UKC

NEWS: James Pearson Climbs Cratcliffe Groove E10 7b

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 Michael Ryan 04 Feb 2008
One of the last great problems on Gritstone has been climbed. The groove below Fern Hill at Cratcliffe Tor was climbed by James Pearson on Saturday.

Listed on Jon Read's Grit List as one of the last great unclimbed problems on Gritstone (full list here) and described:

"This long standing problem w...

Read more at http://www.ukclimbing.com/news/
 Tufas Mum 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:

Brilliant news James, now get your arse over here and get some real work done!!

Sam Orange :0)
 jgoodwin2020 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:

A friend tells me first hand hes working on the face to the left of New Statesman at Ilkley - looks like another nails hard E10 line to me. Seems James and Mr Macleod are the 2 fore-runners of this generation pushing the boundaries of whats possible.

Maximum respect!
 Wingnut 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:
<*applause*>
 Will Hunt 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:

A very fine effort. The footage of him shunting it looked absolutely nails. Cant wait to see some video footage.
 Jon Read 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:
Bravo! A proper line fallen. The LGP list was looking glaringly outdated before, now I think I'll just delete it.
 Jus 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:

wahey! awesome stuff! bonne effort!!
 Oli 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC: Another sterling effort..
Ian 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:
well done that man
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:

Phew, I can relax and stop fretting about it! It will be a relief.

( I'm kidding. I did look at it about 10 years ago - great line but obviously impossible!)
 220bpm 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:

E10 7b, oo er, 'kin fine stuff yoof!
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:

Is this really news.....?

No, damned good effort; look forward to a video if there is one.

jcm
 slacky 04 Feb 2008
Good effort on an outstanding problem.

In reply to johncoxmysteriously:
>
> look forward to a video if there is one.

I'd imagine there will be.

Follow the links through to the original article on Climb Magazine and it closes by saying it was filmed by Hot Aches.
 mrsmesh 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Will Hunt:


> The footage of him shunting it looked absolutely nails <

where'd you see this? you got a link? cheers
 Al Evans 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC: Now that really is something, its not as though its unknown, the best of the best have been trying it since 1970.
 tigertiger 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Al Evans: That is gobsmaking.
 Stig 04 Feb 2008
In reply to mrsmesh: Committed DVD.

Truly outstanding, brilliant, well done James.

The most significant English route of the decade?
 Al Evans 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Stig: Do you mean of the past ten years or of the decade. Actually thats irrelevant, I think its the most significant new grit route since nearby Suicide Wall.
 Stig 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Al Evans: I know! What lines compare
New Statesman
Parthian Shot
Meshuga

But this is One Step Beyond...
 john arran 04 Feb 2008
Nice one James

I never got around to trying this (probably wouldn't have got near it anyway) but the number of people who have tried it and not succeeded proves it's proper cutting edge.

And finally somebody has started using the tech grade more sensibly, rather than pretending everything's 6c!

... although I suspect that if people hadn't stopped extending tech grades sometime in the 80s we'd be up to about 8a by now. Still, better late than never!
 JPGR 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC: Amazing effort, congratulations
 Al Evans 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC: This was once, very briefly, a dream for me, I quickly realised clearly I was nowhere even close to being good enough.
It then became a dream that somebody would do it, I have championed it as the real 'last great gritstone route' for years and pushed many hapless top climbers onto it. Thank you and well done James, you have made an old man happy along with all the other things you have acheived with this ascent. I just wish I had been there to watch you do it.
 Michael Ryan 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Al Evans:
> (In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC)

> I just wish I had been there to watch you do it.

Next best thing Al, Hot Aches have supplied Climb magazine with a video, it should be up soon. Then the full monty will be in a Hot Aches film later this year.

Mick

 nz Cragrat 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:

Is it harder than this?

http://www.climbing.com./news/hotflashes/edumarin2nd515/
 nz Cragrat 04 Feb 2008
 orge 04 Feb 2008
Amazing news!
A stunning line and an ascent that marks the progress made by the new generation!

Congratulations James!

