Friday, 30 May 2008
Wednesday, 28 May 2008
Devil's Glen (where we were staying) is a collection of holiday cottages attached to some kind of horse training centre. All the properties (as far as I know) were occupied by wedding party people, it was a nice morning and there looked to be the chance of better weather in the afternoon. After the obligatory fannying around drinking coffee we set off for Glendalough. The others had already gone and we needed shopping. By the time we'd got some provisions, parked in the wrong place, walked the wrong way and so on we would have had 20 minutes climbing time. Decided not to bother and to lie in the sun instead. Everyone arrived back just after three and started getting ready for the wedding which was at 5. I shouldnt imagine I will see my climbing friends so well dressed until there is another wedding to which we are all invited - everyone looked great. The wedding itself was up at a central building onsite at devil's glen - and that was one of the genius bits about the choice of venue - if you so desired, you could pop back to your house and have a moment, get changed - whatever. Very good. Ushering us to our seats best men Roy and Busby :
Soon after five everyone leapt from their seats as Shiv started her walk through the car park :
And then the ceremony. We were sat outside, and although as you can see the sun was out, it was really windy and quite cool. Ceremony was over in a flash - here are the happy couple regaling the party with their favorite sequences on staminaband :
And then, inside for the meal and drinks. Delightfully Mr Fullwood had been asked for beer recommendations, so we had Kelham island best and easy rider on draught. Next, the speeches... I can't remember the order people spoke in, but there was some real heartfelt emotion going on here. Looking down the line of hard outdoors extreme sports heros (and our table too), the girls were all in bits, Rob Smith, the Sausage and I were concentrating furiously on our breathing and only Nige and Jon looked unaffected. Very touching. Some food later and everyone was ready for the two shifty types to tell some jokes :
A best man's speech has to be all about sailing close to the wind without crossing the line. At points it appeared they werent so much as going to cross the line as ride a motorbike over it, but they didnt - a very well executed slightly risque speech that went down a storm. The evening finished with the compulsory wedding disco. Everyone had a great time - some more than others :
When Andy met Shiv, it was in the toilets at the Kendal Film festival. He wooed her by drinking a pint whilst doing a handstand, I mean - who could possibly resist such a feat? not shiv obviously. He got coerced into repeating the stunt :
Got to crack on - been writing this for ages! so the night continued, we all had a great time and everyone was well oiled. Other personal highlights - Joe dancing inappropriately with a wooden pig, Vicky telling everyone she was a rough as owt (!), and Mr Harris asking us all to cheer when a picture of him in the bath rotated past on the slideshow. The girls were hilarious and far out danced the boys. All tapered off around 2am.
Sunday started slowly, but I had restrained myself and felt pretty sparky. Couldnt muster much enthusiasm from the group for the boulders, but managed to get out eventually. The monster felt ropey! Glendalough is a very beautiful mountain setting for climbing, and as you approach it appears there is absolutely loads of rock, but when you get close to it much of it is knee high - in short, quite disappointing. What climbing there is is good, lovely granite and ok landings, and presumably theres much more than I saw in one short afternoon, but the general impression I got was that most of the blocs aren't actually climbable.
Once back at the house, we went out for our tea and then all piled round to one of the other houses to hang out and finish the beer off. A very funny evening ensued. Those who were on the ferry had been told that the middle of the day ferry was cancelled and were all getting up at daft o clock to get the 8am ferry home, so that put paid to any staying up late ideas. We werent flying until 2000, so we had all day to kill the next day, and thankfully Andy and Shiv were hanging about too. Come Monday morning we drove up to Shiv's mums house for a cuppa, and then on into Dublin to roam about for a few hours. Had lovely fish and chips at Howte courtesy of mr and mrs Harris and then a mooch around town - very nice. Back home to sheff tired but happy. A good weekend.
Friday, 23 May 2008
Wednesday, 21 May 2008
Tuesday, 20 May 2008
Went to the foundry last night. Bumped into Andy Hutchinson and did a bit on the wave with him whilst waiting for that dog Fletcher. Felt slow starting, but warmed up into it and ended the session (as Dylan and Lucy arrived) feeling pretty sparky.
Popped to Nic's to get mine and Keith's shirts and wish I had shared Keith's vision - orange looks ace! Anyway, spoke to Katherine as she is climbing tonight and was going to kilnsey. Then the monster decided to come home, so told Katherine that I would stay local and texted the parry, who has offered a lift. Katherine keen to do routes somewhere as would I be if we go somewher suitable - said I'd keep her posted.
Nearly in Leeds station now, better get my wits together (could take some time!)
Monday, 19 May 2008
Saturday morning club was on time and at Rubicon. Much cooler than previous weeks, met Jo Brown and James. Felt pretty sparky but didnt do anything hard. Had a first look at the reverse of the kudos wall trav, dispatching within a few goes, but unable to do low left into it. This could be doable though. Couldnt do Kudos hard as left leg hamstring hurts. This is an injury I picked up on Dick Williams, but that has never mended completely. I think perhaps I should go and see someone about it. Any sort of pulling with that leg is a bit hurty. Home by 1215 and off to Cafe Ceres for brunch where we met Busby and Ayshea. They joined us for lunch and it was lovely. Left me wondering why I/we dont see them more. Very pleasant. Other jobs through the aft, then 80's party!
