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Posts Tagged ‘monday night’

It was probably about -8 when Diver-Driver, Dr Ali and I set off up Pule Hill at 8pm on a frosty Monday night. The air was crystal clear and there was still lots of snow on the ground from the week before.  I don’t think we’d got off the track that leads up to Intake Head Farm before Diver-Driver’s appreciation of mine and Dr Ali’s comedic and intensely funny Scottish accents wore off. By the time we arrived at the air shaft Diver Driver was walking off into the darkness  by himself and threatening an early bath. Gritting his teeth he stuck with it and was still there to provide a flask of fortifying brandy on the summit of Pule. This along with Dr Ali’s hip flask of whiskey warmed the cockles and raised the spirits as expected.

Under shooting stars we set off down towards Worlow Quarry then followed ‘the bumps’ down to Hades Farm where we paused again to take on more fortification and admire the stars. We were back down to the village and in the pub by 10 where we were greeted by several chaps drinking whilst huddled round the only source of heat in the place – a small fan heater perched on the bar. Happy days. 🙂

Awaiting photos from Dr Ali.

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Phew, finally caught up. With the lads up a Cairngorm at the weekend a reduced party (Diver Driver, Dr Crowe and Michael) took to the crags on Mother Pule. A first proper Monday night out, the longest day and a beautiful evening.

First up Flying Buttress, it still needs a minimum of 3 pieces of gear in the vertical crack, a bit of faith onto the ledge and some awkwardness to feel around the horizontal bulges but the handholds are as good as ever.

Fraser led a corner (next to the hideous green scoop) with aplomb and to round off Dr Crowe had a go at Square Buttress. The first go ended with a Dr Ali-like lunge for the main break. It was followed by a Dr Ali-like pendulum across the face. All the year’s experience came into play – if at first you don’t succeed then light a cheroot and have another go, and so it went, with bats flying around and a curlew and an owl calling at opposite ends of the hill. Dusk came and we went to the pub. Marvellous.

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“Where’s Pots and Pans?” … “In de cupboard under de sink”. Actually it’s here.

We’ve been twice – first time in the lower, right quarry with some enticing lines and some not very enticing lichen covering the rock. Woody and Dr Crowe emboldened by the Dr’s rercent downclimbing practice backed off a number of difficult routes. The Prof soloed the unprotectable arete. Steves Tuck and Fraser and Dr Ali sensibly led two severe(?) routes.

The second visit saw Sharpey, the Prof, Diver Driver, Mr Tuck, the two Drs and Michael take on assorted boulders and in various combinations attempt the obvious hs (?) route  in the left quarry. This was led by Dr Crowe who was then hauled up the adjacent HVS crack by Dr Ali in the spirit of some experimental cheating.

Better sport was to be had in the higher quarry behind on Pans led by Ali which had much better friction and turned out to be a quality lead. Tuck and the Prof took a route to the right which turned out to be challenging – not least because of loose rock on the route, loose rock coming onto the route from above and a spectacularly stuck pice of gear. A really atmospheric spot, great views and sheltered with loads of bouldering scattered about as well. We’ll be back…

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Our first trip to Pule, Drs Ali and Crowe, Mr Tuck and the Prof. A stark reminder of the off width and bulgy, slightly overhanging nature of the quarry. The forgotten art of downclimbing was retrieved from our collective unconscious. I think each pair only completed one climb as a pair. Certainly Dr Crowe and the Prof had to lay seige to a crack that was just out of their reach – a bit like the Ottomans trying to take Vienna – each attempt adding another piece of gear. The Prof finally hit the move needed to take the top. Dr Crowe in a fit of ambition demonstrated the lack of balance that keeps his belayers on their toes and fell off soimething he’d led last year. Truly going backwards. A beautiful evening and the first post-sunset finish needing headtorches in order to abseil down to retrieve (or not) bits of stuck gear.

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Dr Crowe and Woody had a quiet evening out at Buckstones above the road trying out a few problems at the right hand end of the outcrop above the road.
Also a few repeats of some of the slippery critters from the previous week.

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Our first Monday night out of the season saw a fine turnout of stout chaps. Mr Tuckle, Drs Ali & Crowe, Andy Wood and Diver Driver. Off we went up to Buckstones, without a guide, for a splendid evening of bouldering fun.

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With the good Drs Ali and Crowe opting for Huddersfield climbing wall Mr Tuckle decides to take advantage of the last of the snow before the thaw. Deciding against Black Hill I opted for a trudge up Pule Hill, a much safer bet on my own.

The lane leading up to the A63

The lane leading up to the A62

snow drift

Some interesting snow drifts have formed on the old farm track

ST

My initials peed into the snow. Some people never grow up. I blame the parents

footprints

I don’t think anybody will know which way I came

hole

My foot disappeared down a snow covered hole. Looking back I realised I had wandered too far right and had ended up over the gulley with a stream in the bottom. As I tried to push myself back out with my left foot it too began to slip down the bank into the gulley. Waste deep, I scrambled out. Realising that the conditions were a little too rough to be tackled alone I broke open my flask, had a coffee and made my way back down.

snowman

I put my time to good use by building a snowman which, on reflection looks a little scary. His name is Jim. Follow snowmanjim on twitter

snowman

I bade Jim the snowman farewell and set off for home

bridge

After all the trudging through deep snow it was good to be back in the village.

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