Monday, 2 November 2009

State of play.

Summarising mostly for my own benefit:

1. My short-medium term desires are (in order of desirability but probably reverse order of effect):
Explore as much further afield Scottish outcrop climbing as possible.
Progress with my outdoor leading back up to a normal level.
Explore and utilise the closer-by Scottish outcrop climbing.
Progress with my climbing fitness up to a normal level.
Progress with my overall fitness.

(Scottish big in-the-mountains climbing is a longer term desire due to the season)

2. I am now living in Scotland. There is a vast amount of big in-the-mountains climbing available for weekend trips, a lot of outcrop available for weekend trips, also a lot of outcrop climbing available for longer trips, and a bit of outcrop climbing available for day trips.

3. It is nearly the start of winter. The days are shorter and colder, restricting any climbing to more accessible sun trap outcrops (which is all I can walk to anyway).

4. The weather is likely to be variable and often poor from now on, and at least unpredictable. This will further restrict climbing areas and necessitate flexible or last minute plans.

5. I have a reasonable amount of free time and could take 3 day weekend trips if I could find a partner for such.

6. I know plenty of people to climb down the wall with, a few people to go sport climbing with, a few people to do single day trad climbing with, and so far almost no-one to go on full weekend nor long weekend trips with.

7. My current level of outdoor climbing is approximately as follows:
(Taking into account reduced psychological ability and all dependent on type of climbing)
Trad adjectival: 2-3 grades below desired
Trad technical: 1-2 grades below desired
Sport climbing: 3 grades below desired
Bouldering: unknown, estimate 1-2 grades below normal
Redpointing: 3-4 grades below normal

8. My current level of physical ability is approximately as follows:
Technique: 90%
Flexibility: 90%
Upper body strength: 80%
Lower body strength: 60%
Overall fitness: 35%
(Upper body fitness: 55%)
(Lower body fitness: 15%)
Walking ability: max 45 mins flat, 15 mins uphill.

9. I have access to one very large but rarely changing "double size" climbing wall, and one normal climbing wall.

10. I have the opportunity to regularly run, swim, use weights machines etc etc.

The question of course is: How do I best use, or take into account, 2-10, to achieve 1? I.e. this is what I've got, how can I use it?, This is what I'm faced with, how can I deal with it?

So far the best plan would seem to involve plenty of fitness training, a fair amount of climbing training, plenty of looking after myself since I'm still recuperating, discipline to maximise the preceding, good organisation, particular diligence in finding suitable partners, and particular readiness for any chance to take advantage of breaks in the weather.

[Edit: This of course refers to "local" i.e. Scottish climbing desires. Obviously I still have very strong desires for inspiring climbing abroad, but that might have to wait for a little while. Although I really definitely should fit something in over Christmas - I haven't been on a single climbing trip abroad this year which is a shocking waste!!]

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