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How busy were the English crags today?!

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 jezb1 13 May 2020

Watching voyeuristically from Wales, was it Armageddon, was it euphoric, was it “normal”?  

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 olddirtydoggy 13 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

I want to know what it was like out there as well. What did the rock feel like between your fingers?

Hannibal Lecter FFFFFFFFFFF!!!!!!

In seriousness, we're off out tomorrow and I'd like to know how busy it was so we can pick a quiet one in The North Derbyshire/South Yorkshire area.

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 Alex_Handhold 13 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

Completely dead at Stanage. There were perhaps three pairs top roping around stanage popular early afternoon, and two guys leading something on a route I'm not familiar with. Saw a handful of guys wandering around with bouldering mats.

Overall very quiet, and nobody seemed to be climbing anything challenging. The busiest area was the footpath along the top, that was fairly busy with mountain bikers and walkers. 

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 mrphilipoldham 13 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

Nobody at  Gib Torr or  Gradbach Hill. One party spied at  Newstones and Baldstones. On returning to the cars we stumbled across an old couple meeting their son.. felt like they'd decided to go somewhere as remote as possible only to be found out. Smiled, said hello and left them to it. 

Post edited at 19:50
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In reply to jezb1:

Stanage was a ghost town! We climbed Hollybush Crack and Leaning Buttress Crack, the two classic VD’s before going for a wander over the top. A real treat to see the crag so quiet.
 

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 Alex_Handhold 13 May 2020
In reply to Harrison_Connie:

I guess a lot of people were back to work today. It will be interesting to see what happens on the weekend 

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 ianstevens 13 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

> Watching voyeuristically from Wales, was it Armageddon, was it euphoric, was it “normal”?  

Few other at Rothley Crag - 3 groups total including myself. For that place, rammed!

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 luke glaister 13 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

I went to banygor and seen 6 people all day. Nobody climbing by one another. And even seen hand sanitizer being used when passing so for a first day back. Couldn't of gone better.  Ps the rock was cool and brilliant.  

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 Martin Bennett 13 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

Walked the dog to a point near Troy Quarry late afternoon. As far as I could see there was one person there and  I think a rope up (down?) the crag so maybe doing some shunting?

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In reply to Alex_Handhold:

> The busiest area was the footpath along the top, that was fairly busy with mountain bikers 

Where people on bikes shouldn't be unless its the little section of bridleway between the Plantation descent and the causeway. And that's as someone who mountain bikes in the Peak.

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 John Alcock 13 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

Bouldered at the Tump in Frome Valley. No one else around and lovely to be back on rock.

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 Albert Tatlock 13 May 2020
In reply to Martin Bennett:

That will be Steve X

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In reply to jezb1:

From my evening dog walk, couple of cars parked up at Yarncliffe, no one at all at Lawrencefield, no one that I could see (from a distance) at Millstone Edge and a couple of people heading for Burbage South Valley Boulders laden with pads. Quite a lot quieter than a normal midweek evening I'd say

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 Dan Arkle 13 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

Went to hidden quarry (peak) as its not in any guidebooks so I thought it would be quite. There were five cars parked up, so we went to Stoney - saw three other parties, but were pretty sure we didn't touch any holds that others had touched. Warm enough and a good day out. 

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 RM199 13 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

Went bouldering at Houndkirk Tor (false). A couple of other pairs arrived after us, but we all stuck to different areas. 

Great to be out

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 Wanderlust 13 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

Also just got back from a post work climb at Stanage.

Didn't see another climber. Beautiful evening (cool, sunny and fairly still).

Some walkers and bikers around as others have mentioned.

I'm gonna be optimistic and say it'll be quieter than a normal May weekend this weekend.

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 TomYoung 13 May 2020
In reply to ianstevens:

Bouldering or on the main crag? That was one of the crags I had my eye on seeing as Shaftoe is out for now.

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In reply to jezb1:

Did a quick flyby of Castle Naze with the drone, a solitary pair were up braving the weather. Wouldn't have been my first choice it's frickin' baltic.

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 ianstevens 13 May 2020
In reply to TomYoung:

Bouldering - take a brush, most things are a bit sandy. The main crag is looking quite green.

