A Brit Grit fix with Jake

More or less straight off the plane and back into action – Jake’s only home for a couple of days and is keen to get some cragging in.

First venue for a quick afternoon fix is Millstone.

A slightly chilly and dank day, but a couple of super-classic routes. Knightsbridge used to be one of my Millstone party pieces, but it seemed really tough moving through the steepening today. Good gear though.

Next up is Time for Tea, a classic frightener moving leftwards well above the last gear (no problem for Jake of course)

Next day it brightens up a bit and we decide to chance the Rucksack Club evening meet at Shining Clough – perhaps the finest moorland outcrop on the west side of the Peak. Facing due north, it does just about catch the evening sun (though more so in mid June than late August!)

In the fresh breeze it’s absolutely freezing on the crag, but having plodded up there’s no way we’re not getting some routes done.

Pisa Superdirect is the 3* classic of the crag, and is no pushover despite being HVS. Here’s Jake topping out and just catching the rays.

Gallileo, just to its left, steps it up a grade, with steep pulls on excellent finger locks. Here are Andy and Luke in the dusk.

Despite the beckoning gloom, Jake fancies a look at Saucius Digitalis, another 3* outing but this time at E5 6b. A quick look on a top rope to check out the rock and place some gear, and Jake is venturing upwards as the sun dips behind the horizon. Very smooth lead in the conditions and a spectacular line.

And a different view of the same spot of Luke having a go

Here’s Jake again, seconding the route a bit later to retrieve Luke’s gear.

By which time it was properly dark – blundered down and made it to the pub by 9.30 – an hour and a half after sunset. Grand evening!

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