Pembroke and Lakes E8 Onsights for McClure

by Jack Geldard - UKC Chief Editor Aug/2011
This news story has been read 11,604 times
On a recent trip to Pembroke Steve McClure climbed the pumpy E8 6c Point Blank in Stennis Ford, onsight.

The route, a relatively recent addition from Dave Pickford, has seen a few repeats and an onsight ascent from James Pearson earlier in the year. Steve's effort differs from James' in that Steve had no prior knowledge of From a Distance, an E6/7 that forms the first half of Point Blank. James P had onsighted From a Distance prior to his ascent of Point Blank.

Steve then took a trip to the Lake District on a photo shoot for Keith Sharples' climbing calendar, where he visited Raven Crag Langdale and onsighted Dawes Rides a Shovel Head (E8 6c - some people have suggested a down grade to E7) and flashed the probable second ascent of the very difficult Eulogy Direct (E8 6c). Both of these routes were first climbed by Cumbrian legend Dave Birkett.

+Steve McClure flashing Eulogy Direct (E8) on Raven Crag Langdale, 211 kbSteve McClure flashing Eulogy Direct (E8) on Raven Crag Langdale
© Keith Sharples Photography

+Steve McClure onsighting Dawes Rides a Shovel Head (E8) on Raven Crag Langdale, 250 kbSteve McClure onsighting Dawes Rides a Shovel Head (E8) on Raven Crag Langdale
Steve, talking to UKC, said:

"The day in the Lake District was all about getting photos for Keith's calendar. But I had always wanted to do Dawes Rides a Shovel Head, I've been going to Raven Crag Langdale since I was five years old and I remember climbing Trilogy when I was about 18 and looking rightwards at the steep face and seeing it as the main challenge of the crag. I found Eulogy Direct much harder than Dawes Rides a Shovel Head."

Steve went on to say:

"The route in Pembroke was probably the biggest deal for me though."

Keith Sharples was on hand to capture the Lake District action on his camera and has written a report on his blog, an extract of which is below:

"Long story short; Steve warmed up on Trilogy, then effortlessly on-sighted Dawes Rides the Shovel Head without his boot laces even done up! I captured both dangling from the top lip of Trilogy. Job done, I thought, my rope provided an easy ab off – or so I thought. Not so; Steve wanted more and after abbing down Eulogy Direct he tried in once more and only flashed it. Heck, crag ticked in half a day and pics in the can – result!

Day Two started in typical Lakes fashion – poring with rain. Still, we were literally just a stone's throw from the wettest place in England, the bottom of Borrowdale. Following a warm-up on Falcon's we hiked up to Bowderstone. Steve had onsighted Hell's Wall yonks back so Inferno E7 6c was his target. I've never seen him jump for a hold before but he did and he got the wrong bit of the jug and was spat off the on-sight. To say he wasn't happy was an underestimate! The first go red-point, followed by an immediate retro-flash of Hell's Wall – for training – left Mark and myself dreaming!"

Thanks go to Keith Sharples for his help with this report.

Steve McClure is sponsored by Marmot , Petzl , Beal , Five Ten


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