Sunday, 27 July 2008

A bad day leads to a bad month - 22nd July '08

I've been out climbing a couple of times, both times involving me being scared and lacking the confidence to do much else but only second stuff or gibber my way up easy leads.

Went out last week to Clashrodney, with the intention of checking out Central Buttress as I was told it's far back from the sea and I wanted to give this area another chance. Pah! Didn't like it one little bit! Don't know what it was about the area as it was far back from the sea, so the fear wasn't something I could put my finger on. I think it's just the whole atmosphere in this area, it's not the most friendly place, quite dank and dark in the usual Aberdeen seacliff manner. Chris led a V.Diff chimney called Chisel Chimney which was quite spicy for V.Diff and then Jonathon led the severe along from it called Quick Corner. Chris and I had a look at the VS there called Capital Wall which looked nice but was a bit bold to start.
We then moved on to Cairnrobin point where Chris led Glaswegian Snotter which is actually a superb HS! I had always thought the start to be too bold and scary to lead but having seconded it, I now realise the start is VERY easy, no need for gear and you can get a good placement before the exciting part! One I will def go back to lead (well, maybe.......if I can be bothered with the seacliffs again!) Jonathon then led a severe called Scratch which was pretty delicate and off balance climbing, I didn't enjoy it one bit!
Jonathon also found his 1st bit of gear, a number 5 wallnut, which he got by soloing up to the side of Schoolboy alcoholic!

Tues 22nd saw Jonathon and I drive up North of Dunkeld to have a nosy at Creag na-H-Eighe which we were both very disappointed in. 99% of the lines are indistinct crap and far too vegetated for my liking. The one route which *did* look nice had a rather large wasps nest on it!
We drove back down the road to Dunkeld by which point I was getting too hot and bothered and in a 'I can't be arsed to climb' kinda mood! Jonathon led off on Kestrel Crack, which he did nicely as ever and I led the 2nd pitch as I'd never led that one before. It was getting hotter by the minute and the heat was starting to give me a bit of a headache! Next we had a look along the crag for another route and I went along to have a serious look at Spirocheate, but just not feeling confident for the run out at the top! Back to Beech wall, but not feeling confident about that either. Where has my confidence gone!!!? Jon led the 1st pitch, having a wee wobbler on the starting moves, but pushing through anyway and led the crux in very good style indeed! I struggled up the starting moves, flew through the traverse which is the bit I remembered being hard previously, and then got into a fluster at the crux and yanked on the in situ cam, hauling myself up on it, poor style!!! Especially as I know I can do so much better than that!

Time to call it a day. We ab' down Hairy Gully and bump into Adam (the laddy is getting about!) Dave, Ellis, Alexi and Neil are there also and I'm surprised to see Dave leading (well done that man, proper climbing at last, lol!) I'm in no mood for chitchat though as I've lost my bloody car keys! Search in my rucksack and pockets a million times, no joy. Search the base of the routes we were on, no joy. I'm sure my keys were in my jacket pocket (now open) which had been stuffed in my sack all day but they ain't there now! I ask Jon to go back to the car and see if I've been stupid enough to leave them in the door. Not quite, they are sitting behind one of the wheels. Some kind soul must have found them and put them there for me, thank you who ever you are!! xx
Much happier, but still hot, bothered and dehydrated with rapidly deteriorating headache, we head back to Dundee.

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