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The path to Great Wall on Cloggy

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Any suggestions as good routes to do before launching onto Great Wall? I have now determined that is pointless waiting until I'm good enough to have a decent chance as that is probably never going to happen now. My worst case is not blowing the onsight but never trying at all!

My understanding is the route starts off crack climbing with a bit of footwork needed below the first belay. Second pitch is sketchier with less gear which is harder to place so a bit of calmness would help.

I live in London with limited trad partners so need to maximise trips. My basic plan is to start off time on rock so soloing lots of easy routes, doing self belaying with a shunt so i can get lots of routes done quite soon after lockdown, doing bolts at portland and exploiting anyone who will climb with me.

Any suggestions for target routes anywhere in England or Wales? I might end up doing trips to Avon so anything relevant there? Avon is greatly underrated so that'll be fun anyway! I've done 49 routes on Cloggy so know the place fairly well. 

My thoughts sofar are The Snake on Vector headwall cos it looks an out there situation, Memory Lane on the cromlech, Serth on Cloggy, White Wizard on Scafell, Quartz Iciicle & Talking Heads on Gogarth.

thanks

mike

In reply to mike lawrence?:

Did it as the first trad route in nearly two years, in a brand new pair of Ninjas (straight out of the box, first time on). As my feet swelled in increasing discomfort and a wire cheerfully pinged, it belatedly occurred to me that I'd made some singularly unwise choices. Above, the crux beckoned...

Mick

P.S. 49 routes on Cloggy? How I envy you. What a glorious place!

In reply to mike lawrence?:

If you've done 49 routes on cloggy then you'll be fine! It was my first route at cloggy and I found it harder than Right Wall, possibly as I was unused to the style. If you've climbed at the crag loads I'd have thought you'd be well prepared. Get on it next time it's an option. Take loads of really small wires. 

Post edited at 19:24
 dominic o 14 Jan 2021
In reply to mike lawrence?:

You've done 49 routes on Cloggy so I'd say you're more than capable of doing Great Wall. Just jump on it! The weight of the E grade is in the 2nd pitch (think of it as an E3 6a followed by an E4 5c). The top pitch is classic Cloggy - loads of gear, but none of it completely convincing.

Enjoy! 

 string arms 14 Jan 2021
In reply to mike lawrence?: I found it strangely balancey. I remember getting to one of joe browns pegs on the first pitch thinking how did he manage to take both hands off and bang a peg in here? Ha ha.

Its a really historical route and a totally absorbing climb. I was only really a comfortable e2/ odd e3 climber at the time and often like yourself put routes off for fear of blowing the on sight. Reputations meant everything and there was a great deal of trepidation at setting off, but it’s all there and definitely one of the best routes in the country. Get on it, it’s ascent will stay with you for the rest of your life. 

 Martin Bagshaw 14 Jan 2021
In reply to mike lawrence?:

Good choice sir.

At Avon, perhaps Ladder of Desire, and Them would be good routes to get the head into Great Wall mode. Hopefully this thread doesn't end up giving you all the beta!

 Martin Bennett 14 Jan 2021
In reply to mike lawrence?:

Of your targets I can only comment on Serth and say I'm not sure it will be relevant on the basis that it can't be very hard because I led it! The point being that the best I ever got was E25c and I found Serth to be high quality but not too hard. Nice going with 49 routes there I thought I was doing well at 38. What about Bow Right Hand - though I led that too it felt a bit more "out there" protection wise. Hope you get it done and make your half century.

 spidermonkey09 15 Jan 2021
In reply to Martin Bennett:

I did Great Wall as a first E4. I was pretty solid at E3 at the time my partner had only led E2 at the time. He did the first pitch, which is bridgey and quite balancey. Second pitch is not technically difficult, take some RPs for the groove, but there's enough kit for it not to feel too scary. If you've done 49 routes on cloggy (jealous) I think you'll be fine as the intimidation factor is easily worth half a grade. It used to be E3 as well remember! It is one of my favourite climbing memories, get on it. Good luck!

