/ NEW ARTICLE: The Ledge is Narrower by Mick Ward

This topic has been archived, and won't accept reply postings.
UKC Articles 23 Sep 2010
Windy Ledge Stoney Middleton circa 1983, 4 kb

The weekend of the 11th and 12th of September 2010 - the Stoney Middleton get together. Over one hundred climbers met at the classic limestone venue to recall tales of old, climb, reminisce and above all have fun.



In this new article - 'The Ledge is Narrower' - a follow up to the weekend, Mick Ward reflects on climbing, life and his fellow climbers...

Read more at http://www.ukclimbing.com/articles/page.php?id=3023

Chris Craggs Global Crag Moderator23 Sep 2010
In reply to UKC Articles:

Great read, thanks for that.


Chris
Adam Perrett 23 Sep 2010
In reply to UKC Articles:

Nice one Mick. This is a great read.

Nostalgia IS what it used to be ;)

I'm looking forward to looking back....
Ian Jones 23 Sep 2010
In reply to UKC Articles:

Another well considered and well written piece Mick.
I have some regret at not making the effort to get down as there was a good Sheffield turn out.
It sounded as if the Manchester mob weren't so well represented though or am I wrong?
fimm 23 Sep 2010
In reply to UKC Articles:

Brilliant article, thank you.
gingerwolf 23 Sep 2010
In reply to UKC Articles: Nice article Mick
Good one
It was a great weekend, nice climbing with you
"The young Nick Bond" (though better looking and more hair, I might add!)
Cheers
Tom
Al Randall 23 Sep 2010
In reply to tobyfk: At 62 I'm still an active climber. I'm off to Kalymnos in a few weeks and will be very disappointed if I don't tick off at least one 7a by the end of the week. I went out yesterday just for an afternoon, the main purpose of which was to nurture someone elses ambition, and still managed to get in a couple of Extremes. That doesn't stop me enjoying a bit of nostalgia. I love talking about the old days. To coin a phrase the 60's 70's and 80's were a "golden era" in climbing.

To Mick: Another great piece of writing. Sorry I could not be there.

Al
keith sanders 23 Sep 2010
What a good bit of writing and and journey to get there.
Yes lots of us are still climbing 4/5 days a week and still doing trips to new places and crags [advantage of age and early retirement]this year, Kenya, France, Ionian sea next week looking for new crags then back to France.
Let this long continue for myself my climbing mates and all.This is what climbing has done for us. Wish I could have been at Stony on the re-union to meet some of the old faces but was on my way back from France with the help of Diclofenac tablets and spray .

keith s
Phil Kelly 23 Sep 2010
In reply to UKC Articles: A great read and great memories of an outstanding weekend. It was a pleasure to finally meet up with Mick, as well as a lot of others, including Steve Lewis who I hadn't seen for over 25 years, since the early Pen Trwyn days.

Quentin only has himself to blame for the ledge being narrower; he was always a Schwarzenegger fan and now he's grown up to be the same size.

For the rest of us (ok, me...) it's the beer belly that gets in the way on the narrow bits.

Phil
Mick Ward 23 Sep 2010
In reply to UKC Articles:

Thanks to people for their kind comments. I'd worried that the piece was too personal but I'm sure other people must have had similar thoughts. Phil and Mick made it happen - theirs' is the credit.

As Al wrote above, 'To coin a phrase the 60's 70's and 80's were a "golden era" in climbing' with major crags, such as Gogarth, being discovered and standards shooting up from E2 to E9. Of course you can have your own golden era at any time. And each generation goes further than the previous one.

The Supertopo threads seem to show a deep appreciation for both climbing history (they had the same golden age) and renewal. Their reunions and their writing (e.g. The Stonemasters) are superb celebrations of climbing and living. Now, courtesy of Phil and Mick, we've emulated them.

Although there are some brilliant American 'golden age' photos, nobody over there seems to have done what Brian Cropper has: photograph an entire generation in its prime. He's caught the essence of so many climbers, often not even climbing. His work really is special.

