Whilst parts of the UK may be experiencing what could almost be dubbed a "proper winter," some British climbers have opted to head for warmer climes this January.
First off Gaz Parry has made some notable ascents at Sella's Sector Wild Side. On 5th January Gaz made a quick redpoint of Espacio Tiempo F8c as well as on-sighting both La Forquet Del Diablo O Romocop and Dimension Diamante both F8a+ on the same day commenting:
"They were more like F8a but excellent climbing."
More recently Gaz also on-sighted The Destroyer F8a at the Los Pinos/Pinturas area. Prior to his sport climbing exploits Gaz repeated a Mark Edwards E7 (name currently unknown) on the Costa Blanca which he thought was perhaps slightly over-graded and more like E4, but he was as psyched as ever saying:
"I cant wait to do some more!"
Next up is Chris Savage who has also been busy at Sector Wild Side. On the 9th January he red-pointed Pintoreta an F8c that he describes as:
"25m indoor like climbing to a rest at 12m which you can get foot in hole then bouldery rounded tufa then big reaches to the top!bad ass line"
Chris also on-sighted the route Ergometria F8a at the same crag a few days earlier. This is a good start to 2009 for Chris and follows on from last year's good form which included two more F8c red-points and an F8b on-sight.
Finally further north, Tom Bolger continues his love affair with the imposing Catalunyan cave that is Santa Linya. On 25th January Tom red-pointed Santa Lena F8c/+, a route which he describes as:
"Really amazing. Slopey and crimpy."
Earlier in the month Tom also came agonisingly close to an on-sight of the F8b route, Santa Linya. Apparently another amazing and crimpy outing, Tom managed to red-point it on his first attempt but was obviously disappointed to have blown the on-sight. "Estoy idiota" was the comment I think he made!
You can view some photos of Tom's ascent here.
Climbing in the Costa Blanca area has suffered a recent set-back with a large fire breaking out on the Puig Campana. Tragically we have had reports that several people have been killed. More information is available on this UKC Forum Thread.