Saturday, 25 August 2012

WOO HOO!! Bagged it

The forecast for the weekend was pretty grim for the weekend. Yesterday I wrote off climbing.  Then I had a change of heart ... I managed to convince a belayer to head to Malham.
I woke up early again.
the clock reads 6.48 I grumble. I am feeling tired and grumpy.
I roll out of bed and get dressed.
Breakfast is needed psyche is needed more I look outside and it raining.
I grown.
I make a piece of toast and a bacon sandwich. No cereal.
I make a sandwich for the crag.
Bags packed ready. Psyche is building slowly.
Watching tv it gets to 8.30 I set off.
I drive on my own through rain, fog, clag, grimness. Psyche is no being helped.
I turn up the CD player and blast Bloc party, Offspring, RATM. Psyche is building.
I park up and walk to the crag. Its hot humid and spitting slightly.
I walk a long the catwalk. My target is rose coronary its wet, like really wet.
Instead I turn my attention to Consenting adults another 7a. The day starts now.
Moose leads the routes to warm up setting the draws for me. I was quite excited to get on route it looked like my sort of route. I wanted to get on it last time I was there but it had pretty heavy traffic so I got on rose coronary.
The route is fairly direct up a just overhanging vertical wall. I planned to work the route to get a sequence so I got on it on a top rope. Instead of my usual situation of throwing my self up things climbing like a dog in heat I took my time and figured how to do the route. Martin was there a friend of the Stallions. He had warmed up on the route so he gave me some beta as I was climbing.
I got all the moves with some dogging on my first time off the ground. I rested up and belayed moose on a route. I gave it another burn on top rope refining moves slightly and making links but dogging it save energy. I now had a sequence and I knew the moves. It was time for the lead.
I wanted a long rest before getting on the red point so I belayed Moose on Raindogs. He worked it for a while but felt nails so he just lowered off. Fortunately travelling wonder kid Enzo Oddo was there with a fellow french strong kid for raindogs 9a. A route that has only had two ascents 1 by British strongman Steve McClure the other by a future legend and complete beast Adam Ondra. Steve put the first ascent up in 2003 saw its second ascent in 2011 by adam (what took so long, oh yea its Britain and the weather is shit!).
Anyway back to my day. Psyche was ridiculously high watching a kid get really close to 9a so I went for the lead. I had not linked it but I had a sequence and that is all you need imo.
I pulled on the route felt foreign I climbed badly friggin the feet and making it up. I got to the crux but it just did not feel right. I said take like a pussy! The second to third bolt is the crux and is the move to the third bolt. I rested then had another burn. I climbed smoothly to the crux it all felt in place but I bottled the move gain. I stick clipped up to the third bolt and did the move on top rope. I just needed to man up.
I rested up and went for it I knew the move I just needed to commit.
It was time and I felt good. I pulled on and did the first hard move to two greasy jugs. I shook out and chalked up. I then started to move left. Left on the big flatty. Right in the side pull jug. I turned in big span to the small flatty. high rf and sit on it. Right had to a nobble as an intermediate lf to a polished hold and right on a big flatty. RH comes over the top to a small hold. Big reach left to a side pull.
The bolt is now below waist height and off to the right by two foot.
The crux bring right foot far over to a big smear, feeling bunched, I press my lf high on a polished smear. Then a big move right to a good bold by the right bolt.
This attempt I hit the hold got the draw clipped. Now to focus. I was feeling the route in my fingers. Big move to some nice jugs. This is a reasonable rest. Next up I move to a good gaston and side pull high feet. cross through to a good flatty and rock up match. I clip the last bolt feeling tired. I force myself to a poor rest. one last move two rh moves to pinches. First a small as intermediate. High right foot rock into it and reach up for a big pinch I am now set move lf up and step up into the high undercut I am there I clip the chain I am done! Get in! 7a in half a session. Three RPs and two quick top ropes. Proper 7a!
It is graded as Mid grade to hard 7a on UKC so I take it.
I am so happy and I have all weekend to climb (even if the weather is crap).
Anyway I spent the rest of the day belaying and I tried to repeat consenting to get the draws back but the sun came out and I could not repeat the crux. I eventually hauled past it and then repeated the rest of the route. So I climbed all but one move when tired. I would of taken that as an achievement before the day started.
Trying hard is something I think I am good at. I always try to climb at my limit when sports climbing. However with a quick 7a tick I am questioning if I am trying hard enough. I guess my goal should be 7a+? .. I have still not climbed a 6c or 6c+.
Anyway spirits are high. Lets see what the rest of the weekend brings.

Sunday, 19 August 2012

7a the goal, The target

So the goal for Costa Blanca was 7a I got one and got stupidly close to a another. The thing that is in the back of my mind is it was a soft 7a. I want a proper one. My E1's, my E2 and E3 are all soft. I can accept that I have climbed E one as I have climbed harder. I want to be able to say I climbed a 7a a proper one not a soft one.
Since coming back from spain I have not ticked another 7 I have not properly put the work in though weather training and injury has got in the way. In the last few weeks I picked a project that works for me its my anti style. Its steep jug hauling while managing the pump on the route avoiding it getting terminal.
Working the route is great fun. Its amazing moves and so much fun to climb.

I had some burns on this last saturday and I blow my lead on 4 occassions at the same move. I was pretty gutted as I was sure I would get it. According to the yorkshire limestone guide it is near the top of the graded list. So it is a proper 7a. Thanks to Paul Bennett for taking the photos (check out his site).

Sunday I went to Shooters and seconded a load of routes up to HVS and tried to lead an E1 but it rained as I got to the crux. I escaped off up a HS. I am confident in my ability to lead E1 I just need to get on more trad.

I have managed to finish a few projects in the last few weeks too. I got a new problem at Holmfirth that I have tried off and on for a about a year never really working it. I also got a problem at almslciff I had tried over 4 visits.
It's always good physce to tick projects.

The injury has been holing me back and I have completely stopped crimping. It has been a good excuse to work my weakness. I have been getting on longer steeper climbing. Its been great and I am noticing better technique coming through.
So overall that was a random post but I am happy with my progress in general.