UKC

NEW ARTICLE: Enigmatic Affection: The Dark Art of Chimneying

This topic has been archived, and won't accept reply postings.
 UKC Articles 11 Mar 2015
Ian Stevens Getting stuck in on Just Fits in Pembrokeshire, 3 kbUKC User Samuel Wainwright gives a brief overview of the joys and motivation of chimney climbing. Joe Simpson once described rock climbing to be a mixture between gymnastics and ballet. This joy and freedom of movement is usually the tipping factor in the balance between selfish indulgence and unacceptable risk.

However, there is a mysterious and foreboding derivative branch of mountaineering which doesn't conform to this pattern. Where freedom is impeded by lithological incarceration and joy is a long forgotten commodity. Chimney climbing is undoubtedly the 'dark art' of climbing.



Read more at http://www.ukclimbing.com/articles/page.php?id=7115
 ianstevens 11 Mar 2015
In reply to UKC Articles:

Good to see your continued promotion of the dark art of chimneying Sam. What's next on the list?
 d_b 11 Mar 2015
In reply to UKC Articles:

It's always good to hear from fellow chimney devotees.

I have been taking a step beyond the chimney over the last few years and getting into blowholes. It's easier than it sounds, but getting out again is the hard bit.
 Babika 12 Mar 2015
In reply to UKC Articles:

Great article! I'm a devotee too and often wonder why....But there is something about the struggle that makes it compelling. There's a route at Chatsworth Edge that I took my entire rack and helmet off to try and fit through the exit hole but still couldn't and had to reverse it all.
Then that thing at the Dewerstone that I entered and reversed again as it was just too scary. I thought I'd be bricked up inside when they couldn't get me out!
 David Rose 12 Mar 2015
In reply to UKC Articles:

I came to climbing after years of caving. The result is that most chimneys have always seemed extremely easy to me, even once-notorious chimney test pieces such one of the pitches near the top of La Demande in the Verdon (I'm speaking of the days before this had any bolts in it, and required about 45 m of back and footing with almost no gear.)

One I did find very hard was White Horse at Swanage. Desperate.
 pebbles 12 Mar 2015
In reply to UKC Articles:

type 2 fun? no way! type 1 from start to finish!!!!! maybe I just havnt done the right (wrong) chimneys yet...
 JonathanJones 12 Mar 2015
In reply to UKC Articles:

Cave crawl at froggatt - excellent, could be described no other way than as a chimney.
 Offwidth 12 Mar 2015
In reply to UKC Articles:

Nice pics but seems tame on the knowledge or list side compared to some of the thrutch and squeeze obsessive postings in the the past.

http://www.ukclimbing.com/articles/page.php?id=438
In reply to UKC Articles:

Anyone got a list or recommendations for some hard chimneys?
Preferably in the higher grades although I've had the pleasure I getting spanked by HVS chimneys in the past.
 Offwidth 12 Mar 2015
In reply to deacondeacon:

The site really needs someone to do this and its a bit out of my range: Tower Chimney and Dover and Ellis are two common obvious examples on eastern grit but I've never seen anyone climb the latter.
In reply to Offwidth:

Cheers offwidth. I've done tower chimney and I'll get on Dover and Ellis next time I'm at burbage south. Must be done others, I quite fancy some quarryman style moves but on grit
 IanMcC 12 Mar 2015
In reply to deacondeacon:

This is a "recommendation" ?
Optimist's Chimney (VS 4c)
In reply to IanMcC:

Thanks, I think!
 Dave Ferguson 12 Mar 2015
In reply to deacondeacon:

another "recommendation": The Trap (HVS 4c)

hardest chimney I've ever done and "only" HVS
In reply to Dave Ferguson:

That sounds brilliant.
 Offwidth 12 Mar 2015
In reply to deacondeacon:

If you want VS climbs Ive got quite a lot more. The lower grade lists we produced are here (click top tens, then chimneys)


http://www.ukclimbing.com/articles/page.php?id=438
In reply to Offwidth:

Is that the right link offwidth?
It may just be me (I'm on my phone) but I can't see any lists there.
 Offwidth 12 Mar 2015
In reply to deacondeacon:

You need Flash enabled so it won't work on most phone or tablet web browsers. I use Photon on my tablet.
In reply to Offwidth:

I take it you mean on your website?
Your link is for a ukc page
 Michael Gordon 12 Mar 2015
In reply to IanMcC:

> This is a "recommendation" ?


