Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Sunday, April 25, 2010
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Feet of strength
keepin' on keepin' on
So after forgetting to fall off a bunch of stuff last week I thought I'd try and build on the previous weeks 8ertainment and sample some more low 8's. First up was a spur of the moment decision to get on Solomon's seal, a problem that must just about win the award for sitting on my must try list the longest. I sat about until 5ish then launched my machine Stanageward. It was still stinky hot but just about ok and after about an hours worth of pottering on some solos (Anniversary Arete is amazing and now vies with Queersville as my fav Stanage solo). Golden hour was starting and it was time to sharpen my teeth. After dispatching the stand fast I hopped straight on the sit, after half persuading myself that it went from there anyway. After about 15minutes i had a rough sequence and had done all the moves, but it took another 25 minutes or so to refine it down enough to be able to drop the 2nd last move twice. This seemed to have something to do with a weird kind of smeary juice coming out my fingers by the last move one of Stanage's grizzliest small crimps. 15 minutes of chilled out pottering and sitting about seemed to have cooled things off for one last go, having basically already admitted defeat this was a one for the road. Then that elusive ladyluck stepped in and I hit stuff grain-perfect and found myself at the last move and luckily I seized my chance. I'm not normally one for renaming sitters unless they're in keeping with a rough theme of the stand. So if Solomon Grundy sticks then that's cool. It adds some hard moves and makes it a nice mid 8a I think. A brilliant session though and one to remember next time I'm grumbling.
In the rest of the week I nipped up Banana Republic and just about managed to keep my skin intact, but then an unfortunate broken leg from another very unlucky boulderer stalled the days antics somewhat. After taking 2 days off to sand 70+ beastmakers and develop a few things. It was back to the blocs and a meeting with a hideously strong bugger of the yorkshire persuasion, Mr Mark Katz. After seeing him make full power look easier than falling over when drunk I thought i better pull my finger out and give it a stab whilst Mark was trying 8ball via a look how stretched i am, cheek against rock display of body tension, good job too or else it'd be a party piece for the guy. The send train picked us both up after about 25minutes of waiting and we whisked ourselves off to Moorside. Where Katz found another much more impressive project which didn't seem to kick up much initial resistance, but then a wild Jackie Chan footping tomb stoned him onto the pads, and nothing puts a downer on a good session like horrendous whiplash. We moved onto the sausage king of meersbrook and rumours of 8a-ness. For my height this is more like Ian's original grade of 7c and a few footlocks later she was on board the send train too (great problem this and well worth hunting out). The weekend saw another illicit lime visit and an 8 with a bit of everything. That took me upto 9 in 14 days with a few 7cs, the odd training session and two 10ks thrown in there too. I've stepped things up a bit for the next months list, i'm also on the lookout for some slightly opto projects, unfortunately there isn't a match.com for that sort of thing, just alot of legwork and thinking/ training.
we're starting to work and train for our beastmaker vid too which should get people keen. We're going to round up all the beasts and their beastly feats who are keen for a bit of dangling and show people what can be done if you can be arsed to dangle and watch tv rather than sit and watch tv.
Friday, April 9, 2010
A Law of Averages
well it's been a good week of weather! and with the evenings getting longer i've been getting out and about.
Friday: Borrowdale volcanics
Before coming back to Sheff I nipped in to say hi to the Bowderstone, it was still there, and so was the hold that bust my finger, i'll be giving that project a few more months I reckon. I had decided it was time to tackle sidekick, the last thing i really wanted to get done on the stone. After getting slapped about trying to ram a sharp bit of rock through my knee for about an hour I figured out that i only needed it for a split second and good old fashioned burl could take care of the rest. This is a brilliant problem and probably the best 8 on the stone. I remember seeing Glenn wilson try this with his half red half yellow hair(when it was v9 and still a project) back in the day in my first year of climbing! The consensus seems to be that its a tough 8a or more like a soft 8a+ and it's certainly harder than special cases. In the end i got it near the end of the session and had to try pretty hard, especially as the oxygen depletion to my brain stopped my feet working properly and my Jet7s turned into clogs before my eyes.
