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Favourite Gary Gibson route

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His output of quality routes may have declined in recent years (!?) but there is no denying he has climbed some belters in the past.

What is your favourite GG route and why?

I'll go for Widespread Ocean of Fear on the Diamond. Climbed it with Alan James, and even though its a long long time ago still remember thinking the name was made for the route or the route was made for the name...A very memorable experience. 

And you? 

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In reply to Stoney Boy:

Gary has done some really good new routes in Kalymnos recently.

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In reply to Stoney Boy:

A good thread to get started.  He has climbed some absolute stunners and that fact sometimes gets overlooked.  It might also be interesting because there will be a sport climbing generation with a different take on things.  It has got me wondering if there should be a Top One Hundred Gary Gibson routes ticklist, with you having posted the first entry!   

The Fascist and Me - because I haven't done it, but it looks brilliant and is pretty aspirational for me!  Of course, I accept I may have broken the rules!

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 AlanLittle 01 Apr 2020
In reply to Stoney Boy:

I remember liking Duchess (HVS 5a) in '82 when Forwyn was a fashionable crag and it was getting plenty of traffic.

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In reply to Stoney Boy:

> I'll go for Widespread Ocean of Fear on the Diamond. Climbed it with Alan James, and even though its a long long time ago still remember thinking the name was made for the route or the route was made for the name...A very memorable experience. 

I'm so jealous you'v done this. This was at the top of my list when we last went but it never quite worked weather wise. Oddly the day we went over to try it the start was still wet, but the rock was so warm I think my feet would have fried by the time I got ten feet up - an odd set of conditions!

Will have a think about my favourite, although I suspect this will swiftly become favourites as it's always hard to choose one!

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In reply to Stoney Boy:

it would have to be Diagnosis (E4 6a) and Prognosis (E2 5c) at Pic Tor. The first GG routes I led on the same afternoon, pretty early in my climbing career. Really good climbs and also my first bolted lower off!

Clarion Call (7a) I think this is one of his best.

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 Pedro50 01 Apr 2020
In reply to paul__in_sheffield:

I loved Beast from the Undergrowth, did it about 4 times, twice to escape the Leap when rain set in. And Vladimir before it fell down. Aspired to Souls, but never quite felt good enough. 

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In reply to Pedro50:

+1 for Beast from the Undergrowth.

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Deadeye 01 Apr 2020
In reply to Stoney Boy:

His are too hard for me mostly, but can I submit "A Widespread Ocean of Fear" just for the name?

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In reply to paul__in_sheffield:

That's the thing - whole crags where most routes are his!  I have a soft spot for Pic Tor as well - doing the crag in an afternoon and taking Tom Proctor up Prognosis as his first route out of retirement

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 spenser 01 Apr 2020
In reply to AlanLittle:

I did Duchess last year and reckoned it was the best route I had done on an inland limestone crag.

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 Martin Hore 01 Apr 2020
In reply to Stoney Boy:

Wishful Thinking (E1 5b) - I'm not sure Gary gets the credit he should for his trad routes.

Martin

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 dominic lee 02 Apr 2020
In reply to Stoney Boy:

A welcome return after a few years out.. The Cutter  E4 6a. A fabulous line on an awesome wall in one of my favourite landscapes. I suspect Wall of Prey might be better even.. but I haven’t got there yet.

Post edited at 08:24
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 mike lawrence? 02 Apr 2020
In reply to Stoney Boy: Another for

The Beast from the Undergrowth (E2 5b). Lovely climb, apart from the desperate start obviously..., with a great little story of how the name came about.

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 AlanLittle 02 Apr 2020
In reply to Pedro50:

The Beast from the Undergrowth (E2 5b) is a GG route? I had no idea. That gets my vote then

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 Pedro50 02 Apr 2020
In reply to AlanLittle:

A shame that young people have less interest in climbing history!