J
Yorkspud 04 Feb 2008
In reply to john arran:
> Nice one James
>

>
> And finally somebody has started using the tech grade more sensibly, rather than pretending everything's 6c!
>
> ... although I suspect that if people hadn't stopped extending tech grades sometime in the 80s we'd be up to about 8a by now. Still, better late than never!

Exactly!

 Will Hunt 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:
Keep reporting stuff like this Mick and I may have to stop taking the piss out of the UKC news section.
SI A 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:

fantastic effort. i always used to look at and go its looks easy> hahahaaaaaaaa.

And a nice e10, gets the grade for the climbing as well as the death bit.
 billb 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:
Yeah but whats he done on grit?
 billb 04 Feb 2008
In reply to billyboy: Ill get my coat.
 Col Allott 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:
So he's spent longer working this than any other route he's done, yet he can flash font 8b for breakfast.
Exactly how hard is this then?
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:

On the theme of grooves and LGP's, and hopelessly off topic, has anyone done the 'impossible groove' at Burbage South yet?

jcm
In reply to nz Cragrat:

Looking at that, it looks like the route should be called not The Groove but Mostly The Wall Right of Cratcliffe Groove. Maybe the rest of it's more in the groove itself.

jcm
 Adam Long 04 Feb 2008
In reply to johncoxmysteriously:

You're a bit off the mark there John, yes it's climbed more as an arete than a groove but its churlish to suggest the feature hasn't been climbed. A right-hand/ direct finish remains to be climbed but James has certainly taken the logical line.
In reply to Adam L:

Oh, for sure. I didn't mean to sound like that.

You probably know, then: is this the way everyone's been trying it, or have other people been trying to get up inside the groove itself?

jcm
 Adam Long 04 Feb 2008
In reply to johncoxmysteriously:

I think some folk have tried sticking a foot out onto the wall to the left, but basically still laybacking the arete. The groove is too shallow, holdless and vertical to 'get up inside'. The arete it quite positive though, so laybacking it makes much more sense.
 Al Evans 04 Feb 2008
In reply to johncoxmysteriously: It's a good question though John, I must admit that I hoped the line would be direct up the groove, but if James has found that the logical way to be a foot or so right with just a hand on the groove you can hardly quibble, The line is the way it should be, has been, climbed, anything else would be artificial, the line is the line.
 butterworthtom 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:
That route looks miles harder than anything i think ive seen.
Well done James.
 Graham Hoey 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:
I belayed James on this, and it was some of the coolest, most impressive pieces of climbing I've seen in 34 years of climbing for lots of reasons. The video will show why, but what is so significant is that he absolutely walked up the crux, making you wonder what his limits are. A great morning, and something I'll never forget.
Graham
 TRNovice 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:

Given that I haven't recorded a sensible post as yet today, I thought that I'd break out of the mould and say congratulations to James on yet another stellar achievement. Now if only I was younger, taller, stronger and more talented (all by a factor of at least 50)...
 Toccata 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Al Evans:
> (In reply to johncoxmysteriously) It's a good question though John, I must admit that I hoped the line would be direct up the groove, but if James has found that the logical way to be a foot or so right with just a hand on the groove you can hardly quibble, The line is the way it should be, has been, climbed, anything else would be artificial, the line is the line.


Having seen the footage from 'Committed', it does seem he is climbing outside the Groove itself. In rather the way McClure missed most of the Elder Arete on Elder Statesman, it is not the perfect line. But this cannot detract from a brilliant new route from the most exciting climber to have come from this Isle since Ben 'n' Jerry.

A few questions: does this leave another possible line? Is the Elder arete route considered 'done'? Did anyone ever climb 'smiling butress'? Was Samson ever repeated?

Thanks for any answers.
 Si dH 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Toccata:
I think Samson has been repeated by quite a few people now and settled at highball Font-something? Don't know about the other questions.

Brilliant ascent by James. Its great to see a really hard route which is also a really good line and not just weaving up a blank wall avoiding the obvious bits. Wizard Ridge next?


