/ The "what did you climb this weekend?" thread

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TobyA on 14 May 2018

Once again, it's back - the "what did you climb this weekend?" (mid week climbers are of course welcome to chip with their contributions at the appropriate time in the week for their days off!). Mini-trip reports are most welcome, self excusatory ramblings explaining why you failed on your "proj" or a much desired onsight are even more welcome, although expect good-natured mocking as often as sympathy.

I went to the Lakes with Simon - after a winter of 4am alarm calls for one day raids from Sheffield to Wales or the Lakes, an 0630 alarm was relative luxury. We arrived in Seathwaite under sunshine and blue skies, and despite getting sweaty, the walk up to Styhead Tarn and on round to the Napes was lovely. We did Tophet Wall (HS 4a), a classic I've had on some mental list of things to do for a long time. The weather clagged in a bit while we were on the route, but it all felt atmospheric and 'big mountain' like with cloud rolling around. The team work from winter climbing has obviously paid off and we did the route reasonably quickly in three pitches, so stopped off and Simon led Innominate Crack (VS 4b) as we went back round to a bit above the stretched box where we camped for the night.

For various reasons we both had need to be home not to late Sunday afternoon, so after a super breakfast watching the sun come out and burn off the mist at first around and then below us, we head back down to Seathwaite before many walkers had even started heading up. We stopped off at Shepherd's Crag heading north - a crag I've climbed on a few times in the past but when nothing seemed too familiar I worked out it must 20 years since I did last visit. My lead, and it was still a bit greasy from the overnight rain, so I picked Chamonix (HS 4b) as something quickish to do. It's not a terribly good route but nice enough and I managed not to slide off any of the damp polished holds! Coffee and cake in the Shepherd's Cafe, then back on to the motorway and home under more blue sky and sun. 

Lovely weekend and strange that it was only 6 weeks ago that we were last in the Lakes when we did a grade III on Green Gable in a screaming blizzard and some of the most full-on winter weather that I went out in this last year.


Post edited at 15:29
ripper - on 14 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Arrived in Langdale at 11pm Friday, to be told by the staff at the Wainright that the bar had just closed, so turned in... Saturday, after a sausage butty at the NDG, saw us sweating on the walk up to Pavey Ark. We were aiming for Arcturus but it was wet and slimy so we did Capella instead. Climbing as a three, I seconded both then led 1 & 2 (together) of Golden Slipper. We debated going for a second route but were happy to keep it as a fairly relaxed day, and stopped for a quick swim in tarn before heading back to the valley. A cracking day. 

spenser - on 14 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

I was on the Aspirants meet with the CC over in the Pass, spent saturday at Tremadog climbing with another member of the club, we did Meschach (first pitch was my lead and rather wet in places, second pitch avoided any noticeable wetness), then we did Nifl-Heim. I must have spent near two hours trying to figure out how to start the crux traverse before eventually bailing and letting my partner have a go, he duly dances across a traverse line about 3 feet below where I was trying to go (perhaps I need to be more flexible with my interpretation of guidebook descriptions)!  Top pitch felt pretty hard for the grade too.

Then came the feeding of the 28 or so people on the meet, they lavishly dined on home made pies, curries, crumble and summer fruit pudding (hey, who said climbing didn't get to involve culinary delights?).

Sunday was a trip up Main Wall to get some photos for the club journal, I think we're sorted for a while!

Anti-faff - on 14 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Congratulations on ticking Tophet Wall, it was one of my most memorable days climbing last year.

I had three days down in North Wales with the CMC. Friday was a bit rough weather wise so did Flying Butress on the Cromlech then scuttled down to the quarries and did Seamstress and Seams the Same. It absolutely tipped it down half way up Seams the Same which was quite alarming in a sort of almost good way. 

Went to Gogarth on Saturday, nursing a slight hangover. The abseil into Wen Zawn was more harrowing than I remember, in fact the scramble down to the abseil point was a bit emotional! However, once down to high tide start of Dream the atmosphere was actually lovely. Waves crashing and seals bobbing around, the sun came round just as we got onto the final pitch which turned out to be even better than it looked. We finished the day off with Britomartis which was also pretty fab. 

Steady day in the pass on Sunday. Perfect.  

ChrisBrooke - on 14 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Having spent the week looking after two kids while my wife was away working in Poland, I was given a day pass on Saturday, and used it to drive over to the Roaches with my pad. Climbed about 55 problems from easy to very easy with a few easy classics thrown in (Joe's Arete, Three Pocket Slab, Greener Traverse) but backed off Stretch and Mantle as the mantle seemed a bit high up. Managed to mess my back up jumping from the break on that one. Getting old and stiff sucks. 

I've climbed plenty at the Roaches over the years but never bouldered, so it was quite fun to take a pad and look at the venue in a completely new light. 

olddirtydoggy - on 14 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Great thread! Had a good, long session on Burbage to tick off some routes with a friend who's just getting his teeth into leading. Nice to get the classic, Knights move in the bag (didn't feel like a HVS). My 94 year old grandmother joined us for a couple of hours and we might have a project with her very soon. What a great day! More tomorrow.

steveriley - on 14 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

In a happy co-incidence with Chris Craggs' "old farts" thread last week, I met up with an old friend I haven't climbed with for maybe 15 years. Initially thinking some easy Plantation boulder-bimbling might be thing, we decided to be bold and tie in. Got a few HS/VS starter routes done for our new leading careers. Leading stuff I'd previously soloed and noticed a few free upgrades from my battered old guide. My shiney new Big Camalot got used lots and after mulling over whether it was actually worth upgrading my rack (such is the slackness of my climbing) I'm down to a mere tenner a placement. Seconded up Goliath's Groove after a 25 year gap, shunning the elegance of stylish bridging for the full on knee jam, which if you commit to it and embrace the thrutch, gives virtually hands-free climbing in a cycle of struggle, rest, struggle. Real route of two halves with some nice climbing in the top half.

After a little break and collecting reinforcements from Hathersage station, a bit of bouldering on Burbage South. Went home tired and happy. Last night I picked off a couple of new boulder problems locally on the sandstone and got really close on something I'd almost dismissed. Almost as encouraging to fail on that as the earlier successes in a funny way. It'll go.

harold walmsley - on 14 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Last Thursday I confirmed with the local chough expert that no choughs were nesting in the quarry containing my favourite projects for the year so we were free to go and try them. On Sunday I went. Last November I had just bolted two climbs when the the weather finally deteriorated so they hadn't been led (it is N facing and cold and wet in winter). First I shunted these to see if they needed any re-cleaning after the winter. None was necessary but I spruced one up a bit. I hope to go and lead them soon. After that I cleaned and shunted a new line that also gave good climbing,

Dave Garnett - on 14 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

We were ticking classics in the Lakes too (up for a committee meeting on Saturday night).  

Went up to Gimmer for what was probably the first time this century on Saturday for North West Arete (VS 4b) (very nice after a rather damp and worrying start) and F route (which, sadly, was very mossy and looked pretty wet up at the crux).  Instead we wandered rather arbitrarily up what were probably bits of B, C and D routes (staggered to discover C Route is in Classic Rock).

Sunday was warm and sunny and we went up to Dow Crag, despite my warnings that, whatever it looked like, it would be cold.  One party set off up Murray's Direct and partly to be sociable and partly because I assumed it would be pretty quick way back to the sunshine, we set off up Murray's Route (S 4a)

Dear god, I know it was done in 1918 and they did short easy pitches because they didn't have any runners, but I was losing the will to live by the time we finally zigzagged our way to the Easy Ledge.  Jane was slipping into hypothermia.  Even more staggered to discover it was also in Classic Rock...