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 Andrew Barker 02 Apr 2020
In reply to Stoney Boy:

Toiler on the Sea (E2 5b)

The first GG trad route I remember doing. It gives great exposure at a relatively-modest grade and showed me that he didn't just do bolted lines in grotty holes in the ground. It was only later that I came to realise that a lot of the lines in grotty holes are very good and also to realise just how much of a contribution he has made to climbing.

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 Rowlani 02 Apr 2020
In reply to Stoney Boy:

I think Eye eye is greatly under rated, such variety of climbing packed into 20 ish meters of climbing and in a grotty hole in the ground to boot.

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In reply to Stoney Boy:

Majolica (E3 5c) over on the right hand side of Beeston Tor was my first E3 and a taste of what sport climbing would be like with the in situ gear. That was a really great route.

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In reply to Stoney Boy:

Once-again, full credit to everyone who's managed to choose a single route - I'm not that restrained.

My top three would be:

  • Cithaeron (E4 6a) - Granted, if I'd done A Widespread Ocean of Fear I'd probably have included that, but I haven't and given how good this was - and how unlikely a line it takes - it is a worthy alternative (I'm still jealous of anyone who's done AWOfF though!!)
  • Moving Away from the Pulsebeat (E4 6a) - I didn't know a great deal about this when I did it and was absolutely blown away by both the climbing and the position. It's easily as good, if not better, than the E5s on the West Wall and deserves to get a lot more attention.
  • Relentless (7b+) - I did this without knowing about its controversial background (it encroaches on two existing trad routes), but I thought it was brilliant, and potentially one of the best sport routes I'd done in years being both sustained and technical throughout its full height.

p.s. full respect to anyone who's narrowed it down to a single route...

Post edited at 11:57
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In reply to Martin Hore:

Another vote for Wishful Thinking (E1 5b)

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 Tom V 02 Apr 2020
In reply to Stoney Boy:

I've  just spotted that GG's first offering on Lundy seems to be the excellent Holiday in Cambodia (E1 5a)

Post edited at 12:04
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 JamieH 02 Apr 2020
In reply to Stoney Boy:

Controlled Burning on Lundy Island. A majestic granite masterpiece of crack climbing, with similarities to Yankee Doodle at Lands End, and not just that they both crashed into the sea. It’s crux was slightly grainy and wider than the hand crack that preceded it, yet this imperfection and ensuing struggle only heightened one’s delight at topping out. We can but mourn and weep at it’s passing. Thank you Gary, so good I climbed it twice.

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In reply to paul__in_sheffield:

Been back to do this in the last couple of years and is still a great little route. The " pint glass handle " is long gone but it's been tidied up and well worth a visit again.

His routes left and right of this are both excellent as well. 

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In reply to paul__in_sheffield:

Been back to do this in the last couple of years and is still a great little route. The " pint glass handle " is long gone but it's been tidied up and well worth a visit again.

His routes left and right of this are both excellent as well. 

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 Steve Mayers 02 Apr 2020
In reply to Stoney Boy:

Always the Sun (E76c), Stackpole Head

The line and the climbing are stunning...and because I like aretes 

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 Paul Ha 02 Apr 2020
In reply to Stoney Boy:

Widespread for me.. the pick of a series of impressive additions to Lundy. I also enjoyed Play Genetics, Cithaeron and Watching the Ocean, always thought the rock on Controlled Burning far to gritty to enjoy.

oh and Souls was good

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In reply to Paul Ha:

Too gritty?  This from a man who's favourite Peak crag is Agden Rocher!  Love it!  ;-)

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In reply to Paul Ha:

Going to add in a sub topic here and go for favourite Paul Harrison route.

Monster Munch at Agden. A hidden Peak gem....and maybe worth 3 stars? 

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 Paul Evans 03 Apr 2020
In reply to Stoney Boy:

Another vote for Beast from the Undergrowth. Although Wishful Thinking is brilliant as well.

