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Thursday, 26 January 2012

Oak crag, Camp hill, Moor's best routes

Over the Christmas holidays I ventured to two of my favourite crags on the moors with Joe. We went to oak crag first, and after a slip, I managed Digimon, E1 a route Ive wanted to do since i took a ground fall on it, on my first day 'properly' climbing. (I didn't understand what e1 meant). Joe soloed a couple of Hvs' in good style and went on to try and lead Captain Birdseye, a terribly protected and superb crack and slab. He managed the crux, and after a bit off persuading, carried on above small rp's. nearing the top, he made a delicate rock over, but unfortunately his foot slipped. Down he flew towards the ever approaching ledge. I jumped back and caught him just in time, his last rp holding, just!

Joe doing a back flip.

A few days later we visited camp hill. I managed to solo cling wrap direct, E1. I thought I'd completed the clingwrap saga, but not until I'd soloed the best route on the buttress, latching that top hold on solo puts you in a whole new situation!

Recently I've talked to a few people about what they think the best routes in the moors are. Routes on the moors are totally different to routes anywhere else. The sand stone rock provided an array of bizarre moves, but also the atmosphere and bleakness in the valleys and on the ridges is unlike any found anywhere else.

So here are my top ten routes i've done on the moors:

10. If you're not flying, you're not trying.
9. Ace of winds
8. Ornithology
7. Valiant
6. Hari Kiri
5. Captain Birdseye - Perfect slabs are rare on the moors, but this is awesome!
4. Cling wrap direct - Moves which will only amaze, maybe not the best, but my favourite route in the moors.
3. Warrior - A truly amazing and inspiring feature, unlike anything Ive see before, one of the best E2's in the moors
2. The sphinx nose traverse - mint!
1. The nightwatch - amazing, and the best VS in the north!

So there you are! I'd like toy here your comments...

Pickering Woods and Peak Scar

Back in November, me Jake and Tom continued our exploits in Pickering woods. Despite the crags only being between 8 and 20 metres high, there's a significant feeling of adventure, mostly due to the horrifically loose rock (video to come). There are still many more lines left on the creeping buttress, but one stands out from the rest. The large roof was our target for this day. Jake first attempted to free the roof, but the roof proved difficult and he eventually secumed to aid.

A Strenuous Roof   VS 4b A1 We will no doubt come back and free the magnificent roof.

I noticed recently that various cretins on ukc complained at the fact that in our aid climbing video i was apparently belaying too far back, most definitely the most dangerous part of the ascent ahaha. and also unavoidable, do to the steep bank below the route and the fact that when rocks fall down, they hit you on the head. Anyway, during Jake's ascent we photographed my new belaying style.


The typical Pickering woods climbing lout.


I also went to peak scar recently, one of my favourite moors crags, with Rory and Matthew. We climbed a few routes which was cool including a superb ascent of ornithology.

Then we tried to climb the full traverse again as a three, which proved eventful, climbing pitches and realising we'd actually soloed them. Then we simulclimbed a few pitches, though we didn't really know what we were doing... We ended up abseiling off, then the rope got stuck, tried prusicking, failed, so soloed back up and freed them again. All in all, a good day.

Wednesday, 4 January 2012

Last weekend I met Matthew Ferrier at camp hill crag. Basically, this is just about my favourite crag on the moors! And although it lacks in size, the quality is amazing. If you're visiting the moors, and you want a bit of esoterica with some of the best climbing in the country, go to camp hill.

I still had a bit of unfinished business to do. I still hadn't done cling direct, or the direct start, nor had I done Ace of winds or anything on the pick pocket buttress.

We did Cling wrap direct and the direct start, which was really good to finally complete the 'cling wrap trilagy'.
Matthew soloed a few of the easier routes and then we climbing 'ace of winds'. This is the other route I'd really wanted to do for a long time.

Camp Hill seems to just be one of those crags which isn't particularly extensive (although there are several other brilliant smaller buttresses) but every line is classic. After this Dave Warburton rather unexpectedly turned up. He showed us a few of Mike Adams' new boulder problems, and then we went and had a go on the pick pocket buttress. Pick pocket, the central life still confuses me as to how on earth to climb it!

So all in all, a superb day at my favourite crag in the moors :)