BBC - Weather Centre - Forecast for Llandudno, United Kingdom

Sunday, 29 November 2009

Orme Open

I turned up at the Cave today to a typical winter scene - blowing a hooly and it was lashing down. I had been struggling with psyche but i thought i'd go along to meet P.Robins. If he couldn't get me motivated then no one could! It was so bitterly cold, i just couldn't get my fingers warm enough to try Pilgrim. Pete's attention turned to Louis Armstrong and we were both soon trying it, well there wasn't much else to do! Pete made quick progress doing all the moves bar the crux slap. I have watched men do the first hard cross over move for years and have always been totally dismayed with it. After a lot of goes today though i was tickling the hold, which made me very happy. A bit of faith and body positioning made all the difference. The moves after the cross are hard but doable. So basically the problem boils down to the crux slap which is super burly and super duper burly from the start. Pete was close but didn't quite hang the move, i'm sure he'll wrap the problem up pretty soon though. I had a whirl of Pilgrim at the end and felt the best yet on it.
Danny's first ascent of Louis Armstrong 8b:

Friday, 27 November 2009

Thursday, 26 November 2009

Weak in the Peak

Well i'm back from the peak having climbed a bit every day on rock- not bad all things considered. First day at the tor i just bouldered managing to sack my knee in the heel-toe on the 7b+ right of Bens Roof. I fell off the last move and kept waking up in the night as my knee twinged. A very dangerous problem for the ligaments. Next day was back at the tor, i struggled with a move on Chimes cos of my knee so had a play on Mecca, great fun! Did the crux move with the right drop-knee beta. Sacked it off at the end of the groove but would be keen to play again sometime and work out the top moves. Very knacky route. Its a bit unrealistic living in Wales but i'd really like to do it one day, so good. Ry was trying Evolution, really good to see him cranking again after a minor blip in the summer when he was crap. He shows what a wad he is on this route, he's very close! I have some footage of him on it, so will upload soon. Pritch basically did short Chimes but got a bad case of hot aches, he was almost in tears! Today i went to the Plantation with Pete for a couple of hours. We played around on Jerrys Traverse and Brass Monkey. Pete seems to be cranking again after his accident in the summer, good to see. I still couldn't hold the swing on Brass Monkey, bummer! Anyway i quite enjoyed the grit, was a nice change.

Monday, 23 November 2009

Orme Shut

The Great Orme is shut to cars and pedestrians because of "massive rockfall". This means i have nought to do all day as the Mill is an evening and weekend thing at the moment and everything else is wet. I'm not sitting in Penrhyn Bay on me tod all day so tomorrow i will head to the peak to climb with Pascal and whoever else is around.

Sunday, 22 November 2009


And so the rain continues to pour, very dismaying indeed! I have been going to the cave a lot. Although there have been many wet holds and some days have been very grim i can nearly always have a bash at the start of Pilgrim. I still haven't got into RA, is proving a stubborn link. RA is also hard for me at the moment, although i have done this countless times over the years its still tricky especially after months of sport climbing. So it looks like i've got a seige on my hands. Would be nice to mix it up and try some other stuff but the front of the cave is pretty wet. I found this footage of the first time i ever did Rockatrocity back when i was a skinny boy in 2002:

I also went to the Mill yesterday, without having to worry about doing circuits it was great fun. Ticked a load of 7a+'s- great!

