Screda Point

Screda Point is archetypal Culm Coast climbing – smooth uniform angled slabs, with discontinuous cracks providing occasional holds and even more occasional gear. All 7 routes described in Rockfax on the main slab have the fluttery heart symbol, and the easiest of those (Chien Lunatique, HVS, up the right arete) has partly fallen down.

“Afternoon Sun” is one of the promised attractions, but with the crag facing almost due north this is a result of the sun being high in the sky, rather than working its way around the end of the point – might work in mid June, but in early May you don’t get more than glancing illumination until later in the day.

We arrived to find a couple of guys exploring what’s left of the HVS on a top rope

… so rapped in to do one of the E1s.

With the tide only just exposing the rock shelf beneath the wall, we couldn’t really get a good perspective on the lines so accidentally ended up on Lord Lucan, E2 5c. This felt quite sketchy and techy for E1 (which made sense in hindsight) with small cams and tiny wires supplementing the very occasional bomber placement.

With the sea a bit further out, and a bit more illumination, it was more obvious where the E1s went.

… and we did all 3. To be honest, they weren’t a whole lot easier or better protected than the E2, though a bit of residual greasiness probably didn’t help. All mildly harrowing but nonetheless enjoyable.

Meanwhile, the arete team had got their route wired and were going for a very photogenic send.

Somewhat incongruously, a steady stream of climbers were also drifting in from the other side of the boulder beach, carrying pads.

Sure enough, these accumulated into a giant pad patch at the bottom of a very steep, sunny, chalk-plastered wall.

With the chill really setting in, it was easy to avoid the attractions of the two remaining E3/4s, so ticking the complete wall will have to wait for a future visit.

I dare say you are bored of stunning sunsets by now, but here’s another one, with some brooding clouds adding contrast and offering a prelude to the break in the weather for the following day (Bank Holiday Monday).

Two weeks of glorious blue skies disappeared overnight but at least a dry morning interlude gave leeway for a walk along the coast to Boscastle.

Rewarded by excellent soup and cake at the very friendly Harbour Light cafe – you just needed your wits and ninja reactions to stop anything that wasn’t bolted down (including your soup bowl!) from blowing away…

Back at the campsite, the wind was building towards the forecasted overnight gusts of 80kph, and we were about to pay the price for the stunning cliff-top pitch we’d enjoyed all week. The van was rocking all night, and not in a good way ;-).

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