Thursday, 23 October 2008

This is what it’s all about.

New enthusiasm. Not that I generally lack motivation, but not for a while have I been picking over my guidebook collection and devising plans with such vigour. Finally I’m realising a long held ambition to get back into trad grit, after not doing much of it for the last five years or so. The weather has been good and now I’ve gone to three days a week I’ve got the spare time that’s needed. I can do one wall session on a work night to keep the fingers ticking over and then get out as much as possible climbing on the four days off.
Why trad grit? Obviously I love climbing, and living in Sheffield I’ve enjoyed climbing in the Peak a lot for the past twenty years. Generally I’ve been stronger and fitter in the second ten years than the first. During this time I’ve mostly devoted my energies to sport climbing and bouldering. Partly this has been for reasons of convenience, but mostly it’s because I had loads of classic things to do in these disciplines. I like to climb as hard as I can, but above all I love to do lots of quality climbing. I treat climbing as the collection of rare and beautiful experiences. Given the choice of spending ten days to get one treasured experience or spending ten days to get ten only slightly less treasured experiences I almost always plump for the latter. The consequence of this is that I have climbed, or tried and failed on many if not most of the best locally available sport climbing and bouldering. There is still good stuff for me to try but it’s ever more sparse and quirky (conditions dependant, or requiring re-bolting, or perma-wet, or serious, or other confounding issue). As I don’t like to loose too much strength or fitness, bouldering and sport climbing were ideal options when I only had evenings and weekends free. Now I’ve got more time to spare I can do a greater volume of trad and still find time to do some bouldering for strength. Get in! As I haven’t done heaps of trad climbing for fiv/ten years and I was never brilliant at it before, I still have shit loads of super classic stuff to throw myself at. This is proving to be great fun. In the last week I’ve been out six times and bagged a whole bunch of great climbs and still come home each day neither knackered or with trashed skin. Highlights have been Calvary, White Wall, Nettle Wine, Jelly Ache, Spock’s Missing and Moon Walk. Nothing amazingly hard, nothing particularly bold, just good honest brilliant routes. So much good stuff to go at, can’t wait for the next day out!

1 comment:

t_b said...

Spock's Missing. Bet that doesn't see too many ascents. Nice one.