Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Something a little different

I was hoping to be up in Scotland climbing steep hoar frosted cracks but the cold but dry weather means there's very little in condition up there I'd like to climb. To keep from going stir crazy Jon and I headed down to the Welsh borders to check out an area a friend of mine, Ramon had told us about. White Goods has been developed as a specific dry tooling crag one of the few around. One of the difficulties is finding steep rock that no-one would want to rock climb on. White Goods manages this thanks to muddy shale bands between the roofs and a popular fly tipping site. Aesthetic it is not. Infact all that seemed to be missing from the ambience was a stereo blasting out Industrial Noise by Skinny Puppy or perhaps the less gentle tunes by Pantera.

Never the less we had a fun trip, climbing the easier angled Kitchen Garden routes (D5-D7) and then I surprised myself by hollering my way up Jaz a steep D9 (although I suspect pretty soft at the grade). Dry tooling in some people's minds is about as low as climbing can go, but Ive found it to be fun and the perfect option to get the guns reloaded for when conditions kick in again up North.

There's more info on White Goods here http://www.ukclimbing.com/logbook/crag.php?id=3826 and here http://www.drytooling.co.uk/articles/files.display-4.html. I think its a very worthwhile venue and certainly more enjoyable climbing than Birnam, the other major UK dry tooling venue, which is almost entirely drilled.


Anonymous said...

excellent,pleased to see the place is starting to get discovered.
what grade did you think jazz was?
you should try the big roof to the right if you found that easy.
by the way, we think the dump effect adds to the ambiance although i'm not suggesting it for elsewhere!

Ian Parnell said...

Hi Simon I can't say I found Jazz easy! infact I struggled to do the start and finish bolt to bolt but the route flows well and so a bit of momentum helped me up. Grade wise, its always difficult to know what with post Christmas podge etc but easy M8+?? Perhaps worth 3 stars though, so much better than the few things Ive done at Birnam.

Anonymous said...

nah forget the roof Simon you should have a go at tumble in the jungle Ian, much better line, Delicate and powerfull with a scotish ish finish..its class.

ready steady hook is great also..Im just a bit sour rob got it before me.


Ian Parnell said...

Dave they both look good. I was a little worried though that they might require a bit of genuine fig 4 action which I'm hopeless at. I probably will try Power Pact next time I'm down?

Anonymous said...

I did tumble without a fig 4 but when rob did the repeat he needed one.Not sure why as hes alot taller than me.

ready stead hook obviously needs 4's and a few 9's unless you are super strong.

power packed and demolition (a little loose at the top) are both good, and not a fig 4 to be seen.