Saturday, 13 September 2008

Back to the big Sky Pilot trip

Working the mammoth traverse of Sky Pilot back in July. Pics: Stone Country

After a few days working away from home I’m back in the routine of working and training/climbing in Glen Nevis. Training by going climbing on real projects is often much preferable to training indoors, so long as you discipline yourself to work hard and subordinate perfect rested attempts for getting a good workout. Those of you who read this page regularly will know I worked on a massive traverse of Sky Pilot as my endurance training for Echo Wall during June and July.

I was starting to feel pretty close to this in late July but then work trips and Echo Wall itself demanded different focus. The big trip has always stayed firmly in my mind as a solid V13 project (at least) and eating away that I could never make it through the crux and nail it.

The climb starts off with 10 metres of V5, then 10 metres of V6, then 10 metres of V9 then another ten of V9, followed a final ten of V8. Nothing even remotely hard in individual sections, but add all that together you need a lot of stamina and excellent pacing and timing to save your strength for the right moment at the end. It reminds me of running 1500 metre events actually. Hold back, holding back until you hit the crux at the end and pulling down through melting arms.

Last week’s training binge followed by two days of rest, good food and some more sleep had a rather positive effect on me, it seems. Over the past two nights I have made two small improvements on my backlinks through the crux. Tonight’s backlink was from before the start of the hard climbing, and in less than useful conditions with several wet holds and a chasing pack of midges.

I only have a 10 metre V5 to add onto the start now. It’s possible that a good few days of conditions and a few heaps of broccoli could be all that separates me from the end of this amazing upside down rock climbing trip. More updates later this week…

I’m looking forward to the attempt when I grab that bloody pinch after 40 metres of climbing and have juice left to squeeze it.


7 comments:

  1. Hi Dave,

    Good luck with your project....sounds like you're nearly there.

    Interesting that you mention good food and specifically brocoli! Would be great to hear more on your thoughts about nutrition, perhaps even a post in OCC and maybe even some genuine Macleod power recipes (hint hint).

    cheers
    Morgan

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  2. I like the picture you posted up with the article! really sounds like you are getting close to sending the problem, I wish you the the best of luck in bagging it!

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  3. today!. unai.

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  4. I see Echo Wall will preview at the Edinburgh festival, will you be putting it on the site shortly for order/pre-order.

    JJ

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  5. Well done with Echo Wall. Will you be grading it? Not that it matters really I suppose, just curious.

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