Sunday, September 11, 2011


Maneater was but one move off being done tonight.

My right forearm suffered a flash pump as I caught the final crimp on the line. I had my left foot in the jam - I was about to move my right heel up to reach over to the Glory Jug, and my right hand began to open, and there was nothing I could do about it.

I was chuffed when I came off - having made so much progress, but now I feel gutted that it didn't come together this evening.

The line is great fun, and such was my excitement at nearly finishing it, I jumped on it for one last attempt before we had to leave. I got through the opening part and as I went to do the last hard move before I get into a knee bar rest, my left foot slipped from the rock and the speed of it sent my knee on a collision course with the roof of the cave.

I felt the chunk being removed as my knee hit and walking away from the line, I rolled up my jeans to assess the damage. The cut was at the point before the skin realises it's been savaged and it wasn't bleeding, but I knew what was coming!!

The tide was coming in and we started to pack away our stuff, as I put my shoes on I checked my knee again and sure enough... it was a bloody mess!

Claire said something along the lines of - 'Oh shit, that's gammy!'
Colm said: 'Attractive!'

I'll live!!

When we arrived in the Cave today the emergency services were doing some sort of training and their helicopter lingered overhead for ages! The sound of the spinning blades started to do our heads in a bit. It moved off after about 15 minutes or so, but not before they'd lowered one of the guys to just over sea level... He gave us a wave and then he and the helicopter flew off...

Claire worked the start of Maneater (7b) today and made some really good progress on 'Afterthought' (6b). It seems to be ultra reachy unless your tall. I've never thought about it, because I have the asset of a long reach, but Claire did some fancy foot work (as usual) to overcome the length of the move.

As she moved into the final part of Afterthought, and with myself and Colm spotting and talking the moves through, Claire wedged her right foot into the final jam before the Glory Jug. 'It's stuck!' she said... Myself and Colm were unanimous in our response: 'Good' we said!

'That's what you want!' we agreed...

Claire didn't agree at all...

That's the funny thing about the Cave. The foot jams are too good - they leave everyone with the sinking feeling that if hands fail, feet will stick - ending in possible dislocated ankles and/or hips!

In my experience though, they only feel that way - in reality, once a few spills have been taken, the realisation is that one's feet will explode off the rock just as quickly as one's hands might!

It's a head trip for sure though!!

I'd like to think Maneater will be sent next session, seeing as it took a good bite out of me today, I'd like to be done with it!!!!

Really great evening's climbing with all of us working super hard - psyched for the next session! ;)

Thanks Claire for driving me all the way home with my gammy knee!!!

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