 Simon 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Si dH:

Wizard Ridge next?


It was a good wind up - not a line unfortunately...

;0)
 abarro81 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Toccata:
> does this leave another possible line?
Only if you really like getting 2 routes out of one line.

> Did anyone ever climb 'smiling butress'?
No

> Was Samson ever repeated?
Yes, I think Simpson did it solo above uber-pads and called it highball font 8a.


 Oli 04 Feb 2008
In reply to abarro81:
> [...]
> Yes, I think Simpson did it solo above uber-pads and called it highball font 8a.

And John Welford too?

 Oli 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Al Evans:
> (In reply to johncoxmysteriously) It's a good question though John, I must admit that I hoped the line would be direct up the groove, but if James has found that the logical way to be a foot or so right with just a hand on the groove you can hardly quibble, The line is the way it should be, has been, climbed, anything else would be artificial, the line is the line.

As you say, the line is the line, and there can be no rules about how you climb it. That video of one of his 2007 attempts looked utterly beautiful to me, the way he slapped that arete twice. It wouldn't surprise me if it can't be climbed in any other way at all. Surely we must celebrate that what looked impossible has finally been accomplished, and in great style?
 Simon 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:
> (In reply to Al Evans)
> [...]
>
> As you say, the line is the line, and there can be no rules about how you climb it. That video of one of his 2007 attempts looked utterly beautiful to me, the way he slapped that arete twice. It wouldn't surprise me if it can't be climbed in any other way at all. Surely we must celebrate that what looked impossible has finally been accomplished, and in great style?


...Not to say that other ways of climbing it have been fruitless & James has unlocked THE sequence - which always should be celebrated -

...unless the eliminate & harder way gets climbed!!??




In reply to Simon:
> (In reply to Gordon Stainforth)
> [...]
>
>
> ...Not to say that other ways of climbing it have been fruitless & James has unlocked THE sequence - which always should be celebrated -
>
> ...unless the eliminate & harder way gets climbed!!??

I'd say forget the 'eliminate' at the moment: we are surely all now reeling and celebrating at this fantastic technical achievement?

 Will Hunt 04 Feb 2008
In reply to Toccata and Johncoxmysteriously:

> he is climbing outside the Groove itself ... it is not the perfect line.

You make me laugh.
keithcrockford 05 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:

James, Brilliant effort, keep up the good work and keep is all updated on your website, http://www.jamespearsonclimbing.com

Well done
 220bpm 05 Feb 2008
In reply to Col Allott:
> (In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC)
> So he's spent longer working this than any other route he's done, yet he can flash font 8b for breakfast.
> Exactly how hard is this then?

Yep, It'll be interesting to see what he offers as a french grade for it
Committed 2, gerra move on!
 Al Evans 05 Feb 2008
In reply to nz Cragrat:
> (In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC)
>
> Is it harder than this?
>
> http://www.climbing.com./news/hotflashes/edumarin2nd515/

It's a lot different, demands more technical skill but probably less on strength
Anonymous 05 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:

It looks like James is the man to repeat Rhapsody.
 JLS 05 Feb 2008
In reply to Anonymous:

Are you predicting a Pearson/Maclure race for the second ascent?
 JLS 05 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:

I notice it's given 7a on James' website, where does 7b come from?
 Peter Walker 05 Feb 2008
In reply to JLS: 7b in the headline, 7a in the text. One of them must be a typo, and I suspect the latter.
 JLS 05 Feb 2008
In reply to JLS:

... looks like a typo on James' website.
 JLS 05 Feb 2008
In reply to Peter Walker:

yeah, just noticed...
 robin mueller 05 Feb 2008
In reply to Al Evans:
> Is it harder than this Edu Marin's new 9a+?
>
>> It's a lot different, demands more technical skill but probably less on strength

I wouldn't be so sure. That new 9a+ is a monster stamina link up, whereas Jame's new route has a crux around font 8a+ (from what the rumours say). After all, it's one of the hardest moves in the peak, and one which many of the top climbers of recent decades have failed on. Does Edu's route have any moves this hard? It might, but it also might not...

keithcrockford 05 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:

Yes it is a typo, it has been sorted now by the looks of it, it says 7b on there now.
In reply to robin mueller:

>whereas Jame's new route has a crux around font 8a+ (from what the rumours say).

