Tuesday, 11 September 2012

a winter in weekends is not very long

Off the back of my last post's successes I've been riding the crest of a positive wave and I'm excited about winter. On the other hand - until the ground is brown, upon the Grit I shall frown.

The 'bust' for the natural jug on Eat The Rich
 At the wall I have been narrowing down my shitness on each problem and only giving in to the 'I'm not strong enough' tagline when it is the genuine reason and not a lack of technique. If it's a technique problem I'll do drills specific to that failing (unless it's slopers, slopers inside are ridiculous). Failure is easier to take when you analyze it straight away and run through what was going on, it feels like raw data for an upgrade rather than a slap in the chops.

A few weeks ago I went to Water-Cum-Jolly Upper circle with Joble, we had started at Rubicon but it quickly became 1,00000 degrees. James had a massive paddy on the 8a Dangerous Brothers loudly proclaiming Peak limestone shit, painful and that he was indoor based trip climber from now on. An hour later he was back down to earth. We moved on in search of shade and wind finding it high up the bank on the upper circle. I had never been past Rubicon up the valley before and what struck me was how much untouched rock there was around protected by legislation. It is selfish to think that climbers have a right to use all rock and I do prescribe to this hardline when the issue is land ownership but here it is simply a case of letting nature be untouched. Suck it up and move on, it's hard to take but must be took, especially when the fauna and fungi will be here long after every human being has rotted away.

Anyway, there we looked at a John Welford 7c named 'Eat the rich' and a Simon Nadin '8a' called 'The inch test', so as any rock enthusiast should know by that, it wasn't going to be easy. Well it was actually, sort of. Eat the rich is only 7b+ to the lower off, a lovely 3 bolt route (!) with big moves and a crimpy sequence to end. It has a MASSIVE glued on jug at the start but wow, what a beaut of a hold it is, sika me up, from here you gain another good hold for the LH, RH to a nasty little flake, RF into sika jug and bust for an all natural jug. LH out to finger slot, RH up into a rat's eye socket, sort feet to surge upwards with the LH into a blocky sidepull/undercut, few hand moves and a dodgy clip of belay. The 7c does a few moves from here through a small roof to match on jugs over the lip, the rock however is suspect and people have taken the tick dropping off from the jugs, makes sense.

The drop off in a blaze of glory

Sorry about that, I wrote that more for myself than anything. I can get to the surging upwards bit but it's 1/4 on actually latching the hold. I was happy with my progress though as I was hungover. I hope to go back on Saturday to tick it. Jo was getting to the same point but has better feet for the next bit, it's hard for the short as you're on the shit slot for longer and have to get more out of it, James just makes another big move from the second jug, bringing the route down to about 5 moves. I love this short stuff.

James tried The Inch Test and got very close first redpoint, failing after he forgot his foot sequence. This thing looks the absolute living end and has some serious brutal moves on it, 8a/+ seems decidedly unfair, even by Peak lime standards. We left we no ticks but were happy to have found the psyche again in the midst of the rain, sun and mud.

Noble giving a mile but getting an inch on Nadin's test
 I tried another short 7c at Rubicon midweek with Jonny but got a nasty shock, 'Too Old To Be Bold' is short, sharp, polished and intense. After a minor tussle we both left it having been completely and utterly shutdown by the start. It felt exactly the same as when I try Saline Drip 7A at the tor, like I'm doing something completely wrong, how on earth can I be this shit! I'm not keen to go back on as the route/rock quality doesn't match Eat the rich but have it earmarked as one I need to see someone on, just to know. Failed on the kudos bouldering then belayed Jonny on his retro flash of Rubicon 7a. Interestingly he did this in the dark with a head torch and my lamp pointing straight upwards, he must have felt like a German Bomber during the Blitz up there, he didn't go down in flames though and slinked over the lip into total darkness. nice.

Last weekend I went to Bristol for a wedding,  really lovely city but an absolutely mental accent, people saying the Hull accent is bad need to shut the fuck up and head south west.

Jo, aka I'm stronger than Shrew