Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Time To Change Hats...

The twins are being encouraged to enter the world this week. With my family jumping in numbers to five, climbing is going to take a back seat for a bit. I popped out this evening for a preparatory play so that I wasn't jittering too much. I had such a good time that I thought I would share these areas with you. contact me if you want locations..

The Bunker

From left- 1st a through trip into the bunker itself, then the prow into the slab sds is The Wedge V3, slab into hanging crack, an arbitrary offwidth, next bloc is Huggy Bear V3 sds
The Crack House

A jumble of rather large boulders; the block in front is nice to lounge on and has a sds dyno on its right side The Rake V3 which launches off a phat side pull and a crimpy one for the top. Tucked behind this is the pit which holds:

Barred to the Bone V3
a sds offwidth that overhangs by about a foot. (the bottom of the pit is about 3ft by 5ft for scale)
This is inside the Crackhouse. an enclosure of boulders entered via the wide slot on the right of the main picture. It gives enumerable aretes, cracks, and slabs. These are mainly quite eliminate, although still follow strong lines (i.e. following a slab whilst ignoring its aretes etc). The best of these is the stand up Shed Party V4 which takes the central arete. this picture also gives a sense of scale to the boulders

Toebar V4 goes up the front of the prow from the chalked holds near the vertical pod to top out direct. its a sds which utilises toes cammed into the gap between the prow and the block below.

I finished happy at eleven when I could no longer see the holds ( I didn't pack a head torch to prevent me staying too long) I saw two glow worms on the way home!

Friday, 18 June 2010

Barred to the Bone, Lampyridae, and further Shed Theory

Got out for a boulder to the Crackhouse after work. However, as I finish at 10pm it was rather dusky. Still manage to thrutch myself up "Barred to the bone" a nice gently leaning V3ish offwidth, and fed the midges. The Crackhouse might be another shed addition as its quick to access and exit and has some phone reception. A mans shed is his temporary castle, but most of the time its mainly a refuge from real life. I seem to be collecting them. It was past dusk when I headed home and saw my first Welsh Glowworms!

Lampyris noctiluca

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Off to the Bunker

Found a new bouldering spot!
The Bunker is the new area of retreat after the shed, all still a bit hush hush, as I haven't yet fully plundered its potential. Nothing that hard here, a couple of V3's, some squeezes, but round the corner is the Crackhouse, and that is something special.

Have to enlist a co-conspiritor tho' as the monoliths are a bit bunched.

Watch this space

Saturday, 12 June 2010

Is this what Doylo calls Progress?

Went to the shed yesterday with the youth.
Draw lengths all seemed to be about right (tick)
Got on 1st Redpoint and climbed clean to just past the 3rd draw (tick)

Seepage was, however, a problem on the top bit. And I am too weak.

Can't seem to work out the easiest sequence on the top bit, as its all just variations on "can't do" and as such they are hard to differentiate between. I think I'm just going to have to get quite a bit stronger before I can really have another worthwhile redpoint, although just getting to the 4th draw would be probably worth a f7b ego tick on its own... so maybe in a bit I'll try that.

The youth had a sort of go at cleaning project red, but it needs a more workman like approach to bring it into nice climbing condition.

I also did the 1st boulder problem to grace the mini barrel, and buried my nice jumper under rubble securing the top out.

Friday, 4 June 2010

Shed Party

Today, my friend Fraser an I had a mornings climbing. The day started with the traditional mick taking of Ollie the Barista, then off to the atmospheric flanks of Mount Doom. Fraser is a dad of two micro climbers and has a non too shabby history himself, but fatherhood and injury have kept him on the couch lately.
Subtle cajooling got him tied on to lead the stroll that is the wriggler's first pitch. I got to lead the second in temperatures over 5 degree's which was a new and pleasant experience for me (I did the 1st ascent in winter to celebrate the birth of my son). Fraser floated up after me and we were able to take the tunnel to the shed. Always seems to take longer than you expect, especially for Fraser as he doesn't own wellies, and opted to take the cave chilled wading sections in teva's.
At the other end, Fraser once again found himself on the sharp end for "Way down in the Hole" another E1: with an extra wire for dad pro, he romped up the 1st pitch, allowing me to lead through to... the belay for the 2nd pitch (wait for the guide). He was half way up this testing arete before he cottoned on to the sleight of hand, but battled to the top with the minimum of brown trousers. I Guess he's now well and truly back in the saddle now.

After this, I stuck up the rope on the project for my first proper toppy. This is what I found out:
I can get to the third clip clean, and it is about V5.
I have a new sequence for the next section at a more amenable V6.
The Top bit is V6/7 but I am firming up a sequence.
I know what length Quickdraws I want on each bolt.
There are no real rests.
My fingers are a little way off.
My Power endurance is a long way off.
It is Feasable!!!

Must start dreaming up an appropriate training thingumy.

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Giveaway Project of the Month - May & June

Once again the end of the month has passed and i have failed in my responsibilities to provide you with new rock. Due to this, the next giveaway is 2 three star cert's, that to be honest, I'd rather keep...

However the whole reason I missed my deadline was due to the impending arrival of my zoo of monkeys, so I probably won't have time anyway.

Off to Mount Doom.

The White line is the amazing Wriggler, a classic E1 on the lofty heights of Cefn Du. Consisting of two contrasting pitches of enjoyable adventure; the first an easy dolerite ledge shuffle, the second is a bold and airy slate slab.

Project RED

A blunt 40ft fontesque arete. The rock is crysaline slate over an ingneous intrusion, solid once clean but not prone to traditional crimps. Can be top roped off the P1 belay of the wriggler.

Project BLUE

A blank expedition up a near vertical baldness, through an overlap into a very thin slab, joining the wriggler at its second bolt. The route could be top roped off this.

So there we go. Both would benefit from / require bolts. Both are mondo hard, but dripping in glory.

Might even clean them for you tommorrow...