Dave Cundy - on 14 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Me and my climbing partner Christian went on a pilgrimmage to Stanage, where it all started for me, 36 years ago.  Haven't seen too much grit action recently, about one visit every ten years.  The weather was noticeably better than forecast, so we had an excellent two days, ticking off old favourites like Mississipi Buttress Direct and Inverted V (where we sadly got a Friend stuck in a stupid placement, do'h).

We also managed a couple i hadn't done before, Morrisons Redoubt (HVS in my 1982 guide, now E1) which has two bold moves and Hargreave's Original Route, which was really thought provoking for a VS, an excellent route.  I failed in Billiard Buttress as i couldn't summon the courage to commit to the pockets.  I've got a big bike holiday next month, so i couldn't afford a bad landing.

It was good to be back, even if half my friends shun it (cos they can't jam!). 

Post edited at 22:23
TobyA on 14 May 2018
In reply to Dave Garnett:

Are they not any good? And you do know, you don't have to belay every 15 metres because the book says so, don't you?

alan moore - on 14 May 2018
In reply to Dave Garnett:

> Even more staggered to discover it was also in Classic Rock...

surprised you thought that. Murray's was one of my final Classic Rock ticks and, I thought, one of the best; ludicrously exposed traversing on giant flakes. Better'n Tophet Wall, I thought!


alan moore - on 14 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

A good weather forecast for the west of Scotland saw me in Galloway at 6am in lashing rain and flooded roads. A long awaited visit to Dungeon of Buchan was binned for a lonely splash over Cairnsmore of Carsphairn to Clennoch bothy and back. It cleared up later and there was a view from Arran to Skiddaw.   I drove home in blazing sunshine, slightly disgruntled, with the Scottish dry season now on fast forward...

Post edited at 22:40
Ramblin dave - on 14 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

We did the Aonach Eagach in glorious weather on Saturday, which was fantastic, and then sat in a car for about nine hours on Sunday, which was less fantastic.

Jon Stewart - on 14 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Borrowdale esoterica. Although when I say "esoterica" I'm talking about 3* routes on easily accessible crags - they just hardly get climbed in spite of being obviously wonderful. There's nowt so queer as folk, eh?

deacondeacon - on 15 May 2018
In reply to Jon Stewart:

Mad isn't it? Been climbing in the lakes and Wales a bit this year and it's always nice and quiet. A few weeks ago we went to Stanage and with no exaggeration at all there must have been 200-300 climbers. Cromlech last weekend on a gorgeous, dry sunday just had me & Theo sharing the crag with a couple from France. Same thing happened in the Lakes a few weeks ago, went to the lakes and only saw a few people climbing all weekend.

Drove past Horseshoe Quarry the other day and the parking was full. F*cking Horseshoe Quarry!!! People are well weird. 

GarethSL on 15 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Took a trip out to  Gravvikheia on Sunday. It's a stunning crag with views over the inlets and islands of Trondheimsfjord. It's like our own mini Lofoten and we were completely alone. Climbed a route called 'Heteslag' which means heat stroke in Norwegian, a testy n4+ (Something between HS and VS ish), which given that it was 22 degrees with a warm southerly breeze was a fitting name.

It was a fun line with a few interesting moments. The main crack of the route was wet at the top of the first pitch, so had to improvise and follow two parallel cracks up a stem box to its left. With cracks too narrow for fingers and a box too narrow to stem. I ended up trusting a high smear and a lunge to a block which twisted my shoulder into an awkward position, aggravating my already injured rotator cuff.

The subsequent pitches went without issue, we abseiled off and went to the beach to swim and have a bbq. Great start to the season, but annoyed I already have to 'take it easy'.

Dave Garnett - on 15 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

> Are they not any good? And you do know, you don't have to belay every 15 metres because the book says so, don't you?

Yes, you're right, and if I ever do it again I'll at least miss out the Abraham's Cave stance and maybe run it all out in one pitch.  From the ground it isn't so clear and there is some potential for huge rope drag if you don't really know where you are going next.


Dave Garnett - on 15 May 2018
In reply to alan moore:

> surprised you thought that. Murray's was one of my final Classic Rock ticks and, I thought, one of the best; ludicrously exposed traversing on giant flakes. Better'n Tophet Wall, I thought!

I'm probably being a bit grumpy.  I only noticed the exposure when I looked back at the ropes looping out over the drop.  I'm being unfair expecting a killer line and a sustained standard on a hundred year-old mountain route!  I'm normally a sucker for tradition but I hadn't done my homework and didn't appreciate it.  

paul__in_sheffield - on 15 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

The weekend never stops now the evenings are light...

Thurs Cratcliffe on the way home from work, top boulders including an old Dawes problem which I don’t think will ever go ;-(

Fri Churnet to redo an old friend of a V4 traverse which has somehow become way harder since last year (go figure)

Sat Stanage North bouldering and solos. In my natural environment looking for sit starts

Sun Stanage North again, chin grinding mantleshelfs

Mon Cratcliffe on the way home from work

Tonight somewhere local like Birchens for bouldering session 

Samuel Wainwright - on 15 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Tophet Wall really is a cracking climb! Did it for my birthday a few years back. Apparently after the first ascent the climbers were greeted at the top by a party providing them with a punnet of fresh strawberries! No such luck on our ascent unfortunately but great climbing none the less..

Last weekend me and a few lads trekked over to the Far North West and climbed Am Buachaille in perfect spring sunshine. A few words and some photos here if anybody is interested



TobyA on 20 May 2018
In reply to all:

Right, let's be having you. Who did what? It seems most of us got sunshine.

I went to Dovedale with Dave G of this parish. We had another day where we seemed to do nothing but climb, but still managed to get incredibly little done. It's a special skill I know! ;-)

We started off on Simeon (VS 4c), a team beat us up to the start as it is shared with Ten Craters of Wisdom (VS 5a) which they were doing so it was all very social. I planned to do it one pitch, but found the wall above the possible first pitch belay rather hard. Up and down, up and down, getting more and more pumped and angry at myself for finding a VS so hard. Eventually weighed down with self-loathing I belayed on the ledge and brought Dave up. He very politely also found it rather tricky and went up and down a bit too, but of course got on with it and pulled through. He then had a bit of an adventure on the upper slab trying to find where the line of Simeon went. After abbing down I decided I would "shoot up" Silicon (HS 4b) as it would be easier and it would make me feel better. Of course it turned out to be nervy in parts and thuggish in others, I made it up but definitely one of the harder HSs I remember doing. A high gravity day I suspect. And some how that took up most of the day! Dovedale is beautiful, even if the climbing is a bit... well... inland-English-limestoney. Lots of others climbers out, the new guide and cover of the last Summits magazine shining a light on the dale I suspect.


olddirtydoggy - on 20 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Went up to N Yorks to finally hike the 3 peaks but my real interest was Twistleton Scars. After 4 small easy routes we were totally wiped due to the 25 miles hiking the day before. It's a great crag compared to some of the Limestone I've climbed on. Much swag to be had on there. We called one bloke up using the phone number label on a wiregate to see if he would like it mailed back, it's now in the swag bag.

TobyA on 21 May 2018
In reply to all:

No other trip reports?


Hugh Simons - on 21 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Torro on The Ben on Saturday. Had the whole of Carn Dearg to ourselves. Superb route on amazing rock which was completely dry bar a few wet holds on the crux overlap. Been on the wishlist for a while and it didn't disappoint!

TobyA on 21 May 2018
In reply to Hugh Simons:

Fantastic. It looks like a number of the big harder routes have been done on the Ben over the last few days - I was looking at the new(?) UKC mountain rock conditions page, and obviously there has been some good weather up there!

steveriley - on 21 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Well I cleaned out a charmless traverse on Cheshire sandstone, unlikely to see a second ascent anytime soon. Retro-ticked a new boulder problem when I realised I'd done it before and not ticked it. And showed my new-to-trad climbing mate the way to tame classic Severe frighteners with modern gear. 4 bits of gear, 4 cams. They bred em tough, the tweed generation.

Jon Stewart - on 21 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Cracking day on Reecastle where all the classic E2s and 3s were ticked by pretty much everyone there, which was quite a few folk. Crag in brilliant nick, great atmosphere, fantastic routes - and easy to tick when they're all chalked and you've just watched someone else do them (accidentally of course, I couldn't find my usual onsighting blindfold).

D.botts87 - on 21 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Had an ace day on Dow crag on Friday. Had Eliminate A all to ourselves. Was on the ticklist last year but had a bit of self doubt. Felt brilliant leading and enjoying every pitch. Top route, wont forget it any time soon. 

TobyA on 21 May 2018
In reply to D.botts87:

That's high on my list of to do routes. Sounds great!

Mike-W-99 on 21 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Crag Lough on friday (one other party there). Eye watering car park charges just introduced. Did repeat the very good Pinnacle Face and some stuff I'd not done before.

Lakes sat/sun, surprisingly quiet including the campsite. One other team on Buckstone How. Sinister Grooves was the pick of the routes. Honister pass does attract some idiot drivers Short day at shepherds yesterday which wasn't super busy by its standards, pleased to get P.S done and although being tall helps good foot work helps even more.

Post edited at 22:01
Jon Stewart - on 21 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Some disagree, but I think Eliminate A is worth its reputation as "the best VS in  England". It climbs the full height of the most forbidding buttress of a big mountain crag, with the climbing starting at the bottom and ending at the top (while B Buttress has cleaner faces it's broken into separate walls and the whole upper half of the thing is bilberry ledges). It weaves under and tiptoes over the overhangs, finding an easy passage right in the midst of the most spectacular terrain. I did it as a fairly early multipitch route (though I was climbing mountain E1s at the time) and loved every minute even though the climbing felt relatively straightforward.

I would warn though that that Dow is in general a crag to be treated with a greater than average degree of respect. Many of the routes are very stiffly graded, and some cross the line into being outrageous sandbags where the climbing is technically harder than advertised and there is no gear - while Eliminate A is fine, some of the classic routes are pretty gnarly (not all though).

Post edited at 22:26
TobyA on 21 May 2018
In reply to Jon Stewart:

It's funny, I don't remember it from Lakes routes I've done in the dim and distant, but since moving back to the UK in  2014 and now having visited the Lakes to climb a good few times (although still probably more for winter than summer climbing) I've come to the conclusion the rock is just on average more unfriendly for gear than Welsh mountain rock is. Of course there will be loads of exceptions - we did Innominate Crack on Kern Knotts last weekend, and that's safe and straightforward crack climbing for instance - but overall it just seems scarier than Welsh igneous. Just odd as I thought it was all similar rock?

Jon Stewart - on 21 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

I think Lakes climbing is generally pretty bold - as you say the rock just doesn't seem to give crack systems the same as in N Wales. There are plenty of well protected routes, but you have to seek them out, and if you don't you should expect to find yourself some way from your last runner.

The Lakes rhyolite varies hugely from the fantastic black bubbly stuff on the top half of Pavey - which has great gear on some routes too, e.g. Poker Face (E1 5b) to the abysmal chosspile that is  Lower Falcon Crag. The latter is nothing like the same rock: it's shattered slatey nonsense with no meaningful gear, usually microwires in between loose blocks. I don't know how that crap passes is being rhyolite at all, when in stark contrast to what's obviously cooled lava full of gas bubble pockets, super-solid and rough as a cow's tongue, it's a frictionless disaster of tottering blocks.

MFB - on 22 May 2018
In reply to Jon Stewart 

lower falcon, the jewels of borrowdale, the essence of the crag revealed in it's bottomless crack systems - illusion, 4 or 5 star route. Upper in contrast does have some loose rock

Jon Stewart - on 22 May 2018
In reply to MFB:

Borrowdale has plenty of jewels. But lower falcon ain't one of 'em. 

Simon Caldwell - on 22 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

We were running (Kong Mini MM) in the Dovedale area on Saturday evening, I passed a couple of climbers but most had probably gone home by then (about 7.30).

On Sunday we climbed in the shade at Willersley, I've never seen it as busy (by which I mean there were about a dozen of us in total). Nice crag but hard work when VS is your maximum grade!

GarethSL on 22 May 2018
In reply to Simon Caldwell:

Made the most of two national holiday days and had a long weekend in the south. Camped out in hammocks near Moss and had the crag at Sperrebotn all to ourselves. A lazy day in glorious sunshine mooching about on some easier routes (shoulder still playing up) and letting some friends try out climbing.

Spent Sunday tanning, grilling, drinking beer and doing a little bit of climbing at the stunning Hankø. Glorious weather the whole weekend and even managed to get in a couple of 10k morning runs.

Tickets to the alps booked so despite the current turn in the weather I'm sat at work buzzing with excitement!

Anti-faff - on 29 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Fionn Buttress (VS 4c) and Gob (HVS 4c) with my best mate in perfect weather. A weekend that will stay with me for a long time.

Fairhead this weekend too - psyched!

Post edited at 21:06
nuts and bolts on 29 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Great time to visit the high crags. I have done The Grooves, Cyrn Las, Great/Bow Slab, Cloggy and Engineers Slabs, Gable in the past month - all of them in perfect condition (even Engineers is bone dry) and on perfect days. 

One question - has anyone done Shrike yet. When I was up there 10 days ago it looked like there might still be some wet streaks on it?

deacondeacon - on 30 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Went from Sheffield to the lakes for a weekend of single pitch climbing lol. Reecastle first and what a crag. 5 minute walk in, and for something so short and in a pretty location it has a menacing air. It appears steep, dirty and damp but when you arrive under it it's just steep. We climbed a couple of the E2s then I fell off The Guillotine (E3) but lead it clean next go. Drove past castle rock in the evening and saw some guys on a big bold slab from the road and decided we needed to do it! Got to the crag and realised it was a vdiff not a mega E4. Think it was called Gangway Climb and it was brilliant. Perfect rock with perfect holds, and must be well scary for a vdiff leader. Next was Black Rocks (wrynose). Basically Gritstone on a mountain. Perfect, clean, grippy rock with spicy routes. Very very fun crag. Did a few E1's and an E2 but too scared to try Glass Slipper. Really want to go back for this, and White Noise at Reecastle.


Came back Sunday night and went to Cratcliffe in the morning and then  Lorry Park Quarry in Matlock in the afternoon. Tried Tom Thumb at Cratcliffe but was far too hot and sweaty for grit so ran away to Lorry Park. Really surprising Crag. Sneak through into a shitty, dirty, rubbish strewn waste ground, past a homeless guys shelter with crusty sleeping bags laying around, then into the trees to an amazing face of solid rock with perfect crack climbs on it. I failed on the easy 6b+ warm up then my mate smashed Suoercrack f7a. Tried the E5 diagonal Desolation Angels (only because its more like f6c now with bolts all over it but fell off at the last move. Definitely one to go back for.

Highlight of the weekend was probably sharing a four pack of magnum ice creams in sainsbury car park though. Love magnums. 


Blue Straggler - on 30 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

I don't normally join these threads but  today I will. 

I sacrificed Saturday and Sunday to housework but got out on Monday to meet up with friends and a newbie. The newbie was having her first time on British I made the genius suggestion of going to Curbar on a sweltering muggy day (she'd had the Bamford experience on Sunday so I thought I may as well continue the "baptism of fire"!)

A slow easy lazy day for all. Parallel lines on Severes, Flying Buttress and Flying Buttress Right Hand, then a bit of a spanking on Brindle Crack which I am sure used to be easier Leader backed off so I took over to lead through and still dogged the final bit and scared myself, ha. 
But we put someone on PMC1 and this salvaged the day after watching someone take a massive inverting whipper off Avalanche Wall due to not putting much gear in.

