At the beginning of the summer I created a list of local trad routes that I wanted to try. I wrote the list to encourage me to get on routes I had been putting off for a while, to eliminate my standard excuse of “I’m not mentally prepared for leading this route today” and because I quite like making lists.
|Clotted Cream at Meadfoot|
Long Quarry Point:
After a summer of free-time, good(ish) weather and an abundance of climbing partners my list now looks like this:
Suicide Blonde E6 6b – Seconded.
Lumpy Universe E2 5c/E3 5c – Trad at Anstey’s?! You have to be joking.
Incubus E1 5b
Call to Arms E4 5c – Agh, scary!
Long Quarry Point:
Black Ice E3 5c – Slabs, ugh!
Dripdry E4 6b – Tried, failed, ran away.
Interrogation E3 6a – Shocking, it's a classic, get on it.
The last route to cross off my list was Zuma at Daddyhole, a perfect cool crag for a warm afternoon. It felt good to get stuck into the route after thinking about it for some time; there were handholds and gear and even a rusty peg for company.... then the pump kicked in. My control and poise disappeared in a desperate sprint for the rest, too pumped to place gear or even contemplate the largeish fall that would see me landing on my belayer’s head. Luckily I made it and relaxed on the ledge placing gear to my heart’s content.
An easy bit of climbing followed, enough to tempt me to believe that it was all over and the final stretch would be a jug-pulling romp to top with more gear than I could shake a stick at. It wasn’t. I managed to get wrong handed and increasingly pumped above a move I couldn’t reverse with only the stubborn determination not to fall off now keeping me on. Somehow I made it to the top and collapsed on the grass vowing to work on my endurance so that next time I won’t have to make the choice between placing gear and holding on.