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/ Question about Lake District Rock Guidebook

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Sarah Davies - on 23 Dec 2018

Hi,

Does the FRCC Lake District Rock (2015) guidebook have Gimmer Crag in it??

Many Thanks

Sarah

Post edited at 19:22
Graeme Hammond - on 23 Dec 2018
In reply to Sarah Davies:

Yes

Steve Clark - on 23 Dec 2018
In reply to Sarah Davies:

Yes.

One of the topo lines on the front cover is actually The Crack on Gimmer.

Mark Eddy - on 23 Dec 2018
In reply to Sarah Davies:

Yep, about 20 pages just for Gimmer, so very well covered. It’s a very good and useful guidebook

Tom Ripley - on 23 Dec 2018
In reply to Mark Eddy:

> Yep, about 20 pages just for Gimmer, so very well covered. It’s a very good and useful guidebook

No it isn’t. It’s one of the least useable guides published in recent years.

I’d hold out for the Lake District Rockfax that will be published in 2019. I’ve seen some sample chapters (including Gimmer) and it looks excellent.

You could always get a copy of the 2003 Lakes District Rock, cheap second hand.

John Kelly - on 23 Dec 2018
In reply to Tom Ripley:

What you thinking? It seems well pretty illustrated and clear, bit big maybe.

I didn't like the 2003 version, as it happens, weird graphics to my eye, but

https://www.worldofbooks.com/en-gb/books/lake-district-rock-climbs/GOR006572642?keyword=&gclid=Cj0KCQiAgf3gBRDtARIsABgdL3kT3Jp_cMG_8THemEUxmY0zwWk9b0sbwMUtkl4ZPXz_THEjTqO5GKoaAgGNEALw_wcB

Post edited at 21:19
Tom Ripley - on 23 Dec 2018
In reply to John Kelly:

> What you thinking? It seems well pretty illustrated and clear, bit big maybe.

Loads of things:

Some crags described from right to left.

Poor maps and descriptions, which are unusable if you’ve not been before/have local knowledge.

Topos that are spread across double pages and loose routes into the spine of book.

Mega classic routes, like Trilogy left out.

Awful grey cover design. 

Post edited at 21:49
John Kelly - on 23 Dec 2018
In reply to Tom Ripley:

That's quite a list, I haven't really found any of these issues a problem but I generally have access to the specific guides, I like the photos and graphics, too big for the rucksack though

Trilogy - too hard for me to judge

Post edited at 21:45
Mark Eddy - on 23 Dec 2018
In reply to Tom Ripley:

We clearly have different opinions about this excellent guidebook. Fair to say it’s a little on the large side, but that’s only because they try to fit lots of info and photos in. This guide pretty much means there’s no need to bother with the Selected guides for each valley.

The FRCC guide has been written by a strong team of Lakes based climbers. Not sure if that’s the case for the RF book?

My money would always be on the local guide though as it’s likely to draw from a deeper knowledge.

 

martinturnchapel - on 23 Dec 2018
In reply to Tom Ripley:

I thought it was the convention that crags were described from left to right. 

Tom Ripley - on 23 Dec 2018
In reply to martinturnchapel:

> I thought it was the convention that crags were described from left to right. 

Sorry. I should have re read what I wrote. Now editited.

Post edited at 21:50
Misha - on 23 Dec 2018
In reply to Tom Ripley:

I’d say it’s pretty good but not superb. A lot of the photos are grainy and the cropping is odd. Plus there aren’t enough action photos. Still, until the Rockfax comes out, it’s the only Lakes selective worth having.

Incidentally, I think the Wired Pembroke Rock selective is superb - but that’s a CC rather than an FRCC guide (Wired is just common branding). Perhaps the next Wired guide will be even better!

Jon Stewart - on 23 Dec 2018
In reply to Mark Eddy:

> We clearly have different opinions about this excellent guidebook.

I spent years struggling with those beautiful but functionally problematic hand drawn topos. The Wired guide was a revelation.

