Thursday, 28 April 2016


So The Cube has been a source of psyche and frustration for a number of years now. Recently, with irritating shoulder problems forcing a bit of a lay off, I turned my energies to improving the landing...
Well it couldn't be much worse could it? Apart from crocodiles and punji sticks

Less a landing, more of a series of collisions

I've got quite into dry stone platforming; the patioing of  boulder landing sites can often result unsightly jumbles. However, if done right, they can blend into the landscape, and even be quite pretty (or rather, handsome). The Cube's patio took 6 sessions. I built up a retaining wall, backfilled, knitted in the next level of retaining wall, backfilled, levelled off with a spirit level app on my phone (strapped to a laser pen), and finally tarted it a bit..

The initial retaining wall

The next lot are the finished product..

And here's the patio geek himself.

My pilates sessions have been going well, and Eirian has encouraged me to return to climbing with lots and lots of warming up. Last time I climbed at The Cube the landing looked like this:

What a difference 6 cubic meters of stone makes.

Incidentally all the stone was taken from adjacent piles of stones on the hillside. Its rather like Crafnant, and not a place to drop your keys. I don't advocate patioing in natural areas which require more than just moving things around. Spadework might be okay in the quarries, but not out on the hill.

Needless to say, that once I'd dragged two pads, the abb and climbing gear up the hill, it started to snow. After sitting it out 10 minutes under the roof, I set up and dropped in regardless.

I'm going to need more pads. Spotters would be nice too... and being warmer.... and less sleet.

I think the next game will be some cheeky shunting. I've had almost 2 months off, so I've a fair bit of form to recapture. The platform feels quite narrow from to top, but I think this has more to do with the slant of the top slab, and the very far away-ness of the pads. Anyway, any extensions will require a fair bit more stone, and might overwhelm the environment.  I had a good feel around on the rope (before my hands froze), and the sequence I was using on the snow day seem to be the way forward. However, I'll need some gains in hip flexion, core and fingers to latch the next 2 finger micro crimp.

Time for some new distractions..

Until next time..

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