/ Boulder Mat Epics
I'm an old sport climber who's new to outdoor bouldering.
The main problem I had transitioning to outside was the mat.
On the way down to boulders in Portland I got :-
1) Seriously snagged of a blackberry bush
2) Stuck in a gate
3) Almost wingsuited into the sea when the strong westerly got gusted
4) Had the bright idea to wear my pack on the front of my body, which then prevented me from seeing where my feet where going and almost face planting
5) Dogs seeing the mat as a urination target
6) Putting it on at the end of the day, only to realise it had been covering a muddle puddle with obvious consequences
7) Non-climbers looking at me if I was crazy with a mattress on my back
I sent my project, but the joy was replaced by terror as the boulder didn't top out and I was on a finishing ledge with only micro crimps and flowstone footholds to down climb. The mat now looked like a beer mat and I must have been spent 10 minutes trying to reverse moves that I struggled to do on the way up, before pump kicked in and I fell onto the mat. Where was the juggy VB they have at the wall?
Anyone had interesting outdoor mat experiences?
None that spring to mind at this time of the morning but a standard garden tarp thrown under your mat on damper days is a cheap trick. They weigh very little, cost the same and fit in most pads nicely.
I'll remember that next time!
Never used to have that problem with a beet towel and a carpet tile!
Plus there was more skill required in landing on them
I had a pretty substantial Moon Mat which I clipped my dog’s lead to while I bouldered/soloed ‘Peas’ at Stanage Far Right. All good, from what I remember, a hard overhanging mantleshelf, a quick look down at my feet, mat gone, and a lasting memory of the mat bouncing it’s way across the moor with my dog in hot pursuit of a Hare. That time I chose a grovel off along the break rather than topping out.
Recognise your problem. The triple pad of i-Bbz does solve some of your problems, not all, anyways it did for me. Not wide so you can walk with it between boulders.
You can get it at Villliers en Bière (the only Decathlon that is offering these pads, it is close to le Carrefour). Or go the Vieux Campeur on the rain day. Or maybe (try to contact monsieur Montchaussé direct.)
Happy spring climbing!
Ooh, let's see:
Unexpected sledding down a hill on a snowy day.
Looking down from an uncomfortable height to see the wind pick up the mat and flip it over so that it's not remotely in my landing zone.
Climbing at the Spring Boulders at the Roaches, on that one problem where the job of the spotter is to tell the person climbing the problem when they need to get off the mat because the bog is starting to spill over its edges and it's in danger of becoming completely submerged ...
(There were Negotiations about who had to carry the mat with the shoulder straps that had been in the bog on the way back.)
'Yes', first tricky move despatched. Looks down. Wind has half the mat vertical and flapping over the ankle snapper landing.
Was the dog employed as a mat porter after that?
It's very windy - an easterly - get to Plantation boulders with some difficulty - devoid of people, not a good sign. Find relief from the wind hiding behind Crescent Arete, decide that it's possible, layer two mats so the top one is jammed under the boulder and start to totter up, all good.
With the top moves in sight the wind suddenly changes direction to a southerly, tremendous gusts begin, I'm holding on for dear life, look down the mats have gone and are cartwheeling up the hill towards the edge with my spotter chasing after them. I get blown off and then miraculously blown back on, regain balance and carefully reverse with my ankles aching in anticipation of the injury that never happens.
Mats rescued, back in the car, and a walk ensues. Hats blown off and chased down several times and the cheese got blown out of my sandwiches. I knew it was way too windy to climb what on earth made me thing that bouldering was feasible I don't know.
> ...and the cheese got blown out of my sandwiches.
You know it's windy when the cheese gets blown out of your sandwiches!
Funny tale. The things we do when we're desperate to climb!
> Was the dog employed as a mat porter after that?
No, wouldn't even carry his own water
Nicky Spinks has run a double Paddy Buckley Round, in a total time of 57 hours 27 minutes. The classic North Wales challenge completes her unique trio of double rounds on the UK's big three.