Thursday, 14 February 2008

Unexpected progress

Well i'm just back from Pantymwyn after a lonely session trying to concieve a way to link the meager holds on offer on any of the remaining problems that i have still to do. It was bitter cold this morning and i was even contemplating just not even putting my shoes on and walking back up to the car without trying anything at all but i'm really glad i didn't. It seems that the V7 in the guide that i thought i had flashed a few weeks back is now settling nearer the V6 mark but the guide also mentioned a V8 alternative finish that prolongs the difficulties somewhat by traversing into the finish holds of the neighbouring V10/11. After warming up on the V6 (or 7) a couple of times i decided to try launching out left after the crux. It felt really contorted, as alot of these lines can, because there was no footholds of much use so i ended up bunching my hands and feet all near the problem's one and only jug and swinging out left for a sharp crimp. Once secure on this it was just a case of heelhooking the right hand jug, sucking it in to move the right hand to a crimp and throwing for the finishing jug with the left again - Nice! V8 in the bag? Hmmm... i have my doubts because it sent so quickly but it was a great alternative finish and a good bit harder all the same - i don't do enough bouldering to know about grades anymore - i give up!
With that done and still being hesitant to move (i was partially frozen!) i began to inspect the holds on Sparks V10 (although Adam Hocking suggested it should be V11 and he's a sandbagger in the extreme so i don't know!). This is a nasty piece of work - and totally against the grain for me. It's basicially alot of very powerful footless snatching between well spaced edges leading up to a big enough campus move to a chalked piece of vertical limestone that seems to enjoy playing along with the dillusion that it's actually a hold... and then one final campus move from said non-hold to a sloper. Without expecting to pass the move where Sparks deviates from Firestarter i chalked up and pulled off the deck through the familiar first 2 moves and then felt comfortable enough to keep going! Left hand reaches 3, then right hand into the letterbox 4, shuffle feet at back of cave, left hand out again to the three finger tip crack 5, right hand drops into the better slot 6... i just managed to hold that move! Now what? What did he do in that video? Cut loose - right - done, paste right foot onto 3 and throw further left catching 7 with my left and leaving me hanging... and thats it for now. The hanging campus move that gets your right hand into 8 is appaling! but i can to the final campus moves, although pulling them off after doing all that will be a different story. So there it is! 1 move seems to be blocking my way on something i never even thought i would be contemplating - excellent!

Heres a close up of hold 9 that i mentioned earlier - don't ask! I know theres nothing there - it just works! Anyway after that session i began to work the crux of another problem that goes directly up from holds 5 and 6 to hold 10 - this is a recent addition and has begun it's to-date unrepeated life as a sandbagged V8+. As i could do all the moves to 5 and 6 in one i figured it would be worth working. But man what a move! A full on campus heave and throw for a crimper from two tiny slots that you're forced to openhand! After probably 20 tries from a standing start i began to stick it and could finish it to the last hold but didn't have the energy to link the two overlapping sections! It's a beast of a move and felt harder than the crux of Jerry's Roof for sure!

Well time to go... or was it? I still had not looked at the V9 traverse, Thug Mentality. Last visit i managed to work the start sequence and bagged a V7 in the process but totally failed to make any headway on the first move along the lip of the cave - pathetic! Well i couldn't resist trying it and out of the blue things started to click.

I knew from the start that i'd have to find my own beta for this as the video of Sam campusing through these huge horizontal spans was of no use to me at all! Today i found a great combination of a right toehook in the starting cave along with a left heel-toe lock on a crimper near the lip that let me cross-over with my left hand from hold 2 to hold 3 (momentarily) before moving onto 4, the big sloper! From that position reaching hold 5 was easy and a high foot in hold 2 let me cross over with my left again to hold 6! I had just linked the middle half of the route! Awesome! Although i think i ripped an oblique in the process though!! Oooowwwww!!! Anyway, with my right side splitting i kept trying the final sequence... Right hand on 5, left on 6, pull up the legs to get my left foot beside my right hand and throw with my right hand to the big fatty pinch 7. From this position i could actually use the finishing sequence from Sams video and heelhool the finishing jug before dropping onto and swinging out of it with both hands. And there it waits - nicely in 3 sections and requiring way more stamina than i currently have but no move is stopper! I am soooo psyched!!! There is now a V8+, V9 and V10/11 for me to just keep working on till i send them or die trying - It's good to have goals :)

2 comments:

Dave said...

And yes, i do realise that was the most Anal, self-indulgent, boring post ever! especially if you dont know the problems mentioned here in great detail - but think of it this way - i've gotten all the hyper waffle out of my excited little system and don't now feel the need to put everyone i come in contact with through it! Sorry for putting ye through it though! :)

Dave said...

Haa! it seems that i was right! The stand up start to that V8+ i was trying today IS hard by istelf!

http://www.northwalesbouldering.com/newsitem.asp?nsid=310

According to the above news link, just the move from the edges to the top warrents V7! Nice! A V7 and a V8 today potentially - although i did notice that i got the beta wrong - i campused the move whereas even the beast looks like he used his feet - doh!