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In reply to Stoney Boy:

> I'll go for Widespread Ocean of Fear on the Diamond. Climbed it with Alan James, and even though its a long long time ago still remember thinking the name was made for the route or the route was made for the name...A very memorable experience. 

I remember that brilliant day. We did Wild Heart (E5 6a) as well didn't we? (which I actually think was a slightly better route, maybe because I led that one). A few days earlier we did another Gary route Controlled Burning (E4 5c) before it suffered the first of its rock falls. Amazing line but I seem to remember the inside of the crack was lined with broken glass shards and these were the days before crack gloves! It seems to still be getting climbed.

My Pembroke faves are Souls (E6 6b) and Orange Robe Burning (E6 6b).

Alan

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In reply to Stoney Boy:

Pope On A Rope at Intake - ha ha just kidding.

Many of the replies above bring back memories of superb routes - Controlled Burning, Beast From The Undergrowth, Majolica etc.  

Btw - his Pic Tor routes are pretty good too, Erasmus and Prognosis to mention a couple.

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 neilh 03 Apr 2020
In reply to Steve Mayers:

One bank holiday sat and watched Martin Crocker have a go at Always the Sun. Fantastic line. I remember his belayer chomping away  on a cigar.Was a few years ago.

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In reply to steveb2006:

I’m such a complete clutz, after all this time climbing in the Peak, I didn’t realise that ALL those routes on Pic Tor are GG routes. In which case I’m nominating Pic Tor as a kind of ultimate expression of any one climber. Back when we did themed stuff, Like all the ‘D’ routes on a High Tor, ticking Pic Tor was the thing. Permission (E3 6a) was last on my list, working right to left. Maybe Sulphur City (E3 6a) had tired me out, but Permission was a struggle and a steady lead. Thank you GG

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 CPH 03 Apr 2020
In reply to Stoney Boy:

Bruce's Bonus in HSQ; a classic of it's genre.

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In reply to mike lawrence?:

> Another for

> The Beast from the Undergrowth (E2 5b). Lovely climb, apart from the desperate start obviously..., with a great little story of how the name came about.

The desperate what?!

Widespread Ocean of Fear for me as well, much though I hated the first pitch the second time I did it.

jcm

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 roger whetton 04 Apr 2020
In reply to Stoney Boy:

Outside Tokyo/Dight (E1 5b) (though the Dight bit isn't Gary's) and another mention for The Beast from the Undergrowth (E2 5b). Struggling a bit to choose a sport route - Memories (6a) perhaps?

Post edited at 12:26
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 Rick Scott 04 Apr 2020
In reply to Stoney Boy:

Quiet Waters  - just the right standard for me at the time and I found it totally absorbing.

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In reply to Rick Scott:

Well there you go.  I did that with you and although I enjoyed the technicalities, I was a bit unimpressed with the line and the unbalanced nature of the difficulties, but just goes to show how many there are to pick (and now I'm getting choosy!)...  The amazing thing is, there will be whole cliffs (llangollen for example) that haven't made it onto the thread yet, but which are covered in brilliant Gary routes...

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In reply to Rick Scott:

Rick Scott!!!

Long time no see....

Chris

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 Rick Scott 04 Apr 2020
In reply to Derek Furze:

Now my memory is notoriously bad, but I thought Andy followed me on that occasion, but I may have followed you on it too, as it's double ticked in my book. I think when I lead it, it was the same day that we watched someone who nearly blew it on the abseil. They had clipped their abseil device into a gear loop ...... which snapped .... but just before the grass dropped away and the cliff began proper. He grabbed the abseil rope and a top rope was swiftly lowered and all was well. It's a memorable route for me because I lost touch with time and was completely absorbed in the climbing and that didn't / doesn't happen to me often.

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 Rick Scott 04 Apr 2020
In reply to Christheclimber:

Now then Chris the climber, long time no see indeed!