I did return to using the tougher and more portable FRCC one until my mate threw it off a crag (and I know who's got it, he's not answering FB messages, the swine), but only once I'd got to know the crags. I wouldn't consider trying to use it "in anger" now.

Edit: I'm on about the 2003 red one, sorry.

Post edited at 22:19
pec on 23 Dec 2018
In reply to martinturnchapel:

> I thought it was the convention that crags were described from left to right. 

That is most common but its not exclusively so. Where crags are normally approached from the right hand end they are sometimes described that way.

I find it incredibly annoying to arrive at the right hand end of a crag and then have to work my way backwards through the guidebook.

Tom Ripley - on 23 Dec 2018
In reply to pec:

Do you read in Yiddish?

Pedro50 on 23 Dec 2018
In reply to pec:

> That is most common but its not exclusively so. Where crags are normally approached from the right hand end they are sometimes described that way.

> I find it incredibly annoying to arrive at the right hand end of a crag and then have to work my way backwards through the guidebook.

Right to left is always wrong whatever the circumstances. We are not Chinese 

Mark Stevenson - on 24 Dec 2018
In reply to Tom Ripley:

> You could always get a copy of the 2003 Lakes District Rock, cheap second hand.

A decent suggestion. I've got numerous copies sitting around if anyone does want one.

Whilst I'm not as overtly negative as Tom, having not used the latest guide that much, it's track record for some of crags I have recently visited is less than stellar:

General usability is poor. The tabs and page numbering don't work well due to crag titles and edge bleed photos taking preference.

The topo for Sergeant Crag Slabs really is not great.

The topo for South Crag at Castle Rock of Triermain is poorly split across two pages. The same goes for White Ghyll Lower.

The description of Eastern Hammer (E3 6a) is still complete nonsense.

Miner's Crag has exactly the same mediocre topo as the much smaller old style Buttermere and St Bees guide. Although given how unimpressed I was with the crag, that might be a moot point.

It's rather too heavy for Mountain Crags so I still carried the old guide up to Scafell Crag.

On the plus side it did encourage me to visit Hardknott Crag for couple of routes one afternoon...

YMMV.

TobyA on 24 Dec 2018
In reply to pec:

If they could have numbers on the photos going in the same direction as the descriptions in the text it would be helpful in guidebooks. Not sure about the Lakes Rock guide, but my Lakes Winter guide does that and its infuriating.

pec on 24 Dec 2018
In reply to Pedro50:

> Right to left is always wrong whatever the circumstances. We are not Chinese 


Its ok, when a crag is described right to left the words on the page are still written left to right. It just means you don't have to work through the book backwards, as you move along the crag the next route you come to is the next one described in the book, its quite simple and works quite well.

Michael Gordon - on 24 Dec 2018
In reply to pec:

> Its ok, when a crag is described right to left the words on the page are still written left to right. 

Yes, and I'm surprised that some struggle with this concept!

digby - on 26 Dec 2018
In reply to pec:

> as you move along the crag the next route you come to is the next one described in the book, its quite simple and works quite well.

And if you don't move along the crag route by route it's infuriatingly difficult to find what you want and works quite badly. 
What you see in front of you should be what you see in the book. 

In reply to pec:

> Its ok, when a crag is described right to left the words on the page are still written left to right. It just means you don't have to work through the book backwards, as you move along the crag the next route you come to is the next one described in the book, its quite simple and works quite well.

The difference here is between guidebooks which are primarily/entirely text-based and those which rely on visual aids to identify location like maps, overview photos and topos. For text-based obviously starting at the point of arrival at the crag makes sense.

But no-one produces text-based guidebooks any more and as soon as you start including maps, overviews and topos, people use those to locate themselves on the crag. When that happens, writing from left-to-right is the only system that makes sense simple because the guidebook need to visually reflect the geography of what is in front of you. If you turn a page to the right, and are shown something that in reality is to the left of what you were just staring at, it is confusing. Even worse is when a double page spreads has two topos, left and right, that are in reality right and left on the actual crag in front of you. Amazingly, this does happen!

