Sunday, 29 September 2013

Challenge #9 & #10 - Neart Nan Gaidheal & Wall Of Flame.

God I fucking love the North West. Doing cool and fascinating challenges around the rest of Scotland is all very well and rewarding, but doing them in such a special place has a whole different vibe. For a start it's a bit harder to get focused when you're gazing over Ardmair or Diabeg bays in a mellow autumn sunshine....but then the rock and climbing are so good you just have to...

Out of the many stunning areas along the coastline, the bay around Ardmair may or may not be the most delightful. The austere pebble beach arcs elegantly around from the fun bouldering area, leading the eye past the glittering sea and islands to the soaring ridge of Ben Mor Coigach, forming a mesmerising frame for the coastal beauty. But enough of that hippy bollox, Ardmair would be a brilliant crag in an urban quarry, let alone the serene valley hanging above the bay. It's gritstone with jugs, jams, usually great gear, and a seemingly limitless supply of fine climbing. This time I eschewed the previous mileage and focused on one stunning route - Neart Nan Gaidheal.

I'd got familiar with and inspired by the Beast Buttress back in 2010 - On The Western Skyline and Unleash The Beast both being great routes and amenable enough to want to up the ante a grade with NNG....once I was fit, confident, and determined enough. Actually, it's upping the ante a grade and a bit more - NNG is supposed to be low in the grade (which it may be, if one cares), but nowhere near as much as OTWS which is generally relaxing throughout, nor especially UTB which whilst adequately brutal is tamed by easy, perfect protection and useful jams. So NNG feels pretty proper compared to those - whilst it's not technically hard, it's sheer, continuous, and gives plenty of escalating pump through reasonable sidepulls with unhelpful footholds, especially while placing the somewhat sketchy gear in the upper half. I had warmed up, chilled out, recovered from a long drive from Glasgow and an early coffee, waited until it was in the perfect evening shade, and had enough....something to move up when pumped rather than down or off.

Out of the many stunning areas along the coastline, the bay around Diabeg may or may not be the most delightful. Blah blah peninsula blah quaint harbour ruined boat blah stunning outlook to Skye and even the Uists. Suffice to say Diabeg is almost as good as Ardmair and has the added bonus of SLABS. After last weekend's mixing and matching of Scimitar and Rosey slabs with the opposing Rosey steepness, I had got plenty of syke for Wall Of Flame, just about enough to compensate for the sunny, still, but ultimately tolerable weather. There was one slight issue, my partner Steve (from the mighty Far North metropolis of Bettyhill) had a good time at Ardmair but not got on with seconding an E2 5c warm-up. Of course I'm very happy to abseil to strip gear and outwit all of that "Uh I don't know if we should climb together cos I don't climb as hard as you" bollox, but Wall Of Flame has two pitches, and although the last one is only a minor variant on Northumberland Wall, it's still part of the experience. So....give up and abandon it? Force Steve to haul his way up? Bollox to that. A cunning plan is needed.

Firstly we went to Aztec Tower for him to do a couple of leads on this pleasant crag with funky rock. This left us unavoidably close to Gairloch where the recently refurbished harbour cafe needed to be tested to confirm the coffee is indeed very good these days. Then cruise to Diabeg: I lead P1 of WOF, pull the ropes and chuck them down and Steve seconds P1 of The Black Streak with his rack. I lead P2 of WOF and abseil straight back down to the belay. Steve then leads P2 of TBS and does the same because I'm too chilled and my feet are too sore to follow (despite even more cunning putting voltarol on my toes in advance!), and is mightly chuffed with a fine pitch at his level (and effectively ticking TBS), I abseil down WOF P1 to get out all sketchy micro-gear, he follows down as the midges come out, we congratulate ourselves on a slick operation, I'm back in Glasgow by 11 and he's back in a pub in Bettyhill at 9:30. Ta da! And of course, Wall Of Flame is bloody brilliant, I feel well warmed up after the previous weekend's slabs, but it is still intricate and intense with a greatly committing crux, all on perfect crisp rock.


Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Cleaning / Climbing / Calm / Cold / Condensation / Cocaine

I went back to Cambusbarron briefly the other week with both relaxation and inspiration in mind. After Purrblind Doomster there were other challenges, but less pressure. Much less pressure with the time scale too, so I arrived early and did a bit of cleaning. Nothing too exciting but in light of recent talk about looking after Central Belt crags a bit better to avoid accusations of neglect and temptations of retrobolting, I felt like putting a bit of effort in. Litter picking, branch sawing, fern removing and boulder brushing.

I didn't do anything to the routes as most of the good hard ones are in decent nick, or maybe that's just because they're steep enough to stay perma-chalked?? There was one 2 starred route, Economy Drive that I wanted to try and needed a clean, but Geek was happy to scrub that one off for me as I'd rather be climbing it - that's part of the reason I don't get round to cleaning routes I'm still genuinely interested in climbing, because I'm genuinely interested in the onsight journey.