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I remember the abseil incident and I have only followed Quiet Waters.  I think this was the same trip as Trevallen Pillar, Stackpole and Stand by to Boogie - really hot weather.  Easier for me to remember as I have only climbed in Pembroke with you and Paul T.   In reply to Rick Scott:

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 Rick Scott 05 Apr 2020
In reply to Derek Furze:

You have confirmed your ‘mesmo’ status! What would we give for a trip down there now? We should resolve to do that, when this nonsense is over and it’ll be all the better for it.

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 Ian Patterson 05 Apr 2020
In reply to roger whetton:

> Struggling a bit to choose a sport route - Memories (6a) perhaps?

The routes on  Nomad Wall at LLanymynech are great, so maybe This Won't Hurt (7a)?

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In reply to Stoney Boy:

Grew up climbing on North Wales Limestone. Homo Sapien and Foolish Ghoulish are classic GG sport routes.

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In reply to folky:

Forgot about those...Homo Sapien is indeed a great route...

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 Andy Moles 06 Apr 2020
In reply to dominic lee:

The Wall of Prey (E5 6b) is not a GG route, unless history has been rewritten somehow. He does get a credit on Track of the Cat (E4 6a), which is exceptional, but I think only as a second.

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 Andy Moles 06 Apr 2020
In reply to Alan James - UKC and UKH:

> Controlled Burning (E4 5c) ... seems to still be getting climbed.

As far as I know, only by some very capable and dedicated Extreme Rock tickers...sounds like it's hard and bold E6 now.

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 johncook 06 Apr 2020
In reply to Stoney Boy:

As an old low grade climber I like El Sergio 6a at Intake. It has a bit of everything! A 20 ft pile of balanced choss to start, a short arete, a steep slab, a roof, a crack, some rounded jugs and the brilliant crozzley runnel to finish. Go do it quickly because it will soon be polished to death as I do it as a warm up every time I go to Intake.

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 dominic lee 06 Apr 2020
In reply to Andy Moles:

Ive been labouring under the illusion it was a GG route for years....?

Post edited at 18:28
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 LJKing 06 Apr 2020
In reply to dominic lee:

Not done many of his routes to my knowledge. However, one I have done is Never Say Goodbye at Wintours Leap. It's a great climb.

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 Andy Moles 07 Apr 2020
In reply to dominic lee:

Arnis Strapcans & G. Jenkins, 1979.

I know GG had a bit of history with bolting at Fair Head - didn't go down well, unsurprisingly, as there were no bolts anywhere in Ireland at the time. He bolted the line that eventually became The Complete Scream (E8 6b) and I think one other, which I assume was also chopped but I forget where it is or whether it's now been done as a trad route.

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In reply to Deadeye:

> His are too hard for me mostly, but can I submit "A Widespread Ocean of Fear" just for the name?

I rather enjoyed Hawkwing at the Roaches. Looking at your profile that is well within your range. It's 'your favorite' not the best GG route. Perhaps you've already done a few without realising it.

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In reply to Pedro50:

> A shame that young people have less interest in climbing history!

Judging by the dislikes there seem to be a lot of people with an 'irony bypass' on UKC at the moment.

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 nickcanute 16 Apr 2020
In reply to Stoney Boy:

I will pick a favourite for personal reasons Abide With Me E3 at Intake, a super arete, decent rock and more protection than it would appear. It was great to do first ascent with him and which was also a poignant ascent for Gary just after his Father's death, and reason for the route name. I led second ascent the following day as well.

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 Gary Gibson 15 May 2020
In reply to Stoney Boy:

The pint glass handle is still there!

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In reply to Stoney Boy:

Ghost train

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 193 17 May 2020
In reply to nickcanute:

In one door , mowing word  is a relatively recent enjoyable experience of one of Gary,s routes . A good effort by Hazel as the belay is grim , thank goodness I lead the second pitch which would at one time have been my forte, not nowadays , make it stop was the voice in my head , but keep hanging on replied the ego .

Dead Los Angeles , white Ghyll , no stars ! really

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