The way we write Rockfax nowadays we make no assumptions about text people have read so we are now removing the text that old guidebooks use to always use “Start right of *****” which could go on for many routes. We now rely on overviews, maps and logical progression of photo-topos to show you where you are on the crag. Our aim is to try and make sure that you hardly ever need to flick the page when using a Rockfax to find out where you are, and if you do then it should be instantly clear.

Alan

Chris Craggs - on 26 Dec 2018
In reply to Alan James - UKC and UKH:

Absolutely agree 100% (but you know that already). With a book like Eastern Grit, I took the left to right convention through the whole book, so if you are stood under Great North Road at Millstone Plexity is to your left - a little earlier in the book - and Regent Street to the right, a few pages on. Stanage is to your left, earlier in the book, and Dovestones beyond that, whereas Froggatt is to the right, further into the book and Black Rock is miles away, almost at the back,

Chris

charliesdad - on 26 Dec 2018
In reply to Sarah Davies:

Just buy the definitive guide to Langdale. You’ll never want to climb anywhere else anyway....????

Michael Gordon - on 27 Dec 2018
In reply to Alan James - UKC and UKH:

Photo-topos are great, and I agree in general that when using them, left-right is preferable. This is all well and good when producing select guides just cherry-picking the best stuff, or describing nice neat crags with big lines like in Chris Craggs' gritstone example. But what do you do when describing a lot of scattered or more broken crags within a definitive guide, which might just have a couple of routes on each wee buttress, and a long distance view isn't possible (say they are contouring round a hill)? I could be wrong, but would have thought that including a photo-topo for each wee buttress like this would surely fill the guide up in no time. Or some crags might have trees right in front of the crag or otherwise the situation could make getting a photo-topo in the first place difficult.

paul__in_sheffield - on 27 Dec 2018
In reply to Tom Ripley:

> No it isn’t. It’s one of the least useable guides published in recent years.

As someone who ‘dips in’ to the Lakes on the way up the M6, I think it’s a pretty good guide.

if you want to see ‘least useable guides’, have a look at the most recent Ogwen and Llanberis CC guides. You take a route on the photo, get the number, look the number up on a list then find it, sometimes on a different page. The routes themselves aren’t numbered and they’re not all on the photos, so you have to work back from the ones that are. Surprising really as excellent guidebook layout was available before they came out.

Post edited at 09:21
Offwidth - on 27 Dec 2018
In reply to Tom Ripley:

Top typo Tom... love the idea they are hiding loose routes in the dark clefts of the page junctions.

Post edited at 11:06
Offwidth - on 27 Dec 2018
In reply to Pedro50:

Right to left was a perfectly logical choice when we didn't have phototopos on the same page and the crag was approached from the right. It almost nothing to do with what language we speak. I agree it's best that modern photo-topo guides linked to databases stick to one convention.

Post edited at 11:07
Offwidth - on 27 Dec 2018
In reply to paul__in_sheffield:

The BMC Stanage 2002 is surely the most confusing guidebook ever in usability terms. It gave me a headache and I'm perfectly OK with most formats.

Post edited at 11:10
paul__in_sheffield - on 27 Dec 2018
In reply to Offwidth:

> The BMC Stanage 2002 is surely the most confusing guidebook ever in usability terms. It gave me a headache and I'm perfectly OK with most formats.

That’s one of the few missing from my collection, so maybe I decided not to for some reason ;-)

Martin Hore - on 27 Dec 2018
In reply to Mark Stevenson:

> The topo for South Crag at Castle Rock of Triermain is poorly split across two pages. 

Possibly better than the topo for North Crag which is now split across two completely different sections of the hillside

Martin

 

Michael Hood - on 27 Dec 2018
In reply to paul__in_sheffield:

That's my latest Stanage guide. I find it ok but that may be because I've been there loads of times and don't need to use it most of the time (and I've got the Rockfax as well).

