Friday, 19 April 2013

The three Ws - Warm, Windy & Wet

Climbing this week has been sporadic and training has taken a real back step since returning from Switzerland. I've climbed indoors a handful of times since I got back to the UK - the motivation lacking for plastic pulling, I have to admit. But between the rain showers and heavy winds, I've managed to climb a few more boulder problems outside.

The biggest achievement for me was sending Jerry's Traverse (7B) at Cratcliffe - a problem I maybe should have done a long time ago, as it plays to my strengths. The technique for this one is sideways campussing - if you can call that a technique. The handholds are all pretty good, but they're on a slightly overhanging wall and the footholds are rubbish. Due to the overhanging nature of the wall and the crimps being encased within a crackline, leading from right to left, you have to be accurate and quick with your hand placements. No slapping and hoping you latch; you have to hit the holds in control. The only other difficulty is having the required power endurance to keep it going for the 10-12 moves required. I've never climbed a problem that so perfectly suits the finger board generation of today - an easy one to train for if you have access to a Beastmaker.

A small group of us had a quick trip out to Stanton Moor last weekend too - where it was warm, windy and wet. The three Ws all climbers love to hear. It's the first time I've visited this crag and, well, I wasn't massively impressed, I have to say. The problems are a bit all over the place and tricky to get to with pads on your back. However, when you do find them, there are a few gems among the trees. I tried one of them and failed miserably while figuring out beta that would work - Brad's Arete (6C+). However, just down the hill I did the much easier to figure out The 1980s Were The Days (7A). We then went back up top and made our way over to The King Stone, where I climbed The Plaque (6B) before eliminating the "craque" and climbing it again at 7A grade - in truth, not that much harder than the original.

The only other day I got out was Wednesday, just before the BMC Peak Area Meeting at The Maynard in Grindleford. I made a quick hour-long trip to Burbage South Edge to finish a problem I've tried in passing numerous times, Violence (apparently 7A). I'm sure everyone has a bogey problem and this one appears to be mine - it's nails! Maybe I'm doing something wrong, but the first move is desperate for me. And then every subsequent move feels droppable. I did it from one move in four times and then spent most of my hour just about getting my ass off the floor on the sit start - only latching the move once and then popping off. I did not send it and my skin was trashed from the crimp. Gutted! I'll have to go back. The battle is not over! I just need some skin first. 

Anyway, back out tomorrow. Maybe get on stuff I've tried before, maybe get on new stuff. Who knows! I love living in Sheffield... so much to choose from!