Saturday, 13 August 2011

The Friday night climb

Friday night is a good night to head down the climbing wall for a training session. For one, it's quiet. For two, it's quiet. Normally thronging with the masses, my local wall is positively empty on a Friday night. It's not very often that I find my way there on a Friday either, so it's a rare treat when, come the weekend, I forgo the customary collapse after a busy week of work and training and instead summon up my last remnants of motivation and hit the climbing wall.

And an added bonus this week was the new boulder problems at my local gym, Awesome Walls Climbing Centre, Stoke-on-Trent. Put up by two international route setters, they are of top quality (mostly) and so much fun to climb. All the grades are worth a blast. Even the juggy ladders in the V0-V2 range. But the best problems, for me, come at the higher end of the grading spectrum in the centre, V6-8. Although few of these actually constitute the meaty grade of V8, they're fun to climb nonetheless. With innovative movement and excellent use of the wall's features, they take cunning and strength in equal measure. Well, maybe a bit more cunning than strength in most cases.

The other nice thing about my climbing centre is that it's a dedicated bouldering gym. Which is great! Because I tend to stick to the bouldering.

So, come Friday evening, work is ending, my head is lulling, my belly is calling for a glass of wine and my body is calling for relaxation, but I sum up the last vestiges of psyche and just go: "NO! I shall go climbing!" without having to arrange for anyone else to be there to hold my ropes. It is glorious.