In reply to Martin Bagshaw:

> At Avon, perhaps Ladder of Desire, and Them would be good routes to get the head into Great Wall mode. Hopefully this thread doesn't end up giving you all the beta!

Well, bar the fact that both of those are a fair bit harder than GW.

GW is a mid-grade E3 at the most if you're used to Cloggy; footholds everywhere, the archetypal NTBDFU route. And even if you do FU all that happens is that you fall sixty feet or so; there's nothing much to hit.

The best practice for it I can think of would be some laps of California Arete. You'll be fine as long as you keep your cool.

jcm

In reply to mike lawrence?:

I'm not sure I've got a great deal to add that hasn't been said already, but hopefully hearing it from several sources will make it more believable. 

Great Wall was one of my early E4s and I remember finding it surprisingly amenable, although this isn't to say I found it easy - it was just easier than I was expecting it to be. The first pitch felt like it blend of the best elements of rhyolite, dolerite and potentially even slate, with incredible grippy rock and extremely technical and engaging climbing. If you're getting pumped stop thinking about your arms and sort your feet out, as you can often get a cheeky rest by bridging out.

The second pitch is much more open, vertical and balancy. I'd fully prepared myself for a mind-bendingly bold too, as that's what the guidebook had made it out to be; however, I remember placing a surprising amount of good micro-wires lower down and kept placing them pretty much all the way through to where you exit rightwards. If anything, I placed too many, to the extent that I had to start rationing myself for fear of running out!

Whilst the likes of A Midsummer Night's Dream and Indian Face weren't on my radar back when I first did it, and may not be on yours too, doing Great Wall gave me an insight into what they might entail, as you get a glimpse of how such tenuous routes would be possible given the grippiness of the rock. All-in-all I found the route, and the experience, and the majesty of climbing on the Great Wall itself in/around such historic routes to be a very memorable experience.

When it comes to other routes, The Snake doesn't have a great deal in common, but is a cool route - I just don't think it'd necessarily lead you to finding Great Wall any easier. Memory Lane would be perfect, as would the following (which you may or may not have done before):

As a final word I, like many, am in awe of you having done 49 routes on Cloggy. I've done more than most, in/around 30, but 49 really is outstanding. Question is, which was the best (and/or most memorable)??

 Wil Treasure 15 Jan 2021
In reply to mike lawrence?:

I was just about to write a reply, but Rob G seems to have copy and pasted it from my mind. I was going to list almost exactly the same routes as progression.

I think if can get up Quasar and Stroll On onsight then Great Wall will feel fine. Lots of microwires make the second pitch not that bold. It's 2 fairly steady E3 pitches really, but possibly with wobbly calves if you're not fit for the walk-in! A lovely route.

 snoop6060 15 Jan 2021
In reply to Rob Greenwood - UKClimbing:

If he has or does onsight these 3 then great wall is gonna be an absolute path

In reply to snoop6060:

> If he has or does onsight these 3 then great wall is gonna be an absolute path

Ha, this is very true. There is, thankfully, nothing as hard as any of the moves on those routes on Great Wall.

Post edited at 12:22
 snoop6060 15 Jan 2021
In reply to Rob Greenwood - UKClimbing:

I don't recall any specific moves on great wall or it being bold (I'm an absolute wimp so defo would!). I do however remember being boxed stupid or flying through the air on all 3 of those haha. 

 George_Surf 15 Jan 2021
In reply to snoop6060:

This is good news for me. I’ve not done Great Wall and for me it’s got quite a reputation. I have however onsighted the other routes mentioned and found the goey but ok. I’d always thought doing Great Wall would feel way harder / more out there than those. I guess you just need to get on it. 
 

I did the axe a couple of years ago and although it was a full on experience (we did the e1, in to the e2, in to the hand traverse to get to the top, with no food or water in a heatwave, and then strong wind on the axe), in hindsight the climbing isn’t too bad especially once youre out of the start and you get a solid cam and quest off leftwards.

Ive got an idea Bilbo; you chalk it up (no anti beta, naughty hobbit) and ill do it after you!! I found Demetrius pretty full on and almost bold at the crux. I can imagine Great Wall is pretty similar in style. Not quite a slab, not quite a wall. 

In reply to snoop6060:

>> Foil (E3 6a) 

>> Stroll On (E3 6a)

>> Quasar (E3 6a)

> If he has or does onsight these 3 then great wall is gonna be an absolute path 

I'm not so sure - depends on what sort of climbing suits them. I would have said that those three are all cruxier and/or pumpier than Great Wall, but not really the same style, so not the best comparison; Great Wall is more of a headgame with sketchier gear and quite sustained climbing, far more on the feet. As others have, a better preparation and barometer would be the classic off-vertical E2's and E3's on Cloggy and it sounds like the OP has already had plenty of that.

Post edited at 18:11
In reply to Rob Greenwood - UKClimbing:

Thanks everybody, such encouragement and positivity is welcomed even though it may well be misplaced in my case! Out of Rob's 5 i've only done Daurigol but will try to get on some of the others in the pass.

Probably the best pitch i've done on Cloggy is top pitch of Jelly Roll, a spectacular view down Indian Face. Made me laugh that anyone could have the idea that if they fell off they might be able to save themselves by running down it... Best route is White Slab. Most impressive route was Bywynog Chimney, just to take on a hard E1 into the unknown in the thirties, way beyond what i could have done.  The worst route is Ares, you look at it and think the position is so spectacular but the climbing and rock are dire. Most underated is Easy Rider on the pinnacle or maybe Mordor. The best experience was doing Gargoyle in a cloud at nightfall with the sound of the last climbers walking down the path far below us. The route I most want to do apart from Great Wall should be The Axe but bizarrely isn't and actually is Hazy Days.

Any other thoughts on memorable Cloggy times?

mike

In reply to mike lawrence?:

The path is quite long but pretty amenable. Starts in Llanberis. 

 Rick Graham 15 Jan 2021
In reply to Misha:

> The path is quite long but pretty amenable. Starts in Llanberis. 

I have only done it all the way down to llanberis once, getting another route in and missing my lift down.

All the other forty routes have been fortunately been reached by the old parking just before the farm.

I have done gw twice and all the info on here has been quite good. Surprised nobody has given any beta on the crux move , I was glad to have it. Probably best not the spoil the fun, at least there is a good cluster of gear to make it safe. Also to say that the relatively Spartan gear at first on the second pitch is quite adequate for the difficulty of the moves up the the bomb shelter before the top crux.

Out of interest and off topic , does anybody know an efficient way to access cloggy from ynys ettws?

 james mann 15 Jan 2021
In reply to Rick Graham:

Down to Llanberis and then train to Clogwyn station or alternatively helicopter. 
 

James

In reply to Rick Graham:

Yeah you just walk up the path past Cyrn Las then strike out rightwards up the hillside (some scrambling options) which brings you to a broad shoulder which you traverse to cross the Tourist Path and hit the railway line just before the crag. Gear up around the top of the main descent scramble. Steep - flat - steep - flat - steep - flat. Good exercise! Handy if abbing in to do The Axe etc or doing a route which tops out. 

In reply to mike lawrence?:

I'm using the suggestions on this thread for my path to Right Wall!

 James Oswald 16 Jan 2021

Great thread.
I don't have much to add on top of the others but I think GW is much much easier than Stroll On, which I took some pretty big lobs off trying it a few weeks after GW. I did GW as my first E4 and found it reasonable, good gear at the crux then I recall having to keep moving to not get pumped in the final section to the belay at the end of the first pitch. Never desperate.  As Rob says, the second pitch felt okay protected with a load of microwires.
GW is a great route, you'll love it.

In reply to George_Surf:

Tempting but not sure i want you prancing up without a care in the world after my vomit laden attempt!

In reply to mike lawrence?:

Just an observation that supports your Avon Gorge training plan.  I spent a few months in Bristol in the late 70's and the often tenuous, quite bold and complex style of climbing definitely helped with footwork in particular.  I think it would translate quite well to Great Wall.  

Enjoying the thread, which helps with lockdown fever and makes motivation for training easier!