Fairly well restrained, home just after 2, straight to bed and feeling fine the next day. Sister got back from her honeymoon on Sun, so had to give her back her car and am now fully car less. Rubbish. Climbing tonight - poss with Dylan at the Foundry. No idea what Ed, Ed, James, Paul, Jonboy etc have planned for the rest of the week, but I think I am deffo climbing tonight - hopefully routes, hopefully foundry. Tomorrow is a possible this week - I will be on the train to Leeds (am at home today), but planning to be on the one that gets back to sheff at 1544 - there is a chance the monster might stay at her mum's so if I can cadge a lift I might be able to get out then... Wednesday will depend on Tuesday. It now appears I might have to go in the office again on weds which is bad, and if I have been on tues I wont bother on weds. Planning to climb on thurs, but probably just in the day or a short evening session or summat.
Friday, 16 May 2008
Thursday, 15 May 2008
Wednesday, 14 May 2008
Tuesday, 13 May 2008
Monday, 12 May 2008
Friday, 9 May 2008
Thursday, 8 May 2008
Wednesday, 7 May 2008
Saturday, 3 May 2008
Other regulars in situ for the summer include Stone (who I dont think ever goes away), Paul Reeve, Kristian and that chap whose name I think might be Simon - anyway, he's always there too. Had ideas about getting Dave on Sardine, but to be honest, its a full sandbag route to point someone who has never led outside before at. I mean, its hard for 7b+ and its super polished - plus, I havent actually done it before and memory of sequence is sketchy (and the top is both run out and loose). Figured that Super high intensity body building would suit him better, as its only 2 bolts long and bouldery crux at the start. Plus, I had't actually done it before. So, I nip up and put the clips in, and lower down for masonic Dave. Dr Pinch (ed robinson) turns up and we chatter on whilst Dave gets tied in. One thing I should mention is that I forgot the spare harness (dave doesnt have one of his own), so we had to borrow one from SuperTed, and its one of those really shit ones you can hire at the foundry! Dave is not comfortable! Anyway, he skittles through the boulder problem start and makes it to the jug ledge by the first clip, clips it and announces he's pumped (I was too!), the next move is a reach to a pinchy thumb sprag thing off a great foot hold, and he does that but rather than stepping up into the massive sidepull flake he is questing off right wards on non holds! anyway, he pumps out and sags onto the rope. Has a rest, sorts out what he should have done and dispatches first red point. First ever route ticked!
Rae and Tom arrive, and Rae tells me theres actually a belay through the grass on top! I have to strip the route anyway, so do it again and this time find myself mantelling loose sods of earth and facing a ground fall. Great. Its easy and all but I think if you lost it there you would be very close to the ground when you stopped. Clipped the belay, stripped the route. Robin Barker arrives and says hello before doing laps on powerband. Considering he had fully snapped a tendon recently, he's not doing too badly.
We move to Rattle and hump, and to start with I cant do the boulder problem. I am thinking how I have lost it since last year as this used to be really easy, but I am full of cold, and I have had nearly three weeks off climbing, so am not that suprised. Dave shows me a better way for the feet and I do the problem, but sharing the jug feels hard. Wierd. Work out the gaston move and climb from the jug to the top. Remembering how good the climbing is up there. Dave has a go and gets stopped by the gaston move. He hangs on the rope and works it out and then has a bit of a bimble at the rest of it, working out a way etc. I have another go, climb past the gaston move, make the next clip, but for some reason my feet are wrong and I drop it going up to the next right hand gaston. Lower off and Dave tries. He is on and off quickly as can feel a tip splitting. I examine my own hands which are getting chewed up by the dogs mouth teeth like holds. I tie on, climb past the gaston and clip, get my feet right and finish the route. Suprised and happy, we leave the crag.
Anyway, apologies for the last paragraph. i am sat in the car awaiting an AA man, and between the paragraph above and the one before it he called to say he would be 10 minutes, so I have to hurry up.
Update - just got towed back to the garage and home. AA man suspects the following based on my description of events : the turbo seal failed and sucked all the engine oil into the exhaust (hence the clouds of white smoke), then because I tried to turn it over again to see if it had worked the engine might have siezed. Shit. That means a new engine. Possibly. Thats worst case. Anyone know how much a short engine for a 53 plate 2.0 TDi A3 is?
Friday, 2 May 2008
Thursday, 1 May 2008
Anyway, back to the point of this post. Last night I spoke to Rob Napier (keen for Zeke too) and he tells me that Ted Kingsnorth looks like he will do Mecca in the next few days. Bloody hell. He is turning into a full beast! his performance against time curve was flat until this year when it has suddenly taken off - this year he has done two 8a blocs and is about to do an 8b+. Amazing. Good effort Ted. Am more than the least bit jealous. (I havent actually plotted a graph of Ted's performance over time, so this might be wrong, but thats how it appears).
School t-shirts are out. Perhaps I should go and pick mine up tonight instead of trying to climb when I shouldnt.
Finally, on a humorous note; Tony Musselbrook has a blog : its very entertaining reading - more blogs should aim to make statements such as these, here are my five favorites (so far)
i think that session [was] like the second coming of jesus will be if jesus was surrounded by hot babes and ninjas busting facemeltingly awesome guitar solos 24/7
that man has the endurance of a seal. (is this good or bad I wonder?)
i hope one day to become a mountain hermit, soloing really hard things regularly just because i cant be bothered to walk round, chasing down sheep and killing and eating them with my bare hands, and that sort of thing..yes, that would be bitchin'
still couldnt do jerry's traverse. still couldnt do the ace. and thats all i really learned today.
you dressed like a loser, you climb like a loser.