27 Aug 2012

Pause for a second

Bank holiday weekend, fingers have been crossed all week for some good weather. 
Still we should not just rely on hope. Weather is a science that you need to learn for every area you may boulder in. It can take a while to understand rock conditions and weather fronts; but believe me it's worth it.  
I wish some website exsisted that could evaluate the variables and tell you where to climb, but this is not going to happen, so you have to go on knowledge and judgement.

As luck or good judgement would have it, I managed a couple of days.
Sunday's plan was to check out the rest of the quarries on Blakey Ridge - venues with easy access and some good problems, just off the road. 
Best made plans can change, though! A project at the first quarry, which I never expected to find, absorbed me the rest of the day. Even as I write this, am looking forward to getting back on it.
Off-beat problem. You get over the bulge, prepare to launch off a sloping crimp and a tiny crimp,
then the brain kicks in and you drop off! Missed the mats once, shins bleeding after hitting the overhang mid-dyno, brilliant.
Had to stop on the way home, what a view of Farndale.

Day two:  Cloughton Wyke
Planned to sleep at the venue, but gave it a miss due to the rain late, the day before. I missed a good sunrise, but still arrived early, to get the rest of the shots of the blocks for the guide. I don't know whether I'm getting old, keep finding myself stopping and looking at everything appreciating all that surrounds me. I want to dig deeper into where I have been and experience it more than just to turn up and climb a problem and walk away.
Tide's out, happy days
Surfs up, time to fly off 
Resident lichen

17 Aug 2012

Crown Green Bouldering, Cheese and a Jurassic Valley

Two more days on the Moor, good weather and a second visit to the anomaly that is the 'Thorgill Boulders' (not the Thorgill Crag Boulders) may have to change the name to stop any confusion?

The blocks are in a luscious grassy meadow, which feels really strange for the moors but is quite pleasant, a bit like having blocks on your local playing field. The rock is good, just a little bit of cleaning and off you go. We repeated some of the first problems we did, which felt really good, then with help from Steve added a good few more, with a few to go back for.

Later we had a little session on some of Franco and Dave's new problems at Westdale View, a small quarry with a wall that just begged to be climbed - four really good problems with a two minute walk, if that on Blakey Ridge. Franco and Dave joined us to show the way on the harder stuff. There's just one more project of Franco's left.

Day two was a wash-out, bugger! But my philosophy is, when it rains explore, so we headed off to Ingleby to see the Cheese Stones, which look two Picasso faces. This became quite an epic, ending up down a lost valley full of dinosaur eggs (iron geodes), giant dragon flies, serious jungle undergrowth, and jurassic fossils. The highlight was three waterfalls maybe not seen by man for centuries. It's difficult to judge and know how much the landscape has changed, due to man's influence, it could be a hundred years could be a thousand. It could be never in a place like this, we never found any climbable rock, but I didn't care, it was just good to be in a place where the hustle and bustle of the outside world meant nothing.

Maybe back out sunday if the legs recover?
 First attempts on a fine arete
 Classic of the blocks Thor 6c+/7a
 Had to do just one problem on this big block,
harder project to the right
 Day two, Franco on what looked like a fine jamming crack on the best block we saw up on the 'Cheese Stones'
 Will we make it out alive?
 Enchanted waterfall
The Moors rainforest

12 Aug 2012


After three days and two nights on the blocks it's time to take a day off to watch the last day of the olympics. It's been an inspiring few weeks watching world class athletes. It makes bouldering on the moors seems a world away, yet the effort to climb and explore keeps you pretty fit, with some fantastic back-drops. Let's hope climbing is in the next olympics? might try to enter! need to think up a catchy finishing signature move.

Anyway as for the last three days. The task of finishing the guide is at the front of my mind, so finishing off areas and getting shots I had missed previously was the aim.

Lucky for me I met up with some of the younger climbers that were up and active on the moor, still very psyched, Repeating and putting up new routes and boulder problems right across the moors and coast, as well as developing new venues, some of the ascents are really news worthy even though the moors are considered a climbing back-water by some people. 
Matthew Ferrier adding a tough little 6a to the circuit at Round Crag 
A neglected block a the lower Wainstones Neglect 6c+
 Franco Cookson on Psycho Syndicate E5 6c
 Dave Warburton on a new problem on the North Buttress on 
Cold Moor (Originally called Mount Vittoria)
Pads essential Dave Warburton hits the top adding to the already hefty Wainstones circuit.
 Steven Phelps on his own route White Star Line 6a+, on a new crag that's now all clean and tidy ready to climb. I'll give the location away when Steve's finger is better so he can try his final project.
Meteor Shower  6c 7.5m three pads, possibly E2 6b on a lead, you need a sling at the top and holds need checking before any attempt to climb.

10 Aug 2012

Photo and Video Competition

To promote the new Betaguides website we are giving away some goodies, all you have to do is add a video or picture of your own to an area on the website (the picture or video has to be from this area).

It's so easy to do, Just find the area on the drop down list, click on betaguides+ and fill in the details, upload the picture or paste the top HTML web address in the box for video.

The competition is open to all UK areas and Ireland. If the area is not on the website you can easily add it by clicking on the add area and dropping the pin then submitting the area, once approved you will be able to add and picture or video.

The goodies on offer are:

1. Beastmaker 2000
The monster of all training boards
2. Dave MacLeods 9 out of ten climbers make the same mistakes
A must read to help make gains in you climbing
3. Betaguides Sunny Tee
Stand out from the rest, you may need sunglasses, very bright
4. Anston Stones Bouldering Guide 
Limestone bouldering at it's best

The competition deadline is the end of September 2012, please do enter your pictures and videos.
All of them will help build the Betaguides website into a better resource for future bouldering generations to use.

Looking forward to seeing them all