Thursday, 19 May 2011
The Waiting Game.
Some free time, some keen partners, some atrocious weather.
This is the way it goes but once all the moaning and ranting and fist-shaking is out of the way, what is the best way to make the best use out of it?? In Arno's Problem - Question - Opportunity terms:
Problem: The weather fucking blows.
Question: What can I do in climbing / planning terms to maximise current and future enjoyment despite the weather??
Opportunity: Work out what areas are best to explore in weather that fucking blows, work out what climbing desires can be incorporated into weather that fucking blows, take the opportunity to train in preparation for when the weather doesn't fucking blow.
So, here are some ideas for reference, for when it's the typical south-westerly sunshine/fuckingshowers wet in the west weather:
Northumberland: Callerhues, Rothley, Simonside, Bowden, Goat Crag...
South West: Laggantalluch, Crammag Head, Kiln O' Fuffock...
Central Outcrops: Tig-thingy Viewpoint, Glen Croe, Ardvorlich, Glen Lednock, Glen Ogle...
Eastern Outcrops: Glen Clova, Limekilns, Roslin Glen, Cambusbarron, Angus Quarries, Weem...
North East: Ballater, Rosehearty, Tarlair, Red Tower, Harper's Wall, Earnsheugh, Craig Stirling and more...
...all of which have either useful training routes (physically and mentally challenging), or specific inspirations, or would be interesting to explore, or would tackle useful climbing styles.
Bouldering: Glen Nevis, Arrochar (projects ;)), Carrock Fell, Gouther Crag, Gillercombe etc etc, Queen's Crag, Simonside Plateau, Shaftoe etc etc...
...the weather might be occasionally warm but it's often bloody windy during sunshine/fuckingshowers periods, so conditions can be surprisingly good. More mixing and matching, more exploration, more physical training, more fun.
Suitable inspirations: As well as exploring super-awesome areas, I do want to push myself a bit more and explore new areas of challenge and personal climbing development. Some of those challenges are more local, more compatible with general training and a focused hit... ...so that could be a good aspiration.
Training: I've found I need to progress physically to progress with my climbing overall, particularly fitness, stamina, and power to weight ratio. The gym, the campus board, the mighty R, the local-ish sport venues are all suitable and I do have some syke to keep using... ...this needs to be balanced with "keeping my hand in" on trad, but should leave me better prepared when it's dry enough to get to proper venues.
Overall: when the weather fucking blows, explore locally, mix and match with other climbing styles, train hard, and be ready to crush the Highlands and Islands :).
(And paint more toy soldiers and listen to more drum and bass...)