The Yorkshire gritstone has been where it is at for the last couple of days, me and a friend had a good and fun 2 days.
First stop was Brimham. Brimham is a place with proper gritstone features. Slopers that slope in every dimension, top outs that will take the skin from your chin and most notably some excellent wide rounded cracks!
The hardest and most obvious being Gigglin' Crack. Named suitably after a close but failed attempt way back in time by Joe Brown as he was spat out the top laughing. The deed was later done by Jerry Peel and was given E6 (mainly for effort.) Anyway having been on this skin grinder a long time ago in the wet and snow being a bit overly psyched, i got a bit shut down. Having been working on my offwidth technique recently, me and my friend promptly warmed up on it and actually did it twice with minimal fuss and no skin loss. Score! my technique must have really improved, I'm so psyched!
Next stop was Bridestones, which is a lovely crag best known for its bouldering sat right on top of a hill. After eventually making it to the crag, (Tom forgot his satnav, navigation isn't his strong point,) we managed to tick the cool route of Obscence Cleft again E6. unfortuatly conditions were terrible so after a few falls we waited for the sun to dip behind the hill and both sent it next go, a classic little route, with some funky knee baridge going on.
Next day was Ilkley, after abit of a wet start, I was keen to get on Fast Forward orginally given E7 now E6, (which i would agree with) a route that can be seen climbed by John Dunne in the Hard Grit film. Although tucked away in abit of a gully and looks make it abit uninspiring, the climbing on it is really good. The top out is where the meat of the route lies, with what I would call a proper Gritsone top out with some badly sloping holds and moves that are really body position dependant, but I really like that stuff. After a number of goes trying to work out the sequence I eventually managed to do it ground up. Maybe the first ground up ascent? but probably not, its hard to keep track of these things.
Next I went and tried Snap Decision E7, which is in the quarries just round the corner. To round the day off I managed to Flash the route, so was pretty pleased.