'For Adventures of a lifetime'

Thursday, 4 February 2010

Roxcool/Schmoolz Holidays - Getting rid of the demons!!!!

Today I was climbing on Great End over in the Lake District.

Following the shocking incident on Gable Crag, which my friend Craig witnessed and helped with, I offered to take him straight out onto the hill in an attempt to get rid of the demons which had been hounding him since Sundays events. Unfortunately at the last minute Craig had to pull out.

Mike one of my Schmoolz colleagues was happy to stand at 05.30 am departure saw me driving in heavy fog towards the Lakes. Mike lives in Newcastle so we arranged to meet at Penrith and travelled the last bit down to Borrowdale together.

The weather forecast wasn't great with rising temperatures (2 degrees) and rain expected. Walking up Grains Gill towards Great End didn't do anything for our confidence and we thought that we'd missed our opportunity. However, upon arriving at the base of the crag it was obvious that it was in good nick....hawed up rocks, firm snow and the ice pitch on Central Gully Left Hand looking awesome! This was our route of choice today....and perfect as one other party on South East Gully had beaten us to the base.

The route was perfect for Mike too, as prior to this experience today, he had not climbed on much ice at all. His winter experience had involved scratching up a few mixed routes!

Most of the day Mike and myself discussed this strange game of risk we play....unbeknown to us we actually were getting rid of the demons too...reflecting on the nasty incident, last weekend, got us trying to put things in perspective. Although I have been out quite a lot already this winter (including a new route) I still found myself today checking everything twice. I love it when I climb confidently and without hinderance, but sometimes I worry I'm getting complacent. It's a fine line! In some respects if anything good did come from the incident it makes us realise accidents do happen, risks are taken, adventure is had and I guess that's why we do what we do....

The route held out and Mike got to try 'real ice'....the walk down went without incident. 7 degrees by the time we got back to the car!!!!!

Funny moment of the day....Mike leaning against the window while I was driving him back to his car at Penrith...He dropped off to sleep and literally fell off the window hahahahaha poor tired puppy!

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