/ Winter lines in the Lakes (Sphinx Ridge)

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FelixL - on 13 Jan 2017

Hi,

The snow is back and wandering in the Lakes suddenly becomes very appealling.

I've been looking into BMC recommendation for winter climbing in the Lakes and some areas are a bit grey.

My idea was to do Sphinx Ridge in the Napes. Napes is included into the "don't touch" crags for winter with exceptions of gullies and "non-major" buttresses.

I can't find more detailed info about the status of the ridge other than it seems to be an acknowledged winter route.

Wanted to gather few thoughts before venturing there.

Cheers
Post edited at 15:01
4
davidbeynon on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to FelixL:
The ridge itself is a mossy scramble in "summer" conditions & probably wouldn't suffer noticeably if it was properly frozen up.

The direct start is a steepish pitch of vdiff that I wouldn't want to scratch up. I have only done it when it was covered in slime so it may be less steep than I remember.
Post edited at 15:25
FelixL - on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to davidbeynon:

Cheers for that, helpful!
no_more_scotch_eggs - on 13 Jan 2017
In reply to FelixL:

i'd had a similar thought the other night- so thanks for posting, and thanks for the info, david
tripehound - on 14 Jan 2017
In reply to FelixL:

Felix
Should be ok if the turfs frozen but according to the felltop observer it currently isn't.
(Jeff B )
atthedropofahat on 14 Jan 2017
In reply to FelixL:

Sphinx ridge is a scramble and isn't really a classic rock route. It's not on gritstone or a soft rock and is on a mountain. I'd say it's most similar to pinnacle ridge at st.sunday crag in terms of its usage. Pinnacle ridge is climbed in winter.

If we didn't climb scrambles in winter there would be no classic ridge climbs below grade IV!

However the aspect of sphinx ridge would limit the snow cover I suspect.
no_more_scotch_eggs - on 15 Jan 2017
In reply to atthedropofahat:
Would there be any sections that rely on turf to make progress? Or would it moves on snowed up rock, like pinnacle ridge?


Edit- just noticed your reply, tripehound- is it a turfy route after all?
Post edited at 17:29
davidbeynon on 15 Jan 2017
In reply to no_more_scotch_eggs:

I remember a lot of it being quite grassy, so there would certainly be turf bits.
James Jackson on 15 Jan 2017
In reply to atthedropofahat:

> I'd say it's most similar to pinnacle ridge at st.sunday crag in terms of its usage. Pinnacle ridge is climbed in winter.

Given how obvious the scarring from crampons is on Pinnacle Ridge (I climbed it a fortnight ago), I think it's often climbed in 'winter' conditions as well as winter conditions.
CurlyStevo - on 15 Jan 2017
In reply to James Jackson:

I think for many rocky mixed routes it's rare that snow and ice offer much protection for the rock tbh. Probably the opposite is more commonly true that it leads to more scraping around trying to find crampon and axe placements as well as mis judging ones that can't be seen properly.
no_more_scotch_eggs - on 15 Jan 2017
In reply to davidbeynon:

Thanks- very unlikely to be anywhere near in condition in the next couple of weeks then- ah well, back to the guidebook for some inspiration!
atthedropofahat on 15 Jan 2017
In reply to James Jackson:

You will rarely if ever find a ridge which has fully formed ice sufficient to protect the rock. Even with a good neve build up there will be rock beneath your crampons at some point.
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atthedropofahat on 15 Jan 2017
In reply to no_more_scotch_eggs:

There's some turfy bits. At one point you traverse right with your feet on a turfy ledge, then up a turfy groove.

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