More news on Slab and Crack- Curbar.

16th Nov 2007

Friday 16th November.

I have now had a few days for my overactive brain to calm down and write a bit more coherently.

Although, the inevitable thread has risen it’s head on UKC and I don’t really need to write much here, as all those armchair experts have said it all for me. Even though they weren’t there, they seem to know everything- amazing really!

I would like to thank Matt Heason for what he wrote and a couple of other people who wrote some cool comments. Matt puts it far better than I could’ve, from reading his post; I think he was more scared spotting than I was climbing the route.

Anyway, on Sunday I did manage to make myself leave the ground and go for the lead. I’m not quite sure how this came about; as there wasn’t one specific moment where I thought ‘right, I’m ready to go for it.’ I just made myself go through the motions of getting my gear ready, asking Lewis and Matt etc to spot and cleaning my boots and so on.

Then I found myself standing at the bottom of the route holding the first hold and feeling a surge of adrenaline go through me. There was an inevitability about it and staying on the ground just wasn’t an option. After some deep breaths to counter the adrenaline shakes (I didn’t want to wobble off the holds), I launched upwards.

After doing the first few moves, I actually relaxed a bit and felt incredibly free. It was weird but I was almost enjoying being up there. My greatest fear about this section of the route was how would I react?

I didn’t know if I would freeze or get halfway through a move and then not be able to push on through it mentally.

But I surprised myself and found that the moves felt like old friends, I wanted to greet them and get to the next one. I wanted to feel that bad foothold under my toe and put all my trust into it. I was starting to see how this style of climbing can become addictive.

Finding myself at the gear slot on good footholds, I gave out a yell, I couldn’t believe I’d climbed up to here, I’m not sure how high it is but the ground seemed a long way away. The other worry I’d had was that I would be really panicky about getting the gear in and try and rush it, fumble it and generally get freaked out.

But I managed to stay calm and just took my time to put the gear in properly. The