Saturday, August 13, 2011

The Old Magic

'Lets see some of that old magic' was a phrase Matt Dickinson used to me on one of my first ever expeditions - the first ascent of The Thumbnail, a giant sea cliff in Greenland. I was trying to gather my nerves to lead a bold looking blank wall about 15 pitches above the fjord but despite Matt's encouragement I ended up bottling it and handing over the lead. Matt committed and found surprisingly reasonable climbing opening up the way to the upper headwall of the route.
That was back in '99 and whilst the expeditions went from strength to strength it was in inverse proportion to my rock climbing. The good news is having had most of this year off climbing due to injury and an attempt to be a runner I'm back searching for the magic. Whilst I'd love this blog to be about how I've suddenly remembered how to climb E6 again the reality is its going to be a long process. But just that feeling of heading out and getting scared has reminded me that the magic might not be at the end of a big E number but as likely to be found as you take that big gulp of fresh air at the end of a sweaty run out.
Talking of big E numbers the family camping holiday saw Steve McClure and me sneaking off for a couple of early mornings cragging. He catching my lobs off E2s and me holding his ropes on E8 onsights. Both of us searching for the magic, in our own ways!

1 comment:

Dave said...

Good post Ian. Steve is the man if ever inspiration was required hey.

Finger crossed that winter will bring some more nuggets to keep you going.