Tuesday, December 30, 2014

My Climbing Year - 2014

So the traditional personal photo roundup on an odd but fun climbing year. Odd because my main effort was running my first marathon in September - which started with a 6 month training master plan and immediately derailed with injuries but ended well (I digress as this about climbing not running). Having decided therefore to just enjoy climbing whenever the opportunities arose I ended up having a surprisingly successful year.
January - My second visit to the Dubh Loch and this time despite just missing stellar ice conditions with the Giant still complete but with soggy ice, managed the super classic Vertigo Wall with Ben.
February - I had two separate weeks in Scotland. The first week at the International Meet was one of my best ever doing some great routes with Olov from Sweden and then one of my dream ticks - Centurion with Michelle from Canada. The Second week with Garth was perhaps the worst I've had up there and despite lots of very wet walking we only got one minor route done.
March - Lots of fun routes this year including Aiguille du Merlot traverse on the Lleyn with Jon on his birthday.
April - More fun on Chris's stag do with a trip to Reiff and the Old Man of Stoer
May - Back to old haunts in Bristol with my fellow Climb Mag editor Dave and the superb Haystack finish to Yellow Wall in Avon.
June - Beginning to get trucking with Zippy on Gogarth's main cliff. Fowler's meaty 6 pitch traverse Trunk Line finishing up the Citadel crack.

 July (Part 1) - So much fun in this month that I've cheated and used two pics. The first a fine family holiday near Baggy Point - highlights were a great coasteering odyssey with Paul and Steve's families. And then Steve and I nipped off to Sharpnose to revisit some old favourites including Sea Green.
July (Part 2) - The mighty Mandarin at Hoghton Quarry - the second best pitch I lead this year.
August - Extraordinary day with Dave at Cilan Main starting with the ab set up and culminating in another dream tick - Vulture.
September - Churnet with Jon. Great bouldering place even for those who can't really boulder. Infact just a great place full stop.
October - Tremendous trip to Skye with Jon. Including best pitch I lead this year - Mothers Pride at Elgol, but seen as I have a better pic here's another corker the charmingly named Golden Shower at Neist.
November - Attempted to get fit for a specific mixed route in Switzerland. If I could do the easiest thing out of the Works cave then I'd book a flight. I failed so didn't.
 December - Bit of a depressing December was saved by surprise Christmas weekend winter conditions and the chance to fall off a lot trying to follow Pete up a taxing new route in North Wales (click on pic - I'm in orange, Pete's in red). [Photo credit: Andy Harbach]

As much fun and variety in 2015 and I'll be a happy boy.