It wouldn't be right to have a Dave Birkett story without a Dave MacLeod report - they are after all only two of a handful of climbers operating at the cutting edge of trad climbing in the UK today. In the summer their passion and love for exploration takes hold and they can be guaranteed to be up to something exciting.
Dave B has just repeated an E9 and established another last great in the Lakes (UKC report) and it seems that Dave M is having to summon all his climbing power (power in the broadest sense meaning experience as well as fitness and strength) to free climb one of the biggest walls in the UK, the 500m (1,640ft) Longhope Route on St John's Head on Hoy.
Dave has written an account of his attempts so far, at his blog......
Walking off the hill from Kentallen last week after doing Durorband with unexpected ease, I felt that feeling of lightness, fitness and a readiness to climb something really hard that I've not felt so strongly since before climbing Echo Wall. I can't believe it's been a year since I really felt this. For sure, hard climbs can be done without it by pure force, but this state and this feeling is what's needed to break barriers.....the full story at davemacleod.blogspot.com