Before the weekend, on Thursday, was my notable feat

At my local bouldering wall, there is a circuit of problems made of pink and grey limestone-like holds, graded V 2-3 (a bit on the generous side at this wall tbh). Now, I often climb problems harder than V 2-3 but I've once before completed a whole V 2-3 circuit there as there are always some stinkers. I'd had two "last remaining problems" lingering for about a month and was almost resigned to never getting them. A week previously I went at one of those problems with total tenacity and finally got it (only just). Leaving only one last one, with a big sideways dynamic start. I'd never even been able to start it, I couldn't make use of the starting handholds. 

But on Thursday, after a week of no climbing (and the only exercise having been two days of depth freediving which knocks the stuffing out of you bit doesn't exercise any climbing muscles), and four days of tiring work mostly on my feet, I drove to the wall from the customer site I'd been working at all week, got there 7.15pm having booked a cinema ticket for 8.50pm, and decided to tackle this last problem, maybe work on it AND ONLY IT, for 50 minutes or so. No warm up (clever, when there is a dyno move).
Found that I only had my rubbish shoes in the car, and no chalk. Luckily this problem needs neither, so no excuses....

Aaaaaaaaand.......smashed it on my second try. A good case of not overthinking things. Felt heroic like Tommy's one-punch knockout fight in Warrior  
Repeated twice to make sure I hadn't done a French start, then departed. 
One of the most brutally efficient visits to a climbing wall ever, ha ha

TobyA on 30 May 2018
In reply to Anti-faff:

Very jealous. We sort of had Fionn Buttress in mind when a friend came across to the UK two summers ago and we did a climbing tour of Scotland but by the time we were that far north it didn't seem very time efficient. A shame in retrospect because he's the perfect partner for both a big route and a big walk to get there!

I managed next to nothing this weekend. Family-schmamily etc. Did take my nephews to the little buttress at the end of Curbar so climbed a couple of routes (that I've done before) to set up ropes for them to have a go on, but that was it. I did ride my road bike for a couple of hours for the first time possibly in two years! (I do ride other bikes quite a lot, but just tend to use free time to climb rather ride that one.)

TobyA on 30 May 2018
In reply to deacondeacon:

I'll need to check out the E4 Vdiff! A mate was in the Lakes this weekend and asked if I wanted to come and join them. I had suggested to him that if I could make it he could lead me up the hard bits on Central Buttress (E1 5b) which he, being a Cheedale and Spain-devotee sport climber, had never even heard of. As it is I couldn't go, and he went and climbed CB with someone else. I feel sad now. I'm not sure if I know anyone else strong enough to lead the hard bits and I'm pretty certain I can't these days.

deacondeacon - on 30 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Those big long E1's are always easier than short sharp grit routes. Get on it  

WillRhodes - on 30 May 2018
In reply to TobyA:

I somehow managed to squeeze in two seperate sessions at the Roaches this weekend, in between desperate revision for my GCSEs, which continue after the half-term. The first was a on the Saturday Evening, and my first time on Hen Cloud. Everything felt greasy as I thutched my way up Modern (VS 4b) and Central Climb (VS 4c) - in a single pitch, with minimal gear placed. I also tried Central Climb Direct (VS 5a) but that got nowhere and some dodgy remove-cam-with-sling farce ensued. 

Sunday morning, however, was a far more profitable day. On the lower tier of the roaches, I began on Fledgling's Climb (HS 4a), before moving onto Hawkwing (E1 5b), not only scaring myself as I descended into full elvis-leg on the traverse, but also the team who were contemplating doing the route after me. They dissapeared, probably not wanting anything to do with the injuries that seemed imminent. Somehow, I remained in contact with the rock. The next route was Rhodren (HVS 5b), which being with me being a tad short, could have gone easier, but is still a good route nevertheless. I then bullied myself onto Commander Energy (E2 5c), my first E2 (!), and first 5c I've not fallen off, with amazing, freaky slab moves below the prow, and awesome, airy laybacking above.

Of course, the forecast appears mediocre for the rest of the week, which is just typical.

Post edited at 10:08
Jon Stewart - on 01 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

> I had suggested to him that if I could make it he could lead me up the hard bits on Central Buttress (E1 5b) ... I'm not sure if I know anyone else strong enough to lead the hard bits and I'm pretty certain I can't these days.

Worth knowing that the hard bit of CB is a wall which is perhaps a bit bold - it's not something that requires a great deal of strength or technique. You exit the HVS corner crack of the Great Flake and step around onto the face, which you climb in a spectacular position on flat edges with slightly spaced but decent gear. Easy (if the right holds are chalked up anyway)! It's worth all the hype, a real adventure on the finest crag in England, don't let it slip away.

Jon Stewart - on 01 Jun 2018
In reply to deacondeacon:

Glad you enjoyed Reecastle, the best "sporty trad" ever. So much gear - I don't know what the hell is going on there, it's meant to be the Lakes where everything is terrifying. White Noise is cracking (pun intended), a bit harder than the other E3s.

> Did a few E1's and an E2 but too scared to try Glass Slipper.

Haha. Now that really is VDiff. Seriously, it's a path - a slab of incredibly rough rock covered in holds. Half of which are are lovely crimps, the other half are jugs. Very cool little crag, good with a couple of pads too.

Have you been to White Ghyll? A really good valley crag, if you do the classic E2 White Ghyll Eliminate (E2 5c) (hard steep crack crux) and Paladin (E3 6a) you'll come back happy. Paladin is awesome - but keep a bit in reserve for when you think it's in the bag (I didn't), there's a bitch of a move to get stood on the lip.

If you're feeling brave,  Goat Crags, Borrowdale is superb too. So is Castle Rock of Triermain - as well as the awesome Gangway Climb (VD) the North Crag has some killer E2s that are rather stiff for the grade.

slab_happy on 01 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Thursday's totally part of the weekend, right?

Finally conquered Verandah Buttress (HVD 5b) . Now I can say I am a Hard VDiff leader!

Post edited at 09:51
deacondeacon - on 01 Jun 2018
In reply to Jon Stewart:

I'll give you a shout next time I'm over and you can give me a tour  

Offwidth - on 01 Jun 2018
In reply to slab_happy:

Did you find the tough 4c method though?

slab_happy on 01 Jun 2018
In reply to Offwidth:

Well, I found definitely *a* 4c method, albeit a somewhat different version from my climbing partner's as I don't have the lank.

So I can't claim the tech 5b, but it's a proud tick nonetheless.

I've been saying for a while that my real climbing goal is to be a fully-rounded HVD leader, on the basis that if I got to the point where I could smoothly onsight *any* HVD, I might actually be quite good.

TobyA on 01 Jun 2018
In reply to slab_happy:

> Thursday's totally part of the weekend, right?

Absolutely! On Thursday evening I realised where I was camping on a brief family half term break was about 2 Kms from  Meikle Ross. I jogged over at sunset and after spending some time trying to make head or tail of my mid 90s guidebook's description eventually did what UKC leads me to think was an ** severe. Peak climbing has obviously been toughening me up because it felt about diff and wasn't that great, but still great to do a route on a crag I've not climbed on before.


olddirtydoggy - on 02 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Lawrencefield last night. We only hit 2 routes, ate BBQ meat and did a sneaky camp. Left no trace. Noticed that lately the area has improved compared to previous years. It wasn't unusual to find cans and smashed up camp chairs thrown around.

Offwidth - on 02 Jun 2018
In reply to slab_happy:

There are still quite a few other brutal HVD climbs out there. I see a list coming on ;-)

Well done though, its stopped many VS leaders.