I can see how it would distress newcomers to the crag

The one plus in this guide is its description of UK grading which is the best/funniest I've ever seen in a guidebook. Don't know if this description is also in other books of that series.

Post edited at 16:12
Andy Hardy on 27 Dec 2018
In reply to Pedro50:

> Right to left is always wrong whatever the circumstances. We are not Chinese 

Although we do try to go from bottom to top...

paul__in_sheffield - on 27 Dec 2018
In reply to Michael Hood:

Just checked, I know why I haven't got it. It came out between the Rockfax and Vertebrate Peak Bouldering guides, and 2002 was the year I pretty well ditched trad to go to the dark side of bouldering

In reply to Michael Gordon:

> Photo-topos are great, and I agree in general that when using them, left-right is preferable. This is all well and good when producing select guides just cherry-picking the best stuff, or describing nice neat crags with big lines like in Chris Craggs' gritstone example. But what do you do when describing a lot of scattered or more broken crags within a definitive guide, which might just have a couple of routes on each wee buttress, and a long distance view isn't possible (say they are contouring round a hill)?

If it is a small buttress with just a couple of routes then why wouldn’t left-to-right work? 

> I could be wrong, but would have thought that including a photo-topo for each wee buttress like this would surely fill the guide up in no time. Or some crags might have trees right in front of the crag or otherwise the situation could make getting a photo-topo in the first place difficult.

There are techniques to get overviews now with drones and you can always use maps and drawn topos. It is possible to use visual information in a more compact way than equivalent text as well I think.

There are occasions where some recent guidebooks have demoted some routes to basic list status such that they are not telling you where they are, just that they exist. To me it seems pointless to include these in a book and online is a better place for this kind of information. 

Alan

Michael Gordon - on 27 Dec 2018
In reply to Alan James - UKC and UKH:

> If it is a small buttress with just a couple of routes then why wouldn’t left-to-right work? >

It would work, but as you admitted before, no better than right-left if just done as a description, particularly when walking in that direction past a number of similar-size outcrops all with routes needing described or photographed. 

If you had five short routes on a minor crag, one of many many minor crags in a guide, I would have thought describing according to the main feature (crackline etc) would be the way to go descriptively, and that main line could conceivably be the rightmost route. I take your point about a photo allowing a description to be shortened, but would it really take up less room on the page overall? 

In reply to Michael Gordon:

> It would work, but as you admitted before, no better than right-left if just done as a description, particularly when walking in that direction past a number of similar-size outcrops all with routes needing described or photographed. 

Except that it is better because it maintains consistency and it is that lack of consistency in some guidebooks that causes the confusion.

I am not sure what you are wanting to prove here. Are you trying to come up with an obscure occasion where you think that writing descriptions right to left is justified? If so then simply the fact that it would break an otherwise consistent style would be enough to make it pointless. Or are you trying to make a case for wider use of right to left? If so then I am not seeing it.

Alan

Michael Gordon - on 28 Dec 2018
In reply to Alan James - UKC and UKH:

> Except that it is better because it maintains consistency and it is that lack of consistency in some guidebooks that causes the confusion.

I don't see what would be confusing about describing one route and then saying that the next one lies left of it. Someone would have to be very easily confused!

> I am not sure what you are wanting to prove here. Are you trying to come up with an obscure occasion where you think that writing descriptions right to left is justified? If so then simply the fact that it would break an otherwise consistent style would be enough to make it pointless. Or are you trying to make a case for wider use of right to left? If so then I am not seeing it.> 

I'm simply saying that when (for whatever reason, and there must be occasions) photo-topos are not possible or impractical, best to describe the way it makes most sense from a descriptive point of view, which could be either (and I can't see where the apparent confusion comes in). I don't like this idea of sticking dogmatically to a single rule just for the sake of it.


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