Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Pushing the grade at Black Crag

Steve pulling hard on Glass Slipper E2 5b

After our efforts yesterday Hazel, Steve and I made the short walk up to Black Crag from the top of Wrynose Pass. The focus of today was on pushing their grade and working on their climbing technique. Hazel began with a very smooth lead of Jolly Corner (D) closely followed by Steve on the arete of Sharp as Glass (S). We then dropped a rope down the classic Glass Slipper and they both made very controlled onsights of this thin E2 5b.

Hazel enjoying Glass Slipper E2 5b

With everything going well we opted to put Hazel on the sharp end on the steep Slipshod (HVS 5a). She made good progress despite a puddle in the triangular niche before gaining a reasonable rest at the loose block. The crux groove proved a bit more problematical and she took a couple of rests before powering to the top of the route. For folk wishing to gain experience of pushing their grade in a safe environment, having an instructor alongside you on a rope offering moral support and an extra runner can really allow you to push the envelope. Hazel put in a really determined effort and now has a real feel for what leading an HVS feels like.
Today I was working for Adventure Peaks.