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Midges on grit.

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 Kevster 24 Jun 2020

Hello.

Not ventured outside yet. 

Just wondering if the midges were in force on the grit edges yet. 

Thanks. Kev

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 Cake 24 Jun 2020
In reply to Kevster:

There seem to be much fewer than normal. It's too hot for grit at the moment though

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 girlymonkey 24 Jun 2020
In reply to Cake:

That's why the midges aren't there, they prefer to climb on high friction days too! 😜

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 Sam Beaton 24 Jun 2020
In reply to Kevster:

They were hellish at Millstone last Tuesday so we went to Horsesh1t instead last night

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In reply to Kevster:

Whenever it's been dry at has also been breezy so very few midges kicking about., as long as you stay out of windless quarries. 

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In reply to Kevster:

None at Stanage Friday night because it was freezing and blowing a gale. A few last night as it was hot and the breeze dropped at points. So it very much depends on the conditions.

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In reply to Kevster:

As others have said, look at the wind speed and direction and decide accordingly. 
 

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 mrphilipoldham 24 Jun 2020
In reply to deacondeacon:

None in the windless John Henry Quarry yesterday! 

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 MischaHY 24 Jun 2020
In reply to Cake:

Never understood why this gets rolled out so often. Sure, at the higher end temperature plays a role in difficulty - but it also mostly doesn't at the level within which most people operate, especially trad. 

When I was local I had some of my best days on grit in the summers, and managed to climb up to E6 quite happily during the hottest months. 

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In reply to MischaHY:

I agree. My hardest trad leads were admittedly in a cold winter but I only lose about a grade when it's hot and sweaty. Also I've been out late a couple of times the last couple of weeks and after about 9 I've been glad to have a jacket with me. 

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 MischaHY 24 Jun 2020
In reply to deacondeacon:

I was always pretty crap in winter, although I suspect I've hardened up a bit now and generally have better blood flow. 

I very much appreciate crisp temperatures on lime, I must say! It's not a deal breaker though - unless you're on minging crimps. 

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 MischaHY 24 Jun 2020
In reply to deacondeacon:

I often thought the grit slabs were even a bit easier in warmer weather because the rubber on your shoes is softer. I always found that the toes seemed to skate off smears less in warmer temps. 

I was predominantly climbing slabs at the time so maybe that's got something to do with it. Steeper stuff on slopers definitely lends itself to colder temps. 

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 gooberman-hill 24 Jun 2020
In reply to girlymonkey:

I was clearly wrong in wondering what the midges had ever done on grit! I had always assumed they were too busy on gabbro to bother with grit

Steve

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In reply to deacondeacon:

It was so cold on Friday it was ridiculous! The picture is Simon second-hand me in a winter Gore-Tex and belay jacket over the top! 😆 Last night was hot though and and I regretted my route choice when trying to hold onto rounded standard edges in the sun on the first vs I've onsighted since lockdown eased!


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 LakesWinter 24 Jun 2020
In reply to mrphilipoldham:

Thats a great venue

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 Offwidth 24 Jun 2020
In reply to MischaHY:

Maybe because on grit you don't focus on highly friction dependant bold soft touches. Friction is worse in hot conditions and matters more for hands than feet.

Post edited at 19:40
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 Kevster 24 Jun 2020
In reply to Kevster:

Just a thank you to the responses about the midges. 

Reinforced what I suspected was going on. But also good to know they are not a plague as yet.

With respect to grit conditions... I've seen people climb sport 8b cleanly in 40 degrees C (not exaggerating the temps). OK its limestone, BUT if this is possible, surely the low/mid grade trad offering on the grit are not rendered impossible by a pleasant summers day in the UK. Besides, rubber sticks well when warm..........

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In reply to Kevster:

Did get a bit midged at Burbage South 2 or 3 weeks ago - subsequent Peak gritstone visits have been on  more breezy days and have been midgeless.

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 MischaHY 25 Jun 2020
In reply to Offwidth:

> Maybe because on grit you don't focus on highly friction dependant bold soft touches. Friction is worse in hot conditions and matters more for hands than feet.