The journey on this particular route turned out to be a fairly interesting one. Freshly cleaned, it looked "reasonable", Geek said it should be "reasonable" (yeah, I should know by now!!), so I treated it as reasonable....initially. Hard moves off the deck leading into more hard moves above those leading into a rest ledge and adequate gear before more hard moves to a pod. So far so good. Then I got to the hard bit.... Standing in the pod and progressing upwards was looking considerably less likely than getting shut down by a total sandbag. Feeling around on slippery sidepulls and fiddly footholds, I looked failure in the face and, unusually, calmly accepted it - I wasn't going to get up this route, so with fine protection, I might as well fail going upwards rather than downwards. Each move I planned to fall off, and when I somehow didn't, I applied the same resignation to the following move, until, bizarrely, I was near the top. The final moves had been heavily cleaned and I was warned "just take care with the rock, but you'll be fine, it's about Hard Severe here". One more final powerful crux had me lunging for blocks and hauling myself into surprised success. After that I couldn't face any more dolerite sidepulls so left any other routes for another time and had a blast repeating Spanking The Monkey with much slithering and laughing all round.

Throughout the recent weeks, I've been aided and abetted by good conditions (as well as syked trad partners). The weather has cooled down nicely and although I'm still busting out the gut, it's less essential and more about stacking every odd in my favour. But of course it's going to get cooler....and colder. With many inspirations still to go and the season ticking away, I am a bit concerned how to deal with the cold, not whilst climbing but just at the crag. I'm usually reasonably prepared but I think I need to optimise things better....maybe more fleecey layers....over-trousers....hip-flask?? I certainly needed something at the weekend. Down with PJ at Scimitar Ridge, doing a pair of funky bold slabs that took a lot of time and a lot of fiddling in RPs and C3s. It was still and muggy on the walk-in and I thought down at the crag, a windsmock, beanie and snood would be enough. It wasn't. 4 hours later in a hot shower I defrosted. Brrrr. Two nice routes though.

Despite a cold, grey, gloomy day, with intermittent spots of rain and the ubiqituous sea-spray, conditions at Scimitar Ridge were surprisingly good, once past a slightly greasy start the smooth granite was in fine nick. So obviously the next day at Rosehearty, with clear skies, dry warm air, glorious sunshine and a brisk westerly raking on the crag, it was going to be mint conditions all day, right?? WRONG. Once again the North East coast is as contrary and fickle as it can be, and a quick recce of the sea walls saw them dripping in condensation. How. Why. WTF. I had a mini-sulk solely because I could see the Rosey season coming to an imminent end as the sun-drying hours were rapidly diminishing. But as a Rosey virgin, Brad was still optimistic and also had the stylish slabs to try, so we got on those at least, and he ninjaed his way up a couple of fine routes. Lo and behold, back on the sea walls with a few hours left, the sun was working it's magic, transforming dark grey rock into silver, damp smudges into enticing chalk....

(aka Challenge #8) Even dry, the sea walls are steep, as steep as the slabs are slabby, as steep as a really fucking steep thing. I was prepared for that and battled through a fair good warm-up. Brad almost battled through his route but some sustained slab numbers had taken their toll and he wanted to show me how a proper sulk was done. Once the dust had settled, I had enough time to try a bit of Cocaine, the closest I'll come to any drug but who needs it when you have climbing this good...! Thankfully as the warm sun was getting lower, I had managed to hit a sweet spot with the rock fully dry but the late afternoon cooling down, and did the route with reasonable confidence and little drama. In fact it would have been pretty boring to watch me squatted on the overhung rest ledge for ages, but hell it worked and it's nice to feel "okay" on such terrain. Hopefully I'll have another few weeks to put that into action...

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Challenge #7 - Lady Charlotte.

Well I seem to have managed another route that is A Fairly Big Deal for me. Not quite sure how that happened but it might be something to do with a bit of training, a lot of syke, and a fair amount of good conditions. I'd been on Lady Charlotte before, climbed up a few moves in too hot weather, looked around and thought "fuck me I can't find any gear here, how on earth can I continue up steep sweaty terrain with god knows if there's any protection coming up" and downclimbed hastily.

This time I climbed up a few moves in much fresher weather, looked around and thought "wow I've found a great tricam slot and an okay RP slot and the holds are good enough to move up a bit and fiddle some more in". So I did. And to be honest, I did a lot of dicking around to get the route done. Up and down 4 times - once ropeless to check out the gear, once to get the tricam in and move up further to a wire and tiny cam, once more to get to the jugs at the top of the groove and a good cam and peenut (oh and stop reading if you don't want gear beta), once more to get stood on the so-called ledge (it isn't) on top of those jugs and a crucial cam and realise the wall to the break is quite sketchy and blind and come down once more and give Adam a break from belaying as he goes for a burn on Silk Purse and does it with two falls including onsighting the top groove. I can only dream of such stamina so I need all this dicking around on LC to get warmed up, pumped up, fiddle in all the "it only appears when it's by your face" gear and only then do I realise I have to fucking go for it.

