Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Another couple of walls and a topo (Maidens Bluff)

A hot weekend before the perfect weather bubble bursts. First up a re-match with the wall right of Harbinger that I didn't want to do last time as we had no pads. Three pads on the ledges and a quick re-rehearse and it was done. It's got poor-ish but interesting hand holds and quite poor feet. I wasn't sure if this was 6b or 6c as it feels quite hard until your limbs are in the right place, but its steady away if they are. So probably E5 6b, rather than E5/6 6c. Either way, its only short and certainly not worth the walk in just to do, but over the next few years I can see the amount of HVS and above routes quadrupling.

Franco was busy with his GF, so I walked three pads down to Maidens Bluff and headpointed the wall between Jugendstil and Archaeopteryx. It's not really a squeezed in line, its difficult to explain. Basically its far harder to go sideways on the wall than it is to go straight up, so even though you'll probably on a metre or so right of Jugendstil, I never thought it would be easier to 'jump ship', however you might be able to hang on to push a cam into a thin break which is on Jugendstil - would box your fingers on the hand hanging on though, so i'd still probably solo it!

Its always interesting when climbing a wall like this, it needs some ascents and people to work out what the tech grades are (are they sustained 6b or 6c?) and also what are the best lines? I for example much prefer Archaeopteryx E6 6c (hard start) compared to Mullet of Cocktail (E6 6b). Both lines share the same bold, 6b/c finish but Archy has a harder start (I think). So Archy isn't the 'line of weakness' but it follows a cool flake feature which looks like it SHOULD be the line of weakness? I dunno. I just love the wall. Every route is sort of similar, a hard start, then easier moves leading to a high crux, but the moves are all wicked!

It's a bit of a play ground really, easy approach, simple shunting set ups on stakes and an easy walk up and down from the crag and only 20 minutes drive from home. Bon.

E5 6b * - Jugendstil
E6 6b - Gates of Tomorrow
E6 6b/c * - Living on a Razors Edge
E6 6c ** - Archaeopteryx
E7 7a * - Plasticman

The four other lines are not lead.

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