The weekend saw us journey down to the Peak, with the plan being 2 days climbing and a quick pop into see Matt Heason and then maybe look at Cliffhanger. As it turned out, the plan changed but it worked perfectly. Stanage High Neb and End was the destination for Saturday, climbing "Impossible Slab" - E3 and "Orang-Utang" - E2 as well as some solos on stuff like DIY - E3 and Cent - E1. Franco then made a flawless ascent of 'Old Friends' a route that i intend to return to lead at some point i think.
Sunday we talked buisness, then with Curbar calling the rain set in... so we went to Cliffhanger.
Brilliant event, i enjoyed it more than i expected especially the Dyno competition and the womens climbing comp.... I wonder why? ;-)
We departed the Peak in the rain and drove to the CMC hut in the Lakes, intending to get on some high crags, eg Gable, Dow ect ect.
Unfortunately the weather was damp in the mornings and we settled the best bet would be Slate until the weather improved... which we didn't know whether it would or not as there is no technology in the Hut.
The slate was a good move. The showers didn't affect the slate as it dried so fast and Franco climbed the Wonderful 'Ten Years After' - E4.
I then got forced into climbing the E3 / F6c arete in the all weather Gym, after rain began. Hardly, Ten Years After!...
The next day we ended up at Hodge again. The weather was exactly the same. Franco jumped on 'Wicked Willie' - E5 6b and despatched it, after a fall on the Crux. A really really good effort.
On the walk back around, we met a couple who had been directed up the wrong road to their car...which was parked at Tilberwaite Car park.
We decided that Tilberthwaite was worth a look so we could give them a lift around and i wasn't psyched by anything at Hodge now.
I climbed 'Violation' E3/F6c, a weird groove and slab pulling through a roof. It was varied and nice, but again, it was no 'Ten Years After'.
The Wednesday saw us return, yet again to Hodge, after yet more rain. I was talking myself into doing something good and after a brief stop off in the Lakes Climber, (talking to the shop owner and Andy Hobson, i believe) i was psyched to climb Ten Years After.
I jumped on it, which is most unlike me.
The initial groove was pretty awful to be honest, laybacks and smears on slate, to the gear. Then stepping left was slightly technical to a peg. Happy.
Climbing up and leftwards to gain some good nuts and carry on up to a series of grooves and a Peg/Bolt.
I topped out, having climbed my first E4 onsight. Have to admit that im glad my first E4 onsight was a GOOD, reasonably large route, of a sustained nature rather than say a Moors problem/Sandbag or a Peak route. Im even happy i didn't do Poseidon Adventure onsight now, so that Ten Years was the first.
Franco then climbed 'The Main Event', damn, he loves the Slate!
We returned to the hut and from this point on the holiday lost its gloss. First a misguided trip to Borrowdale took us to the dry rock of the Bowderstone... :-( The Crack, the Ramp and Bowderiser were enough to make it fairly decent... But then on the long drive to CAtherdral Quarry the bloody car turbo blew up and it took us til Saturday to get recovered to the North East. Long story short, saw the car being in a Garage in Windermere, while we and our Kit were in Patterdale... we managed to hitch over and get back to the North East.
It ought to be expensive...