 George_Surf 16 Jan 2021
In reply to Shani:

Strangely I feel like this is more straighforward than the path to GW! Maybe it’s because the climbing isn’t north facing at 800m? 

The path to RW in my mind would be plenty of e4 face climbing under your belt and some sport fitness so you can take it a bit steadier. I think good routes that might help you prepare would be (obviously!) foil and resurrection, cream and silly arete at Tremadog, Great Wall at forwyn, king wad, crimson cruiser (Moelwyns), waves of inspiration (slate), warpath (rhoscolyn), the routes at crafnant (clogwyn eryr)

 Steve Clegg 16 Jan 2021
In reply to Rick Graham:

does anybody know an efficient way to access Cloggy from Ynys Ettws?

Do a route on Cyrn Las (Main Wall) then toddle over the top to Cloggy (Bow RH and Mordor).

 Rick Graham 16 Jan 2021
In reply to Steve Clegg:

> does anybody know an efficient way to access Cloggy from Ynys Ettws?

> Do a route on Cyrn Las (Main Wall) then toddle over the top to Cloggy (Bow RH and Mordor).

What is it like from the top of Cyrn Las to gain the ridge?

Looking at the map, hitting the ridge at 700m would enable a short link up with the path to the base of the crag , only losing about 50m in height.

Nant Peris hillside looks pretty dire from below, just wondered if there was a sneeky link up of hidden terraces and sheep tracks.

Could you bike up to the old parking ?

 Steve Crowe 16 Jan 2021
In reply to Rick Graham:

Karin and I walked in from Ynys Ettws mid summer, we climbed The Grooves E1 on Cyrn Las carrying an extremely light sack. We continued up and over to Cloggy, dropping in from above for Karin to lead The Axe E4 then we walked down to tick West Buttress Eliminate E3. We probably could have done another route but I was concerned about potentially spoiling an awesome day out. 12 hours from hut to hut.

 baron 16 Jan 2021
In reply to Rick Graham:

> Out of interest and off topic , does anybody know an efficient way to access cloggy from ynys ettws?

Ynys Ettws?

Surely the correct way is from Helyg?      😃( Welsh Rock, page 56)

In reply to Rick Graham:

> Out of interest and off topic , does anybody know an efficient way to access cloggy from ynys ettws?

The first, in 1984, of only six days I've had on Cloggy we made a horrendously steep ascent from a bit down the valley to where you traverse round to the crag. We did Great Wall, The Axe and Curving Arete before walking down for chips in Llanberis and walking back up to our tent below the Cromlech Boulders. A great day.

In reply to Rob Greenwood - UKClimbing:

> As a final word I, like many, am in awe of you having done 49 routes on Cloggy. I've done more than most, in/around 30, but 49 really is outstanding. 

I recall either meeting or reading a discussion where someone was looking forward to shortly completing their hundredth. Could it have been Paul Williams, perhaps?

jcm

 Alex Riley 17 Jan 2021
In reply to johncoxmysteriously:

Nick Dixon’s probably done quite a lot, I know he only had one or two of the hard routes left to do.

In reply to johncoxmysteriously:

Paul Williams refers to having done over a hundred routes himself in his Cloggy guide.

In reply to mike lawrence?:

As others have said, those Pass E3s are all pretty testing at the grade, and most likely harder than Great Wall, so don't worry if you a) fall or b) fail. 

I'm inspired by your having done Bywnynog Chimney, as that's always been on my long-list. Other routes I've always been intrigued by, now that we're on the topic of random routes, are Little Krapper (E3 5c) and Feeding Schmae (E4 6a). It's meant to be a great combo, but one that is often overlooked as a result of its lack of stature (both in terms of the fact that it looks a little shit, says 'krap' in the title, and isn't a bonafide *** classic). Hazy Days is supposed to be amazing too, but rather criminally I haven' even done Woubits or The Mostest, so will have to rectify that first.

