On Saturday morning I woke early and headed into Paignton where I met Andrew (Andy) Haley where we got on a train and headed up to
Bristol for the TCA (The
Climbing Academy) Redpoint Bouldering Competition. We had finally arrived at
where we met fellow Base Cubic athlete James Squire and shortly after arrived
at TCA. I was quick to get climbing and started to warm up on some easy
problems; then I got my score-sheet and got going on some of the easier looking
boulder problems. I swiftly completed 18 of the problems and just had a few
tougher ones to do. In the end I finished having topped 21, fell from the last
move on 3 and only reached the third/fourth hold on my remaining which was
extremely hard! After an interesting final the results were announced and I had
finished in third place with James beating me by one hold! Temple Meads
After the comp there was a lengthy journey back to James’ were we had food, watched climbing films and slept to recover for our attempts at soloing ‘The Prince’ (F8b) the following morning.
|Me sending 'Mouldy Rain' V9|
Photo by: James Squire
We headed out to Avon Gorge for 11:00 to discover that ‘The Prince’ was absolutely soaking and not a single section of the wall was dry… So we headed to an eliminate cave called
(see video below) and did some training there. My plan was to try ‘Mouldy
Banana’s’ (V10) but one of the main holds was soaking; so James did the first
ascent of a nice variation to ‘Mouldy…’ called ‘Mouldy Rain’ (~V9) and I
quickly got the second ascent. After that I did ‘Gollums One-Armer’ (V10), I’m
not certain if I did it off the right hold but the hold I used was the poorer
of the two possibilities, so obviously the harder option. We tried another
(even harder) variation to ‘Mouldy Banana’s’ but the session came to a
premature end due to heavy rain closing in on us. Gollums Cave
The approach is down a steep muddy bank, so obviously reversing this to get back to the car was extremely dangerous in the rain. After lots of falls and slips we were back at the car drenched and muddy.
I then got on the train and headed back home after a great weekend climbing.
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Thanks for reading,