North Wales – May 2017

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Early start down on Thursday night got us into the welsh mansion in tip for a kip. Up early with en eye on the seaside me, Roger mac (Gandalf) and Other tom set off. Deciding the sun wouldn’t be round to Gogarth yet we headed into the pass to slay an old demon of Rogers, Nea VS, which was sheltered from the strong wind and a lovely little route.

Cup of tea in the van and we were informed that the seaside was way too windy so we detoured to Tremadoc for a leisurely brew and a start. ‘Warm up’ was set as Falcon E2 which I had been wanting to get on for a long time. The climbing was incredible, quite sustained but well protected. Roger needed a ‘strong’ belay and once up it settled for some quite time in the bushes, he is after all 104 Yrs old (well done) Tom came up and loved the climb. A quick rap put us back at the van for another brew (there’s a sequence building :O) Next up was the Plum E1 which I had done previous but Tom was keen on but after a determined effort from Tom the score was 1-1 and we moved on to Nifl Heim HVS which was much better than expected and offered everything in 4 pitches grass, slabs, off width, jamming, finger traverse, ramp and a wee roof!

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Saturday was a tad overcast and still windy so we settled on Marmite, I Mean slate, which you’ll love or hate. Keen for a confidence booster Tom jumped on Gnat attack E1 with its first runner at 13 Mtrs! Confidence was gained and after I also lead the route we moved onto rainbow wall area (what a sight rainbow wall is!)

First up was Bella Luguisi E1 and Tom squared it up with relative ease Next on the agenda was next door Catrin which I lead and found typical of Slate in respect to bolts placed post crux and a little ran out. After another route in this area we moved onto Rainbow slab itself GULP. Pull My Daisy E2 has been on the radar for a while and I felt ok for a change. Next 30mins was a blur of great climbing, huge run-outs and such a memorable climb, which Tom came up and agreed.

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A nip down the rope, some juice and a quick reflection and a plan for Tom to do a route he’d been keen on for a while German Schoolgirl E2. We hopped up a few levels had a butchers at it then rapped in, as they say in USA. Can’t remember the climbing being as good as it was! Technical and real bridging. Tom applied his trade and came out trumps and a very happy bunny :O). Another route could have been had but why take the chance on tainting a good day, anyhows there was a cuppa at the van and burns night to look forward too. The burns night was brilliant and another story altogether!

Sunday had an air of single malt and a sunny aspect so with a lazy start and even lazier people we headed for Pinnacle route direct in Owgwen which provided, as well as the submitted photo’s straight forward climbing in anything but straightforward situations with a group ascent by Me, Tom, Roger, Martin, Sean, Mike and Gary ‘boom boom’ Baines. Cuppa in the sun outside the van was bliss and with a heavy heart we left North Wales. I”LL BE BACK FOR THE SEASIDE (gogarth)

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Jason Wood Esq.

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