Monday, 21 September 2020

Aonarachd (overhang lip traverse extension)

With the sand at a higher level, it's been easier to work out hard moves at Hummell Rocks this summer. Yesterday I managed to stick to my traverse project.

Aonarachd, which is the Gaelic for 'isolation', is an extension of my existing Overhang Lip Traverse

Instead of deadpointing to the good hidden flatty, I continue leftwards to the slopers of An t-Sliseag ('the slice') and finish left into the big jug of An t-Sliseag Cop Out.

I thought it would be 7a+ but I have done it only once so far after weeks of trying. Being tall allows me to use the low plinth as a foothold but it is very sandy and it is very difficult not to sleep. I have also tried to do it footless but then, sticking to the slopers is even harder.

So I reckon the grade is probably more like 7b for small people - unless you get very dry and cold conditions, which does not happen often at Gullane.

Here's a photo of the problem:

 And here's a video of my original Overhand Lip Traverse:

Saturday, 19 September 2020

Bouldering at Gullane beach, Àrd-ealain


Hummell wall - Gullane beach (near Edinburgh) V

Here's an update of my mini-topo (September 2016).

I did a few vids at Gullane since 2016, you can find them here.

The sand level has gone up very high in Winter 2019-20, so some sit-starts have almost disappeared, e.g. 'An t-sliseag', and landings are much safer  - no mats required!!! :)

As a results the grades are much lower:
  1. Àirde An Làin, 
  2. High & Dry, 4    
  3. Leum, 5
  4. An t-sliseag 6a    
  5. Àrd-ealain 6b
  6.  Overhang Lip Traverse, 6b
I've added another couple of problems, which I thought worth trying if you are bored. Here's my topo update.

  • Green: An t-sliseag, 6a at the moment.
  • Red: Shit-Start, 6b
  • Blue: Àrd-ealain, 6b at the moment.
  • Purple: Overhang Lip Traverse, 6b at the moment.

Please remember -

Don't use any hard/wire brushes !

Hummell Rocks is a soft sandstone crag by the beach. So holds will always be sandy here. In many cases, you will need to brush the holds before climbing but please, brush them very gently, using soft (not wire!) brushes, to avoid any damage to the rock. Soft nylon are the most popular, but at Hummel Rocks, even soft brushes need to be used gently! If you want to compete with the next guy, give him a chance to try the same climb ;)

Don't climb here less than 24 hours after the rain!

Climbing on wet sandstone destroys it. Hand holds and footholds are softer and break apart more easily. Wait as much as possible, at least a week when there's been high humidity, cold temperature and already moist conditions.
So late summer is probably the best period to climb at Hummell Rocks.

Friday, 7 June 2019

Training Routine

This is my new training project at Agassiz Rock - linking as many loops as possible.

I know neither the name of the problem nor its grade. I think it's a variation of Jammin' Beneath the Darkness (7a) but in any case it provides a good routine for training, one loop making about 20 moves. Exactly what I needed to build a bit of stamina outside :)

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Ìosal, St Helen's bay, near Siccar Point

I was back to St Helen’s recently, an area I’ve developed back in 2014/15. 

I took a break from climbing and hadn’t been there since the release of the third version of Stone Country Press' Boulder Scotland.

I was glad to see the place has received some traffic – the Latha saor boulder was heavily chalked up, especially Ìosal ( which means low in Scottish Gaelic).

A recent comment from Andy Shanks on one of my previous posts confirmed what I already thought - this latter line is an eliminate.

Here are the holds I've used:
Ìosal, 7b

The true line would be to traverse low, rightward, all the way to poor holds, finishing up Tha mi nam shìneadh (7a) but that was beyond my abilities.

I’d love to know if someone sends the whole traverse and what method they use, so if that's your case, please let me know!

Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Bouldering near Edinburgh - Roslin Glen

What makes a good problem?

Solid rock, nice setting, dry conditions, safe landing and a cool line, easy to read and that will involve both technical and powerful moves.

Roslin Glen has a bit of that: