Sunday, 7 November 2010

County account...

...has been opened. For bouldering at least - I've done a few routes there before. One of my favourite self-indulgent stunts is waiting for people to ask me, an outsider, if I've ever climbed in Northumberland. "A little bit....only Back Bowden, Berryhill, Bowden, Callerhues, Corby's, Crag Lough, Curtis Crag, Drakestone, East Woodburn, Goat's Crag, Great Wanney, Jack Rock, Kyloe In, Kyloe Out, Peel Crag, Raven's Crag, Ravensheugh, Rothley, Sandy Crag, Selby's Cove, Simonside and South Yardhope" I answer with a poker face but without modesty. I still want to add Howlerhirst and Linshields to my list.

I've also done a few boulder problems there before, mostly at Kyloe In (when recovering from golfer's elbow) and Hepburn Out (when recovering - or thinking I was recovering - from DVTs). Both really rather good. Of course there is so much more than that, indeed a whole guidebook full of hugely innaccurate grades and "not to scale" maps etc etc, and to optimise winter climbing I've realised I need to explore the County a lot more. I've started with a visit to Dove Holes (the bouldering venue, not the Dove Dale caves nor the village near Buxton), despite a deluge overnight it was sunny and idyllic and indeed a bit warm for bouldering as shown in the video below, but pretty good fun. Alas I ran out of daylight / courage for the better and higher problems but I'll be back for sure.

In a generally very fine afternoon, one disappointment was my renewed punterness. This time I didn't need stamina of course, but did notice that I seemed to get tired and out of breath even on boulder problems. Partly due to the penis-grinding mantle top-outs, and probably partly due to not breathing well enough, but it is still rather odd. Particularly since I went to the gym on Thu night and had my best recumbent cycling / rowing fitness session so far. So why do I get so tired on 1 minute of strenuous bouldering?? Maybe this is the same issue as getting so tired in Arco?? Anyone got any thoughts??

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