Friday, 29 April 2011

Moors Development

Over the past month or so, there has been another surge of moors development! and it is something i am pleased to have been part of. We have developed a new major bouldering venue, found another venue. Me and Jake a found a new crag and also a new butress at camp hill.

First off is clemmits, which is still providing more and more boulders with several new lines. I'm pretty sure it's going to be the new font of the moors!
Then, last thursday, I was out for a quick tick of the list with Lee, however it turned out to be a good picknick venue with atleast 50+ problems!
Then, the next satuday, myself and Jake Hampshire thought we'd try ou look yet again in Pickering woods. Its always been a complete pile of choss and the only climbing we'd done was some ice on the icicles formed in the winter. For those who have climbed at white stone, imagine the looseness 15 times over and you've got 'the woods'. But anyway, we decided we may aswell put a route up.

The line is still to be named but it is a two pitch Vdiff. Although some who have no experience of loose climbing will find the climbing at around E5 3c.

The route in volves a choice of either chimeying between the rock and the tree which is probably less strenous although much more exposed to death by stonefall. The other way is to begin by chimneying untill pointless gear on the leaft. Then swing round and hug the tree untill just befor the branch. Then make a stradle between the tree and the rock and leap for the branch to the 'belay'. It is recomended that the second leads through. Beware when in the hanging belay, as we found out, its pretty easy for the leader to knock of ankle breakers.......

The next day, we headed back to clemmits where we met Lee and he introduced us to Mick, Rob and Luke. We tried out the moors bus which is really good but meant for a 'little bit of a walk in'. After clemmits we headed over to camp hill where I was keen to check out a small overhanging butress about 500 metres north of the main butress. Its not particularly high, around 8 metres but has some good looking lines. One of which we did, The F.A. of  "Avoiding the truth" HS 4c *, takes the line of corner ledges up the leaft hand side. It then traverses leaft under the overhang, sneakily avoiding it. Then it heads up the thin crack (a knee bar can be helpful).

The other two lines are the overhang direct which looks around E3 6a and the slab into hanging groove which i tried but fell off in the heat which I reckon must be around E1.

After that I returned to the main butress where i managed cling wrap HVS 5b ** which id tried once before. Then we power marched back down the road in the heat for a few km. just in time to catch the bus!

Thursday, 28 April 2011

The peak trip!

In the easter holidays, three looneys went on a quest to find climbing on the gritstone outcrops of the peak disrtict. The trip needed great planning and attension to detail.

Frankly, This is the best climbing trip I have ever been on, and for that matter its the only multi day climbing trip i've been on, but it was awesome!

The plan was to go to stanage, then burbage, then millstone.
Then the plan became stanage, millstone, lawrencefield,
After that, It became stanage, millstone
And finnally, it became Stanage.

The first day, we were kindly given a lift to the peak district from Toms mum who happened to be going to 'Donny' that same day. We started off near the spectacular routes of arche angel and don, of course we climbed both onsight, solo. ;)

So we did some climbing and soloing around Hot spur area, Then there was a rain shower so we started to eat some ration and fancying out chances, had a go on Brad Pit, which we almost nailed first go but had to settle for defeat ;) (Those holds look a lot bigger on the video)

Then I had a little epic on fern crack as the sun came out and after that, Jake Hampshire made a rather bold ascent of wall end slab, placing too bits of gear in total, one which got very stuck. both were at arounb one third height. We also got a bit scared on creasant arete. All this grit arete smeary lay back crap it actually quite tricky!

Also we tried careless talk which was pretty tough as well. Gotta be in it to win it!

Then we looked up at goliaths grove and Tower face and became fairly de-psyced for climbing and so messed about with our wire brushes and ice axes on 'the pebble' boulder.

Next, we had, 'the quest to find a bivvy' and settled for a nice small cave to sqeeze three in with a shelltered eating area and also a dish washer and kitchen sink.

After tea, it got dark and we went dwon for a night sesh on the pebble, it was dark. We enjoyed the slabby climbs on the lower side and found out how hard deliverence is just to get on it but how easy it is with a set of crampons, some ice axes, a bolt dril and some three step aiders.

I was psyced for bed.

So we went back to the bivvy and slept. Which seemed easy for the other two, deep insode the cave, but unfortuanately for me in my 1/2 season sleeping bag or whatnot, I was sat right in a wind tunnel, added to by Tom's simphony of trumps, composed through the night. (Dear pasta and source, what is really in your meals)

The next morning we arose and were met by the Stanage Ranger........

At first he seemed wheary and asked us questions and noted answers in his notebook. Then he lightened up and seemed amused by Toms greeting as his head popped out from the cave. Any way, he said it was fine and told us we could stay as long as we liked!

The day began with Tom leading and some random solos just out of plantation.

Then I lead August arete (HVS 5b) which was my favourite route over all and i think is worth *** especially as you gain the second to last break above poor gear, then place good pro and run it out to the top.

Jake also lead what is possibly the bouldest HS I have ever seen!

Then we headed back down to the pebble and climbed some of the problems which were quite good but in my opinion are not comparable to most of the problems on the moors! We also met a chap with a bright yellow mat and discovered a new breed of Human known as 'The pander twats'.

After this I decided not to try billiard butress and soloed this Mitch Pitch which was HVS in our guide but when i got home, found out i'd actually soloed an E1, Yes!

Also I got scared on some other climb and ended up doing a diff.

In the evening, we soloed on the small butresses between plantation and popular which was fun and then went to bed.

