UKC

COMPETITION: UK Classic Rock Summer Challenge

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 UKC Articles 12 Apr 2021
Summer Classic Rock Challenge

To celebrate the 55th Anniversary of the Joe Brown Shops in Snowdonia, The International School of Mountaineering (ISM), The Climbers Shop, The Joe Brown Shops and UKC have teamed up to offer you a fantastic summer rock climbing challenge right here in the UK.



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4
 Michael Gordon 13 Apr 2021
In reply to UKC Articles:

Nothing like encouraging more traffic onto the busiest routes...

21
 veteye 13 Apr 2021
In reply to UKC Articles:

I might see if I get the chance to do the ones that I haven't done so far, which is a short Lakes list, due to intending doing them on days when the weather was foul. So probably the hardest to get to do, is Jones' route in my mind, due to that uncertain weather.

In Wales, the ones that I have not done are further out of core pass/Ogwen areas, such as Will O' the wisp. These are mainly due to other climbers not wanting to travel away from the honeypot core area, so I'll have to be more persuasive.

In reply to veteye:

Will o the wisp is close to me and is a brilliant route. Drop me a line if you want a partner for it.

 veteye 13 Apr 2021
In reply to pancakeandchips:

I might just do that. Thank you.

In reply to Michael Gordon:

> Nothing like encouraging more traffic onto the busiest routes...

This comes up every time pretty much anyone tries to do something positive and my conclusion is much the same: that people can pick holes in anything.

If Joe Brown's had selected a series of more esoteric routes I have no doubt that they'd have been accused of some other wrongdoing. Is the solution just to give up trying to do anything positive and embrace a more bland, homogenous form of marketing instead?! At the end of the day it's just meant as an excuse to have a bit of fun, much like their infamous/legendary challenge to 'Find Joe's Golden Nuts' back in 2016: https://www.ukclimbing.com/gear/competitions/joe_brown_50th_anniversary_competition-8460

As a sweeping generalisation, popular routes tend to be popular, but beside them there will almost always be other quality routes that are quiet sat just beside them. Some people prefer the former, others prefer the latter - the choice is yours...

10
In reply to Rob Greenwood - UKClimbing:

> This comes up every time pretty much anyone tries to do something positive and my conclusion is much the same: that people can pick holes in anything.

> If Joe Brown's had selected a series of more esoteric routes I have no doubt that they'd have been accused of some other wrongdoing"

Such as?

I don't agree Rob. This comes up frequently as you say, and for good reason! It shows a lack of imagination by the sponsors. There are an infinite number of 'challenges' they could have come up with that would avoid the obvious criticisms seen here. Get people to draw up their own Classic Rock lists, the rule being no starred routes allowed, then hold a vote on here....whatever.....God knows there are so many fun and novel alternatives!! This is, I'm afraid, another example of commercialism killing the 'golden goose'! 

9
In reply to WVRox:

I agree, best to be sanguine about it though. Commercial aspects are here to stay in climbing, we aren't going to change that.

Use the competition and the oxymoron that is mountain festivals in a similar way, a heads up as to where to avoid. 

2
In reply to WVRox:

> Such as?

The Arc'teryx Lakeland Revival is the obvious example.

Funnily enough the exact case that comes to mind is Sergeant's Crag Gully, which featured in the following video: https://www.ukclimbing.com/news/2015/09/arc'teryx_lakeland_revival-69963

After its publication we received the following comments:

"And here is the problem, its actually a great route of an unfashionable style, when we did it earlier this year it was a touch damp, so not bone dry, and pretty much climbing top to bottom on rock. Rob Greenwoods comment thats its better in the wet is actually unhelpful, in the bone dry for a severe/HS leader it would give a top notch day out particularly a very hot day with a pretty tough crux IMHO. Not only is the climbing fun and a bit adventurous but as you look back out of the Gully Langstrath is framed by the sides of the gully making a beautiful scenic effect."

"Entertaining though it is, I can't help but feel this video perpetuates the image of the Lakes being an overgrown and esoteric backwater, rather than encourage a visit"

I could probably find other examples, but that is the most relevant and illustrates the point perfectly - you're damned if you do, damned if you don't...

> I don't agree Rob. This comes up frequently as you say, and for good reason! It shows a lack of imagination by the sponsors. There are an infinite number of 'challenges' they could have come up with that would avoid the obvious criticisms seen here. Get people to draw up their own Classic Rock lists, the rule being no starred routes allowed, then hold a vote on here....whatever.....God knows there are so many fun and novel alternatives!! This is, I'm afraid, another example of commercialism killing the 'golden goose'! 

As per my previous post, some people love climbing no star routes - myself included - but not everyone does (in fact, most people don't). If I went to the Lakes after the long winter lockdown I'd just be looking to do some of the routes I'd always wanted to. Some of these are in Classic, Hard and Extreme Rock, others are not, but the idea of encouraging everyone to go out and climb a load of no star routes is as ridiculous as it is specialist, because that's not what the vast majority of people want to do.

