Wednesday, 9 April 2008

Jonny two hols

Week (five days actually) one was snow blown grit up in Yorkshire, week two was sun kissed pockets in Buoux.
Not feeling very wordy at the moment so will make this brief.
Yorkshire: Generally windy with snow showers meant Brimham was a good sheltered option. I love Brimham too so going there twice was good. Also had a day at Caley where the rock was in remarkably great nick, a snowy walk up to Simon’s + Lord’s Seat and a cold damp day at Malham. Did a bunch of good new-to-me probs at Brimham up to 7b including The Green Nose, The Governor, Black Chipper Arete, Arthur, Hole In The World, Joker’s wall flake SS and Murky Rib SS. At Caley I finally did Ben’s Groove after bottling the top bit on previous visits, need to go back for the amazing looking sitter now. Also did a cool arĂȘte mauling 7c called the Drey, which felt a bit soft with cunning beta. Repeated Blockbuster again, which felt harder than usual, cold fingers I reckon. Malham was a bit too cold for my tastes but it was raining so the best of a rum deal. Did Free And Even Easier, Consenting Adults and Bongo Fury, all of which I’ve done before. Fi led Consenting Adults which was something of a milestone for her. Although not too hard for her it has always been a bit of a nemesis route since she took a nasty upside down fall from the third clip a couple of years ago.
After a couple of days rest it was Buoux time (see Dob’s blog for fuller write up). The occasion was Kranken Arthur Harribo’s stag do. Fun was had, cheese was eaten, Arthur was dressed as a gay bear, pockets were pulled on. Routes of the week for me would have to be No Man’s Land 7b and Devers Pervers 7b+, both totally stunning routes. Least favourite was Reve De Papillon, nasty sharp pocket traversing with polished bugger-all for feet. Goes to show fame doesn’t always equal quality. In general I thought Buoux was a brilliant crag with perfect rock and many varied routes, far from the homogenous pocket hauling you might imagine. I did think however that based on my admittedly limited experience that it was a better crag in the 6s and 7s than in the low 8s. The 6s and 7s I did there where as good as any I’ve been on, the 8a-8bs seemed few and far between, very small pocket orientated (great if like Harribo you love the pockets), often unsubtly manufactured and for me not as interesting/varied as the harder routes at other big name euro crags such as Gorges Du Tarn, Ceuse, Rodellar, Terradets. We also had a day at Volx. Fun polished steepness, not bad for a knackered old crag but this style of climbing is done a whole lot better at numerous other places. Did a couple of 7bs there and redpointed a 7c+ (with unfortunate rope dabbage). The last day of the trip was a belter, ten routes on ten sectors. A great way to get a flavour of what Buoux has to offer. Will hopefully get round to posting some pics soon.
Sunday back in the peak and a snowy day on Burbage N. Nothing of note to report. Did a pleasant new low start to Little Brown Thug, starting on the left arĂȘte of Wednesday Climb. Little Brown Wednesday(?) – 7a, Nige being first up the “line”, getting his last session in before a shoulder op. Nige and Andy B both did Blind Drunk the heel way. One said 7c+ at most, one said deffo 8a. It’s hard putting numbers on lists! Tried Submergence but got snowed off.
Went back last night with Si to try Submergence again. Didn’t manage to do, although I did get the move to get the high layaway sorted (it’s all about turning the right heel outwards). Met Iain then went over and did Giza, which had up till then been a minor nemesis. It felt 7c to me and took quite a bit of effort, but I know lots of folk piss it (especially the lank) so it’ll get listed at 7b+ (for now) based on a range of opinions.

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