When it comes to my most memorable experience I really don't know where to begin, because there's just so many; however, one in particular stands out above the rest, when I walked up to Cloggy after finishing my last exam at Bangor University. I watched the sun setting over the Indian Face and bivvied overnight, then soloed a route the following morning, topping out to my first ever brocken spectre. Whilst the route I did (Slab Climb Right Hand) was actually pretty forgettable, the whole experience - coupled with the liberation from study (which I'd begun to find pretty oppressive) - felt like a huge moment. If memory serves me correct I then walked down to Rhydd Du and did the Nantlle Ridge afterwards too. Retrospectively this seems a bit random, but I think I'd just read Let's Go Climbing by Colin Kirkus and was feeling inspired on big mountain days, having fun and feeling free.

As for my favourite route, I think I'm going to have to choose Great Wall (and I'm not just saying that because of this thread). It's an absolute classic with immaculate rock, climbs beautifully and really meant something to me back when I did it. Furthermore, it's one I could easily go back and do again and again because of how good it is (and there's not many routes I'd say that about). 

The worst route I've done is The Organ Flagellator (E4 5c), which really was truly awful - highly eliminate and needlessly dangerous as a result.

If others want to post up their experiences I might see if we can collate the best into an article. Be nice to have some more inspiration for the year ahead!

In reply to Rob Greenwood - UKClimbing:

> Retrospectively this seems a bit random, but I think I'd just read Let's Go Climbing by Colin Kirkus and was feeling inspired on big mountain days, having fun and feeling free.

That little book had exactly the same effect on me - and so many others. How could he have guessed that it would inspire generations to come?

Going up to Cloggy, you can't help but be aware of all those great climbers who went up there before you. Colin Kirkus is one. He was so brave...

Mick

In reply to Shani:

> I'm using the suggestions on this thread for my path to Right Wall!

There's potentially another thread in this, but I remember in/around the time I did Right Wall a friend - the supremely talented Dan McManus - suggested that I go out and do as many pumpy routes as I possibly could.

This probably sounds totally obvious, but maybe not within the modern day and age of indoor climbing + fingerboard training, where people tend to focus on the mechanics. I tend to be climbing my best when I feel most comfortable and at ease, and generally - at least as far as trad is concerned - that's after onsighting a lot of routes. The irony here, at least from the modern approach, is that this is probably when I am at my absolute weakest. A lot of trad isn't about being strong - it's about being able to recover.

Tangents aside, in/around that time (if memory serves me correct) I did things like Rimsky Korsakov (E5 6a) and What a Difference a Day Makes (E4 6a) up at Hidden Wall; Stroll On, Quasar (both of which have been mentioned before) and Mural (E3 6a) on the Grochan; and Strike (E4 6a) at Upper Tier Gogarth.

Resurrection (E4 6a) is clearly the most obvious choice, but not necessarily the best, because dare I say it - it's harder! It's also better protected, but that's part of the reason why it's harder - you've got to place all the protection. On Right Wall, if you're going well and not too intimidated out by a bit of boldness, then the climbing flows because it isn't interrupted by the opportunity to place a piece of gear each and every metre.

No idea whether that's of help, but I've enjoyed the escapism and optimism that's within this thread.

Roll on the spring, freedom and good weather!

 Andy Moles 18 Jan 2021
In reply to Rob Greenwood - UKClimbing:

> Resurrection (E4 6a) is clearly the most obvious choice, but not necessarily the best, because dare I say it - it's harder!

Lots of people dare say it, but I don't agree. I repeated both on the same day on second a few months ago, and thought Right Wall was definitely harder, if only by a third of a grade. I think it's a typical expectation thing, because of the grade and status.

 Tyler 18 Jan 2021
In reply to Shani:

> I'm using the suggestions on this thread for my path to Right Wall!

If you think you are good enough to climb an E5 then you’ll do it, no need for any path as it’s soft for the grade, pretty obvious what it entails. You could come by gear beta if you want it.  

When this was done there wasn’t much of similar steepness and sustainedness around but since the advent of lead climbing walls and sport climbing trips abroad most people setting off will find it pretty familiar sort of ground. 

In reply to Tyler:

> If you think you are good enough to climb an E5 then you’ll do it, no need for any path...