Post edited at 11:20
slab_happy on 02 Jun 2018
In reply to Offwidth:

> There are still quite a few other brutal HVD climbs out there. I see a list coming on ;-)

Oh, I wasn't intending to imply that I think I *have* now attained true HVD mastery (I am not so delusional!), merely that I aspire to it. *g*

And I was just thinking of starting a thread to ask for suggestions for such a list. So -- yes please!

I'm pleased to see I've already ticked a few off the "interesting" HVDs list on your website (Swimmer's Chimney and Brown Crack being especially fond memories), so I feel I'm off to a good start. Or at least have established that I'm the kind of deviant who seeks these things out.

Right, here we go!

Post edited at 12:07
TobyA on 03 Jun 2018
In reply to slab_happy:

Back to work tomorrow (boo hiss!) but out to Stanage this afternoon. We did a couple of the Crow Chin routes, then up to Stanage End where we had most of the crag to ourselves. I did The Crab Crawl (S 4a) and Crab Crawl Arete (VS 4c), Tim led The Green Streak (VS 4c) and The Tempest (VS 5a), which was rather good despite it greenness.

We then soloed Prospero's Climb (VD), I had back off it in the past when soloing, but even today with better conditions I still thought getting onto the halfway ledge felt too hard for Vdiff - I mantled just as I had seconding The Tempest, but there must be an easier way of doing it? Any tips? Tim headed home and I soloed a couple of easy lines including the 2nd route on all of Stanage if you start from that end (no. 1 is too hard for me soloing!). Great afternoon.

Stanage seems pretty dry despite yesterday's very heavy rain and we weren't troubled by midges today.

Stopsy - on 03 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

First trip up to  Glen Clova - Red Craigs area , really enjoyed the rock, and style of climbing there, with the SMC select guide ticking off the best bits including Proud Corner (VS 4c)Flake Route (S)Central Crack (HS) and Parapet Route Variation (VS 4b) . Central Crack and Proud Corner were probably the pick of the bunch, routes that put a smile on your face at the top!

Met a couple of other parties on the crag and everyone seemed to be enjoying it, pretty good considering the drenching in the monsoon at Dunkeld the day before! 

TobyA on 04 Jun 2018
In reply to all:

No other reports?

Mike-W-99 on 04 Jun 2018
In reply to Stopsy:

Clova is very good. You missed Saturdays monsoon which rained us off at 2pm. The locals in Kirriemuir were bemused when we told them how wet we got.

Post edited at 21:16
French Erick - on 04 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Finally got to do this Skydiver (E3 6a)... has been on the back burner for 13 years!! Lived up to the expectation.

Got to 2nd this to Hardland (E4 6a) which has to be amongst the best single pitch I have done in a long time.

steveriley - on 04 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Couple of things at Stanage in the heat. Rounded up with a lead of Heather Wall - lovely steady climbing with interesting moves. Gave myself a bit of a retro-scare thinking of the last time I’d climbed it solo 20+ years ago. #usedtobeacontender

Robert Durran - on 04 Jun 2018
In reply to French Erick:

Ooh........ envious. Reiff was like climbing in a sweaty oven on Saturday but avoided the storms inland. Good training for Sunday's foggy, greasy conditions!

Anti-faff - on 04 Jun 2018
Alex Riley on 04 Jun 2018
In reply to Anti-faff:

Hells kitchen

Midnight cruiser


Am Bealach Runda


Wall of Prey (although got caught in a massive rainstorm, so only the first pitch)

Also a good weekend...

Post edited at 22:41
TobyA on 04 Jun 2018
In reply to Anti-faff:

Excellent. At Fairhead I imagine any route is a big tick at the grade!

Were you there when the rescue happened. Must have been alarming.

TobyA on 04 Jun 2018
In reply to Alex Riley:

Is that also Fairhead Alex? I like a good climbing quiz, but I don't know those routes (maybe heard of Wall of Prey, hence the fairhead guess) so you need to use the "insert climb link" box to help us punters!

Anti-faff - on 05 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Ha! Any route longer than 8 metres is a big tick for me! 

We were at the other end of the crag when it happened so just saw the helicopter departing, hope they're on the mend. 

AMorris - on 06 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

To celebrate a few of the group picking up the mid wales guidebook we decided to sample some of the local delicacies in the Elan Valley, and headed to Craig Cnwch. We very quickly found that the place is a total suntrap, which means it is amongst the best summer evening crags in mid wales for sure.

We decided to potter up some of the easier lines on the Abseil Wall: Pancho Villa (6a) and Stranger On The Shore (6b), the latter of which looks much more trivial than it is, and throws you a perplexing sequence at the top. We where then attracted by some of the better lines of the crag, such as the meandering tour of quartz pebble buttress that is It Started With a Kiss (6a+), and the fantastic Nevermind (6a), which deserves more attention than it gets.

To finish the day, I decided to try out the moves on the "hard line" of the crag, Angelito (7b), which turned out to be quite nice climbing, if a little contrived, since it is easy to be lured into wondering off the route. I quickly sorted all the sequences on dogged RP but unfortunately we had to get back for an appointment at a local Curry house before I had a chance to attempt the clean redpoint.

All in all, a great little summer evening crag, easily accessed, well (read 'liberally') bolted and in a beautiful location. Well worth a look.

lummox - on 06 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Funnily enough I did Chamonix this weekend as well and I thought it well worth a star... Tophet was fantastic when I last did it on a hot summer's day too many years ago.

TobyA on 10 Jun 2018
In reply to all:

So, who did what this weekend? My long if successful day trip to the Llanberis Pass is detailed here: but what did everyone else get up to?

I saw someone up on High Tor while driving through Matlock this afternoon - that looked hot in the sun. Was it anyone here?

Robert Durran - on 10 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Just back from a wonderful afternoon and evening on the Buachaille after a leisurely start to let the damp clag clear


Simon Pelly - on 11 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Did the Welsh 3000's on Saturday.

Rather warm but nice dry ground to run over. Really dehydrated.

At 4.30am at Pen y Pass car park, got the second to last car park space. Plenty of people out and about.

Well earned pint for finish the day off.

becauseitsthere - on 11 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Had a fabulous day at Diabeg yesterday with the place to ourselves. Route 2.  Worth the stars.

Mike-W-99 on 11 Jun 2018
In reply to Robert Durran:

You were more leisurely than us as it was still damp when we rocked up. Numb fingers in June was a novelty.

Carless - on 11 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

A fine day at Freyr yesterday - was surprisingly empty

Robert Durran - on 11 Jun 2018
In reply to Mike-W-99:

> You were more leisurely than us as it was still damp when we rocked up. Numb fingers in June was a novelty.

I don't think we started climbing till about 3pm - just slightly greasy. Lovely when we finished at about 8pm.

d_b on 11 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Spent some of Saturday trying to climb as much of the "Wintours Sub 4c Half km challenge" ticklist as possible in 4 hours.  Sadly we didn't have time to devote a full day to it but it went well enough that we are convinced it will go.

Training for something big I hope to have a poke at in August.

EarlyBird - on 11 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Saturday -  Clogwyn yr Oen (Moelwyns) - did Kirkus's Climb Direct (S 4a) then Pinky (VS 4c). Both superb - the starting moves on Kirkus's were a bit of shock first thing in the morning. Pinky was amazing - would be three stars without the grassy ledge.

Sunday, bolt clipping on slate which was fun in a completely different way.


Post edited at 16:11
MG - on 11 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

On Saturday: Cneifen Arete, y Gribbin, Dolmen Ridge, Bristle Ridge(d), Pinnacle Scramble, Tryfan N Ridge (d). Good fun. 

Just Another Dave - on 12 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Saturday: Scafell Central Buttress.

Unbelievably hot and without a breath of wind on the walk up, then cloud and drizzle rolled in while I was trying to man up for the crux. Very atmospheric clearing afterwards, beautiful day.