I've also been thinking about Shaftoe - via the lesser used south approach. The crag itself is on CRoW land (no issue), the issue is the parking. From the south, you can park in a lay-by, walk 500m down the main road then approach the access land via public footpaths. Bit longer of course, unless you climb on the southern half!

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 gribble 13 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

This thread is frustrating to say the least!  I live 10 mins from Peak eastern edges, and I won't have time to go climbing until Monday at the earliest.  Whoever thinks that this 'quiet' season means lots of free time clearly has a different job!  However, I am very looking forward to a few quiet days next week and will climb until my fingers fall off.  Hopefully that gives me more than 30 minutes...

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 TomYoung 13 May 2020
In reply to ianstevens:

Cheers, I'll bear that in mind

I reckon the southern escarpment at Shaftoe is probably in need of some heavy gardening anyway so maybe more traffic to that area will be a good thing.

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 walts4 13 May 2020
In reply to TobyA:

> Where people on bikes shouldn't be unless its the little section of bridleway between the Plantation descent and the causeway. And that's as someone who mountain bikes in the Peak.

I'm guessing the dislikes are Mbikers who'd rather the dark secret be kept under wraps, that during the lockdown just about any footpath has been fair game to be ridden whilst there's nobody about.  

Anyway, Froggatt very quiet when I wandered up there late today, couple of people bouldering, but maybe the late afternoon hail was sufficient to discourage most people.

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In reply to The Reaper:

Mine was one of the cars at Yarncliffe, there was only us climbing. Then I went for a boulder up at Carl's Wark and I was the only person up there (not surprisingly). Could see one pair/group on Burbage South. Looked like they were top roping Messiah, but they were a long way from me.

A gorgeous evening too. Warm enough to climb in a t-shirt, no midges yet, just beautiful. I've missed climbing so much!!! 

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 ianstevens 13 May 2020
In reply to gribble:

> This thread is frustrating to say the least!  I live 10 mins from Peak eastern edges, and I won't have time to go climbing until Monday at the earliest.  Whoever thinks that this 'quiet' season means lots of free time clearly has a different job!  However, I am very looking forward to a few quiet days next week and will climb until my fingers fall off.  Hopefully that gives me more than 30 minutes...

If it helps I've worked all evening to balance out my afternoon out. The one  and only joy of WFH is that it's flexible! Not helpful of course if you're not working from home.

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In reply to jezb1:

Lovely conditions for the grit, bouldering at  Roaches Lower Tier. Cool, bright and breezy. Saw about five other boulderers. Pretty quiet in climbing terms, but fairly busy with couples and families walking. Most layby parking full when I left early afternoon. I reckon you'll need to get there early come the weekend. How I've missed sore fingertips and shredded palms. 

Post edited at 23:02
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In reply to jezb1:

Rubicon, had the entire crag to myself

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In reply to Andy Clarke:

This is the nub of it. Here on UKC some people are berating other climbers for venturing out when the reality is most 'visitors' to 'beauty spots' are families and couples.

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In reply to jezb1:

Pretty much spent the whole day at Harpur Hill & only met 2 other climbers as we were leaving
 

 *Also bumped into Gary Gibson and his wife who stopped (at a safe distance) for a natter all things climbing  

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In reply to walts4:

The footpaths around my way a bit further to the south then Stanage have been relatively busy as people have been out walking. At least at times. I've been mountain biking fair amount and on the loops I can do from my front door it has been quite quiet on the bridleways, but that's often because I have set off before 7 a.m. or gone out in the hour or two before sunset I guess. 

It would be fantastic if the the footpath from Burbage bridge along the top of Stanage the whole way could be turned into a permissive bridleway in the same way that it has been over Froggatt and Curbar, it would be a wonderful ride to go basically the whole way on the Eastern Edges, but it doesn't look likely to happen. I spoke to one of the Stanage rangers last year, he said they simply didn't have the capacity to often ask people not ride along Stanage popular end, so sort of accepted it would happen but he was grateful to the mountain bikers who don't ride on that rather obvious part of footpath. The same goes for people riding above Burbage North, not on the permissive bridleway below it.

Post edited at 08:23
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 JMarkW 14 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

Stoney west dead in the evening. Few climbers and bouldering at new mills  tor during the day.

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In reply to planetmarshall:

> Did a quick flyby of Castle Naze with the drone...