I suppose the question now is should the Stoney reunion stand as a one-off or would people like it as an annual event? Whatever the answer, I will always treasure the one that we had - the only reunion I've ever been to.

Mick
Mark Leach 23 Sep 2010
In reply to Mick Ward: Thanks for a great event both you and Phil did a great job. I could only make the Saturday. Myself, Courtney and Helen had a good time meeting old friends and making new friends. I remember Courtney my daughter shouting up at me whilst I was on windy ledge, with some famous climbers, that I was a rubbish climber. I could not rebut her opinion other than second Scoop Wall with some very good friends. However, I have since been back to Stoney and have started working out on the old routes. What a great weekend and what a great place in the history of climbing. That Saturday at Stoney has motivated so much.

Mark Leach
TobyA 23 Sep 2010
In reply to UKC Articles: That's a great bit of writing Mick. Not my era or region, but still very engaging. Sounds like a great fun weekend as well.
mozzer 23 Sep 2010
In reply to UKC Articles:

Superb piece of writing Mick. Sounds like you had a fantastic time.
In reply to Mick Ward:
> I'd worried that the piece was too personal...


It's the personal touch that makes it an enjoyable insight - thanks for sharing

Steve
Mick Ward 23 Sep 2010
In reply to Odwin Kay:
> (In reply to Mick Ward) I remember Courtney my daughter shouting up at me whilst I was on windy ledge, with some famous climbers, that I was a rubbish climber.

Oh, the irony - love it!

> I could not rebut her opinion other than second Scoop Wall with some very good friends.

What it's all about, I guess.

Helen kept saying, "He'll be down in a minute..."

Mick

P.S. And thanks for other peoples' comments also. Much appreciated.

Michael Ryan 23 Sep 2010
In reply to Mick Ward:

Thanks Mick.

Two great articles and brilliant to meet you.


Mick
Phil Kelly 24 Sep 2010
In reply to Odwin Kay: Hey, Mark (Odwin?!) It was great to see you out there at Stoney; we first went there together around 82/83 ish and did the classics like Alcasan, Bitterfingers, Our Father etc (OK, so you led the latter two), and back later for Menopause, Hysterectomy and other desperates.

I have photos of all of them apart from Bitterfingers. Will get them to you sometime.

Thanks for coming along on the day, even if you are a 'rubbish climber' - it was guys like you turning up after all these years that made it such a great weekend.

If you've been working the old routes again do you feel up to a bit of guiding?

Phil
Al Evans 24 Sep 2010
In reply to Mick Ward: Great article as usual, sorry I wasn´t there but it´s even further from Spain than it is from Dorset (What was Croppers excuse?) Hope to see you again sometime when I get back to England.
Al
gingerwolf 24 Sep 2010
In reply to UKC Articles: Aye, great weekend, and to answer the inevitable question - definitely an annual event
Get Mick and Phil in their mobile cafe and do it again
Thanks alot guys!
Skyfall 24 Sep 2010
In reply to Mick Ward:

Great article Mick, and the original, beautifully written. Thanks.
brian cropper25 Sep 2010
In reply to Mick Ward: the moving finger writes and having writ moves on nor all thy piety nor wit shall lure it back to cancel have aline nor all thay tears wash out a word of it to me the greats poet ever regards brian
Mick Ward 26 Sep 2010
In reply to brian cropper:

When I was a mere sprog (not so long ago!?), my uncle Paddy, who'd emigrated to Australia, send my dad a copy of FitzGerald's translation of the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam. Uncle Paddy might have been a tad philosphical, but my dad certainly wasn't. So it was left to aforesaid sprog to struggle with the intricacies of long-dead Persian intellectual giant. Obviously it was a one-sided struggle! But it was a worthwhile one. Scholars may argue about the (mis?) translation but, for me, there's a timeless wisdom that shines through.

Again, my thanks to people for the comments above. But Brian, nothing would have happened without your superb photograph history. So thank you too!

All best wishes,

Mick
mark mcgowan01 26 Sep 2010
In reply to Mick Ward:
Great Article Mick.

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