Led the Great Flake the original way, took a lot of psyching up wedged in the niche where the old chockstone used to be. Glad to say it's brilliant, but never worth it's new silly upgrade - I'd say top-end E1 5b; only five feet of commitment, with a bomber chockstone still just below. Continued via top pitch of Nazgul, which was stunning.

Then did Botteril's Slab. Simpleh Lovely

Sunday: Heron Crag, totally deserted. Gormenghast. Ran P1+2 together, did the bold 5a wall variation, right to the holly tree. Felt very bold indeed, but wonderful. Blistetingly hot again, Swam in the river rest of afternoon.

Best weekend climbing in a long, long time. Huge grins.

mike barnard - on 12 Jun 2018
In reply to becauseitsthere:

> Had a fabulous day at Diabeg yesterday with the place to ourselves. Route 2.  Worth the stars.

No midges? I wasn't even going to risk Ardmair without a breeze!

joe.91 - on 12 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Side Walk up on Dow, first E2 of the year and first Extreme Rock tick. Then a wedding and hangover... 

Mike505 on 12 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Well we did try to climb... A good club meet in the Chew Valley seeing 7 of the 13 attending members fall of something due to pump, climbing in the wrong direction (suspected sandbag), biting off more than one can chew (had a good laugh watching folks learn to jam on Freddies Finale) and finding top outs a little to green (my excuse and I'm sticking to it) . But good to see that everyone took it well and pushed it until they were boxed and then tried again anyway.

Post edited at 13:13
becauseitsthere - on 12 Jun 2018
In reply to mike barnard:

Hardly any throughout the day . They started making an appearance about 4 but we were packing up then.  5 ticks though. 

TobyA on 17 Jun 2018
In reply to becauseitsthere:

Not so great weather for many folk I think this weekend, but still, who got up something?

I went out on Friday night to Curbar Edge, perfect grit evening - dry, a fresh wind to stop it being sweaty and to keep the midges away. We went to the far end and did a few easier and moderate routes. One I did Bulldog Crack (S 4b) which seems to pop up here as HVD, although my Rockfax has it as Sev 4b - if it is HVD it's a good one for that chap's thread last week on brick hard HVDs!  Tim led Green Acres (HVS 5a) which I though was great. Might need to try and lead it now I know exactly what cams you can get in it. ;)

The forecast looked lousy for Saturday so we cancelled plans. But by Saturday lunch it had hardly rained and was brightening up. I had been to Decathlon in the morning and treated myself to some ridiculous prism belay glasses which I was keen to try, so persuaded Tim to shoot out to Horse Thief Quarry where we did a few 5 and 6as in the sun, which were surprisingly good fun. The heavens opened just as we got back to the car - quite biblical rain for a bit. Haven't seen it rain so hard for some time!

MFB - on 17 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Friday -Dodged showers to climb 

The Shroud (VS 4c)

Pitch 2 was thought provoking (5a) and I followed line of least resistance pitch 4, in retrospect probably on last pitch Coffin, missing a ticklish top pitch but finishing at a well equipped abseil

Then on to

The Mortician (HVS 5a)

The second pitch is 40m of HVS all the way - great pitch 

a good afternoon

gribble - on 17 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Deep joy - I'm finally back in the climbing game after 16 months of cancer treatment.  My body has been wrecked, so the bar is starting low.  Today, for fathers day I walked the 5 edges with my daughter and friends.  This is a mini version of 9 edges, and about all I can muster. Starting at Birchen edge, then Gardoms, Baslow, Curbar and Froggatt with a climb on each edge.  Turns out it was more than one climb per edge, but it was fun.  Took way too long though, next time it will be back under the two hour mark.

Robert Durran - on 17 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Went to do No Place for A Wendy (E3 5c) in Glen Lednock today, which for some reason I'd never got around to doing. Warmed up on the other crag, felt tired from rain enforced training yesterday. Walk in was head high (literally) damp, tick infested bracken. Midges started coming out, Drizzle started. Began to lose the will to live. Went home.

TobyA on 17 Jun 2018
In reply to gribble:

Fantastic - I was looking up from Curbar on friday and thinking I should do something similar, but its plenty of walking so well done! Top effort when you are coming back from serious health issues. Nice one!

slab_happy on 18 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

> One I did Bulldog Crack (S 4b) which seems to pop up here as HVD, although my Rockfax has it as Sev 4b - if it is HVD it's a good one for that chap's thread last week on brick hard HVDs! 

Not a chap, as it happens, but taking notes anyway! *g* And I see the logbook comments mention a "no-hands kneebar" -- be still, my beating heart.

steveriley - on 18 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Not a sausage of anything new. Friday tried my current local project: powerful crimpy pulls to a bunched shoulder leap for a decent pocket just below the top. Hit the top pocket twice but not quite in far enough or on the deadpoint. I'll get there by beating it into submission one day. Then onto running club presentation night - barbie, beer, v50 xc prize (go me!). Sunday night cleaned up the tops of a couple of dirty boulder problems. Did most of the moves on a couple of that have eluded me so far, but too chicken to top out. Bit happier taking the drops on ageing knees though

TobyA on 18 Jun 2018
In reply to slab_happy:

Apologies. I've sort of de-gendered "chaps" in my head, although I'm sure my unconscious bias on UKC is still to presume people posting with neutral names are men.

Dave Garnett - on 18 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

A slightly unsatisfactory couple of weeks with work and a couple of other issues competing, plus two disrupted Wednesday night sessions (midges at Stanage, mysteriously reinstated bird ban at Ravensdale).  

Did a spot of soloing on the Skyline (rather disconcerted to pull over the top of some Severe to encounter the Dawes sat at the top, making me feel as though I probably wasn't trying hard enough!)  and took my son up his first E1 at Aldery, which was nice milestone, but feel I need to try harder... 

slab_happy on 18 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

No apologies required! I've noticed that apparently my brain's de-gendered "guys" as a term of address (even for all-female groups). There's a shortage of casual gender-neutral terms that don't sound stilted; we just have to wait for people to figure some out ...

TobyA on 18 Jun 2018
In reply to slab_happy:

Yeah, I teach and call whole classes "guys" - some older teachers still seem to think it is masculine, but I think most people use it in the more American gender neutral sense. Anyways... Bulldog Crack (S 4b) is a good one to go down on your HVD list! It looks scarier that it actually turns out to be with a bit of 3D thinking, but definitely a proper thrutch!

TobyA on 18 Jun 2018
In reply to Dave Garnett:

Have you got plans for next weekend yet Dave? I feel I need to be trying a bit harder too... I've onsighted a number of 6as over the last couple of weeks, so I don't think I have any excuse to not be trying some HVSs again!

Steve Perry - on 18 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

After breaking my ankle trying a new line last July, I finally managed to go back and lead it yesterday. That was a good day for me, physically and psychologically, life can now go on. A great weekend.

Elisha Grays (E5)

Post edited at 22:08
Just Another Dave - on 19 Jun 2018
In reply to Steve Perry:

Well done getting back on that.


Dave Garnett - on 19 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

I'll be in touch.  I'd like to make some progress with ticking off the entire crag at Aldery, but it's the end of term and I may have to fit in a trip to collect the first-born.

machine on 21 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Grand Paradiso and Tresenta.

slab_happy on 22 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

> One I did Bulldog Crack (S 4b) which seems to pop up here as HVD, although my Rockfax has it as Sev 4b - if it is HVD it's a good one for that chap's thread last week on brick hard HVDs!

Done! What a lovely route -- thank you for the rec! I may have threatened not to top out because I didn't want it to be over.

HeMa on 22 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

mid week send of my longest project...

(bad video edit, as never have I used 3 different cameres at the same time for video and tried to make it work in PP).