Am assuming from the dislike ratio that flying a drone is still more controversial than actually going climbing - which is hilarious.

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 joem 14 May 2020
In reply to ianstevens:

While you can go to shaftoe via the alternative approach it might be best to leave it as the farmer has asked people to avoid it. be a pain if we permanently lost the normal parking/approach because we upset him.

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 olddirtydoggy 14 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

Surprised today, not the stampede of climbers some of us were expecting. Burbage North was very quiet today. Great weather. Lot of walkers and bikes out there.

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 Jezz0r 14 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

At Nesscliffe today I saw two pairs top roping hard things and a couple of lone boulderers, plus myself shunting. Plenty of room for all and amazing weather!

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 Fellover 14 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

Three people at bamford today, plus a fair few people walking, mostly in jeans and trackies rather than looking like typical walkers.

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 markfairbank 14 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

Not many at Scugdale, one party climbing together and one more bouldering alone.

Was a glorious day and getting hands on some rock again was great

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 Darron 14 May 2020
In reply to Jezz0r:

Did you hear the Cuckoo?

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 Lizard Ollie 14 May 2020
In reply to markfairbank:

Slight change from the locations mentioned previously,  Toad Rocks (Denny Bottom Rocks) on the southern sandstone was quiet, me on my lonesome and one other pair. Perhaps some of the more popular spots were busy though

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 mrphilipoldham 14 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

One other pair and a singleton at  Shipley Glen today. Loads of families enjoying the woods and the southern end of the rocks too. Also a bmx dude who was hopping around the rocks on his bike. Well safe 🙃

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In reply to jezb1:

Only 3 other pairs at  Hedbury all day today. Beautiful conditions (and I felt much stronger than during yesterday's slap in the face!). The people we walked past on the path and on the edge of Langton Matravers were all very friendly with no sense of hostility at all from local dog walkers etc. 

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In reply to jezb1:

...but of course its Saturday that is really going to be the Big Revealer. 

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 andrew ogilvie 14 May 2020
In reply to Paul Sagar:

Well from North of the border, I certainly can't claim to speak for the whole country  but I personally am delighted to hear of you all getting out. The sooner we're all back to normal the happier we can all be. Have a great time this weekend.
My worry is that its been so perfect in Scotland since the middle of March that we might have run out of sunshine by the time our hills and crags are back in play...I think I might be tempted to find something rough and volcanic and go climbing in the rain...it'll be like 1990 again -only 20kg heavier  

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 Alex_Handhold 15 May 2020

We were out again yesterday evening top roping some easy stuff at Burbage. Not a cloud to be seen, and not a single insect bite, that's a 10/10 day as far as I'm concerned. 

Didn't see any other roped parties, but a handful of couples bouldering. 

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 George_Surf 15 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

judging by the government website advice, it won't be long before you can in Wales. Strictly speaking, if you don't drive, you're only with a member of your household, you exercise social distancing and the activity isn't considered (by who I dont know?) to have a 'significant degree of risk'. Like it or not, climbing easy routes or sport routes could easily be considered low risk, but that's the problem really, Its totally open to interpretation!

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In reply to Alex_Handhold:

I was at Froggatt.  It was very quiet compared to a normal weekday in perfect weather, only a handful of roped climbers in total.   Some boulderers around also.

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In reply to jezb1:

If you do venture out, people...I found a tick on my leg yesterday. The ravenous beasties are probably desperate for our lockdown blood. Worth remembering in the excitement of freedom to do the end-of-day checks...

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 Stegosaur 15 May 2020
In reply to Paul Sagar:

> If you do venture out, people...I found a tick on my leg yesterday. The ravenous beasties are probably desperate for our lockdown blood. Worth remembering in the excitement of freedom to do the end-of-day checks...


Yeah, the last thing you want is Corona with Lyme.

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 heleno 15 May 2020
In reply to andrew ogilvie:

> My worry is that its been so perfect in Scotland since the middle of March that we might have run out of sunshine by the time our hills and crags are back in play 

And the midge-count will only be getting higher as time passes : (

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In reply to Stegosaur:

Seem to remember Corona Limeade a looooong time ago when Corona was a fizzy pop that rotted your teeth.

