Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013 in pictures.

Climbing is a frustrating activity, no mater how good your year as been you always wish you'd done more. Looking back at 2013 whilst I've not done lots of the routes I'd wanted to I have done a lot routes that have been on my ticklist for a very long time and a heck of a lots of good climbing. As the reality of full time employments kicks in in 2014 I don't think I'll manage to do as much climbing.

Despite some of the best winter conditions in recent years I only managed a couple of days out. Here is me psyched out of my tree beneath Pillar Chimney on Clogwyn Du.

Being a poor time manager I spent much of my final year sat in the library procrastinating and eating cake. I did manage to sneak out occasionally - like this early season trip to Castell Helen with Mark Reeves.

Ollie seconding Merry Monk at the sadly banned Lazonby Crag. The Easter Holidays were frustrating. The Lakes was freezing cold and covered in snow, but there was no winter climbing to be had. Ollie and I retreated to Cumbria's best kept secret: the Eden Valley.
As if leading Armathwaite's the Exorcist wasn't enough Ollie stripped off and jumped in to cool down.

Climbing a deserted  Point Five Gully on perfect spring day. The day previously we'd failed miserably to climb the Cullin Ridge in winter. This wasn't a bad consolation. 

Sampling the local crag whilst on house hunting trips to Sheffield. Gwen Lancashire cruising Curbar's Insanity.

Doing ten routes at Tremadog during the 2013 Tremadog Festival. Ollie leading the improbably blank Harvey Proctor's Spanking Slap.

Ogmore - a crag for those who are weary of life. Ollie took me down to his local playground for an evening dose of fear on Exposure Explosion. We bailed due to rain and a lack of moral fibre on my part.
Climbing Great Wall on Cloggy in the evening sun. I got dragged up by Luke Hunt but it was still brilliant.

Luke biving beneath Cloggy around the summer solstice. The crag was bone dry for weeks on end this summer and I managed to climb many long held ambitions. The West Buttress Eliminate and Shrike did not disappoint.

The Lakes was also bone dry. Jimmy Marjot loving the top pitch of Astra. The next day we climbed Central Buttress and Saxon. The rock on Scafell is incomparable.

Getting engaged to Nikki on the Menai Bridge - psyched for our wedding next April.

Climbing five pitches on Dinas Mot after work with my Dad. The next day we climbed Longland's Climb and White Slab on Cloggy.

Family Holiday to Cornwall. Here is Nikki and Dad on a team ascent of Commando Ridge - undoubtedly on of the UK's best easy climbs.

The other highlight of the week was the Extreme Rock tick Astral Stroll - an E1 that thinks it's E3.

In August Nikki and I left North Wales and moved into our first home in Sheffield.

Evening cragging at Millstone - it's not bad this grit lark.
Ollie climbing Imaginary Voyage, the classic 5.8, White Punks on Dope goes up the slabs behind him. Our ten week trip to the States started with the Needles. The climbing was desperate, yet brilliant and the place was stunningly beautiful. It was a privilege to climb there.

The dream team on top of the Incredible Hulk after climbing the Red Dihedral. The rock quality wasn't great and we queued all the way but it was a good adventure.

A speedy day in Tuolumne with the Almadad. We climbed Great Pumpkin, Lucky Streaks and the Regular Route on Fairview Dome in the time it took Ollie and Duncan to queue up the Regular Route. I've we'd have been a bit slicker we might have overtaken them.

Finally we got to Yosemite and like kids in a sweet shop started ticking our way through the classics. Here Duncan loving one of the world's best Hard VSs: the Central Pillar of Frenzy

Ollie enjoying the pendulum on Royal Arches, the last route I did before getting kicked out of the park due to the US Government shutting down. 

Ollie climbing Dream of Wild Turkeys at Red Rocks. When the government shutdown we spent a week in Vegas enjoying  brilliant face climbing at Red Rocks.

Congress sorted themselves out and we were allowed back into Yosemite. We didn't manage El Cap, but we did climb the Leaning Tower instead, which was pretty damn cool.

Day two in Patagonia and we're climbing the Whillan's Ramp on Aguja Poincenot.

Later the week we climb Aguja Guillaumet. Sadly the rest of our trip was foiled by bad weather.

Back home in the Peak I was like kid in a sweet shop with a million and one routes and problems that I'd never climbed. Malcolm Scott climbing Crescent Arete, which I pleased to flash.

Mrs Claus taking a well earned rest and enjoying Christmas Crack on Christmas Day. 

 Here's to 2014 I'm sure it will be a good one.

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