Saturday, 24 April 2010

Evening light

Last Saturday we made the 120 mile pilgrimage to Malham – it was a scorcher and the place was full of tourists and climbers. First up I jumped straight onto Raindogs , 8a, to get the draws in and try the moves. Finger friendly holds and nice moves all the way but every one burly and every move relies on specific body positions – everything is a undercut or sidepull and all the footers are polished to the point of looking shiny in the dead heat. I gave it one go in the midday heat and then lowered off cleaning the draws – not today! The rest of the day was spent onsighting lower grade 7’s – 4 7a pitches and a 7b finished off the trip. This week the Dinbren fun continues. We’ve been up and climbing tue, wed, thurs and Fri – sweet! This weeks haul of new sends include a 6b+, 6c and 6c+ for Caroline and a 7B+ and 7c for meself, happy days!! It’s been great to be able to get out almost every day just for a few routes and I’m feeling the benefit of the mileage on rock. I love the movement and flow you get to experience on the routes outside – nothing even comes close indoors! This is where I want to be, this is why I climb.

Tuesday was freezing and unsurprisingly we had the crag to ourselves. I was still feeling tired after the weekends climbfest so it was all Caroline this time. First on her list was a short and steep 6c+ with a definite crux move over an overlap. 1st go Caroline got into the crux but due to numb hands hung on the rope. lowering off and pulling the rope Caroline was rubbing some heat and life back into her hands – warm now – send it! Sweet! Second up was a neighbouring 6c which due to a long reach makes it feel much harder to most climbers shorter than 5’10. This used to be Caroline’s nemesis and she never ever managed to climb it in the past. This evening however, the recent mileage on rock and confidence on lead made the difference and Caroline lead it first go – no working and probably a good 2 years since trying it last – very impressive.
Wednesday I was feeling like I wanted more routes under my belt so decided to drop the target grades and aim for some quick ticks – first up was Bolt the Blue Sky Direct – a burley and steep 7b+ with a crux dyno to a jug and a steady top section (if a little run-out). The onsight went well but the prospect of dyno’ing to an unknown hold wasn’t that appealing. I fell off due to hesitating then clipped it up to the chains. 1st redpoint I sent it – happy with that!

Thursday I moved focus onto Dyperspace 7c – this takes a direct line through probably the steepest terrain at the crag. The first 3 bolts see you climb through a 2m horizontal roof, finishing with a deadpoint out of an egyptian to a jug and cutloose. There then follows a redpoint crux on crimps and poor footers leading into another roof with a crack. 1st redpoint I surprised myself by making it through the roof to the redpoint crux but blew off by ripping off an undercut – awesome fall! Now I needed a new sequence for the top – no problem. 3 more redpoint attempts gave me the best burn I had in weeks – leaving the crag I was sated. I knew it was in the bag and I was happy with the session. Friday. With aching shoulders and after a week at school I was wrecked. Caroline wanted to tick off a 6b+ that she’d never lead before so we went up to the crag. The minute I walked under the roof of the 7c I wanted to get the draws in it – Caroline reckoned it was on tonight so I warmed up by swinging my arms around a few times (both directions mind!) and then went up to put the draws in – but it was feeling so good that I just kept going to the chains – Ticked! And I think I have a new favourite route at Dinbren and warm-up :o) Caroline did the same, tied in and flowed up her 6b+ to the chains first go. Happy with that we packed up and went home.


Tim said...

The great weather is bringing loads of fun, how far from your gaff is the crag? It almost sounds like you have put a tent up at the bottom!

Love the warm up,I like to sometimes jazz it up with a few finger flexes just to get real hardcore.

I can't hear enough about malham it's a great place, I even like walking around it. At this rate Caroline(got it right this time) are gonna crush this summer!

Good luck.

Dave said...

Cheers Tim - yeah the good weather is helping loads lately!

We're 5 mins drive and 7 mins walk from Dinbren's first bolt - if we break a sweat we could be there within 10 mins of leaving the flat

Yeah, Caroline is finding her form alright... A good summer would be very, very nice to look forward to!