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In reply to Alex_Handhold:

Loads of cars out today around Burbage and Stanage but very few climbers or even boulderers from what I could see. Maybe the handicap of having to trad climb with someone from your own household is keeping the numbers down. Biggest change from last week was the reappearance  of "casual" walkers and folks sitting in their cars admiring the view with a flask of tea.

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In reply to jezb1:

Lawrencefield was quiet today, two other teams climbing and a few walkers around. The surprise view car park was busy as we left. 
 

We climbed Snail Crack, Straight Crack and Three Tree Climb, the classic HS. 
 

Worth noting we seen nesting bird and heard chicks of some description about half way up Pulpit Groove/Great Harry. 
 

I’ll most likely chill this weekend as I suspect most crags will be busy. I’ve had 2 super days on grit since Wednesday, time to let the skin on my fingers recover! 



 

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 ianstevens 15 May 2020
In reply to joem:

> While you can go to shaftoe via the alternative approach it might be best to leave it as the farmer has asked people to avoid it. be a pain if we permanently lost the normal parking/approach because we upset him.

I wasn’t aware of that; thanks. This is were a lot of access seems ridiculous to me - the crag itself is on access land but if we use land we have the legal right to use we might lose permissive access to land that makes it easier to use that access land.

As much as I think that scenario is mental (giving the farmer an effective veto over use of access land) I’ll avoid shaftoe. Thanks for the heads up.

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In reply to jezb1:

First day back at a crag in Gloucestershire. Very quiet. Some familiar faces. Climbed like a clown but great to be back out and feel vaguely normal again.

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 Siward 16 May 2020
 SteveSBlake 16 May 2020
In reply to ianstevens:

> I wasn’t aware of that; thanks. This is were a lot of access seems ridiculous to me - the crag itself is on access land but if we use land we have the legal right to use we might lose permissive access to land that makes it easier to use that access land.

> As much as I think that scenario is mental (giving the farmer an effective veto over use of access land) I’ll avoid shaftoe. Thanks for the heads up.

If you weren't aware, then you have missed a raft of posts on the subject. You may find it useful to read this.......    https://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/crag_access/access_in_northumberland-719255  

There are a lot of crags where access is sensitive and needs to be handled carefully.

Regards,

Steve

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 Lankyman 16 May 2020
In reply to Siward:


We had Corona beer on offer at my store back in March. I don't think it was anything other than coincidental? I bought a pack and I've been virus-free so far (I think).

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 Flinticus 16 May 2020
In reply to andrew ogilvie:

Our next dose of settled weather will probably be next April...

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So what was it like out there today?

No climbing for me yet but went to Thetford Forest and the car park was very busy, unlike previous weeks when there was hardly anyone there. The roads were busier as well. Seems that a lot of families / walkers really did sit at home all this time and are now overcompensating...

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In reply to jezb1:

Oh guys this thread is just such a sight for sore eyes......Positivity , tales of socially responsible climbing during lock down, people psyched to be back on the rocks. Brilliant  

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 George_Surf 17 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

can anyone report on any chaos anywhere?!?

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 dominic o 17 May 2020
In reply to George_Surf:

> can anyone report on any chaos anywhere?!?

Not chaos as such, but it was absolutely rammed at Masson Lees on Saturday (usually well off the beaten track!) Plenty of room for sociable social distancing though.

https://rockaroundtheworld.co.uk/2020/05/17/lockdown-loosening/

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In reply to dominic o:

I went to Ravenstones yesterday and we were the only people there, could see one pair across the valley at Standing Stones. Went to Stanage Plantation this Evening and were the only people there. One line boulderer arrived just as we were leaving. Very few people climbing (maybe 3 pairs) at stanage popular. 

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 tjdodd 17 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

Went to a quiet bouldering spot near me and had the place to myself apart from the sheep and lambs watching my attempts with a mixture of amusement and pity.  You could tell from the look in their eyes that they wanted to come over and show me how it is done properly but also not wanting to give away their secret of being font 8a boulderers.  I always knew that hanging around on cliffs was just the tip of the iceberg of their climbing prowess.

Anyway, it was great to be out moving on rock again, watching the scenery and just relaxing not worrying about anything.  Didn't push it and just enjoyed making up moves low down without worrying too much about completing problems.  Really felt alive again.

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 Skip 17 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

Saturday at Leigh Tor - 7 people inc myself.

Leigh Tor

Sunday at Irish man's Wall - 4 people inc myself.

