Thursday, 16 February 2012

What I've been working on!

World Class Climbing Centre Opening in Dublin 2012

 The UK’s most successful chain of indoor climbing facilities, Awesome Walls, are about to bring Irish climbing to a new level in 2012 and beyond.

Awesome Walls Climbing Centre Dublin (AWCCD) will be located in the North Park Retail Park, just off the M50 N2 junction in Finglas, Dublin 11. The climbing arena will house in excess of 1,500m2 of expertly designed and manufactured climbing surface comprising;  a competition lead climbing wall over 13m in height, vast bouldering areas,  traverse walls and children’s climbing areas. In addition to your climbing needs being catered for, Awesome Walls Dublin will have a dedicated climbing shop and a comfy café with wifi, allowing you to sit back and relax in comfort between bouts of climbing with friends.

“For years Ireland’s indoor climbing facilities have lagged behind the standards of our European neighbours. Despite this, the Irish climbing community have remained probably the most enthusiastic and vibrant collective of climbers and have created a truly unique scene. I've always wanted to provide a venue that could cater for the vast potential out there and allow more Irish people to try climbing for the first time. I’m very excited to have the support and backing of Dave Douglas (owner of Awesome Walls) on this project as his climbing centres have continued to set the standard of what can be achieved at climbing walls in the UK. I’m looking forward to welcoming everyone into a modern, friendly, fun and challenging climbing centre of national importance in 2012!”

Dave Ayton

Managing Director Awesome Walls Climbing Centre Dublin

To keep up to date with the project just check in at Alternatively you can follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Flickr.

Happy climbing!

Awesome Walls Climbing Centre Dublin

Friday, 10 February 2012

Amature Hardcore

A classic from my youth (well early twenties!). Mark put his whole movie up on Vimeo for everyone to enjoy. A bit dark and sombre at times but then again so is North Wales occasionally. Underlying everything is the drive and passion the local scene had for development and exploration. Watching this made me want to get out more and was one of the main reasons I dedicated some time into sending Jerry's Roof - seeing Mark's journey as he progresses and the movie ending with his final well earned send was inspiring!! Everyone should watch this ... and then we should make our own! I've got a HD cam and will try film more when I'm out! What the hell... I'll film all the classics in Wicklow but I'll need climbers!! Anyone else game?

And as a bonus you get "Between the Rain" another classic! Brilliant!!!

Tuesday, 7 February 2012


Apparently its all about momentum – in the correct direction of course. Now being massively gifted I find I can generate quite a bit of momentum. The trick is ensuring that it’s not always downwards! Went bouldering in Glendalough on Sunday and the psyche was high! Met loads of new people and climbed quite a lot, surprisingly. Although all I've thought about is trying problems new to me I found that once out there I couldn’t resist trying the old familiars. You know, just to ease back into things. Trish took us on a journey around some sweet warm up circuit problems before we went over to Superswinger. Felt good to do that again but also a little disappointing. In my current shape I sent it second go proving without a doubt that it’s easy and probably only 5+. Shit. Ah well! Onto BBE sitter – I love that problem. Could do the start, could make the throw, liked Shea’s Shakira-esque hip beta. Momentum is key! But didn’t finish it. Toms brushes died. Then we went to Chillax. Man, Kids these days. Ruining perfectly decent campus burlyness with footwork and the likes. Was actually pretty cool beta and once I tried this heel hooking shite I kinda liked it – though I’m sticking with my ignorant oldschool topout. Sunday was a good day to die. To Chubbachop or whatever it’s called. I only remember bleeding and topping out from my last time on this boulder so with limited skin I bowed out and recalled past glory. John “spider monkey” H lead the way in fine style as Shea, Tom, Trish and Eoin all followed. They sparked my interest but skin was precious and I wanted to play on some other old friends. To the Hidden groove! Wonderland still looks amazing! Michael D you legend! Tom and Shea did King Cobra (Irelands best 6a) and then we played on Spinal Blood Clot (5). Now I remember this being easy and a lank-fest but despite out best efforts, maybe it was the damp rock, maybe we were tired, whatever! We failed. I recalled my sandbagging motivations from when I first climbed and graded this one and smiled, ahhhhhh! I showed Tom FluteBoy (6c) which on revisiting is the more modern of the problems on this wall. It’s a pure bloc style, one move, subtle, body positioning, dynamic dream. It’s the lowest, safest problem on the wall and should be on everyone’s list. My trip down memory lane finished we walked back to the car. Then I regretted not doing more new stuff – theres just so much to do in Dave’s guide!! Next time, new experiences all the way! Monday, with worn arms I hit the arch and began training. Progress!!! No other way of putting it, things felt easier. I felt less clumsy, lighter, stronger. Good session! This morning's run was also the driest and brightest to date – couldn’t resist a few extra kms around the park, beautiful.

Now for some psyche, these definitely deserve a watch – crush!

Thursday, 2 February 2012

Ready, Set, GO!

Just like out on the mountains you have to stop and take stock of where you are if you want to get where you want to be without any wrong turns. It’s not pretty but it has to be done. So here is where I’m at in January 2012. I’m 84 kgs (87 at Christmas!). I've been running most mornings now and am building up to the bouncy, upright, feel-good feeling that comes with regular running. Unfortunately it’s all been on road but with a stretch in the daylight due to happen I’m going to try and get out onto grass or sand more. Running down to the coast road and back before the commuter routes come alive with traffic is a great way to start the day.  I've been bouldering outdoors once, into Gravity 3 times and the Arch twice and have noticed a few specific weaknesses (other than just generally feeling shit and wimpy).
·         Lock off power is nonexistent. By that I mean the shouldery static lock that seems to prevail in indoor bouldering moves.
·         Finger strength is ok (not great) but of more concern is the complete inability to squeeze or pinch plastic blobs and slopers. Again, this is a very indoor specific strength that I’ll have to develop over the coming months. Not too worried about this one though as I've rarely found it necessary on rock.
·         Core strength. It’s a healthy dose of L-sits and leg lifts from the Beastmaker for me from here on in. Whenever I do any specific core work I always have to be careful to balance out the lower back with extensions or fit-ball work.
·         And Lastly but not leastly – flexibility. I've been really impressed lately but some peoples bendiness and I’d like to develop some of my own. This ties in nicely with the running actually as I click back into a post-run routine of warming down and stretching.
Great! So plenty to go at. My target weight is 78kgs. I want to boulder V11. Sport climb 8b. And headpoint Divided Years. Just as well I like a challenge, huh? Haa!
Heres some insane, mind blowing, standard defining footage from Font that has been doing the rounds on the web lately. Plus a V14 FA from everybody’s favourite, Dave G – word!