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Rock Action success

27 Jul 2009

Anna, Jethro, Dan, Buster, Vivian, Elliot and Austin all joined me last week for a successful week of climbing.... despite the weather.  By the end of the first day at Burbage South boulders, there split tips and flappers galore.  The weather then changed and various venues including Hampers Hang at Stanage, the Foundry and traversing at Rubicon were visited.  But on Thursday (for most of the day) we basked in fantastic weather and every one of the group led trad, most for the first time ever.

Rock Action 

I was working with Jill Whittaker and Jules Barratt, whose help was invaluable.  Thanks to them and everyone at Thornbridge Outdoors. 

I've put some pictures from the week up here

When being keen just isn't enough

19 Jul 2009

Here I was on Saturday night.  Mina and I did wonder whether we were plain stupid or overly keen.  It was no surprise, after all that rain, to find Caviar flooded and I went prepared. I bought Mina a pair of wellies at Decathlon and I picked up a pallet from a skip on my street.  Things all seemed ok.  Conditions were actually quite good.  But belaying standing in a lake isn't easy.


My first redpoint just didn't work out, with Mina struggling to stop the rope falling in the water.  So we found another pallet in a heap of rubbish not far from the crag.  Now the rope had something to sit on.   Things improved a bit, and on my best redpoint I managed to get the crucial hold, but not quite properly and somehow I found myself tangled in the rope.  Off I came.  

Mina also didn't manage the Sissy (8a).  We had hooked up positive that the other would succeed, but things just seemed to be against us.  I'm now off for 2 weeks work - the route lingers in the background.  So many things were right yesterday; my head, my body, conditions, but a flooded start - that's an unusual one.  Whatever the case, I feel I'm prepared from almost everything now - I have decided that I must return at some point soon...

Anyway here's something for anyone else out there who's finding it difficult to actually reach the top of their project. 







Rock Action

17 Jul 2009

Next week I’m running the Rock Action week in the Peak District. 6 young people will be applying their climbing skills to world of outdoors. The plan is to boulder, trad climb and sport climb, trying to get as much climbing done as possible. Let’s hope the weather can behave itself.  I'll report back.

One of the young people I coach is Ellie Rymer. This great short film has been made about her – it’s part of a Yorkshire project leading up to the Olympics, with plans to go further afield. She did really well this year at the BRYCS coming 14th, especially so as it was her first year in this age category.  Ellie can’t make the Rock Action week, but we’ll be going outside a few times this Summer holiday.

Climber from Dreams 2012 on Vimeo.

First off tomorrow I’ll be scoping skips for pallets, perhaps purchasing a few inflatables and certainly getting hold of some wellies. Everything apart from the weather seems to be just about right for another attack on Caviar tomorrow. It’s almost certainly flooded, but I’m trying not to think about it. There must be a way round it. I’m really running out of time. Following Rock Action I’m working on another week long residential Youth Leadership Programme. I’ll emerge again in August!

Bye for now…

Tom Briggs: Live on Talking Heads

09 Jul 2009

Finally I've got round to talking to Tom Briggs about his approach to building confidence for trad climbing.  You can hear what he's got to say here.  Tom is very ordered and practical about what he does - and you always know you can rely on him in a presssured situation. Find out how he manages to stay so calm.

The next talking heads will be 'my big difference'.  Cutting down on booze and building a board at home are some of the differences.  But who's who?

Caviar progress??  Well I'm really happy to say there has been some progress.   The campusing worked and on Monday I got through the move that's been eluding me, the next, the next, and with the horn in front of my nose, I slapped it and it slipped through my fingers!  The end really is now in sight.

Word on the street is that Rubicon is flooded.  But I'm going to remain optimistic that water levels will subside in time.  Tomorrow really might actually be the day.