Not sure what you mean but that sounds like the definition of what I used to climb on grit. Techy off-vert stuff with no or low gear because I wanted to climb hard stuff but didn't have the strength margin at the time. 

Some examples of routes I climbed in warm sun: Hairless Heart (E5 5c) White Wand (E5 6a)Science Friction (E6 6a)Natural Born Chillers (E6 6a) Origin of Species (E5 6a)Silver Lining (E5 5c) 

All of these routes are bold soft touches that are friction dependent. Not sure if that's what you meant... 

Post edited at 08:29
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 Offwidth 25 Jun 2020
In reply to MischaHY:

The three of those I've climbed (on ordinary good days rather than cold high friction days) the hand friction didn't seem especially crucial. People forget friction routes can fall into different categories: being able to use marginal sloping handholds that feel worse on hot days is the key temperature factor for me.

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 MischaHY 25 Jun 2020
In reply to Offwidth:

Probably the case. All soft for the grade anyway if you've got a good head! 

Spock's Missing (E5 6b) is one I needed colder temps for due to the bad pinch on the crux. 

Probably still down to weakness though! 

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 Offwidth 25 Jun 2020
In reply to MischaHY:

It depends... soft headpoints maybe but not onsights... plus for Science Friction in particular if you stay on the arete it is more than a grade harder than if you mantle the lump on the slab. It's similar to the old 3PS argument.... those finding it HVS were often cheating by scuttling off left above the technical crux (or so good that super serious 4c smearing was trivial for them).

Post edited at 11:05
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 Wil Treasure 25 Jun 2020
In reply to MischaHY:

Because I'm such a pedant I looked at your logbook and then the weather in Hathersage on the days you were climbing. All except Natural Born Chillers (17C, but that's in the valley and this is on Kinder) were between 8C and 13C and had a reasonable breeze and low humidity. I'd say those were perfect conditions and they were all climbed outside of the warmer months (March, April and September). Obviously it can feel warmer on the crag in the sun at those times, but it's not warm summer conditions. Good effort on an impressive ticklist either way!

You're right that people get too into the idea that you can't climb hard on grit in the summer though. There are some routes that will benefit from it being colder, but for the most part unless it's sweltering the vast majority of routes are fine.

Post edited at 11:36
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 Offwidth 25 Jun 2020
In reply to Wil Treasure:

Where are you sourcing your historical weather records from Wil?

I'd add it can be lovely in Hathersage with temps in the low teens at the same time as it feels brassic on some of the edges.

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 Wil Treasure 25 Jun 2020
In reply to Offwidth:

A random historical weather website. My post hasn't been peer reviewed...

Post edited at 14:15
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 Offwidth 25 Jun 2020
In reply to Wil Treasure:

I wasn't being picky just interested.. there are quite a few and I have no idea which are the best to use.

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 Wil Treasure 25 Jun 2020
In reply to Offwidth:

I didn't think you were! 

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In reply to Kevster:

No midges at the Roaches last night.

Not going to weigh in on the hot/cold grit action here except to say we were pootling up VDiffs in the sunshine with sweat pouring off us!

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In reply to Kevster:

There were plenty out in force on Weds evening at various crags. Common flies too. Seemed to congregate around the over grown areas only though. Stay away from bracken and trees etc and should be fine.

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 MischaHY 26 Jun 2020
In reply to Wil Treasure:

I love this amount of pedantry because I considered it and then decided I couldn't be arsed.

That being said I do have various photos on my profile of some of the routes proving I was in the sun! ;-) 

In fairness the photos of NBC and White Wand betray my memory of sun with evidence of lovely cloud - but here's Hairless Heart in sweaty connies: 

https://www.ukclimbing.com/user/profile.php?id=173094#&gid=1&pid=5 

I'm convinced the Froggat routes were all climbed in sun because it's always sunny at Froggat! 

Looking back on these routes mainly makes me realise how bleedin' lucky I was starting climbing a stones throw from the Peak. What a brilliant place. 

Post edited at 07:32
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