26 July 2015

Night and Day at Almscliffe

Last Sunday night, and Bryn and I had heard tell, from Dean, of a group of climbers at Almscliffe, so up we went. Dean, and Martin, and Paco, and Joey, and Ellie - performing telescopic yoga atop High Man - and Max, and a few more, were sessioning hard. Bryn and I had a bit of a play on some chimneys. I was without head-torch (spontaneous session, you see) and in the wrong trousers (well, not THE Wrong Trousers), but I made the usual traverse and then darted up to the top, to Ellie's alarm. Bryn followed, and we soaked up the night. It had been a good call to go up there.





We were back there the next day, straight from work. I made it there first, and I fancied the teaspoon area. Matless, I tackled the problem next to the wall, and enjoyed getting reacquainted with it. I headed upwards from there, for a play around in a green and pigeon-infested gully. Back to ground, and the next problem along, the old project, the one with the body-sized scoop. This had also been a while since an ascent, and I was a little unsure about finding the moves again. With good reason, it turned out - I completed the problem, but with a lower, smaller and less positive hold to take me to the finish. Well, okay. I guess that's progress. Of course, I had to then do it the original way...

Bryn rocked up, then Ed, and we took it to the outlying boulder, left traverse to be specific. Ed took it on and made it look like the rock was moving under him, his limbs delicately prompting the inertia-less rock along. I took a punt on the same line, and got it, but somewhat more clunkily. Ellen joined us, despite illness, figuring if she was going to be ill she may as well be on the crag. I like the cut of her gib. We made our way over the top of the crag's lower half and its esoteric boulders...

Banana-Ed.
...and ended up at the back of the Virgin. There, we threw ourselves at and off the direct and the cave opposite, while Ed scampered around various alternative lines. One of my throws involved a decent fall, in which Bryn saved me from tumbling down the crag, though I still took a knock on my knee. Still, the evening had been a good one, even if much of it was familiar territory, and it made for a very satisfactory companion piece to the previous night's adventures in the dark.


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