Sunday, 3 June 2012

Dib Scar - E3's, F7a and F7b

I have always been tempted by Dib Scar and finally today i got to go. I was mostly stoked to get on 'Central Wall' E3 5c A0***, but there were a few other things that looked nice too. After dropping mates off at Kilnsey, we walked up the pleasant approach to the crag in the cool, brisk breeze.
Arriving at the crag, the trees adorning the tops and sides were swaying around but the sheltered bowl that is Dib Scar was totally calm and warm. Excellent crag choice for the day!

Climbing as a three i was stoked to get on with it early, with no faffing around so i jumped on 'Mettle Nettle' E3 5c* and made steady progress up the 'non-line'. The grey wall, littered with flakes and small cracks climbs really well, with small wires making it feel E2. Passing two, pretty unnecessary pegs i arrived at the belay and lowered down to let Huw and Harry second it.

Harry and Huw then climbed a F6c, which had a bouldery start before tackling some nice looking ground above. I declined the lead and instead racked up for Central Wall. Utilising Conors clipstick, i clipped the insitu aid thread and dogged up to the starting jugs, before making the hard pull to get established.

Aid Sling - Bring a clipstick!
'starting' groove.
After this lovely, groove based moves up the corner, with more gear than you can shake a stick at leads to a glue-in bolt. I was half-tempted not to clip the bolt, seeing as i had a good wire a foot below and could see good cams in the roof, but 'sensible dave' prevailed. If it had been 'offline', even slightly, i'd have not clipped it but it was perfected placed to prevent drag and right in front of my face.

Cool groove/corner moves

Tricky undercuts
After this a tricky step up on undercuts leads to juggy undercut jams in the roof. A couple of powerful moves with less than helpful feet lead around the roof. Excellent position but slightly weird, butch manouvres which are all over too quickly.

Powerful crux - easy if you're a thug?
A tree belay was where i'd spend the next half an our or so of my life, while i brought up Huw and Harry on second.
Harry on second
Huw then got stoked to try a short, bouldery F7b called 'Rock Around the Bloc' and after making some progress unlocking the sequence it was my choice again. I was tempted by Cauliflower - E4 6a** but the lower crack was vegetated and dirty. I should have rapped down to clean it, but i decided to take the 'easy' option and got on 'Passion and Warfare' F7a** after advice by another crag user. After racking up, i pulled on and climbed up the thin crackline and up via a difficult (cos i did it wrong!) undercut to a large sidepull. I headed up towards the arete and the bolts seemed to head right, as did I, swinging onto a large flat hold before powering up a thin flake to the top. As it turned out the '7a/7a+' which is climbed to the left used the arete but as i'd not checked the guide i didn't know or think there was a route there. The bolt above the bulge is hidden so i just presumed the line went right. Felt 6c+/7a so i don't think it made a huge difference. Really nice climbing, on good holds and rock. There are a few creaky bits though, so this might change after a few more ascents... Harry then flashed the left arete direct at 7a and we returned to 'Rock Around the Bloc'.

I wasn't that interested in the climb, but with little else i wanted to do, i pulled on. I was soon latching the grassy jug at the end of the climbing after dogging the sequence so lowered down and pulled the rope. I started up again. Right hand in a crozzly pocket, a nice move left to a side pull and then left hand again to a great, incut crimp. Sort feet higher and then 'pex stack' a small edge/hole. These moves actually felt really cool and i was enjoying the bouldery nature of the climbing. A high left foot onto a small nubbin and a double pop into, first a crimp and then a crack, leads to a slightly unbalanced move to a crimpy sidepull and a 'fall' into the grassy jug. Excellent bit of climbing, if you like bouldery yarding on thin crimps and stuff. The route then finishes up the 6c, which has some really nice climbing which is not over til it's over.

Huw had a toprope burn up the 7a and we marched back to Kilnsey to pick up a cold Sam and Bojan. Cool day out, great crag and avoided the 'showers' the weather predicted. Good stuff...      

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