Thursday, 4 October 2012

Clemitt's Crag - New Routes

Over the last few weeks Matthew and I have been climbing at clemitts crag. We repeated some of the routes on the clean 'Main Buttress' which were good, but after a suggestion from Franco and Dave that we look for some new routes, we saw far more potential on the buttress.

We climbed the existing routes 'Rainy day blues' E1 5b, a good, sustained, but unfortunately short crack climb and also 'Yellow brick road' the 1 * choss classic of the buttress which is quite long and covers some good ground.

Our attention was drawn to a thin unclimbed crack around the corner from 'Yellow Brick Road'. We were keen to actually see where the line would go or if there was a line, and we also needed to alter a tree slightly... Anyway, it looked great. Matthew attempted the line first and managed to flash the climbing, very impressive! Then I had a go, but with numb hands and feet, i couldn't do it! Then, after warming up i managed it. A nice traverse into the crack, which involves some technical climbing to a peg. From the peg, a huge dynamic reach leads out away from the crack which is now too small for fingers, and onto the arete in a great position, to finish boldly up that. 'A Pack of Fibbing Beavers' E3 6a ** we reckon. Cracking!

We then went on to try and onsight a new slab line to the right. But unfortunately we failed to puzzle out the start - what appeared to be a sort of controlled leap/lunge to a sloper, a smear of nothingness to some pockets which may or may not take gear? all above not the best landing... So we failed on this.

Bring on the next weekend though and we were psyched! We opted to give it a top rope and work out all of the climbing. The difficult was actually sustained all of the way up, though thankfully the pockets took good gear, a small hex and a nut. It seemed the first top rope made it easier than to onsight, but after that, it never really seemed to get any more straight forward! Dave also came along and had a top rope on this and an abb down some of the other routes.

We went for the lead, the climbing was utterly brilliant, weird in a places and in some ways, slightly wild! I tied my shoes too tight and ended up with Elvis leg after trying to down climb the top moves after i got a bit mixed up, managed the top section, and then had some sort of pansy on the top out, which isn't actually that hard. Then it was Matthew's turn. He made the first moves and then tried the long reach to the pocket. Ending up off balance, he had to jump off and i pulled him away from the gully of death. If you jump off before the gear and land just right, you should be ok, though if you slip and the starting moves, down the gully of death you may go... Then he did it and that was that. A really great route! 'Cupid and Psyche' E5 6b **.

We went to ravenswick a few days later and ground upped 'Fred' E4 6b, though its probably a bit easier than that. The years old thread also seems to be bomber as well.

A Wednesday training day at school meant we could make another trip back to clemitts. We went to camp hill first, but got utterly freezing in the heavy rain showers and strong winds and all me, rory, jack, joe and matthew could manage was a team ascent of tempest.

So we ran across the moor to a slightly warmer and dryer clemitts in time for the sun to come out. The lads made a good simul solo ascent of capstone chimney as me and matthew tried and failed to climb a blank wall we wanted to do - probably getting distracted by the shouts and boulders flying out of the chimney.

Jack made the fa of 'Dirty Clemont', the reasons for its name illude me... A good line, but could do with a bit of rain i reckon.

Then Matthew and I made the fa of  'The Badgermin' a HardVS 4c adventure route involving bold crawling through a ledge sort of thing to finish up a fine arete. Much much better than the goblin, some crap 2 star gritstone route. No doubt that the crag has more to give. Those 'classic' E2's look good.

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