Thursday, April 29, 2010

Betaguides Site

Just a nod to the growing list of topos and info on UK bouldering at the Betaguides site. Lee Robinson is slowly pulling together the complete wilderness bouldering resource. Check it out or visit the Betaguide blog.

I really liked the look of this new North York Moors venue at Camp Hill, this problem looks like a mini version of West Side Story...

Lee Robinson on Phileas Fogg 7a+ Camp Hill Boulders

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Triangulation 8a at Arisaig

Dave MacLeod climbed the obvious steep crack from deep out of the Arisaig Cave on April 19th. The crack is a new classic from standing at about 7a but the deep cave start made moving into it a real conundrum even for Dave. Another bomber contender for the best 8a in Scotland - on immaculate rock in a stunning setting (look out for resident otters if you're there). The name of the problem might refer to the navigation methods to actually find the cave!


Firefight by Malc Smith

Malcolm Smith has done another incredible link up at Dumbarton called Firefight 8b. It climbs the Pressure cave then finishes up Firestarter. The hardest way through this cave had previously been Dave MacLoed's Pressure which finished up Smokescreen at 8b. Now that a slightly easier variation finish to Smokescreen (7c) was found by Alan Cassidy, Malc continued his journey to find the hardest link-up lines at Dumbarton and logically added Firestarter (8a) as the natural 'hardest' finish to the cave! Thanks to Will Atkinson for recording this on the video...



Saturday, April 17, 2010

Rum Bouldering - Hallival Blocs


From the Dibidil path all the way up to Coire nan Grunnd under Hallival lie hundreds of the cleanest boulders in Scotland in a wild lunar landscape of volcanic scale . Pristine 'allivalite' rock which feels grippier than gabbro - salt and pepper coloured, sculpted for the climber, generous grades on ridiculous angles and some big lines and perfect boulders... I hope to get back in the summer with Hamish Fraser who is working on a complete guide to this astonishing array of blocs.


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Perfect Conditions at Craigmore

Bone dry rock, moss crisp and , woods in bloom, bees buzzing round the willow, barn owl in residence...'HYMN TO NATURE!!' as Clambton might say... all in all a perfect morning at Craigmore. Here's a wee vid of the classic Wizard problem, feeling a little wobbly for an early season highball!



Sunday, April 11, 2010

Lendalfoot Bouldering




Revisited this neglected wee coastal venue on a fine hot day with a cool sea breeze to dry the tidal boulders. Reclimbed a few old problems and have described the best here, named in absentia of any actual history - they have been done before. Paul Savage visited here years ago and I suspect his '8a' project was the black wall - a leaning tidal highball roof and wall.

Lendalfoot Boulders NX 134 906

Lenndalfoot is a summer shingle beach venue with a terrific view out to Ailsa Craig. The boulders along the beach provide limited bouldering with a few choice problems and some hard projects on the central black wall boulder. It is immediately accessible from laybys on the beach at Lendalfoot, a few miles south of Girvan on the A77. There are three sectors: the northern being the best with the Orange Walls and northern leaning ‘pinnacle face’, the central black wall boulder (tidal) and the village boulders and walls to the south. Summer is best when a drying breeze dries out the weepy shale.

 1. Toffee Nosed Bastard Font 6c
Northern sector. Orange Walls northern ‘pinnacle face’. SS and climb the steep tapering toffee bulge via a long reach off an undercut to a diagonal crack, use holds in this to slap up to the left arĂȘte to gain reluctant jugs over the top left.

Pinnacle Face of the Orange Walls (Toffee Nose)

 2. Toffee Nosed Traverse Font 6b
SS on the far right of the pinnacle face of the Orange Walls and traverse hard left to gain the left arĂȘte and rock round this. Excellent technical lock offs and presses, the footholds are poor if the sand is high!

Project:

Friday, April 09, 2010

All the Small Things - Video

Here's Pete Murray's taster of Dave on his new 8a at Arisaig:



Thursday, April 08, 2010

Rum Bouldering

The Hallival boulders have finally seen a bit more of a concerted action, here Chris Everett highballs it out in this remote corrie! Topo on UKC


Arisaig Cave Project Sent


Dave MacLeod took advantage of a rest day to arrive at the Rhu Cvae fresh to complete his journey into darkness with the link up of the big cave project, citing it as a long 8a and a superb trip on perfect rock. The angle of the quartzite is punishing all the way and clever footwork and full-on technique is key. Check out Dave's blog for updates on this cave.




Malcolm Smith's La Saboteur Dumbarton

La Saboteur is the latest hard link up by Mal Smith at Dumbarton, an 8a+ climbing Sabotage and finishing left along Mike Lee's French-inpspired Tour du Technique, further colouring Dumbarton's reputation as the black Fontainebleau - Mais oui, c'est noir...

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Filming in Morar



Pete Murray and myself travelled up to meet Dave MacLeod at his '8c' cave in Morar. This secretive and impressive venue took us a while to find, but was obvious once we did - a 50 degree walled quartzite cave with no moss or drips or lichen and a singular line of chalked holds disappearing into the triangular darkness - Dave's 8c project. I pulled on a few holds the first day and tried one or two moves, but the sheer brutality and power required was too much and we let Dave show us his rubric of moves and contortions that allow the cave to be climbed. The 'easiest' lines appear to be butch 7a's and the top level is close to Dave's idea of Nirvana - long power-plays and complex link-up sequences. We bagged some good film and a short interview about the place which will be forthcoming in a new short film from Pete Murray, to go along with a new collection of writing on bouldering from Stone Country.