Sunday: Yorkshire Grit
I was driving back down the country so nipped in to see my good mate Kev in't Bingley town. Now I think i've only been to Caley when Kev's been there and I've only been 3 times, and none of those were in the last 3 years! I think i'd forgotten just how awesome it is (except for the prolific victorian chipping) There are loads of things that I want to get done here but an obvious one was the striking line of Ranieri's Reach. After declaring it piss on my third go i then got bored of controlling my limbs properly for the next 30minutes, including dropping it after the crux 3 times, after a bit of a break and a re-warming up of the support team as well as a cameo appearance from legend of the lakes, triple-daddy, Rob Fielding. I gave myself a good talking to and made good on my original declaration. This was much easier than Sidekick and is kicking a good sized hole through the ceiling into the realm of 7c+ . After that it was skin loss time on nothings safe, which went from being painful and jerky in my mind to eccentrically brilliant, especially with the top move being a good value pull off a pinky mono! Now bellies were growling by this point and Kev's easter egg was a distant memory so binge o' clock was called.
Wednesday: Peak Grit
my next chance to get out saw me tired from training but lapping up a bit of afternoon vitamin D at Curbar, i thought i'd check out what the low roof hoo haa was all about. It looked less low than i remember but it looks like some sterling patio skills have been put into place (effort!). After a good chin wag with the a nice Mr Marek whom was there also. I got stuck into la musee. I quickly sacked off trying to use the jug as the ridiculously dabby move spoilt the problem for me (as did the jug). I worked out a slightly harder (physicaly) but less dabby way of not using the jug at all by keeping the toe hook in whilst nipping along the slopers. This flowed nicely and was much more enjoyable. 5 minutes later i linked it up and found it much easier than Sidekick and Ranieri's. To me it seemed to be no harder than ben's roof (at the Tor) or columns at the roaches So soft 7c+ seems about right. I was getting tired by this point but went 1 foot further back to the newly extended start. After working out how to get my leg out of the massive, and slightly painful kneebar without my fat arse touching the floor (this sequence takes you straight into the start holds of la musee) I was getting through things ok but had run out of juice for the full thing. And by this time things were getting pretty sunny under there, so I packed my bags and shot off home. The line from the back is the full line though and a good addition to peak 8's, very unique climbing for grit too.
Friday: peak lime
I nipped out in the afternoon to make the most of the good weather. Cough. really horrible still warm conditions. Cough. My chosen sweat box was Dark Therapy, the perma goppy holds are bloody well annoying on this. Despite that it is a truly great problem slightly marred by greasy crag acne. after battling the grease for a while I had a good go where I didn't slide on the holds too much and luckily ended up on top and not on my back. For me I reckon this is a benchmark 8a, although it is a bit morpho and conditions dependent (if you ever see the start holds bone dry then get on it!), I really like the unique bulge climbing on this and it features a good candidate for legitimately busting out a 1 armer on the last move. After that i spent 45 minutes on another problem reminding myself that i have lost a lot of nouse and now have to compute hard foot moves like a commodore 64 faced with endless lines of code whilst my upper body hangs there waiting for something useful to happen. Basically I can't wait to be able to turn my brain off and just climb again!
So there we go four lovely British "8a"s and all of them completely different to each other in rock type and style and grade, yet apparently all the in the same place on a scorecard.
Monday, April 5, 2010
you'd think the first of April would be a safe time of year to head places without getting snowed on. I've just about had enough bloody snow to fill my snow boots. I thought i'd celebrate spring by nipping upto scotland to get back on some nice lines which i didn't quite manage to join the dots on last time. to sum up a long horizontal snowfall filled story I basically I got 1 days climbing in 4 and so left early. That 1 day was brilliant though and i made sure i climbed from sun up to sun down, trying different projects left right and centre along with repeating a few lovely additions Mr Betts the sharp eyed local.
I got one done which i'd noticed last visit, coming through the roof right of "a fridge too far" featuring double toe hooks some lovely quarter pad crimps and then a powerful throw off them round the lip to a drag and a hard front lever-esque foot move. i'll get round to naming and grading it soon (not that it matters it's there either way). Mind you it seems like 8C+ and red tags are the headline grabbers of the moment anyway or (in reality) stirring up storms in teacups with keyboard commandos doing battle for their chosen trooper, along with a good old bit of willy waving on the side. I'm amazed there isn't an RSI injury climbing blog help site somewhere... or maybe that'd be a touch too ironic
Ned bailed out of another likely wet trip to font so stayed and worked last week despite the temperamental weather in the last week i reckon this year has been pretty special so far. Certainly distinctive anyway.
We're cracking on with designing a new machine at the moment to help more people get their sweaty mitts on our boards. we've also been tinkering a bit down the garden shed if you get our drift... Trevor bayliss'd be reet proud.
Oh and i went to the depot for the first time in ages. G-bus C.H.Rist that is a crackalacking wall,
i know we built the board so are slightly partisan but it is heaven in your hands to train on... they should put a vomit bucket at the top of the big roof though, just incase any boulderers get up there and feel the after effects.