Jordan Buys has made the second ascent of Steve McClure's Bat Shadow (8c+) at Malham. The route starts up Bat Route (8c), heads left into Rainshadow and then left again into Overshadow. At the time, Steve described the route as 'taking all the best climbing of all the routes.'
Jordan first started trying Batshadow after redpointing Rainshadow in 2013: 'I fancied another project and it looked like a wild route to have fun on. The 8b section of Bat Route into the awesome traverse through Rainshadow, then you get to do the finish of a 9a+ - so not very British in its style either.'
Jordan tried the route again in 2015, but says that in hindsight he was 'not serious enough.' Last year he turned his attention to trad, with ascents of Talbot Horizon, Muy Caliente!, Hasty Sin Oot Ert Hoonds and Final Round. After such a successful year of hard trad, Jordan said that it was difficult to return to redpointing: 'I thought I could just breeze back onto the scene, but once fit doesn't mean always fit. It took some self-discipline and serious planning to get back to where I was a few years ago.'
This year all went to plan though, after putting in the ground work on the route and managing some big links and good redpoints, Jordan booked a holiday to Gorge du Loup to get the required fitness and brush up on his knee bar skills. Unfortunately, whilst on the trip he burst a blood vessel in his finger and wasn't able to bend it for some time – he still managed to pull himself up and 8a+ though…
Once back in the country, Jordan was straight back on the route and was dropping the top move: 'It was just a matter of time and some fine tuning. A few weeks later, plenty more rehabilitation (on the finger) and training at Boulder UK with Ian Vickers and the crew, and I managed to cruise it.'
With a return to sport climbing fitness, Jordan is now eyeing up Overshadow : 'I've done all the moves, just need to figure how to train for something like that. Back to the drawing board I guess…'
Here's a video of Steve McClure's ascent: