E8 Action at Fairhead - Northern Irelandby Jack Geldard - UKC Chief Editor Jun/2011
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"It's without doubt the coolest line I've opened in Ireland. Long with some safe runouts and some amazing moves. It felt wild to climb!" enthused Ricky on his blog.
The Rathlin Effect *** 65m E8 6c
14/5/11 R. Bell, A.Moles
The beautiful prow of the Rathlin Wall.
Start up the corner to the left of Wall of Prey. A line of crimps lead across the top of the lichen wall and up to a triangular niche. Small nuts and good no.1 cam. Climb diagonally up and left to a hanging block with a letter box above. Swing up into the niche and climb the groove system on the arete in a spectacular situation. Move right around the last roof at an old rusty peg and then straight up past a very exposed boulder problem. The big foot ledge 8m below the top of the crag is a nice place to take a moment. Finish up the arete.
Speaking to UKC a few weeks prior to his successful ascent Ricky told us that:
"I was thinking it might be E9 but now I think E8...who knows/who cares -- I don't haha..it's just brilliant! 60m pitch... hard E7 into an airy E7 with a good rest in the middle..."
Ricky hasn't been the only one out on the hard routes though. Andy Marshall has made the second ascent (headpoint) of Ricky Bell's An Bealach Eile, E8 6c also at Fairhead.