Friday, 1 September 2006

How It All Started

My brother was the one that first discovered climbing. He visited the 'Local' Climbing wall and discovered the art. He dragged me along to indoor sessions and soon i could climb. Indoors however, was not real climbing. This i found, was done on lumps of rock found in remote and cold areas of the local moors. The Rock; Sandstone was quite different from the Pastic holds of the wall. I was taught to climb by means of Top Roping at Scugdale, routes such as Alpha - HD, Beta - D and Gamma - HD were my first routes. This however, was done very rarely, perhaps once, or twice a summer that we got out and climbed outside, indeed indoor climbing was also becoming something of a rarity.

2006 was the beginning of things. A trip to Wales with the family was to rekindle the love for climbing that my brother had, and i was again to be dragged along. This however, was quite different to the North York Moors. Lumps of Sandstone were replaced with soaring cliffs of "Volcanic" rock, something i would later know as Rhyolite. We climbed on some of the smaller crags, Clogwyn Cyrau was the crag were i got some practice placing and removing gear. This was all in preparation for what was going to be one of the best expierences of my life.

The route was in the famous, Llanberis Pass; a VD route called 'Parchment Passage.'

The Rain was pouring, it was misty and cold. Typical Wales. We thought twice about it, but then went for it. Nick Lead the route in 3 pitches, and i enjoyed the Exposure and the sence of being safe 100's of metres up.
I was hooked, and the route we did the next day at Milestones Buttress; the Classic Direct Route. I lead one of the pitches and throughly enjoyed it. I knew now, this is what i wanted to do.
The winter came and climbing stopped, however, come the spring of 2007 me and Franco were constantly at the local crags try and testing our technique. We started off leading, but we soon tired of the complicated nature of tieing on and belaying and so on. We started to Solo.
It wasn't until the summer that we re-discovered our leading racks and rope, with trips to Raven's Scar and Highcliff.