I seem to remember that I tried this on the first year of proper climbing and naturally it didn't go... have occasionally tried it during the years since, but not really put much effort to it... As Sari wanted to climb it this year, had to visit it a few times and naturally it went (a day or two after Saris send). Luckily the kiddo slept most of it and I managed to get this off my back... especially as I fell on the 1st go of the day from the start, then on the 2nd from the last move... 3rd time was the charm. And  day later did another blitz morning walk there with the kiddo and filmed it....

TobyA on 24 Jun 2018
In reply to all:

Who else got sun burnt?

Saturday - a very early start for a quick morning session at Stoney. I did a 6a+ onsight with no great drama, really pleased. 6b next. Simon did a stonking job and redpointed his first 7b+, it was great to belay him on it.

Sunday, another early start but it was already boiling when we got to Aldery Cliff. I started by leading Mitre Crack (VS 4c) and The Cardinal (VS 4c) - both nice routes. Dave than got on A Pig in the Middle (E3 5c) which he cruised up. I managed to second it cleanly without any great drama too which was good. I then had a go at Surface Plate (HVS 5a) and got up OK, which was great as I don't think I managed any HVSs last year, so it was a little victory for me. Nice climb as well.

So overall a successful climbing weekend for me!


Jon Stewart - on 24 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Totalitarian (E1 5c)


The actual route was alright (well it's incredible - hard climbing, bold in places, spectacular positions and of course a total sandbag), but the approach at the moment is, err, problematic.

First time I've climbed on this Raven Crag. It's very strange. It's an incredibly impressive crag with great rock (albeit dirty) - one would have thought it would be one of the classic crags of the country given that it's almost roadside and nearly 100m tall. Yet it's virtually unclimbed, attracting only a handful of ascents each year. Of course the bird ban doesn't help - do a couple of peregrines really need an entire crag that size to themselves? The seem to get on OK at other places...

TobyA on 24 Jun 2018
In reply to Jon Stewart:

Could it be in normal years it is often damp? It seems everything is bone dry currently including lots of things that aren't normally!

joe.91 - on 24 Jun 2018
In reply to Jon Stewart:

How did you get in with all the roads and paths closed or have they now finished logging? 

Jon Stewart - on 25 Jun 2018
In reply to joe.91:

> How did you get in with all the roads and paths closed or have they now finished logging? 

Nightmare! The works not been started, looks like a big job. 

Jon Stewart - on 25 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

> Could it be in normal years it is often damp? It seems everything is bone dry currently including lots of things that aren't normally!

Could be said of most of the lakes... 

Dave Garnett - on 25 Jun 2018
In reply to Jon Stewart:

> The actual route was alright (well it's incredible - hard climbing, bold in places, spectacular positions and of course a total sandbag), but the approach at the moment is, err, problematic.

That's my memory of it too!  The approach to the first pitch was a steep hanging garden, dripping wet and decidedly fall-offable.   Then there's the long unprotected ramp of the 'easy' first pitch and then it really gets going...  Actually, we didn't even do the proper last pitch because it was running with water.  

HeMa on 25 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Familyday with the youngest one in tow at Kauhala. Got me arse handed to me by a couple of sport routes. But did manage to OS that lovely Avaruushissi (E1 5b)by Ossi. 


After that, it was a casual headpoint of Mid-life Crisis (E1 5c), as in I remember that I have perhaps toproped it like a year or two ago. So now simply lead it. Now that this one os ticked, I don’t need to buy a sports car ;).

TobyA on 25 Jun 2018
In reply to HeMa:

> But did manage to OS that lovely Avaruushissi (E1 5b)by Ossi. 

Never managed that cleanly. I'll have to give it a go when I'm over next month! Can I get a belay?


HeMa on 25 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Sure, If it ain’t too wet. I still have a few lines there waiting for a lead.

Anti-faff - on 25 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Was supposed to be on Skye this weekend but something came up so had to make do with an evening pottering around Brimham and a day at Gimmer today. 

I led Stone Wall (HVS 5b) at Brimham, has anyone else done it? I thought it was class, almost as good as Rough Wall to the right of it. 

How good is Gimmer though?? I hadn't been before, goodness knows why. Lovely rock, lots of gear and a great position. Can't wait to go back, Whits End Direct looked amazing but didn't have time today. 

D.botts87 - on 26 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Friday we did Coati on Pavey. Gets mixed reviews on ukc logbooks. Thought it was great. Esp the top pitch. Great exposure in an amazing setting 

DubyaJamesDubya - on 26 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Did Octo (Cloggy) on Saturday. Great route easily deserving 3 stars. Bit unpleasant to get to but worth it when you do.

Tom Last - on 26 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

I followed my friend Max up Godspell on Blackchurch Main, which after six months of beer, fags, sofas, fags, the occassional vdiff and more fags, was a bit of an experience.

Dave Garnett - on 27 Jun 2018
In reply to Tom Last:

Yes, I imagine it would be!  Bold or loose, or both?


slab_happy on 27 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Delicious shade (and far fewer midges than expected) at Chatsworth today. Mort Wall (HVS 5a) , which I'd seconded before but was still very pleased to lead, and also Emperor Crack (VS 4c) , completely new to me and I don't know why it isn't on all the lists of classic squeezes if tackled that way rather than by laybacking.

Crux was realizing I'd gone too high inside the crack and had to extricate myself, which was achieved by horizontal writhing (and, according to my belayer, ended in a dramatic pop).

Offwidth - on 27 Jun 2018
In reply to slab_happy:

Sometimes an owl nests in that crack. You don't want to be stuck inside if it repels the invader. One dumped what looked like half a pint of guano when we inadvertently disturbed it once. Chatsworth has lots of really good and very memorable routes from HS to HVS that are rarely climbed. It's shady and often less midgy than you might think on a sunny but breezy day.

Post edited at 19:36
slab_happy on 27 Jun 2018
In reply to Offwidth:

> Sometimes an owl nests in that crack.

I am glad I was not sharing it with the owl!

> Chatsworth has lots of really good and very memorable routes from HS to HVS that are rarely climbed.

I'd been there once before and really wanted to go back. It seems to have a rather forbidding reputation, maybe because of Sentinel Crack looming over it, but there are some real gems in the lower grades, even below HS -- Emperor Flake Climb (VD) and Empress Crack (S 4b) are joys.

And Cave Crack (S 4b) is, unfortunately, my idea of fun.

Post edited at 21:35
TobyA on 27 Jun 2018
In reply to slab_happy:

I thought Cave Crack (S 4b) was pretty desperate! Good but horrible but good. But horrible.

I'm just home from Curbar. I tried Pale Complexion (VS 4c), but in the sun and heat it felt desperate and hanging on and trying to get RPs in to stop you snapping your ankles if you fell off the first half. I did October Crack (VS 4c) instead which felt a lot more secure. I see it comes up here as HS although I reckon the VS it gets in Gritstone East is more like it!

Tom Last - on 28 Jun 2018
In reply to Dave Garnett:

It was excellent and yes bold and a bit snappy, but not really loose - the rock was quite good stuff on the whole. Pegs are good too.

slab_happy on 28 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

> I thought Cave Crack (S 4b) was pretty desperate! Good but horrible but good. But horrible.

Yup, that was pretty much my experience, though I'd add another "but good" at the end. One of my prouder leads!

Simon Caldwell - on 28 Jun 2018
In reply to slab_happy:

Now added to my Wishlist

slab_happy on 28 Jun 2018
In reply to Simon Caldwell:

Delighted to hear it! It is a marvellous beast.


Gordon Stainforth - on 28 Jun 2018
In reply to TobyA:

I've just looked it up in my logbook (led, Aug 31 1975) and, strangely, there's almost no comment apart from 'Interesting'. All the other routes done that day at Chatsworth, from Diff to VS, have much longer comments. I certainly can't remember a thing about it.

Post edited at 12:53
TobyA on 01 Jul 2018
In reply to all:

So, who's been up to what?