The third day was our final day and we were sad to leave behind the grit stone. Jake started off with a nice overhanging crack and then we did some other climbs. One of my favourites was verahnda butress which was quite a long route and got the amusing grade of HVD 5b.

Jake then got a bit scared and so lead some moderate.

And finnaly we climbed the louisiana rib which finished off what was a fantastic and memorable trip!

P.S. Tom, you should do some more leading, its really fun, honest!

P.P.S. No bolts, pitongs, three step aiders, wire brushes or ice tools were used on this trip.

P.P.P.S. anyone remeber this ;) .......

Thanks boys....

Monday, 25 April 2011

Weil Ich nach Hamburg geflogen bin!

Today I headed up to clemmits again! I arrived to find Lee snuffeling boulders out and started on some cool problems on a block outside the woods. Then we were joined by some of Lee's friends and then Franco Cookson who was climbing well considering his fall! Then we moved in to the woods.

Over the past few weeks, there has been a great surge of development at clemmits crag by 'the moors team' (probably the whole climbing scene on the moors!) Great boulders have been uncovered and we have found some fantastic boulder problems. A great circuit is developing with way over one hundred problems (maybe 200) across all grades.

Some of the best are: Full Breakfast, Finger preservation society, The heaven slab, Stairway to heaven. Off the rails, Jakes problem, Arrogance of youth, The sentinel, Sams slab and The iron bar.

More development should be soon to come at the betaguides bouldering meet!

I have also met many new people which has been good aswell.

May development continue!

Thanks to Lee, Jake, Tom, Mark, Franco, Luke, Rob, Aidan, Mick, James and Scott.

P.S. special thanks to Lee because ive nabed your pictures.

Longer afternoons = bridestone seshes, A slightly more 'normal' post of the year.

Yesterday I went to the bridestones with Rory Stead. Tres bon. We started off on the first boulder and I tried the full circuit which makes for an exelent variety of climbing.

Then onto pinnacle four to try some of the higher problems before the pepper pot.

Then onto the pepper pot where rory managed it on his third attempt and I was pretty chuffed too after I managed to get over the steepest part to the lip but then I hit Rory in the head and he fell over, then i fell off and landed on him. Reckon he could rent himself as a highball boulder mat personaly.

After that we headed round to the cave on the other side of the valley and I repeated 'the cave' font 6a (bit soft id say) and then added 'the hobit'

Also Rory did a really cool problem called .......

Then we did a bit of soloing on the isolated pinnacle and moved onto the butresses. Twas tres bon!

Friday, 1 April 2011

Alms-cliff. The bod squad.

On Saturday the 26th of march, the 'Bod Squad' commonley known to boulderers as the 'Pickering massif' descended onto almscliff for a right ol' grit stone climb ubiquitous with that of tweed hats and hob nail boots that once rubbed with the sharp pebbled yorkshire grit. In this day and age, the grit is often ascociated with the young melencoly of youthing boulderers with beanie hats and an abundance of mats which cover the holy cow pats at almscliff crag. This not what so ever satiricle analysis of what loiteres the crags of the humble roling land differs from that of the tweed wearing hard nuts that have travelled the crags for the past hundred years. However, this change has not come instantly, in the 80's we saw slightly obese lycra wearing men embrace the crags with odd spectacles of E7 ascents despite a clear bear belly preventing a proper grip of slopes and crimps. Everyone was especially blown away by the noteable ascents by a certain John Dunn who would often nock of a highly graded E number after polishing of a cake or what he would call an over sizzed muffin. We can not deny the versitility of this stone which has been climbed by generation to generation, each presenting its own steriotipical grit climbing odities which make this famed rock what it is. Poor mans granite as one particular UKC user described it as.

So, we arived in at Almscliff doned in tweed jackets and a beany hat to a rather cloudy and tipicaly windy almscliff crag. We started off with leads of Fluted columns which was enjoyable as you can sit down every three moves and enjoy the surrounding feild.

I would also like to add that the sufficient amount of gear to take is a few medium sized nuts and the odd cam and maybe a hex for the belay at the top, not the 20 quickdraws, full set of hexes, 5 cams and double set of huts i saw one guy carry.

After that, Jake tried Square chimney to whisky crack and erm 'retreated'. Then I had A go and found it pretty goo although not entirely happy with my slightly punterish climbing so far.
Then we headed up on to high man and Jake tried this cool looking climb.

Then he got the typical 'almscliff pump' and came down again so I tried to get the cam out and a stuck nut which was stuck and then I got my new size 4 stuck so then i was really sad and subsequently speant 45mins getting this stuck gear out....

After that Tom made a rather speedy ascent of wall and crack, HS 4b but the way he did it probably was about 4c. Then Jake also lead it making them quite chuffed.

After that I lead stomach traverse VS 4c which I was rather pleased with after last time i tried neither me or matt could do it in the high winds. I placed two bits of gear as well which i was pleased with cos it shows i'm becoming a bolder climber.
It was over a big cow pat aswell.

After that I tried great western getting a nut stuck after i decided not to go for my first E3, western front, which i'm pretty sad about to be honest.

Then Jake tried birdsnest carck and failed and I almost soloed after showing him how to jam and ended up about half way up. So then he decided he'd try some diff on low man to end the day. So anyway, Jake managed the first section to about 2 metres using a crimp two slopers and this crazy egyptian layback toe hook move. Abd err well failed at the rest and so climbed back down. He wasnt over happy now so we went for some fish and chips felling we'd had a 'fruitfull' day at what is a crag with a rather fruit full history of tweed, beanies and fat mycra wearing muffin eating climbing Vdiffs and E7's.