Here is a photo of James on Gerty Berwick, at Ilkley (click to enlarge). James had been on the line last year and had done the moves on a tope rope. He then returned with Ryan Pasquill early last week after Ryan's first ascent to have a another look and try the moves.
Then on Friday 13th February, James, accompanied by David Simmonite and his friend Mark, returned to Ilkley for a lead attempt. James cleaned the route, checked the moves and then went for the lead, wearing a helmet and having a some bouldering mats at the base of the route; the crux initial wall is unprotected. He was belayed by Mark, and a nearby climber was recruited as an additional spotter. He fell off onto the mats on his first attempt, then after another false start fired the route next go.
There is small protection once good holds are reached and straight forward UK 6b tech moves lead to the top. James, Mark and David then went bouldering at nearby Shipley Glen.
James said on his blog, - jamespearsonclimbing.blogspot.com -, "Hat's off to Mr Pasquill for getting it done. She's a feisty little lady is Gerty". James has no comment on the grade. Ryan Pasquill proposed highball Font 8A, or E9 7a.
James has also been showing interest in Widdop Wall (hard and sustainedE9 7a/ French 8b/5.13d) , which got its second ascent by Jordan Buys ( UKC News: Jordan Buys - Widdop Wall 2nd Ascent), but has been thwarted by wet weather and the original slider used by John Dunne on the first ascent didn't fit anymore, perhaps due to some wear in the bolt hole where the protection is placed.
With his current great form, and hopefully better weather, an ascent may happen soon. There are lots more last great problems out there on Pennine gritstone.
You can see more photos of James Pearson on Gerty Berwick in a forthcoming issue of Climb magazine. Thank you to David Simmonite for the photograph.
James is sponsored by The North Face, Five Ten, and Wild Country.
View a photograph of the line of Gerty Berwick: