Archive for the ‘Peak District’ Category

2016-05-24 England, Peak District, Harpur Hill   Leave a comment

I’ve tried several times too enjoy Harpur Hill, and each time I’ve only had marginal success.  It’s not pretty.  It’s windy, can be noisy and it’s chossy to the point of being dangerous.  Most of the routes are shite.  You can find some gems, but generally it ain’t so good.  Don’t let this blog put you off though, you might rock up there and love it.

We start our day at Cairn Sector, with The Misfits, 6a which was just another climb.  Sharing the anchor with the line to the right, Hissing Sid, 6b was a bouldery warmup – not the best, but it wasn’t a bad route, just not a great route to warm up on.  So then we mix it up with a little trad – Two Cave Gully, VS 4b was dirty and falling apart at the seams.  Honestly, routes here should have a “Keep Your Eyes Skyward At All Times!” warning for falling debris.

Kamikazi Klone, 6a+ over in Sumo Sector was uninspiring and hard.  So we move up to Prophecy Buttress – much better.  Gary put in a new line, Supernatural, 6a which I would agree – a 2 star route.  20mtrs long and the friction of the rock was superb.  Nice climbing, but a bad mean result for the day, a long way to come for not much.  A waste of petrol?

Supernatural, 6a

6a   6b   VS 4b   6a+   6a


Posted 2016/06/09 by allend66 in Harpur Hill, Peak District, Rockclimbing

2015-07-03 England, Stanage   Leave a comment

What better than, in the middle of a heat wave, to go climb on some nice, soapy-feeling grit? 

As it happened we were fairly lucky with the breeze-to-midge ratio, but chalking up didn’t seem to do much.  It just sweated right off.  We warm up on the top-50 classic The Link, E1 5b which was a lot easier than I remember it.  It was still in shade too which helped.  Next we do the fairly brutal, and aptly named Desperation, graded at E1 5c in the book, and commonly given 6a online, which would scan – it was a lot harder than the E1 6a I nailed in Tremadog’s Upper Tier last week.

Desperation, E1 6a

Browsing Alex’s hitlist, we schlep up to Tower Face Direct, E2 5b and a bold-feeling onsight and flash with a large creaking flake that you just prayed would hold the cam should a fall ensue.  With the crux just above this, in the middle of the wall, the upper flake was a romp.  A good route.

Only three routes done, but grit tires you a lot.  We have a look at The Tippler Direct, E3 6a but feel The Tippler, E1 5b seems more realistic considering the heat and our levels of energy.  I start up the E1 5b with roof traverse, and suddenly feeling very tired, down-climb it from the crux removing three cams.  We’re done for today, and hit the pub.

E1 5b   E1 6a   E2 5b

Posted 2015/07/05 by allend66 in Peak District, Rockclimbing, Stanage

2015-05-17 Peak District, Stoney West & Goddard’s Quarry   Leave a comment

Stoney West should see a bit more traffic now it features in Gary Gibson’s new Peak Limestone North guidebook.  We warm up on A Timer & A Place, 6a and Voices, 6a+ and move on to worthwhile climbs Don’t Talk To Strangers, 6c and Perilscope, 6c+.  I still have a several more routes to do here until I’ve ticked everything, but for today we’re more or less done.

Whilst the lightweights slope off to the pub, Anthony & I have a look at a classic in the making: 15 Steps, 6c+ over at Goddard’s.  This easy-for-the-grade 28mtr line is new and though it’s still ‘bedding in’ – it’s a bit broken in the start section, it’s dirty in the lower third and dusty under the roof, the top is a joy.  This line will clean up pretty nice though we think… it just need plenty of people up it.  So come on people…

15 Steps

6a   6a+   6c   6c+   6c+

2015-04-11 Hathersage, Lawrencefield   Leave a comment

Gritstone.  You either love it or loathe it.  “God’s own rock” some dorks proclaim, but for me, coming back from a very short, midge-infested crag, that leaves your skin utterly trashed and your body aching like it’s gone 20 rounds with Mike Tyson AND his tigers is not a particularly pleasant experience.  Simply, the climbing isn’t ‘that good’.  Mind you, you can avoid the midges if you climb within a 17-day window in midwinter when there’s snow on the ground and you’re freezing your ass off and have no feeling in your frost bitten extremities.  Grit.  Oh joy.

