This week's ticklist has an eclectic mix of hard sport, new trad, international bouldering and some Adam Ondra...
I went to do War and Peace with Ian Parnell, shortly after it was first done in the 90s. We got up really early, lowered stashes of water and snacks on ropes at key points along the traverse, headed off along the first pitch, and then ...
... it pissed down and everything got drenched!
I don't remember why we didn't go back for another try, other things got in the way, I suppose. Amazing to hear it's had to wait 24 years for anyone mad and bad enough to repeat it; makes me think we may have got well spanked had we been able to continue! Good effort, Nick & Mick.
If anyone is interested in reading a bit more about The Certainty of Tides (E7 6c) and that crag in general, I've written up a blog with videos:
Nice one John, I can't imagine two more suitable candidates than Ian and yourself. Good job it rained 😉
Truth be told, having an in-depth knowledge of the crag, the routes, the rock, belays etc, made a massive difference. I'm never going to say a complete one day, on-sight is impossible, I'm sure it is, but as Pat has said, a one day sideascent would be world class, haha, if world class can be attached to shuffling sideways on Doris, not sure it can, plus, if you start sprinting on that crag, well, good luck... 😃
Thanks for posting this - that looks like a bloody great FA and it's definitely a great write-up. Good observations on the NC500 too. Congratulations both.
Thank you. On the NC500, it's a little tricky to discuss without coming across elitist or hypocritical, a case of complaining about traffic when you are traffic. But I feel the whole concept encourages an attitude where an 'experience' is just another thing to be consumed, a place just another commodity, and it's very hard not to be affected by this. Something to be discussed more fully elsewhere.
Lovely write up, I share your thoughts on the NC500, but as you say, for another topic!
> This is partly because claims of firsts and bests tend to draw attention from the kind of person who might see in that missing chunk of video the latest iteration of Maestri/ Simpson/ Gaskins/ take your pick...
I can’t really see this being the case here, Ferdia had a proven track record, and you’re hardly an unknown Spaniard who just happened to by cycling past Stanage!
You're probably right, but there's definitely a view, perhaps cemented in by the controversy over Paul Robinson's FA claim of Lucid Dreaming, that all significant ascents should be backed up with unedited video footage*. All seems a bit abstract to punters like us, who don't have much of a 'profile' to worry about, but I thought it worth acknowledging.
* Mind you, there aren't many boulder problems or even redpoints where the climber spends 15 minutes standing on a ledge with her heels out of her shoes, so a bit less SD capacity required!
For what it's worth, I would regard anyone expressing doubt about this ascent as either an idiot or a charlatan. And nor would I preclude the possibility of both.
More footage of the lead would have been great, but it's good just to see any. I just watched it again - it looks like an absolutely brilliant route. Respect to Ferdia. As for repeat ascentionists to assess the grade .... where's smally?
In any case, we have a long tradition of accepting routes on the basis that climbers are generally honest. When claiming, say, an E10, proof is really required but for something 'just' very gnarly I doubt many would question it even without any video.
No shortage of hard winter FAs without any video of course, so we rely on track record, any photos and the word of their climbing partners.
> I just watched it again - it looks like an absolutely brilliant route. Respect to Ferdia. As for repeat ascentionists to assess the grade .... where's smally?
Probably shaking out on intermediates somewhere.
I guess there aren't many hard bridging corners in the UK - there's The Quarryman (E8 7a) groove pitch, though that's bolted, there's Tombola (E7 6c) at Nesscliffe and An Empty Book (E7 6b) at Fair Head, but I can't think of many.