Is that all?! You'd think he'd have flashed that!

jcm
 Col Allott 05 Feb 2008
In reply to johncoxmysteriously:
> (In reply to robin mueller)
>
> >whereas Jame's new route has a crux around font 8a+ (from what the rumours say).
>
> Is that all?! You'd think he'd have flashed that!
>
> jcm

If in some magical reality I could flash font 8b, I would expect to be able to top-rope font 8b in a few goes. So if it took him so long to work out and then link these moves, what the heck is the font grade? Could it be the current hardest piece of non-overhanging climbing around?

Just need someone to on-site it now...

In reply to Col Allott:

We're 'on-siting' it this morning
In reply to Col Allott:

Well done James! I've just watched the video of this and it looks like a fantastic piece of climbing, very Dawes-esque with that one-handed slap up the arête and quick reach to the pebble...

I wouldn't fall into the trap of assuming that because James has flashed 8b anything he struggles with must be harder. Even the best climbers in the world struggle with easy things sometimes. If James thinks 8a+ that'll be about right.

As an aside I think that makes it the hardest sequence on a grit route to date, with careless torque and Samson both being 8a...

Well done again James. Hope your luck holds for the ilkley project...
 Andy Farnell 05 Feb 2008
In reply to midgets of the world unite:
> (In reply to Col Allott)
>
> > Well done again James. Hope your luck holds for the ilkley project...

Stunning effort, now that Ilkley project, the one on Redzza's grit list by any chance?

Andy F
 john arran 05 Feb 2008
In reply to Col Allott:
> If in some magical reality I could flash font 8b, I would expect to be able to top-rope font 8b in a few goes.

I'm not sure you can generalise like this, especially when talking about gritstone. The hardest flashes are often those with reasonably obvious moves on well-defined holds. Whereas on gritstone it can take many sessions to combine all the subtleties into a workable sequence, after which the moves may start to feel relatively straightforward. The bouldering grade is for the easiest sequence, regardless of how long it may take to find it. On some rock, such as granite, you may find the easiest sequence quickly. On gritstone this is rarely the case.

Not that I would expect this groove to be anything other than extremely desperate, but if he's offering a bouldering grade equivalent it will (or should) be for how hard he finds it to climb now, rather than for how long it took to work out.
In reply to john arran:

I was going to ask that. So how interesting really is this 'flashed 8a/8b/8c/whatever' stuff, when some 8bs are very much more flashable than others and than some 8as.

I suppose the answer is 'a little bit but with obvious limitations which are known to the cognoscenti', like a lot of grade stuff.

jcm
In reply to johncoxmysteriously:

Also, of course, with these dangerous things (not sure how dangerous this is, but anyway), the question is not how hard it is to get eventually, but how hard is to get to a position where you're reasonably confident you can do it on demand. That's a different measure again.

Which is why I never understand this urge to give trad routes grades drawn from other disciplines, but hey.
 Col Allott 05 Feb 2008
In reply to john arran:

> I'm not sure you can generalise like this, especially when talking about gritstone. The hardest flashes are often those with reasonably obvious moves on well-defined holds. Whereas on gritstone it can take many sessions to combine all the subtleties into a workable sequence, after which the moves may start to feel relatively straightforward.

Damn right. To be honest these grades mean nothing to me anyway cos they're all impossible! -just a bit curious really.
Also, more important than any grade, is what a great line it is. good stuff.

 Paz 05 Feb 2008
Awesome James, awesome.

Some explain why the hell this isn't E11?
 Toccata 05 Feb 2008
In reply to Will Hunt:
> (In reply to Toccata and Johncoxmysteriously)
>
> [...]
>
> You make me laugh.

