Catch It...Snatch It...Dispatch It!

Yesterday afternoon I headed to the Peak with Alex Fry and Chris Davis. We all had a very successful bouldering session at Rubicon (also strangely known was Water-Cum Jolly). This was my introduction to peak limestone.  Big guns Alex Fry (aka Warwick Bear Rock manager) managed to send his second font 8a boulder problem, Dancing Fish on Kudos Wall. Quality effort. I managed to capture the ascent, check out below for video. Unfortunately Alex injured his finger on the final big move of the problem, which took took the shine off the success. The full extent of the injury in not yet known, we wish him and his finger a speedy recovery.

On a more mortal level, I managed to send A Bigger Tail and Kudos which was my first proper font 7a+. Chris managed A Bigger Tail and Kudos Traverse which was his first font 7b.We also managed to onsight Rubicon 7a+. Pretty good evenings climbing!

The evening light was very photogenic, managed to get a few good snaps:

Rubicon Wall 

Alex on Dancing Fish

Chris on Kudos Traverse 

Me on Kudos

Alex Sending Dancing Fish - Font 8a

The video can be viewed in better quality by viewing it in youtube and clicking 720p

Right! Back to Power Electronics Converters and Devices module revision......

End of Easter Climbing

Today was the last day of Easter climbing for me. Chris and I climbed The Weaver E2 5c on Bwlch Y Moch in glorious morning sunshine then travelled down Warwick. The Weaver was an awesome route, possible one of the best routes iv done in Tremadog, the second pitch just keeps on going.

Chris Cruising up the First Pitch of Weaver 

Me on the Second Pitch of Weaver

Enjoying Morning Sunshine at Bwlch Y Moch

Recently I have acquired a Citroen Dispatch panel van. The plan is to do it up into a DIY camper for summer climbing and alpine adventures. Watch this space!   

Blank Canvas....

Slate Head but Not a Gritstone Gorilla ....

The spell of good weather has continued, iv been making the most of my last fewer days at home in North Wales before I go back to uni for the dreaded 3rd (exam) term.

Yesterday Chris and I worked our way through a few sport routes in the slate quarry's. We started off with Gerbil Abuse 7a, its an amazing route with super funky climbing. We then moved on to True Clip 7b+ but found it nails! A  Better name would be 'Clip Stick' as Chris had to clip-stick his way up it. We finished off with Geordie War Cry 7a+ which is an awesome route. It some how manages to be pumpy, strenuous and balancy at the same time. Chris also climbed Fools Gold E1, was good to climb this excellent classic route again.

The Immaculate Rainbow Slab Catching the Afternoon Light

The Amazing but Painfully Blank Wall of Tue Clip

Chris Cruising Up Fools Gold 

Chris Enjoying the Contorted Hands off Rest on Geordie War Cry

Today we hit the Orme for some more sport climbing. Even though the sun was out the air temperature and the wind was pretty cold, therefore the day was spent sun chasing. 

We warmed up on Contusion 6c then moved on to the classic but polished Axel Attack 7a+ which went on the first red point. Following the sun we move along Marine Drive and climbed Precious Metal E1 5b. The sun moving towards the West necessitated moving on. We went down to the little rather unknown crag of St Tudnos. This is where I learnt I was not a Gritstone Gorilla after failing to get up Gritstone Gorilla E3 5c it cleanly. Partly due to lack of commitment and partly due to the onset of a mammoth arm pump. It's wild route, it goes over a massive overhang, check out the photos below.

The Impressive Roof of Gritstone Gorilla 

Gritstone Gorilla Make or Break Time

Sadly not a Gritstone Gorilla...Yet

Pen Trwyn Panorama 

Summer Has Arrived!

It's been a fantastically sunny weekend here in North Wales. Two days were spent in Gogarth and the other in Tremadog.

Although I feel pretty strong and fit, having just returned from a sport climbing trip, trad climbing fitness is very different. My calf muscles have been taking a battering!

The highlights at Gogarth were Emulator E1 5b on Main Cliff and Gauntlet HVS 5a on Upper Tier. We also climbed Bezal VS 5a on Upper Tier but the last pitch was so loose (even for Gogarth) I don't recommend  it. I didn't take that many photos as I was too busy climbing (and faffing!), I did manage a few in the evening light.

David seconding The Gauntlet HVS on Upper Tier

Mmm what to choose - David leading the 2nd Pitch of The Gauntlet

If you are considering climbing the Gauntlet its best to abb of after the 2nd pitch (in situ tat). If not a whole world for steep vegetation and loose rock awaits..error. 

Gogarth Upper Tier and South Stack Lighthouse

Gogarth South Stack in Evening Light

Today was spent on Craig Y Castell in Tremadog. David climbed Tantalus E1 5b and I climbed Tensor E2 6a. I have always wanted to climb Tensor after seeing the classic photo (in PYB reception) of Joe Brown on it. I always get inspired by the photos on the walls in PYB, usually when I am delivering the all important tea and cake trolley to the staff. I had heard stories of horrendous polish and a desperate and reachy crux. In reality the climbing was steady and interesting up to the top roof then a couple of hard moves to get over the roof. The abseil down from Tantalus took us down the line of Tensor, therefore I had a good idea where the good holds were! Definitely not an onsight. After the roof the route degrades to slightly scary scrambling but the quality of the climbing below makes up for it.

Last of the Winter Snow / First Rays of Summer Sun

Wednesday, a day of two half's:

The day started off with a scramble up Crib Lem Spur in the Carneddau, Its a great grade one scramble up the North side of Carnedd Llewelyn. There was still a little bit of snow on the Black Ladders and near the top.
Nearing the top of Crib Lem Spur on the Carneddau

Alpine(ish) style descent from Carnedd Llewelyn

Wednesday was the first sunny day for a while, when we got back we decided to make the most of it. We headed down to Criccieth beach for some sunny bouldering. 

The bouldering on Criccieth beach is not well know, it only gets a brief mention in North Wales Bouldering guidebook. It deserves more attention. It it situated below the castle. The bouldering consists of a traverse, usually done from left to right with increasing difficulty. The crux is probably V4ish bit the length of the traverse makes it a proper pump feast. 

Amy took some great videos showing the quality of the bouldering, featuring me struggling along the crux of the traverse. 

Jawbreak Success!

I don't class myself as a boulderer (and hopefully never will do!), but I have indulged in a few bouldering days at Porth Ysgo. Every time I went I had hoped to do the classic problem Jawbreaker but it had always been too wet (its tidal ). The tide retreated enough on Tuesday to allow a successful ascent (all three moves of it!). It was a bit of an anticlimax but still a quality problem.

Credit to Tony Stone (strong man with an injured arm) for the great photos.