To celebrate the start of my long 'summer' holidays (though it doesn't look much like summer to me) I travelled up to Snowdonia for the weekend to get some indoor and outdoor climbing done. Because I will be having a GB team training event next weekend to select for the European and World Championships, I decided to spend a day at the Beacon Climbing Centre where the selection event will be held to get some practice on the different walls.
I like the walls at the Beacon as, despite not being very steep like most other walls, they are very tall and often have consistent, non-cruxy routes which require stamina and solid vert technique-the kind of routes which suit me best. I enjoyed getting on some of the harder routes to onsight but discovered a couple of routes set with wooden holds-holds I had only experienced on circuit boards and did not like on routes. These were slippy and unpredictable but I gave them a go anyway. My favourite route of the day was an 8a up the main wall which had a dynamic beginning but very technical end. Unfortunately I fell off a bit over halfway up but I managed to get all the moves in sections.
On Saturday evening, after visiting the Beacon, I had just enough time to spend a couple of hours at the Cromlech Boulders in Llanberis Pass. I hadn't expected to do any outdoor bouldering but had brought a mat just in case-and it was a good thing I did because the problems were brilliant and by the time I had to go back to the house I had already ticked a crimpy 7a/v6 called The Edge Problem and given a good go at the famous Jerry's Roof (7c/v9).
The following morning I got up early as I knew it was due to rain at midday and I had to get back to London that evening. After a drive through not-so-promising mist and light showers, we arrived in the valley where the Cromlech Boulders are and got out the pad. I though our session would be short lived and was beginning to regret coming outside again after feeling the slippery, slanted footholds. Nevertheless, I pressed on and the weather began to get better. I soon found myself topping out on Roadside Arête, a nice 6c/v5 I had looked at the previous day, and proceeded to work the pumpy, sloper traverse into it, which formed Cave Route (7a/v6). The traverse was of course concealed in the local sheep toilet, which was less than pleasant, but I figured out the moves fairly quickly and managed to get the link.
Having battled hard keeping the sheep poo off my climbing shoes and bearing the pain of my quickly disappearing skin, I though it would be a good idea to try the next link-Roadside Basic (7a+/v7) and surprised myself sending it on my second attempt of the full link. Alas, the weather starting really packing in and I ran to seek refuge in the car-it was time to go anyway. I hope to return soon to claim the other links-Rampless (7b/+/v8) and Full Roadside (7c/v9)-and get back on the classic Jerry's Roof.
|The Edge Problem (7a/v6)|
|Coming out of the traverse on Roadside Basic (7a+/v7)|
|Next move on Roadside Basic...|
|The sequence continues...|