Sunday, 25 April 2010

Know yourself

Last week I tried a 7c+ up at the crag…. I couldn’t make head nor tale of the crux – no holds I could use. I felt I gave it an honest go too – tried every combination of handholds, footholds, intermediates, undercuts, crossovers, deadpoints, slaps – nothing worked! Shut down! Some fresh scars on the rock let me know the route had changed lately and the guide description of a good hold by the second bolt was way off – all that was there was an epoxy stain where a glued on hold had once been. Was it still 7c+ or was it now an 8? I lowered off and crossed it from the list of routes to do at the crag – for me this was impossible.

Could someone please then explain to me why on Saturday (my fifth day of climbing straight this week!) when I tied in at the base of the same route (for some unknown reason) I pulled some sick, devious sequence out of nowhere and managed to redpoint it 3rd go?!? I was totally confused! I had really considered this thing impossible and Vince (the Belgian) was surprised too. He had belayed my failed attempts when I first tried it and was there on Saturday to see the redpoint.

I need to realise the HUGE difference working a route makes. Impossible to enjoyable. What was to blame for this drastic turn around? Stronger? Nope! More holds? Deffinately not! Better conditions? Nope – if anything slightly too hot. So it must be my head. I think once I know I have a sequence and something to aim for I’m quite good and just taking a deep breath and blasting through things that really I shouldn’t be able to. If that is a trait of mine i really should learn to take account of it more often and use it to my advantage intentionally. Reminded me of my first 8a. That was another one I had walked away from after having to resort to aiding on bolts to get to the lower off… something pulled me back onto it though and eventually I sent it.

Morale of the story? Keep trying hard – it’ll pay off!

I’ve now sent three 7c’s and two 7c+’s within a session or two - three tries max. This evening (Sunday) I even cooled down by clipping up Friday’s 7c for Vincent to try – no falls, no rests, no hassle! I need to try something harder…

3 comments:

Neal said...

the biggest lesson I've had in the last years is just the emphasis on consistency which ties in with what you're doing! if you're regularly getting on hard stuff, you'll regularly send hard stuff :) keep it up, you're flying....

Dave said...

Cheers buddy! Psyched for Pembroke now! Been flicking through the guids - so much to go at!!!!!

Neal said...

sweet, look forward to the activity :)