I don't think I am!

 Rory Shaw 18 Jan 2021
In reply to Rob Greenwood - UKClimbing:

Good prep for right wall is to work full roadside at the cromlech boulders and and associated stamina links/loops

 Dave Ferguson 18 Jan 2021
In reply to mike lawrence?:

I can't give you any advice on Great Wall, never did it and too old and fat to think about doing it now. I too am at 49 routes on cloggy and have really enjoyed some of your recommendations in the past, particularly https://www.ukclimbing.com/logbook/crags/clogwyn_dur_arddu_cloggy-457/easy_rider-2133

I too need to think of a 50th route to do that will be memorable. My top grade is probably E2 these days so Great Wall, Daurigol and the Axe which I was never really good enough to do have eluded me. I could get dragged up one of these by a strong leader but it would somehow miss the point. Cloggy is all about leading. I notice you did Capricorn recently which I've eyed up before but the top pitch looks nails.

Not one of the best routes but one of the best days out I've had there was doing https://www.ukclimbing.com/logbook/crags/clogwyn_dur_arddu_cloggy-457/the_east_buttress_girdle-2193 . We did it back in 92 on a hot dry day. We got in really early which was a challenge for my partner who usually gets out of bed later than me (and thats saying something). Having gotten ourselves established and just finished the traverse on Llithrig, the world and his wife arrived in the form of that years International meet. Much hilarity ensued with us traversing the top Great Wall with teams on all the usual classics. The atmosphere was terrific with everyone having a great time and not bothered in the least by our sideways ramblings. The last pitch up the corner was altogether the most harrowing as tiredness and thirst had got the better of us.

Looking at the logbooks I see you've done the West Buttress Girdle and seem to rate it so assuming the peg doesn't go back into Slanting Slab anytime soon, I think this would probably be my 50th route to remember. Certainly something to look forward to in these uncertain times.

 Pedro50 18 Jan 2021
In reply to Andy Moles:

Agreed. I cruised Resurrection in about 15 minutes in 1987 and then ground to a halt on RW at the porthole the next day, probably over-psyched. Jimmy Jewell kindly recovered my gear. I scraped my way up it two years later after leaving my shoes at Ynws and having to pop down for them after my mate Nigel led it first. No pressure there. 

In reply to George_Surf:

That sounds a great day on Cloggy but as you well know there is an alternative view of the day which hopefully is with UKC as we speak...

In reply to Dave Ferguson:

Dave,

East Buttress Girdle! Respect! West Buttress Girdle was great, some choss obviously but overall loads of good climbing with a nice finish. I've committed to a friend to go up and replace the peg on slanting slab so will let you know if successful. The top pitch of capricorn is really good but we were a bit depressed by the time we got there so overall not a great day. The top pitch, which i didn't lead, was easier than expected and really enjoyable. I think the guide suggests just doing the top pitch which i thought was morally wrong but in retrospect i wish we had done that.

If you ever lack someone for some of the more esoteric routes let me know as I am short on partners for that type of adventure ie i don't know anyone who would do them with me! Guinevere? The Republican? so many!

 PaulTanton 10:01 Sat
In reply to mike lawrence?:

Hi Mike,

I think I’ve met you in Pembroke a couple of years ago. Your mate had an unfortunate accident cutting his leg. We got him back to the car. How is he?

Great Wall is an absolute classic and actually not technically that hard. Yes the E points are for the top pitch. Just stay cool and steady. I’ve done it twice it’s so good.

routes leading to that? Probably some of the routes on suicide wall in Ogwen. Nice and run out. CP is harder than Great Wall as I remember. Resurrection on the Cromlech is good training and safe. I did the LH finish last year. You have to commit to that but it’s safe. 
other stuff on Cloggy like November. Very good but I thought it was E2. Very good gear and steady climbing. But it was in a drought so perfect conditions. I think Troach is a hard lead for the grade. All the routes around that area are a good preamble for GW. 
good luck. You’ll be fine. We just need to get there. 

 marky 19:03 Sat
In reply to mike lawrence?:

When you do Great Wall make sure you top it off by finishing up the top pitch of Jelly Roll on the headwall above. I remember this being a memorable and very exposed finish.