Why? I suppose the Groove left of The Groove is now a last great problem?
 Ed Booth 05 Feb 2008
In reply to Paz:


> Some explain why the hell this isn't E11?

Firstly good effort James, nice to see the LGP's falling!
I was just wandering the opposite? How safe is the crux move? Is there a cam in the break taht your feet are in when you start slapping up the arete? If so would it not be lower. I agree with John Arran that its nice to see a 7b move suggested but when working it with the adjectival grade, even if it was utterly desperate it could still be E8 or E9 more like considering the effort for an on site. Jusdt curious, seeing as there are problems such as Dixons Vlad the Arete which is english tech 7a but given e4 cause the move is by some pegs with a safe fall. Possibly that is too low but just curious as to how safe, sustained the new route is. Cheers Ed
 robin mueller 05 Feb 2008
In reply to boothy:

Given that this is one of the hardest moves on gritstone, and looks like a very unique move to boot, how likely do you think it is that it will be onsightable at the same grade as an E8/9 with a far, far easier crux?

(I'm not saying E9's are easy, btw).
 Ed Booth 05 Feb 2008
In reply to robin mueller: Yes but generally they are given E9 because if you fall off them you die or really hurt yourself? Maybe E10 is spot on? The only reason i asked is because it seems likelots of routes at the cutting edge get given the grade E10 where as its quite a broad area in all the grades and routes are probably so individual they are hard to put to one grade, grades are a load of shit anyway, we could do without them in climbing!
 Jon Read 05 Feb 2008
In reply to Paz:
Hubble was suggested to be E10 7b when Moon first did it
(could have been Mountain hyperbole though!)
 Al Evans 05 Feb 2008
In reply to robin mueller: Robin, I think I'm agreeing with what you say, aren't I?
 Al Evans 05 Feb 2008
In reply to johncoxmysteriously:
> (In reply to johncoxmysteriously)
> Which is why I never understand this urge to give trad routes grades drawn from other disciplines, but hey.

John, its because only UK trad climbers understand trad grades.
 robin mueller 05 Feb 2008
In reply to Al Evans:

Not exactly. They may be equally difficult, but you might be wrong that the 9a+ requires more strength. More stamina certainly, but it's quite possible you have to pull just as hard, or harder, on the E10. Just going on the mooted grades, that is.

But I'm a boulderer. What do I know...?
 Ed Booth 05 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC: Just read that it has a probable ground fall from dyno so fair play E10 sounds fully justified. I wasn't having a dig, just wandering if there was a cam there. What a cool sounding route!
 Al Evans 05 Feb 2008
In reply to robin mueller: Sorry Robin, just looking at the picture I made an assumption, with no real knowledge.
Vlad the arete is overgraded at 7a. There are a couple of 6cish moves lower down leading to 6b moves giving a hard sequence overall but no move in particular is actually 7a.
In reply to boothy:
> What a cool sounding route!

Cool looking too. Utterly compelling line on one of the highest quality pieces of grit in the Peak. Obviously one of the best achievements on English, if not British, rock for quite a while. I'm slightly disappointed that it hasn't generated an even more enthusiastic response on UKC than it already has.
 remus 05 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC: for soem reason, this is one of the few routes i considered a proper LGP, untill now of course. Absolutely stunning line, and a brilliant ascent in general.
 simon c 05 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:

Excellent, over the years I've wondered when standing below this when it would finally get done; a great achievement.


 Alex1 05 Feb 2008
In reply to Mick Ryan - Editor - UKC:

Will it get a name or is it called 'the groove'? Looks like an amazing effort!
In reply to necromancer85:

Hope it's not just going to be called 'The Groove'. Hope its name may have some bearing on Fern Hill or Owl Gully, or Five Finger Exercise just opposite.
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

I don't know. It's been The Groove at Cratcliffe for so long it'd be rather a shame to see it given any other name, in a way.

jcm
In reply to Al Evans:
> (In reply to johncoxmysteriously)
> [...]
>
> John, its because only UK trad climbers understand trad grades.

And we think they'll understand them better if they're told Indian Face is 7b+?!

jcm


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