I don't like the look of some of those comments! Sounds like not so much chimneying fun as just a stupidly loose route.
 IanMcC 12 Mar 2015
In reply to Michael Gordon:

Type 3 fun?
 Michael Gordon 13 Mar 2015
In reply to IanMcC:

Probably! I guess going to hospital with a broken leg counts as that
In reply to UKC Articles:

I recommend Strapiombo (http://www.ukclimbing.com/logbook/c.php?i=2625) for a tougher chimney. It's been a while, but I remember it as flaring out and overhanging, but that may have been me.
While you're at Tremadog, the inside version of Shadrach is a good warm up for the much admired Monolith Crack.
 Offwidth 13 Mar 2015
In reply to deacondeacon

Oops... my tablet cut and paste sometimes seems to have a life of its own. Try this:

http://offwidth.uptosummit.com/chimney_topten.html
 joeruckus 13 Mar 2015
In reply to UKC Articles:

Putting another shout in for a Tremadog route: Nifl-Heim. Starts with a struggle inside a pile of broken boulders - you can do it on the outside, but it's fun passing through the middle, although you might have to take your rack off or dislocate your shoulder to get through the last gap. There's a nice crack pitch at the top to finish - a big mixed adventure.
http://www.ukclimbing.com/logbook/c.php?i=35929
 hedgepig 16 Mar 2015
In reply to UKC Articles:

Several nasty green things with comically low grades at High Rocks. Southern sandstone chimneys are the darkest of dark arts. Many are lined inside by bits of my discarded skin.
 Offwidth 22 Mar 2015
In reply to johncoxmysteriously:
That's more like chimney climbing enthusiasm
Post edited at 17:58
 Jonas Wiklund 22 Mar 2015
In reply to UKC Articles:

this is an excerpt from something I wrote at some point, but never used

------------------
“Only a fool can fall out of a chimney.” True. But then, what do you call someone who gets lost in one?

Of all the chimneys we climbed during the international Czech sandstone meeting in 2012 the one that stands out most in my memory is the Original route (Stará cesta) to the top of the Mayor's wife (Starostová) in Adršpach.

The first pitch started with a hand-crack somewhere deep inside a rock labyrinth, followed by a bit of sideways chuffing in one chimney which lead to a three-way junction when it met another major chimney. After some confused back-and-forth shouting with local chimney-aficionado Tomáš Vidlák, I got the impression that I was supposed to take the left junction, and continue across a smaller side-chimney up and diagonally across the wide chimney to the tower on the left. Since I judged the rope-drag to be “impossible” (for some reason I often find the drag bad just before climbing starts to be scary…) I instead turned in to the side-chimney and made a body belay to bring up Tomáš and Stefan.

It turned out that I was supposed to just go diagonally up in the left arm for ten meters or so until a hidden bolt in the chimney could be reached. The chimney was extraordinarily green and wide enough to not feel super safe, so I was very thankful that Stefan led that part.

Stefan was perhaps not quite as thankful to take the lead, especially after he failed applying one of the fine tricks our host had shown us: when approaching a ring bolt that you really want to clip as soon as possible, take a double shoulder-length spectra sling and lasso it to the pin (only works for the old style square pins from the year dot). If the bolt is drilled in vertically or in slight downward direction, as is often the case with old bolts, the sling should give you a body-weight top-rope anchor.

Stefan on lead:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/wiklund/8012884281/

The bolt that Stefan failed to lasso was old and almost rusted through. (Note: In four days of climbing it was the only bad bolt we saw.) The next pitch was an easy off-width to more wide chimneying, followed by a last pitch with an easy hand crack which led to the top. But that feeling of getting lost in a maze of dark green chimneys will stay with me for some time.

Next pitch:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/wiklund/8012903010/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/wiklund/8012898803/
------------------
In reply to UKC Articles:

Loving the names of some of these chimneys... you know exactly what you're in for with names like 'The Optimist'... 'The Trap'... good luck with those mate, I'll come along and watch

This topic has been archived, and won't accept reply postings.
Loading Notifications...