Monday, 30 January 2012

Engineer 's Slabs

Engineer's Slabs VI,7 has stopped me in my tracks on numerous occasions.  Out of condition, bad weather, teams ahead of us and even un-psyched partners.

This morning was different with a hoared up crag, no wind.  Only other team was on Pinnacle Ridge and Scott and Steve were up for it. So game on..

One thing soon became very apparent as the belays are a joke for a team of three.  Steve had to balance on a tiny ledge whilst Scott was in the Sentry box - and on the belay beneath the final corner, they both had to suffer hanging in the groove.  It felt like an on-sight (having last climbed it in the summer of 96) but from what I do remember, this is equally as good in summer as in winter.

Sunday, 8 January 2012

The Cove

Tyneside has very little to offer for dry tooling, but an area which is suitable is the Cove at South Shields.  It has two good areas; one being the cove itself, and just a few hundred metres north is what we call the Burl Cave.  The rock is limestone with lots of pockets and is ideal for hooking.  Just remember to check the tide times, otherwise you'll get wet feet!

It'll never be comparable to Newtyle, but it is in a good setting!

Here's a few pics and a video from this morning.

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

The Vicar

With Steve Roberts, John Glendinning and Steve Wilkinson we headed into a windy Coire an Lochain yesterday morning.  Me and Steve Roberts decided on The Vicar VII,8  whilst John and Steve headed for Andromeda IV,4

Like most grade VII+ climbing it can be time-consuming finding hooks and good protection. But the major crux of the day was the weather.  High winds, heavy snow and unbearable spindrift made for difficult upward progress!

Steve made it part way up the cracked wall on the 3rd pitch, but we decided to rappel.  Time was pushing on and we had both left our head torches in our sacks!!

Lesson learnt... Don't climb something so hard in such harsh conditions.

John and Steve had a good time on Andromeda, but topped out into ferocious winds.

Another difficult drive home due to heavy snow and a incident on the A9.

Me on first pitch


Steve Wilkinson topping out

Nice gloves Steve..

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