Friday, March 20, 2009

Cave Crag Fun and Games

Nic Duboust on Marlena

During a pumped lull in working the sports routes at Marlena, Mike disappeared off with his shoes in hand seeking something amenable to solo in the rhododendron wilderness. He appeared back an hour later with a 'pretty good' boulder problem project instead. Hard, he said. Okay, I thought, Cave Crag and its environs are not renowned for the generosity of bouldering, but what a little gem! Having eventually refound the problem, his radar having gone astray, Mike pointed out a beautifully scooped groove with two obvious holds on the right and none on the left, sloping ledges and a rounded top-out - the perfect boulder problem: not quite enough but maybe just enough.

'The Project'

Numerous plays later he returned to the sports crag, still psyched but beaten for the day. Adrian Crofton, the bullshitting teuchtar, sent us off on a wild goose chase for a 'nice scooped boulder on a little meadow'. We found a chossy overhang on a bog.

Meanwhile, Nic was cruising up Silk and inexplicably tossing himself off Marlena, still, looking strong and fluid after just having repeated Sufferance the day before. Not to be outdone by the youth, Guy Robertson was cruising up Hamish Teds for warm-ups before despatching Silk Marlena, despite forgetting the sequence at the top and receiving bad beta from the dangling photographer.

Guy Robertson walking on Silk

Second session and the stamina is returning... off to bolt a new Loch Lomond crag today. By Monday we should have a new venue to add to the burgeoning list of sport climbing crags in Scotland, and more to add to the upcoming Stone Country Bloc Sport guides.

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