My Kendal MF overview

21st Nov 2011

Kendal flag

Well another Kendal bites the dust…in a bit of a blur it has to be said. Ste Mac and I went up on Friday and popped into Marmot HQ on the way to check out the winter 2012 range, which had some great stuff. It’s always good to see a whole range in one place like that. Because shops only take a few pieces from a manufacturer, being able to see everything in one go is pretty cool and quite gob smacking as to how much they make. So that was fun and then it was onto the Brewery to meet up with the other ‘Marmot- A Question of Climbing’ panellists for a briefing.

Present were:

John Horscroft aka Sue Barker- The Quizmaster

Andy Perkins aka tranny in troll lycra- The Scorer

Team A:

Niall Grimes (captain)

Ste Mac

Jack Geldard

Team B:

Me (captain)

Dave Turnbull

Sam Whittaker

John’s idea of a briefing was to ply us with alcohol and feed us pizza, I wasn’t complaining at the time but I definitely was the next morning!

So, we all had a rough idea of what was going on and trooped through to the main theatre. The next 2 hours were fun filled and frankly ridiculous at times. It was a reet laff and a very entertaining night. One of the rounds was a physical challenge, where Grimer and I had to fight it out doing a very hard version of the plank. Our arms were down near our waists and it was hard from the word go, especially with a little too much red wine on board. I unfortunately lost this one but I’m claiming mental torture from Grimer who was shouting over all sorts of unsportsmanlike-like things and making me giggle and lose my concentration; anyway it worked and I collapsed in a heap.

No surprises for who got the majority of questions right- yes you guessed it, that man Grimer again. He is a walking encyclopaedia of climbing knowledge and we weren’t quite up to his level…but due to some over ambitious gambling and losing of points on their part, we managed to pull back in the charades round and a tense (not) nail biting finish was assured. In the end the audience won, no it wasn’t a fix, just weird how these things work out.

Mine and Grimer's mystery guest!

Marmot had pulled out the stops on the prizes front and there had been loads of cool spot prizes for audience members who managed to answer questions that we couldn’t (hmm not that hard as it turned out!). So a good night was had by all, just next year it would be nice to have even more people there. So if you didn’t make it, be sure to come to the Marmot night next year.

Friday evening descended into a late one and I collapsed into bed around 2pm. Not a great idea, as I was presenting at 9am the Climbing 2 showing in The Town Hall. I apologise now to anyone who was there if I seemed a little erm, not with it. I tried my best though.


Lynn and Lucy

after the show

Then in the evening, one of my hardest challenges of the year, to introduce Lynn Hill to a sell out crowd! I’d already written my intro but was in desperate need of an afternoon lie down. I couldn’t get to my hotel till around 4pm but slid into a nice bath and relaxed. I’m not one of these people who can sleep during the day- however much I need to- it’s very annoying, so I just lay down on the bed and tried to relax. That didn’t last very long!! I went over my intro and tweaked it a little until I felt happy with it. I got back to the festival feeling a lot better than I had in the morning and getting quite excited, always preferable to feeling nervous.

I greeted Lynn beforehand (whom I’d never met before, so it was nice to get to know her) and then the show started. I was very pleased with how my intro went (I didn’t stumble over too many words) and Lynn’s talk was inspiring. At the end there were queues of people who had brought many books with them for her to sign. There was even one guy who oddly asked her to sign his back! To be fair to her she did and I’ve got the evidence on my camera!


Sunday I did some more presenting of climbing films and fortunately hadn’t been silly enough to drink Saturday night away, it was still a late one though! But it was another great festival, with loads of good people to catch up with and great films and lectures to see. One of the highlights had to be the crazy Belgian guys who came up onto stage to pick up their award for best Mountain Adventure film for ‘Vertical Sailing Greenland’ and proceeded to create a sing-along with their musical talents and had everyone joining in to ‘What shall we do with drunken sailor?’- very entertaining and probably a Kendal first.

Lynn signing somebody's back. Is that a bit weird, or is it just me? Fair play, she didn't say no.

Off to climb at Stanage tomorrow with some hardcore US trad climbing ladies,

I hope the weather picks up!