In reply to PaulTanton:

Hi Paul,

It's good and bad about dave. He had a long enforced layoff of about 6 months but is back to climbing now. Sadly he does not seem to have improved his route selection taste,.. i had a look at the route this autumn and it was pretty obvious that it was a death trap from a mere glance over. Thanks very much for your and your mates help. You really helped to get him up though i do remember a lot of inappropriate giggles from the three of us!

Suicide Wall routes are probably a good call but want to stick to routes that are easier than great wall. Resurrection i found desperate to second a few years ago so need to get fitter if it is anything like that. November is such a great line and has got history so want to do that for its own sake. Any success will help!

thanks again

mike

In reply to johncoxmysteriously:

> I recall either meeting or reading a discussion where someone was looking forward to shortly completing their hundredth. Could it have been Paul Williams, perhaps?

Sorry, totally missed this one.

I wonder who that was then?! It'd certainly be an amazing effort, and someone like Paul Williams - or Nick Dixon - would seem like the two most likely candidates. 

I'll do a bit of digging and see if I can find out. It might also give me the necessary impetus to put together this article idea I've been mulling over...

In reply to Rob Greenwood - UKClimbing:

I thought Nick Dixon said at the time of the guidebook launch that he had climbed all the routes in the guide, well over 100 in that case?

In reply to Rob Greenwood - UKClimbing:

> I wonder who that was then?! It'd certainly be an amazing effort, and someone like Paul Williams - or Nick Dixon - would seem like the two most likely candidates. 

> I'll do a bit of digging and see if I can find out. It might also give me the necessary impetus to put together this article idea I've been mulling over...

Back in the day, Al Harris was reputed to have done more routes on Cloggy than anyone else, racing up on his motor bike (vroom, vroom!)

How did he find the time, between (not) running Wendy's, various half-finished building jobs, making the ladies happy, playing his beloved records (favourite singer, Petula Clark!), organising the next wild party, etc, etc?  

I guess, as with so many of us, he fell hopelessly under the spell of Cloggy. As Jack Soper astutely noted, "You could stand at the bottom, turn round and feel a vast, brooding presence behind you."

Mick

 Alex Riley 16:46 Mon
In reply to mike lawrence?:

From chatting to him I think there are only a few of the hard routes he hasn’t done and some of the unrepeated winter lines.

 Rick Graham 16:56 Mon
In reply to Mick Ward:

> Back in the day, Al Harris was reputed to have done more routes on Cloggy than anyone else, racing up on his motor bike (vroom, vroom!)

> How did he find the time, between (not) running Wendy's, various half-finished building jobs, making the ladies happy, playing his beloved records (favourite singer, Petula Clark!), organising the next wild party, etc, etc?  

Quite a good climber and boulderer apparently as well, used to take the piss out of Crew for taking it all so seriously, like seconding Zukator in winklepickers.

After his fatal accident, I recall his wife wrote a letter to mountain magazine to defend him as a good father despite his reputation , so maybe add that attribute to a busy life.

Only met him once, hitch hiking to Llanberis. His wide grin got wider when I complimented the mini vans cornering ability. 

In reply to Mick Ward:

I knew him a little bit and i am pretty sure he said he had done 50 routes on cloggy? might be wrong. He did moan about pete crew insisting they climb all the routes in their tremadog guide though!

In reply to Rick Graham:

I can well believe he was a good father. There seems to have been a kind, sensitive and caring side to him (which he probably did his best to keep well hidden). Mental chess seems to have been another of his many talents. A polymath disguised as a party animal?

Mick

In reply to mike lawrence?:

Bloody hell, and you've only done 49! Do keep up (with the inimitable Harris). If you do Great Wall as your fiftieth, you'll definitely merit the Harris thumbs up seal of approval. Mind you, you might have to drink till you (literally) drop afterwards, just to keep in the spirit of things. Even more challenging than the 'wall without end'?

Mick


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