The infamous groove pitch is relatively easy to access and features quite unique climbing, however, very few climbers have repeated the route in a single push. The first was Steve McClure in 2011 and only a handful – including Caro Ciavaldini, James Pearson, Angus Kille, and Hazel Findlay – have done the same.
Harriet had been looking at the route with her partner Kris over the last couple of months, enjoying the focus of a project and having the goal of climbing all the pitches in a day. On her motivation to climb the route, she told UKC:
'I find the slate intimidating, and it took a bit of time before I believed myself capable of doing the route; in part because I found the climbing difficult, but also because I thought some of the runouts would push me too far beyond my comfort zone. I guess that was part of my motivation—to see if I could operate in that uncomfortable territory.
'As I gained confidence my comfort zone boundaries started to shift, but I was still pretty gripped in the days beforehand. I was in a constant state of fight or flight for about 48 hours before attempting the route—it can't have been good for my health. For me, the challenge was as much mental as physical, and I'm really pleased to have managed that effectively.'
Due to the 'thin, powerful, and precarious' nature of the climbing, Harriet approached the day by only thinking about the first pitch: 'I really wasn't sure I'd manage it, so it was super exhilarating to pull it off. After that, I took it pitch by pitch.'
The line breaks down in an E6, E5, the '8a' groove, and a 7c+ slab to finish. She had led the groove pitch a few days before, so felt confident on that but it still required an exceptional balance of effort and technique.
Harriet's partner Kris was abroad, so she was joined by her friend Libby Peter and Martyn Eade, who helped to reduce stress levels during the ascent.
'The day was a lot of fun. No falls and relatively smooth, with a small bit of big-wall style rope faff and an unplanned pit-stop to change my shoes part-way across the second pitch.'
Harriet lives on Anglesey and works part-time for an educational outreach company and part-time as a self-employed potter.
She is sponsored by Mountain Equipment and DMM. Follow her on Instagram here.