BBC - Weather Centre - Forecast for Llandudno, United Kingdom

Thursday, 25 December 2008

Your Christmas Sermon

Climbing with world class climbers like Mick and Ty makes you realise that we all suffer the same frustrations and pressures. We are all players in the same game. The desire to do a much sought after bloc can affect the climber whatever level they’re at. I also realised that the lack of logic in climbing applies to all levels. Sometimes you feel strong and everythings perfect but you fail whereas on other less than perfect days you succeed. Climbings at ones limit is a mystery; a lottery where success is never guaranteed. Watching Micky make the fourth ascent of The Dagger (8b+) at Cresciano yesterday was a truly inspirational experience. At one point after the crux his heel slipped and the tenacity and pure compression power that he summoned to get it back on was super impressive. It made me determined to apply the same tenacity to The Alphane Moon and as i swung footless with one hand on the final jug today i somehow found the strength and tension to match it up and complete the problem-a great way to spend Christmas. As i matched that blocky jug all the doubts and pressure dispersed and i felt truly satisfied. Climbing is a special sport. It gives us all pleasure in different ways. Whether everything is a battle and a siege (like me!) or whether your crushing 8b+ blocs in a matter of days (like Mick and Ty) we all ultimately gain great pleasure from these experiences. Anyway Merry Crimbo and i hope you all crush in the New Year.

Friday, 19 December 2008

Swiss 7

The weather has finally broken, blue skies are back at last just in time for the arrival of MIcky and Tom. Jackie and si had enough and went home, can’t say i blame them. They didn’t have much luck. True to form i did a link up on one of the driest bits of rock in Chrionico area 1. The loneliness of Arabald 7c links the start of the Loneliness of the long distance runner and the very nice 7b Arabald. This is very nice and is probably a FA i’d say. Tom and Mick hit the ground running both climbing Lapelle and Extreme Ironing in Cresciano. Today i took them to the Alphane Moon where they both despatched. It seems i’ve finally developed some muscle memory on this problem. Today i fell going for the last hold when my hand ripped. Fingers crossed i’ll get it done. Mick and Tom confirmed the quality anyway.
Finally there has been some debate over the top end grades in the Cave. I’d say whether we go for realistic grades or hardcore grades the problems must be in order of difficulty. When a problem graded 8b is easier than a problem graded 8a something must be wrong.

Monday, 15 December 2008

Swiss 6

Apparently this has been the most snow to fall in ticino since records began. On saturday i failed to even get to the blocs at Chironico. Today i will return shovel in hand and i will spend the day creating a path to the Alphane Moon. I anticipate this will take approx 3 hours. The snow is so deep one can no longer walk through it. Things are better snow wise in cresciano and i anticipate with the good forecast ahead this crag will recover. Folk are departing and arriving at the house in the next few days. I told micky in font to try and get some snow shoes. Hopefully decathlon stock them. Time is running out now, i have effectively been beaten by the weather, split tips and my own complacency but i haven`t given up yet. Ciao for now.

Wednesday, 10 December 2008

A lovely shit

Finally a nice pic of Alphane taken by Sander Pick:

Swiss 5

I sit in an internet cafe in the town of bellinzona. Only me, si, jackie and sander remain. Keith did Amber 8b so he left maybe to return maybe not. His willpower on this problem was impressive, many days trecking up there through the snow on his tod to clean it. Most days he couldn t even climb on it cos it was wet. I am proud to announce in the next week the arrival of the owen and mîcky and master newman. Hopefully they ll bring fresh physche to the proceedings. I have had to be patient with my own climbing. The alphane moon is still holding out from my attacks. I either need to get a bit stronger or i need a bit of luck. i really struggle with the last two moves on the link. As ever it is a interesting process. One i have been through many times before. I need to stay relaxed but physched at the same time. Fingers crossed i will do it before leaving. My other current proj is a different kettle of fish style wise. Teamwork is a crimpy not so steep bastard on sharp rock. It reminds me of a cromlech problem, similar gnarly rock and holds. I have it down to one hard crux move. If my skin holds out i should do it. I also plan to spend a week in font before going home. There are over 60 8as in the forest so i figure i might be able to do one if i find the right one. I will use this trip as a selection process. Surely every man wants to climb 8a in font. Will be good to hang out with the sheffield hombres out there too. Anyway ciao, happy climbing.

Monday, 1 December 2008

Swiss 4

Times are hard here in swiss, i have had major skin troubles for a while and then the weather turned to shit. Thick thick snow followed by rain followed by more snow. Basically bad news, team physche hit a new low as all contemplated a dart to font. However the forecast there is abysmal and the forecast here is better in the coming days. It seems the wise move will be to sit it out here. I still haven't done the Alphane Moon and this is a major goal so if i stay here i will have a chance of geting it done. Jeff Landman and Ricky Bell joined the team a week ago. Jeff tore it up - Dream Stand (repeat), reve de mario 8a, komilator (2nd go), Freak Bros (3rd go) and alphane moon (flash), not bad for a week. Ty did the Shadowfax 8b and Davey G did the low start to Boogaloga (8b+ or 8c). Ty and Keith also went to check Vareze in Italy, it seems the weather is bad all over. Anyway i have identified the problems i am physched to do this trip, i have been concentrating on seiging harder stuff rather than getting loads of ticks. I'm not too bothered about coming away with 30 7bs, a couple of 8as would be nice though! As long as i can climb on a few things at a time i stay physched. Going to the same problem every day is demotivating though. Anyway hopefully the net will be fixed in the house soon and all will come good. Adios