31 August 2011

An Earl-y start

With a return to work imminent and grandparental childcare secured. It seemed important to seize the day and get back on the rock. We where walking in by 9.30.
Earl crag sits above Keighley and I realised it's what Rachael calls salt and pepper when I got there.

Andy Glaister joined me for the walk in. Back from the abyss after his intensive and lengthy recovery from a cycle accident gathered pace. He has a healing arm so I had half a spotter for company.
Two weeks in Germany training on sausage and beer seemed to have taken it's toll. The plums of the John Dunne slap and Trick ArĂȘte that I had hoped to pluck where a little out of reach. I got the pocketed wall to the right of Trick Arete as a consolation and a few bits of pieces on sharp, positive and barely used rock. Under foot was damp and there was a brooding feel to the crag that left me backing off a few problems.
I think I was conscious of not wanting to start a new term by re-straining my ankle as well.

No doubt I will be back on a hot day next summer to wrestle with the fantastic looking Earl Crack which looks like three stars of anyone's money. Oh and Erasor Slab did I mention that?
So not a bad first look and maybe its top billing is looking justified. Although some of the problems are routes, some landings are pretty suspect and bring a brush. I didn't and should have.

Location:Wainman's Close,,United Kingdom

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4 August 2011

Well at least we'll know for next time...

or "Never the Wain' shall meet"

Being in the area and free of other commitments, Ruth and I decided to head for the edge of the North Yorkshire Moors, where Wainstones crag held 'The Sphinx', a top 50 (top 50 of what, I never did become clear on) route that Ruth had a hankering to tackle.

Now, a tip for adventurous types heading for crags that no-one in the party has visited before - do your frickin' preparation work! I think I thought Ruth knew the lie of the land. She didn't. I'd spoken to a local earlier - having visited the delightful village of Great Ayton for pie, ice cream and some library defending - and I had the GPS on my phone, but still... Well, all will become clear.
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