Ryan Pasquill has flashed two tenuous slate slabs in the same day with his Easter weekend ascents of The Medium and Windows of Perception.
The Medium is a F8a slab just to the left of the classic route Heading The Shot on the Seamstress slab at Serengeti in the Llanberis slate quarries. It was first climbed by Johnny Dawes back in the late 1980's (with an old skool grade of E7 6c) and is known for its sustained and technical climbing.
The peculiarities of slate slabs mean that flashing routes of an E6 7a / F7c+ and F8a standard is a significant achievement.
"Flashing just one of these routes is really impressive. Flashing both of them in one day is amazing." commented local slate climber James McHaffie, who is no stranger to hard slate slabs himself. "I've never seen any two people do The Medium in the same way." he said, meaning that any beta Ryan had for the moves will only have been of limited use.
Ryan mentioned that he thinks Neil Kershaw also flashed Windows a few years ago.
Both routes are protected by bolts and have been recently re-equipped in the general overhaul of the slate quarries. However a ground fall is still possible from the easier sections (UK Technical 6b).
On the subject of slate, local climbers and visitors alike are waiting with eager anticipation for the forthcoming slate guide, produced by Ground Up and authored by Mark Reeves, Pete Robins and Mark Dicken. Currently the guidebook editor Simon Panton is in the process of choosing the cover for the slate guide:
"Choosing a front cover shot for a guidebook is a tricky business. Finding that special shot with all the ingredients can be very frustrating."
Simon is looking for inspiration and has just sent UKClimbing.com 3 potential cover images (one is a bit whacky!) and wants some feedback - do you have a preference?
Check out all three in this OI NEWS: Choose a Guidebook Cover