21 June 2012

the Caley #tweetup


Meeting up as a group of climbers off twitter seemed to have been bubbling under as an idea for a month or two. Wednesday night it got going. Only everyone's ability to spot or process the information that Otley was shut due to the cycle racing, stopped us all getting there on time. We rolled in anything between half and an hour after we had threatened to be there.

As I got to the Sugarloaf with Stu-@LongHairStu, who will insist on making his life harder by uni-cycling into crags, Craig-@Probalm, Gareth-@MomentumPads and Dave-@davelozman where bothering Smear arete. It put up some resistance to me and Gareth  but eventually succumbed to a blend of stubbornness and careful footwork. Craig seemed to find it no problem. We all got beaten by the right hand version which claims to be the same grade, but not I reckon if you factor in the back bruising landing which is hard to spot or pad out well.

Ian-@ianburtoncamera  and Andy-@AndyCornfield1 were next to arrive fresh from, but jaded by what sounded like and a rather wonderful trip to Namibia making a film, Ian driving a camera, Andy climbing and being belayed by a non climber? Their attention then turned to the Pinch whilst Dave, myself, Stu and Jordan had a look at the darker tree covered side of the Suckers Wall block. There are a couple of nice easy problems on its left side but it such a shame they have been chipped as they do feel a little artificial.

Back round the block's other side Ian made short work of The Pinch and had a go at what looked liked a pretty desperate line up the wall to its left. Not bad application for a man who was claiming to be trashed after his adventure in the deserts. Craig pinched and pinched and pinched and finally got some reward for his efforts as he sent The Pinch. I had a couple of token thrashes and managed to actually climb up to and hold the pinch for the first time which is progress, next to do something with it.

The weather was threatening, the sun of an hour ago had left us for dark, rain heavy looking clouds which were already giving up the odd drop of rain. It could go either way it seemed and this evening could turn out to be a very brief encounter. We headed below the track and under the trees looking for shelter.

Down to The Horn for what felt like another dose of punishment for my crimes committed in a former life. The Horn seems to be to be the hardest V4 in Yorkshire, it is driving me mad this was session 5. Whilst we were fitting boots, Gareth-@rockclimbinguk and his mate rocked up after an epic traffic struggle and a warm up down at the roadside. Most everybody bar me demolished The Horn in a few goes with a mixture of power and subtle technique. Everyone queueing up for their go and egging each other on good naturedley.

I at least I managed to latch that pocket that's been bothering me for my last two sessions with a new foot sequence, that meant I wasn't having to lunge for the pocket but going static. Somewhat inevitably in a state of euphoric shock at this hoped for progress, I cocked up the top slap and slithered onto the mat. I'm thinking this problem just moved onto the "next time" list. I've now got a sequence that works and only half a move left, so here's hoping. It doesn't half take it out of you though considering how small it is, I'm all ache as write this.

@rockclimbinguk on the Flapjack
We all moved down to the flapjack for a final fling. At some point in our Hornfest the threatened rain had evaporated and we were here for as long as finger ends and motivation allowed. The group divided neatly into Punters and Wads with a few flitting between both groups as energy levels and skin thicknesses dictated. Many eased up the scoop, with Ian and Gareth's mate (Lee?) managing the scoop, but having done the traverse across the wall first at a creditable and seemingly exhausting V7. Lots of people tried the sitter on the groove at an alleged 6c+ Craig maybe getting closest, but this it seems is a middle grade problem that shrugs off most suitors perhaps it is a tad under graded?

People by now were drifting away, taking memories of a good evening, some decent banter and sore fingers with them. It was nice to put a few faces to some @twitternames and good to watch some decent climbers make it look easy.
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