So we go up to Millstone Edge.  30mtr routes and yes, it was FREEZING… no sun, windy as hell, basically painful.  Luckily, Lawrencefield just over the road is sheltered…

2015-04-11 07 Great Harry

“Wait, what?  Routes over 8mtrs you say?  Actually worth tying in for?  Sun?  Pleasant climbing??  And this is gritstone, right?  In England?  And no midges?”

“Yeah, a quarry.  No midges yet…”

Oh… quarry… hmmm…

Yeah, but the rock’s quite good.  Solid, and with more crimps than usual for grit

Crimps, you say? <raises eyebrow>

And so some very pleasant trad climbing was done today.  Noteworthy routes: Three Tree & DelectableCordite gets a star in the guide but we thought it was a bit of a minger…

Tyrone, VS 4c   Nova, HS 4b   Three Tree Climb, HS 4b   Delectable Variation VS 4c   Red Wall VS 4c   Cordite Crack VS 4b

Posted 2015/04/21 by allend66 in Lawrencefield, Rockclimbing

2015-03-21 Stoney Middleton, Golden Wall   Leave a comment

Maestro Gibson has found another outcrop to bolt (which will be included in his new guidebook coming out soon) so I get to help out with the cleaning some of the dust of the routes.  There’s only a handful of routes here, with nothing harder than a bouldery 6c+.  Full details are of course on his site.  Good for beginners.

First public airing of Gary Gibson's Golden Wall.

We then go to neighbouring Stoney West (an excellent little crag) for a quick 6b+ & 6c to finish the too-short day.  Good work Gary, Ian.

6a+   6b   6b+   6b   6b+   6c

Posted 2015/04/20 by allend66 in Peak District, Rockclimbing

2014-09-28 Stoney Middleton   Leave a comment

New route setting on Garage Buttress at Stoney, and Gary cleans off, mostly, a new 6b+, Turf ‘Em Off.  It’s located just next to Rip ‘Em Off & Chew ‘Em Off.  I claim the second ascent, but 2nd ascents don’t get your name in any guidebooks…  It should clean up pretty nice though.

Turf 'Em Off, 6b+   Turf 'Em Off, 6b+ 

I repeat Creamsnatcher, 6b+ and do the long & excellent Dreamsnatcher, 6c and the very worthwhile Four Thousand, 6c, but with the sun on our backs, it’s very warm, so we decide to go over the road to Goddard’s Quarry.  In the shade, this dusty corner has seven climbs (from left: 6a+, 7a+, 6b+, 6a+, 7a, 6b, 6a). 

I climb past the crux on Red Mist, 7a and manage to fluff the onsight above it on relatively steady climbing.  Nice climb, butch and a bit dusty, but nice.  I try it again after maybe too long a pause but mess up what should have been a textbook send.  Cool down climb on Pleasant Wall, 6a+.

6b+   6c   6b+   6c   7a   7a   6a+

2014-08-19 Stoney West   1 comment

Good job on this nifty little crag by local legend Gary Gibson whose topo proved really useful.  It’s a natural crag and the quality is great.  The ground at the base of some of the climbs can be a little steep, but it doesn’t lessen the enjoyment of some excellent climbing.  We do a range of routes from 6a to 7a (the cherry-buster?) though the 2-star 7a+ Northerners Can’t Climb has been debolted.  There’s plenty to do here and its lack of inclusion in the Peak Limestone Rockfax might mean it stays under the radar a little.  Well worth seeking out.

Procession, 6b+

Procession, 6b+ was a nice flash..

6a   6a+   6b   6b+  7a   6a+   6b+   6b  6b   6a

Posted 2014/08/24 by allend66 in Peak District, Rockclimbing