Here at UKC we've got pretty psyched by James McHaffie's latest new route. We like trad climbing, and we like Welsh trad climbing! Lots of plans from the UKC staff for visits to Wales this summer, with the crags of the Llanberis Pass, Ogwen and of course the sea cliffs all on our agendas.
So, to celebrate the beauty of the climbing of North Wales, this Friday we are having a hard trad double bill, and from two of the nicest climbers we know too; the ever enthusiastic Tim Emmett and the inspirational Jude Spancken.
Tim Emmett has got a big plan for this summer, the Trango Airwall Expedition.
He is planning to climb perhaps the best rock spire in the world, Trango Tower (Nameless Tower), hopefully free and by the famous Eternal Flame route, and then BASE jump off the top. Rather him than us, but we wish him, and his team, good luck, and we hope they get up, fly down, come back safe and tell us all about it. Sounds terrifying (not the climbing bit, the jumping bit!).
Anyway, here is Tim in action a few years ago on the Main Cliff at Gogarth on the Steve Mayers' E8 6b Extinction. Tim is attempting the route ground-up and gives it a good go. The climb is around F7c+ in physical difficulty, quite badly protected, but on immaculate quartzite rock, on the best part of the best cliff of Gogarth.
VIDEO: Tim Emmett VS Extinction - Have it mate!
This footage was part of the Slackjaw film HardXS. Thanks to Rich and Ben at Slackjaw for letting us use it.
Next up we have Jude Spancken. Jude, originally from Germany, is now living in France, but was a long-term North Wales resident until around four years ago. We spoke to Jude about this clip of her climbing the classic E6 6a Lord of the Flies, and asked her to look back at that time in her life:
"I left Wales not long after climbing Lord of the Flies, to move to France. Looking back now, having been in France, mainly sport climbing for the past few years, thinking about this route really creates a desire in me to go back on routes like that. Thinking about it, it feels as though that special something is missing from my climbing right now, something you only get from trad climbing."
Jude is a fantastic climber, both bold and technical, and in this clip, she cruises Lord... in a display of cool and steady climbing.
VIDEO: Jude Spancken on Lord of the Flies
This clip is from the Hotaches film Committed Volume 1. Big thanks to those guys too, and we are looking forward to seeing 'The Odyssey'.