The Cattells auditioning for the next series of Queer as Folk:

Monday, 16 November 2009

Cave Season

Well after a bit of a worrying spell i can finally say that i once again really like to go bouldering. This is a bit of a relief as a:) the weather has crapped out BIG TIME and b:) i hated the thought that i'd been wasting my time over all these years. One day i woke up and it just clicked, bouldering seemed like a worthwhile pursuit again. And the cherry on the cake was that i was even psyched for the Cave again. This is quite handy as it currently rains every day and opportunities for none cave activities are few and far between. Even after the most significant seepage there are usually dry holds in the cave. Its normally only completely knackered after a change in temperature when an inversion occurs. After all the recent redpointing a bit of stress free bouldering has been a breath of fresh air. I have several Cave projects on the go, Halfway, Broken Heart/Sams and now Pilgrim. I have been trying the ramp section of Pilgrim for donkeys years. Its probably the piece of rock that i've tried the most and had the least success on. No one else's sequences worked for me and i had tried everything i could thing of! Going right to left (i.e Cave Life) i find quite steady but going the other way just seemed completely desperate! Well the other day my stubborness finally paid off and the beta was revealed, YYFY! Soon i should be into RA although this feels hard right now so a bit of seiging will be on the cards i'm sure. Need to tone up my bouldering stength after all the sport climbing. To me Pilgrim is one of the most obvious of the Cave links so it would be great to do it, also would achieve a long held ambition to do an 8a+ in there. Theres nothing better than being in that cave when waters dripping from the roof and outside the rain is pouring and your hammering three holds into submission!
John Maskell working In Heaven:

Thursday, 12 November 2009

The Power and The Glory

After the good response Obsession got on Vimeo (over 26 000 views! wish i'd charged 10p a view!) i thought i'd stick my swiss flick up. Some of the footage you will have seen before on some of my youtube vids. Its too big to go on in one go so here is Part 1. Part 2 will follow shortly.

The Power and The Glory Part 1 from Chris Doyle on Vimeo.

Between The Trees

Between the Trees is the latest offering from my sometimes bumchum Keith Brad Uncle Fucker Bungle Bradbury. He is flogging it on his site. Today i rested so i had a watch, in a way i kind of knew what to expect, funky soundtrack, tripod stylee and many hard ascents from Ty. Ty's trip to Font was groundbreaking in many ways. He was extremely well travelled and had performed at every place he had visited. To go to Font though and come back with such a meaty ticklist was truly historic and propelled Ty to the front of the pack at that moment in time. Keith had to do justice to this ticklist with his film and i'm glad to say he pulled it off. The film is a very classy affair. I was impressed with how much interesting and comical commentary that Keith managed to extract from Ty (it was like trying to get blood from a stone when i was with him in Swiss). Keith's editing style really suits the climbing in Font in my view. When you have so much hard quality climbing on film its hard to make a bad film but making it stand out as being special is equally as difficult. Well Brads hours in front of the computer screen have paid off and i really hope he makes a bob or two out of it (GO GET IT). I suppose the true test of a climbing film is how inspired you feel after watching it. Well i really felt the urge to back to the forest after watching this, what a place! Good work Brad.

I'll be Back!

Winter is truly upon us, it has rained every day for two weeks. The crags aren't in the best condition. I went to the Diamond yesterday rather optimistically, the crag was dripping! My route was not affected by the seepage but the holds were like paste. Alas i can handle this no more. This place has beat me down, the experience has been great but i think i must leave it for now. The Diamond scene of 2009 seems to have come to an end, it seems my progress was good but not good enough. I got to the redpoint crux four times, its 8b to there but you need a bit more in the tank to complete the next six moves. I am pleased with how i did but naturally a bit disapointed not to finish it this year. I haven't given up though, i will return fresher and fitter and complete this line maybe even before the March bird ban kicks in. I headed to Llanddulas with Spidey after the Diamond and polished off The Wirral Whip 7c+, the holds seemed to have got bigger from when i last tried it, was satisfying. I'm pretty psyched to work my roof there a bit more too. Luckily my psyche for bouldering has returned too and i'm keen to get stronger and get some hard ticks. Pete completed the Incredible Bulk in the Cave, effort.

Saturday, 7 November 2009

The Magic Flute

Went on top of the Little Orme today with the Spide to the Hole of Creation. This is an amazing bit of crag with one trad route and one sport route. Spidey got things going leading The Hole of Creation E3, this is a very atmospheric funky climb. It starts up a big feature before a high crux bridging up a pod. It was cold, i seconded it and it felt hard, cold hands!