I went on Rob Greenwood's unofficial Chee Tor clean up after seeing there are actually a few routes for a not very good trad climber to do there. I turned up on my own so was getting ready to not do much as everyone else was in a pair when Sam turned up, also alone, so we teamed up and had a good day bashing nettles down, chatting with others, eating hob nobs (although Rob's promised tea and coffee never materialised due to a forgotten gas canister!) and and cleaning climbing Gulle Gulle Groove (VS 4c) and The Chopper (VS 5a). The lower-off for the Chopper (also used by Goal of the Month (E3 5c) and Match of the Day (E2 5c)) has now been replaced with some fat brand new static and lower off ring, backed up to other threads with some thinner but still brand new cord - courtesy of Rob and Sam.

Today I went back to Cheedale for a family walk but no climbing, so popped out Baslow at sunset to do a few easy solos. Has anyone done a severe called Left-Hand Flake Crack (S 4a)? I've tried it a couple of times now and it seems a bit desperate for the grade, despite having soloed various things that are meant to be harder on Baslow and elsewhere.


joe.91 - on 02 Jul 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Day up at pillar after van issues stopped us from going to try the Needle, did Megatron, Thantatos and Electron. All clean and dry, worthwhile getting up there while people can. 

Afterwards headed to Scafell, did Centaur and Mickledore Grooves but our feet got too sore to contemplate getting on Ichabod. One for next time. 

teh_mark on 02 Jul 2018
In reply to TobyA:

A small handful of mods and diffs at the Roaches and Windgather - first trad leads since my February accident. My partner also got her first ever trad leads in at Windgather and was suitably chuffed - a good sunny weekend if I do say so myself, even if not much climbing was done.

Ben_Climber - on 02 Jul 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Spent a nice morning up on Grooved Arête (HVD 4a). Early start to miss the crowds and throughly enjoyed a catch up with and old friend.

Beer and sun was enjoyed afterwards.

Country_Boy - on 03 Jul 2018
In reply to TobyA:  We drove from down south to camp over in the peak and made our debut on grit.  So, on Saturday........

Birch Crack (VD) - fun, but we had no big gear so it felt quite runout at the top.  Scary.

Birch Buttress (S 4a) - fun, but run out at the top.  Scary.

Birch Bark (HS 4a) - I don't think I followed the route quite right as it felt about the same as Birch buttress.

Solitaire (HVD) and Rodney's Dilemma (S 4a) - both a little scary, but the latter being very satisfying indeed.

Then a nice meal at the Anglers Rest in Bamford, followed by Zip Crack (M) - something gentle just after 9pm.

On Sunday we had a look at Baslow on the way home.   Did Heather Wall (VD) - nice at the bottom but didn't have anything to protect the top crack, so, um, scary.  After that we decided to call it a day.

We had a great time, but I'd like to think that we're similar to many grit debutants, in that we found the charactristics of the rock, the routes and the protection opportunities somewhat different to our usual limestone climbing.  We headed home with our little brains fizzing, but we'll definitely be back


Post edited at 18:40
Steve Perry - on 04 Jul 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Vulcan Wall (HVS 5a)

I took my daughter on her first ever multi pitch in the mountains. We started late so topping out at 10pm to the sun setting over the sea was pretty special. Such a good evening crag.

Post edited at 08:25
Anti-faff - on 04 Jul 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Satchmo (E1 5c) and Fever Pitch (E2 5b) at Raven's Scar the other day. Both very good, especially Fever Pitch. A hold has fallen out of the top section of Satchmo making it a bit harder apparently. 

Lots of routes chalked up at Raven's Scar too which is great to see, fabulous crag. 

slab_happy on 04 Jul 2018
In reply to Country_Boy:

Congratulations on your grit debut! And commendations on your choice of crags -- Rivelin and Baslow are lovely, and Rodney's Dilemma in particular is such a good route.

> We headed home with our little brains fizzing

Sounds very normal for a first time on grit! To be honest, I've done a fair bit on grit by now and it still makes my brain fizz some of the time ...

TobyA on 08 Jul 2018
In reply to slab_happy:

Tales of daring dos, sweaty failures and the rest please ladies and gentlemen.

My climbing trip today failed, so it's fortunate that I persuaded my son yesterday that if he wanted a new pair of trainers he'd have to belay me on a route first. We arrived reasonably early in the slightly esoteric Duke's Quarry only to find a team already halfway up Great Crack (HVS 5a). The early birds from Leeds cruised it and soon it was my turn to have a go. I've wanted to do the route for ages, so was a bit nervous setting off up it - having only done one other HVS this season (and indeed none last year I don't think). The start is still greasy even if not wet, and you need to be pretty aggressive with your foot jamming as well as your hand jams but I got through the greasy bit and on to better holds above. It keeps coming at you but will take as much big and medium gear as you can carry, so rewards persistence plugging away with the jams. Top route and long even by Millstone standards (maybe Great North Road (HVS 5a) is as long but not as sustained), I chatted with a local couple who say they walk their dog there twice a day and had seen more climbers in recent weeks than they could remember seeing ever before (some one has done or has been working Dharma (E7 6c) next to Great Crack for instance. Anyway, now is the time to get Great Crack ticked if you are an HVS crack aficionado.

Who else has been out?

Jimboandrews. - on 09 Jul 2018
In reply to TobyA:

I managed to dodge house decorating duties Saturday and made a South to North Wales and back in a day trip so I’d be able to do some today. Killer but worth it. We did Idwal Buttress, continuation and onto Cneifion Arete and then Dolmen ridge and down Bristly. Bit of linking up and moving quick. 


Lovely day with lots of people in the mountains. 

Post edited at 00:09
Dave Cundy - on 09 Jul 2018
In reply to TobyA:

We got out on Friday afternoon and repeated King Kong at Wintour's Leap, for about the fifth time.  Which was a clever choice because although it was boiling hot, the route was mostly in the shade.  We noticed that the lip has fallen off the overhang on P1, a piece about the size of a shoe box.  It makes it a little harder to protect and a little harder to start.  Apart from that, it's a cracking route, apart from the broken middle bit on P1.  Looks like the peregrines like it too - plenty of feathers there, from meal times i guess.

d_b on 09 Jul 2018
In reply to TobyA:

A trip down to Shorn Cliff on Sunday.  Repeated a bunch of routes I had done before and had a miserable failure on Secret Identity (VS 4c) - got a piece of gear at about 5m, a second one at about 10 and the second piece fell out as I got level with it.  Couldn't get anything to go in and retreated.

The stupid thing is that I could clearly have finished the route as I climbed down without any real difficulty.

Redeemed the day slightly with the lovely State of Independence (VS 4b) but as it was a repeat it doesn't really count.

gribble - on 09 Jul 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Popped out to Yarncliff on Friday afternoon to see what exciting new biting insects have mutated during the hot weather spell.  The idea was to climb in the shade, but that didn't work out quite as well as we hoped.  Still, got a good clutch of VSs ticked off, and now we don't need to go back to Yarncliff for another year.

Country_Boy - on 09 Jul 2018
In reply to TobyA:

We headed to Shorn Cliff on Saturday - I've never seen it so busy.  The classic HVSs were getting lots of attention.

We started out looking at the 'new' Tiger Bay routes as per the 2012 CC Wye Valley supplement.

Out of these, we did Jenny's Route (S), which tbh, was a bit chossy.  Had a look at the HS Dazed and confused, but it has a terrifying loose earth slope top-out.  No thanks.

After that we did East to West (HS 4b), (energetic tussle up the crack to the top of the pinnacle, followed by an easier top section)' followed by The Iron Curtain (VS 4c).  This is a repeat for both of us, but quickly becoming an old favourite and a good confidence builder; nice moves, not particularly strenuous, easy to protect.  Lovely.

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