Scotland's first XI winter climb

Dave MacLeod has made a winter ascent of The Hurting, a summer E4 6a in Coire an t Sneachda (left) on Cairngorm. After abseiling down the climb with a view to headpointing it, Dave decided it might be possible to climb without toproping. On his first attempt Dave came within three moves of flashing it but fell when a hook ripped. Three days later, on Feb 19th, he completed the climb on his second attempt, in very poor weather conditions (classic Scottish blizzard and gales and verglassed cracks). Dave has given the route XI,11 and given that it featured very tenuous M9+ or M10 wall climbing with groundfall potential, has tentatively suggested that it could be the hardest single pitch traditional mixed climb in the world.

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