Irish Man's Wall

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 Sam Beaton 18 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

Climbed at Buckstones Above The Road Wed pm. One other boulderer there, we exchanged a few pleasantries. Felt slightly uneasy about climbing again, not surprising after so long and in these circumstances.

Climbed at West Nab Fri pm. No other climbers, saw one family out for an evening stroll. Felt much more relaxed and really enjoyed it.

Noted the number of cars parked chaotically at the roadside at Langsett on the way home Wed pm and decided not to climb in the Peak at the weekend. Perhaps I was being unnecessarily cautious, but seeing as I have the option of getting out on the rock in the evenings midweek I'll stick to that for now 

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L bobyboys 18 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

I guess a lot of people were back to work today. It will be interesting to see what happens on the weekend 

--------------

abc

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 steve taylor 18 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

Durdle Door car park yesterday.

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In reply to jezb1:

Cadshaw Rocks yesterday afternoon, one threesome (not sure they were all from the same house but that's not my business) and one couple. Keeping distance was no problem, used gel several times at the top, especially if it was a route I'd seen done earlier.

Reminded myself why my one and only previous visit was nearly 27 years ago. Although the situation is very nice, the climbing feels like the antithesis of somewhere relaxing like Windgather.

Post edited at 07:56
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 Hat Dude 18 May 2020
In reply to deacondeacon:

> One line boulderer arrived just as we were leaving. 

I now have this picture in my head of a guy with a mat on his back  wearing a cowboy hat and with his thumbs in his belt loops 😀

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 mattdennies 18 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

Attempted to go to Wimberry yesterday afternoon and it was carnage, car park closed at the main road, cars all over the verges with traffic wardens making a fortune. Never seen so many motorbikes out, all meeting up in large groups and certainly not keeping their distance.

Made a detour to Black Tor and managed to find a parking space but again heaving roads and car park. Once at the boulders it was pretty quiet, only one other couple there who kindly agreed they would move on from the warm up routes.

It was so nice to be outside again although my soft fingertips and toes weren’t ready for their reintroduction to climbing!

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 peppermill 18 May 2020
In reply to Michael Hood:

> Cadshaw Rocks yesterday afternoon, one threesome (not sure they were all from the same house but that's not my business) and one couple. Keeping distance was no problem, used gel several times

******snigger***********

Oh I've been on lockdown too long.........

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 AJM79 18 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

I drove to the peak to meet my Mother yesterday. Lots of walkers about - not the normal crowd though mainly strollers, and lots of folk on mountain bikes - again not the normal crowd I saw plenty walking the rougher sections. Not many climbers though. I drove past Stanage and it looked like probably half a dozen teams maybe more at popular end and a few folk with mats. Definately not hordes of selfish climbers descending en masse. Maybe we can be trusted to make sensible descisions after all.

Although Langsett was busy the car parks were shut so it's hard to say whether it was more busy than normal, and there was parking available at Stanage popular, not bad for a dry Sunday afternoon in May.

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 Richard J 18 May 2020
In reply to jezb1:

Took myself for a walk to Froggatt yesterday, at noon just one couple climbing, having an exciting time on Three Pebble Slab.  

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In reply to peppermill:

You're obviously more awake than I was when I wrote that 😁

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In reply to Richard J:

Did you ask what grade it was, all innocent like?

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 ianstevens 18 May 2020
In reply to SteveSBlake:

> If you weren't aware, then you have missed a raft of posts on the subject. You may find it useful to read this.......    https://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/crag_access/access_in_northumberland-719255  

> There are a lot of crags where access is sensitive and needs to be handled carefully.

> Regards,

> Steve

Hi Steve, 

I had seen your posts which were very helpful. However, I haven't lived up here long (maybe 7 months) so am not aware of some of the nuance regarding access - as in this example. I had assumed that accessing CRoW land via a footpath would be fine based on what you had said in those threads, but clearly not in this case! I thought the issue was with using the conventional approach requiring parking in and crossing private land. So thanks for the education. I'm aware this might sound lazy on my part but what bouldering crags are okay to access in Northumberland at present? I'd guess Rothley/Simonside/Corby's (and those in the immediate vicinity on CRoW land?)and Calleerhues? Any of these I should be avoiding?

Post edited at 15:00
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