Thursday, 24 March 2016
Returning home from Mull I could see the incredible spell of weather was about to break. I dived out to my project on The Cameron Stone in Glen Nevis, which I was very close to completing before I left. It was starting to rain as I got there and the top rapidly got soaked.
The project is super crimpy and I’ve split my fingertips on it twice already. Basically, you only get a handful of tries at the crux match and jump before it splits. On each try, you gamble with ‘one more try’ until your finger splits and you lose two days training.
The project starts up Dan Varian’s problem up the arete, completed last spring at 8A+ and repeated by me last September. I could see there was an obvious harder link to go leftwards on the tiny crimps and jump to the good block on the neighbouring 7C+ ‘The news in Pidgin Gaelic’. I’m never too sure about the grade, especially with super crimpy lines, but if the arete is 8A+ then it’s got to be a grade harder.
As usual I didn’t think I had all that much chance of success, but though I better hang my Prohpet Jacket off the baby Scot’s Pine growing out of the top-out crack, just in case I got there and needed dry(er) holds.
About 4th try, I finally held the jump and braced myself for sliding off the soaking wet top-out and into the bog below. With a careful approach, the top was actually fine and I strolled off down the hill, delighted to have finished a great project in such unlikely conditions. Check out the video above.
Before I go to Switzerland, I have two more boulder projects I would like to try, but going by the forecast for the next week, I might be training instead. Actually that will do me good. I feel like I’m getting a bit weak from all this outdoor climbing! A good problem to have.