Who's right and who's wrong? Neither - it's just a case of personal preference. I suspect you've climbed a lot of three star routes previously, which is why you've moved on to other routes, but this isn't to say we shouldn't allow others to have their time climbing the classics.

6
In reply to Rob Greenwood - 

> Who's right and who's wrong? Neither - it's just a case of personal preference. I suspect you've climbed a lot of three star routes previously, which is why you've moved on to other routes, but this isn't to say we shouldn't allow others to have their time climbing the classics.

I quite agree. People will climb what they want to  - and rightly so, but encouraging yet more people with commercial bribes to do these particular, already well worn routes, to me reflects a real lack of imagination from the marketing people. 

3
 Cathy Casey 13 Apr 2021
In reply to Michael Gordon:

Your opinions are your own and we respect that, however for the sake of clarity, I wanted to share with you the corporate structure of our company:

Me & my husband at the central core surrounded by all of the staff at Joe Browns and all of the staff at The Climbers Shop.

That's it.

For further clarity; there is no sponsorship involved in this competition. It is a collaboration by three small, independently owned companies working together to navigate their way out of a tricky year. 

Our aim, as stated, is to encourage climbers to have fun doing the sport we all love.

Best regards

Cathy Casey

(aka The Marketing Department)

5
In reply to WVRox:

Classic Rock has got 2 other lists at the back which would be challenges that would spread the load a bit...

Possible Alternatives - which are generally on the same crags as the Classic Rock routes 

Other Worthwhile Climbs - in the same areas but generally on different crags

 profitofdoom 13 Apr 2021
In reply to Cathy Casey:

> .........for the sake of clarity, I wanted to share with you......

Hi Cathy,

I like your list (I enjoyed reading it too), and the idea, and the article (thanks for posting it), and the challenge, and the prizes you're offering. I wish you all the best with it

3
 Kemics 13 Apr 2021
In reply to Cathy Casey:

It's a great idea. I wouldn't be too put out by the endless well of negativity that UKC seems to draw from of late  

2
 Michael Gordon 13 Apr 2021
In reply to Cathy Casey:

I wasn't objecting to commercialism, more that one couldn't have picked more popular routes if one tried! Most are in the book for a reason (though there are plenty equally good ones), but the Classic Rock list as it is (through being in the book) is enough to get many on these busy routes without the need for further encouragement. 

In reply to Michael Gordon:

Then you can just go a climb something else. I'm really unclear what the problem is here.

5
In reply to Michael Gordon:

I sort of agree but if this leads to any extra traffic on Grooved Arête, for instance, it should also lead to an extra ascent of Wilo the Wisp which I think is a good deal. 

In reply to UKC Articles:

Like Rob, I think it's a great idea and there is nothing wrong with encouraging people to go and climb fantastic rock climbs, especially given the year we've just endured.

I'll be aiming to do both the Welsh and the Lakes challenges. These are all routes I wanted to climb anyway, because my long-term goal is to do all of Classic and Hard rock, so why not bump these to the top of the queue.

3
 C Witter 13 Apr 2021
In reply to Rob Greenwood - UKClimbing:

UKC staff can be so prickly when someone comes along with a different opinion!

I think it's a grand challenge and a good excuse to try to get all these routes done in one summer with someone. But, more generally it would be great to get out of the shadow of Ken Wilson's excellent books and suggest some alternatives... Next time, maybe

1
 veteye 13 Apr 2021
In reply to C Witter:

Maybe they should have had a list of 55 VS's to work our way through?

Why VS standard? Well because that is what I perceive as within most people's ability, when they have chance to get outside normally, and frequently. Those that currently do not climb that grade, could possibly have the grade to aim for. As we all know there are some VS's which are easier than others, so these could be tried first. (There is a VS 4b at Burbage North, whose name escapes me, which I have soloed more times than I have lead it, that could be a starter).

Of course others could always plan 55 routes within another grade, such as severe, or in the opposite direction E2's.

 Michael Gordon 14 Apr 2021
In reply to pancakeandchips:

> Then you can just go a climb something else. 

Of course I can. But spreading out traffic amongst lots of good routes, not just the most popular ones, would surely be beneficial for both.

 Andy Hardy 14 Apr 2021
In reply to Michael Gordon:

> Of course I can. But spreading out traffic amongst lots of good routes, not just the most popular ones, would surely be beneficial for both.

Are you saying you'd have a list of say 100 routes and entrants pick 20?

1
In reply to C Witter:

> UKC staff can be so prickly when someone comes along with a different opinion!

I guess we do because we care, and we care a lot. Same goes for those getting prickly on the other side too. We all care...

 C Witter 14 Apr 2021
In reply to Rob Greenwood - UKClimbing:

> I guess we do because we care, and we care a lot. Same goes for those getting prickly on the other side too. We all care...


True, that

In reply to UKC Articles:

Looking forward to the queues on Great Gully.

jcm

In reply to johncoxmysteriously:

> Looking forward to the queues on Great Gully.

... can't call yourself a climber until you've done Great Gully... and for the full-on type 2 experience, it has to be in the rain and you need a stinking hangover...!!!


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