Then we got on George Smith's classic 7c tufa The Magic Flute. This is an amazing feature, surely one of the coolest 7c's in Britain. After working it and a couple of duff goes i got it bagged. Very nice and one hard stopper move!

After i bailed to join the masses in the Cave, gettin the love back for the place. Good sesh.

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

A Day in the Cave

I went to the cave today to meet up with males Robins and Bransby and to get out of the house. I haven't really bouldered properly since summer and it showed. I didn't feel my usual self in there, in fact i felt like i was climbing with a small child on my back. I've been on a real downer with British bouldering recently, maybe its because i've done it too much over the last few years, or maybe its because the majority of it is pretty shit, who knows. I mean when you've been going to the Diamond and then your in the Cave its hard to get psyched. Anyway i brushed off the initial dismay and got stuck in. I felt heavy and weak but it wasn't a disaster. My best effort was probably tickling the shot hole on Trigger Cut. I had only climbed once with Ben on Kudos wall and his climbing dismayed me greatly so i braced myself for more dismay. After warming up he flashed Rockatrocity, dragging every single hold, it was something else. He was shaking out on the last move trying to figure his body position out. I expected him to be powered out and drop the move. HELL NO he finished it off. Pete was working on the project from Bonnie into the left wall, by the end he was dropping what is effectively the last move. This will be a good addition when he does it. By the end of the session i had re-discovered some psyche for bouldering, even if it is to be strong for routes. I would quite like to finish off Halfway snd Broken Heart/Sams finish in the Cave (both of which i dropped the end this year). And then theres always the big link on the Box, Drink Driving/Last Rites is the most inspiring link in Britain for me but the only problem is another level of performance will be required!

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

Welsh Connections

Out soon is the latest film from Dave Brown now of Bamboo Chicken Productions.
Back in March i did some climbing on Pill Box for Dave's camera. I was impressed with how cool he made the Box look (we all know its a world class bouldering destination). I did a lot of climbing that day and returned in the summer to get Jack the Drunk on film. Dave and his missus Lynwen were genuinely psyched for the Welsh scene and wanted to capture its diversity and some of the years highlights. I've seen the film and was impressed. The film has a different feel to Dave's other big hits which at times were a bit to centered around the big names rather than the experience IMO. I think he's turned it around in this production. Sure some of the big names are still there but the climbing and the experience takes more prominence. The film has a bit of everything bouldering, sport, trad, DWS and is definetely a labour of love i'd say. I also think Dave has made the right choice charging a bit less than the standard 20 notes for his film. I actually think he'll sell more in the long run and 15 nicker is a fair price. You certainly get a lot of quality footage for your money. No surprise that for me the highlight was Pete doing Liquid Ambar, was so nice to see the actual ascent and was good to see a man performing at his limit on what still is a pretty tricky route! So thats it go check it out.

Some Footage:

Jack The Drunk - Chris Doyle from Bamboo Chicken Productions on Vimeo.

Welsh Connections climbing film trailer from Bamboo Chicken Productions on Vimeo.

Monday, 2 November 2009

Good Conditions at Last (but the tides in)!

The last two days down the Diamond were finally climbable. Saturday was still a bit greasy but manageable, today was bone dry but a tad cold on the fingers. In these two days i got to the high redpoint crux twice. Its proving to be a bit of a drag from the ground that move. Still there's not much left to do after it, just need a bit more in the tank and hopefully i'll gain this in the wall in the next week. I really do have to get pumped most days now just to get this bugger in the bag, its within my reach thats for sure! I'm pretty calm about the whole thing really. This is probably the longest i've ever spent on a route i think but a good seige never hurt anyone. I'm enjoying the process, after all it is such a treat climbing on a route of this quality so close to home. Having said that i'm ready to finish it and this will be the end of what has been a good year for my climbing.