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Sunday, 28 June 2009


My strict regime is starting to pay off, i've managed to shift around half a stone in 2 and a half weeks, i am pleased with my discipline! Have also continued with the training at work so hopefully everything will come together soon. The weather was disgusting this weekend, hot, rain, mist, no wind. I tried Jack the Drunk on Friday feeling good i almost did the move to the pinch static but couldn't hold it long enough cos of the grease. I had two great sessions in the mill climbing the best i ever had in there, getting closer to my goal of ticking a 7b+. A few weeks ago i couldn't of dreamed of this. So thinks are good, fingers are getting stronger and i'm starting to feel light, watch this space....

Sunday, 21 June 2009

Upping the Ante!

Two important shifts have started to happen in the last week. Armed with my flask of green tea the pounds are starting to shift. I've lost 4 of the buggers this week. Basically i have done this by yes eating less but mainly by cutting out the shit. 11.8 this morning, get in! Last two weeks i have eaten only salad during the week but at weekends have loaded up on some carbs so i have energy to climb. The other important thing that has been happening is that i've started deadhanging again. I was a keen disciple of the deadhang in uni, spending hours in my room hanging off a bit of wood. I knew it was great for finger strength, why i haven't doen it for years i do not know. So anyway i do 3 sessions on Pascals fingerboard in the week. I would reccomend this for anyone who wants quick improvements in their finger strength. So simple, it takes hardly any effort and yet it is one of the most effective climbing exercises! With the beastmaker boys churning out quality produce it is easy to work those fingers. My deadhang philosophy doesn't involve seperating your fingers though, i don't like to do this because to me it seems slightly injury potential. I prefer just to get a piece of wood with a rounded edge and make it small enough so you can hang it for no more than 10 seconds, any more and its too big. I then do ten sets of this. At the mill on friday i was curious to see how i'd feel, warming up on a pinchy 7a i wasn't feeling too good. Didn't feel any lighter yet and not too powerful. However on the other warm ups i noticed i was dragging holds i would normally pinch or crimp. This is pure deadhanging- amazing and i've only been doing it for 2 weeks. I then proceeded to crush most of my projects. Have been climbing there on my own which was hard at first but now i'm getting well into it. Also i started running again last week, again haven't doen this for years either. Obviously this is good for weight loss too but also it is good for routes. My legs were knackered for days after!. Simpson reckons you need to run about 3 times a week, i think i'll do it every 4 days. So i'm at the start of an interesting process, come back in a month and i'll let you know if its all been worth it.
Went down LPT before the Mill yesterday, was rammed. Pickles and Pascal on Melancholie, Pete and Smit and Tommy on Walking Mussel. I was overjoyed to find Pete the one man requipping machine Harrsion has re-equipped Parasite and Wild Undertatement and put a new belay in Youthanasia, what a fuckin leg. Tommy is having a whip round for the lad so please contribute. He won't stop til the crags finished and then theres talk of sorting the Diamond....
I've always dismissed Walking Mussel as being a nails shit boulder start, dirty middle and then a nasty crack. However its amazing what new bolts and a bit of chalk can do. I've always whinged about the fact that there is no decent 8b+s in N wales. Well there is. I got on it and it was mega, didn't do very well mind but i'm keen for another look sometime. It is apparent that the original line Moon's Seagulls Dilemma is actually the same grade as WM (boulder start font 7a). So you either go with the Carson grade for both or the Moon grade. Well we're going for the Carson grade as the middle section is a 6 move font 7c. Very cool moves and holds. Pete got maybe the 2nd ascent y day, great fighting on display!

Saturday, 20 June 2009

Ondra- The Worlds Best

I think its fair to say that becoming the best climber in the world is harder these days than it used to be in the era of Ben, Jerry and Wofgang. Climbing and the number of people operating in the highest grades has taken a quantum leap. The sheer number of good climbers out there now operating in the 9's is staggering. The best redpointer is rarely the best onsighter. On paper Sharma is the king redpointer with two 9bs. Patxi holds the onsighting crown with two 8c+'s under his bed. However it is a 16 year old from the Czech Republic who has emerged as undeniably the worlds best. Climbing the hardest routes in every style and ridiculously quickly in most cases this young man is a phenomenon. Like the best climbers of the best he travels almost non stop seeking out the hard old school classics aswell as the modern pumpfests. Go to and check out his all-time ticklist, you will be impressed, and then remember that he is 16! Two 8c's and an 8b+ onsight in a day, 9a+ in eight goes. Truly shocking! A year or two ago Adam tried his hand at bouldering and had four days in Ticino, his ticklist put the best boulderers to shame. Dreamtime in 4 hours, Shadowfax in 30 minutes! and many other problems in the 8's. Whats next for the young buck, 9b is an obvious challenge, there are plenty more crags for him to get his teeth into, Buoux? what about Roughlings routes? Will his sense of history bring hime to Britain, Hubble? Big Bang? Mcclure routes? Time will tell!

Sunday, 14 June 2009

8c+ Brigade Blitz Masterplan

Smit and Pascal did the 2nd and 3rd ascent of Masterplan today both said it was a great route which was music to my ears. Neil Dyer and Ioan Doyle are also trying it. Nice that its getting some attention. Observe the footage:

After i took Pascal to the mill and was shocked by how shit he was on the board (for a man who has climbed font 8b). Imagine what he'd climb outside if he had some raw board power, scary thought! 9a would be no prob! Oh yeah and the Mule did a rare ascent of Masterclass the other night.

Friday, 12 June 2009

Here we go again!

Just been to the Mill after work and felt my strength is back to normal after the slump. Unfortunately normal strength for me isn't very impressive. But this is something i'm keen to address, my weakness is weakness and my strength is motivation. After probably a month slump the motivation is back and hopefully i can push on now till the winter with training and watching what i eat etc.. I am still keen to push my sport climbing and that is what i'm training for. Gaining more strength and power endurance are my priorities. Looking around at the climbers around me i have been making observations. Out of the people who have been trying Liquid recently i am by far the weakest in terms of basic power. Secondly (and the two are linked) i am significantly heavier it seems that most strong people these days. I am over 12 stone, even big folk like Pascal are nowhere near this, i defo have some podge to lose. This week at work i have been watching what i eat and have been doing deadhangs and assisted lock offs. Tomorrow i hope to start my power endurance circuits again and intend to keep going with them this time. Here are some pictures of my recent new route Masterplan,thanks to Ray Wood for the pics:

Sunday, 7 June 2009

The Walking Mussel

The Walking Mussel 8b+ seems to be the route of the moment down LPT. This Neil Carson route is probably unrepeated. Tommy and Pete R have been trying and today Pete Chad and Ding Dong tried it. Tommy and pete h have rebolted it. The 'impossible' start that we all used to marvel at is actually quite steady. Above looks like a cool crux sequence, this is shared with Seagulls Dilemma 8b. I may give it a whirl myself one of these days.

Friday, 5 June 2009

Pascals Mobile Fingerboard!

The last 3 weeks i have been twatting a chisel with a hammer all day long in Aberystwyth. This is no life for anyone but i am a grown man these days and i have bills to pay. This is very disheartening from a rock climbing point of view. No where to train or climb. Luckily i am working with a very psyched man, Ryan Janckyn Pasquill who spent last weekend building an A Frame so we could train. Here it is:

So now we can make our fingers insanely strong when there is nothing else to do! Result. Pascal has also been pumping iron:

Tonight i will prbably go the Mill if i can be arsed!