rob:on:m, originally uploaded by monkey_pushover_tree.

Climbing mojo once again returned! Okay, so the above climb is not me on it, but I seconded this clean. I also believe that’s the hardest climb I’ve done first go. And it was a dam awesome climb.

So yesterday we went to Dam Cliffs; this is a place I’ve been to many a time and lead all the easy routes before hand. The reason for this was that I knew the routes, they are easy and I can get my head back into climbing. The first one we jumped on was Jug City. Just like it’s name, it has a lot of jug like holds. In fact, if you are not on a jug, then you’re on the wrong hold. Which for me was a good confidence builder. I’ve lead this three times before (maybe?), so it should be nothing new. There was a moment before the first bolt where I was a bit worried, but after that it was easy. I almost climbed past one bolt. Then at the top I was bit anxious, but that lasted for a minute. Got to the top, felt a bit pumped, but all good. Happy was I again for completing a climb.

Next, I lead “fucary ring”. This is a really good climb for beginner climbers. There are bolts every meter so you get used to placing draws and the like, There was this one moment where I stepped up in the wrong place and felt like I was about to barn door, but corrected myself, didn’t allow the panic to set in. All good. I went right at the top, cause I could. Again a good lead.

Feeling good, I decided to top rope the 18. I’d thought I’d done this one before, but in fact it was the one next to it. There is a really tough move at the top. I wanted to top rope this first and see how I got on with it before attempting to lead it. Climbing up to the tough part is easy (as these things normally are), I remember Rob shouting, think how are you going to clip this… Hmm good question, I can’t think how to get passed this move yet. It’s fiddly, with an undercling, to a crimp, then another crimp, move up to the jug. Seems easy, but it’s not. I did the hard move okay, then the next move, the easier one, I just couldn’t sort out. I couldn’t work out what to do with my feet. In the end here I just called take and had a rest. A minute or two later I tried again. This time got it; didn’t fancy leading it though.

I had no regrets no leading it, today was to have fun and go from there. Amy went up and down it and I had another go. This time I got it. The move is still a PITA, but i got it.

Rob then lead the 19, the one above this. The pressure was on him as he’d onsighted everything else on the wall. He had to make this. I took photos, as Amy belayed. Rob, made it with no problems ( a few grunts there and then). The way that the climb is set out, you have to have someone come up the rope behind you (seconding).

So I decided to second the climb. I was feeling good, it looked like fun and the way things were going, I would do okay. The start is a pig though. I didn’t see rob do the start as it’s hidden behind a boulder. It’s a fiddly bouldering mantle move of a small foothold. I gave it shot while Amy spotted me. Stood up and BAM… I hit my head on the bolder (good thing I have a helmet). I’m stuck I cried… looks like my chalk bag got caught. But I freed myself and got up on the boulder. What a pig of a move.. what’s the rest going to be like?

Next is the traverse. This appears scary from the first look. You can see the floor drop away from you. Tops of trees and bushes appear below the rock…but the traverse is on a big ledge with big holds. Awesome view at this point and you start to feel the exposure. Falling here would be into space and could be interesting on how to get back. Then you get to the real part of the climb, the arête. Here it’s overhanging but the holds are big when you get them. Lots of grunting and few quick moves and I make it to the big jugs. Dam fun moves, really good fun in fact. Then I’m at the top. I’m really quite ecstatic. That’s the hardest climb I’ve completed outside as a first go. It’s also a climb I’m pretty sure I could lead.

After this, I lead the 10; it’s easy as, but fun. Then I downclimb it… which is much harder. All the big ledges obscure all that you can see. makes you think a lot about what you are doing. Amy does the same.

We then move over to the other wall. I’m getting tired now, and it’s getting late in the day. James decides that he wants to jump on a 22…great thinks me as I’m not likely to complete that. That climb is occupied, so we do the one next to it. James says it looks easy and does it clean. There appears to be only one hard part. I think I can do it and try on top rope. I have no idea as to what grade the climb is but I give it shot. Yeah, it’s pretty straight forward until the third clip. Then it’s thin and thought provoking. I’m trying to remember where James went. I make a move for break of rock. It’s thing and crap… I try to hold on, then Whoooosh… i’m off. I fall quite a way with the rope stretch and I pull amy off the ground nearer the rock.

This is a good thing. I needed a fall like this. It shows that everything works and it’s all good. The system works etc. I try multiple times and eventually get the move and get to the top. Rob then gives it a go. I watch Rob move though the move that I got suck on. Something clicks to me about it. Rob says I should give it another go… I kinda have a think about it and do it again.

This time I’m at the hard move quickly. I remember that crappy side pull and crimp. This time I find a better left foot hold and stand up on this and find a good right foot. Reach up for the break and get it. Awesome..done the hard move. Jugs to the top. It’s good to end the day on a good climb. I was quite happy to be done there.

Rob wanted to go do the unknown climb left on the other wall. That would mean that he’d onsighted everything there. I’d done that one before and it’s a piece of crap. But, we went to do it. Rob leads it and finds out what a piece of crap it is. Then I second it. Again, a piece of crap. Its not as mossy as it was last time, but still pointless. But it’s another successful climb for me.

Today I hurt lots though…a good hurt, from a good day at the crag.

Climbing mojo has returned…life is once again good.


~ by monkeypushovertree on March 23, 2009.

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