Sorry to be a 'party pooper', but a Friend/camming device is almost as bad as a carjack. The forces it exerts sideways are something like 2.5 times the weight of the falling person - unless I've remembered this wrong. That is a huge force.

The only time I've led RU (on sight), having been scared of it for many years, I'm sure I didn't use any cams at all, just conventional nuts. About 5 or 6, just where I most wanted them. Placing the gear wasn't v difficult, though it took a bit of guts to hang around for a fews seconds to get it right. But, even doing it the old-fashioned way, I was up it in c. 4-5 minutes.
Rob Parsons on 18 Dec 2013
In reply to Coel Hellier:

> ... However, the car-jack story originated in a UKC thread ...

Both the broken flake, and the accompanying car-jack story, long predate the invention of this website.
davidalcock - on 18 Dec 2013
In reply to Rob Parsons:

Long term memory seems to tell me I first heard the car jack story in the 80s. Might have been a Perrin article...?
ads.ukclimbing.com
Graeme Hammond - on 18 Dec 2013
In reply to davidalcock:

Someone must know something? I have a hazy recollection that I read the missing piece of flake was either on a mantlepiece in Sheffield or in a greenhouse somewhere but could be totally wrong
bill briggs1 - on 19 Dec 2013
In reply to Graeme Hammond:

I picked up part of the broken flake and placed it in the garden next to the foothold block of Knights Move ( Burbage ) . If I still lived in Sheffield I would have been to Gardoms by now for the Moyers block.

Moved to Wales a few years ago but did not wish to disturb the rockery so they lay in peace in a suburban garden.
dave_rose - on 19 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

i climbed it on the 16th Nov and it was left perfectly intact. Tbh i didnt even noticed it wobbled.

les bonnington - on 22 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

Have you seen the Pub Forum listing "Rescue from Moyers Buttress"? Didn't see any reference to it in this forum
civilhasbeen - on 24 Dec 2013
In reply to Chris Craggs:

But what happened to the pillar at the right hand end of the flake on Fox House Flake?
Iain Thow - on 24 Dec 2013
In reply to davidalcock:

RE the R Unconq. flake. Looking at my logbook I think it was 25th june 88. I knew the guy who was belaying and was along a few minutes later. The leader hit the ground but was OK (but didn't want to play any more). The flake end was lying on the ground and I thought about having it as a souvenir but didn't fancy carrying it around the rest of the day. As for the speed of rumours spreading, someone told me the car jack story before I left the edge that day.

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