So I do.

And after all the rather dissatisfying up-and-downing, it is great. Great wall climbing, committing moves, pumpy, enough decent gear, cool features to go for. I get to the top rest ledge - effectively the end of LC itself - and try to balance my wariness of the "E3 5c" top crack with my impatient desire to keep fucking going for it. Somehow I get a burst of confidence and blast into the crack, the crack that isn't a crack with gear that isn't gear. I get into the final micro-niche with one tiny cam 2m below my feet and in a blaze of pumped summit fever top out directly over the crag top.....except it's a rounded boulder covered in pine needles and fading into sloping heather. Fuck FUCK FUCK. Fiddle in a cam cross-handed and it falls out as I clip it. If I fell now I'd blow the tiny cam but hopefully not the ledge-height wires and still end up below the half-height break. Somehow I squirm back into the niche, squeak and squeal a cam into a loose vibrating plate, and look 1m left to the real topout, maybe a 4b move on good rock but it feels like the living end.

My lungs were still aching on the drive home.

Abseiling down this "classic wall climb", it overhangs by at least 3m in 30m.


Thursday, 12 September 2013

Positive / Negative

Recently I have been involved in a colossal UKC debate on retro-bolting established trad routes in Ratho Quarry, without any warning, consultation nor attempt to make them more climbable as trad routes:

I have generally avoided arguments, discussions, bitching and trolling on UKC for a long time now, so stepping back into the pit has been a bit of a shock.

I'm not sure how much detail I need to go into here as the principles of UK climbing heritage and a trad / sport climbing balance are as blindingly obvious as the pro-uncontested-retro-bolting arguments are fallacious. Normally the whole "try to convince people on a forum the sky is blue and water is wet" interaction is something I'd get bored with a lot quicker, but in this case there is something personal at stake:

See the crosses next to the routes? 
1 cross is "quite like to climb it"
 2 crosses is "definitely want to climb it"

Having climbed Wally 3 a couple of years ago, I looked a few metres to the right, saw Wally 2, got inspired and fully intended to lead it at some point. Of course I kinda got a bit distracted with going to Skye and Glen Nevis and Creag Dubh and Dunkeld and the Aberdeen coast and Caithness and Gairloch and Reiff and Ardmair and Sheigra and Orkney and somehow didn't retain such a devoted focus on Central Belt quarries, preferring to leave them for a shorter day at some unspecified time in the future (having no idea there was a retro-bolting threat).

Then it's retro-bolted, then my inspiration is denied, then I look closer at the issues at stake and responses presented, and start to take the issue a lot more seriously - because it's not just about my personal inspirations, it's about the whole issue of retro-bolting and sport impinging on trad - and get involved in the "discussion". I'd never been convinced by the "thin end of the wedge" argument, but here it was, actually occurring, getting incrementally thicker as the bolts spread from new sport routes to "dirty" trad routes to "bold" trad routes, to things I wanted to fucking CLIMB.

And therein lies what I am posting about, the dichotomy. Climbing, the activity and the community, the purity of the rock and the incomprehensibility of some of the people.

Being involved in this furore has been often a fairly NEGATIVE experience. I have been arguing vigorously, partly because I strongly believe in the principles I am standing up for, and partly because, of course, SOMEONE IS WRONG ON THE INTERNET. Quite a lot of people are wrong actually, but the negativity doesn't come from that alone - because some of the "other side" are engaging in intelligent and balanced debate - but from related nonsense, such as:

  • Blind acceptance of retro-bolting without any engaging in the issues at stake.
  • Persistent ignoring of arguments and blatant twisting of people's posts.
  • Obvious pointless trolling with later pretences at being seriously involved.
  • Lies about what climbing people claim to do and other people's motivations.
  • Persistent personal insults and snide jibes instead of proper discussion.
All of this of course only serves to weaken the pro-retro-bolting case, and make me more determined to persist against it, and more hostile to some of the people involved. Having one's determination strengthened is good, but not when it's catalysed by negativity - I feel like Ken bloody Wilson, but not even I am quite *that* belligerent. Then again, there is progress, with one route repaired and two to go.

A positive result after some negative interactions

At the same time I have been fortunate enough to get out a fair bit to a variety of crags and had POSITIVE experiences of hanging out with some cool people (a mix of relaxed climbers and hardcore veterans, all of whom - PJ, GR, NM, TF, RD, IS, AM - acknowledge the pressures of sport climbing popularity whilst rejecting uncontested retro-bolting) and simply climbing at:

  • Little O Wall - very cool new trad crag at Aberdeen. Could have been bolted but it's obviously trad suitable so it wasn't and has been a hotbed of mid-grade trad activity.
  • Brin Rock - having done the good trad and excellent bouldering here, I had an exciting day pushing myself on the sport.
  • The Mound - nice little sport-climbing stop off en-route to Thurso, in an area of cool conglomerate crags.
  • Yesnaby -great Reiff-esque sea-cliff trad, amenable but intense.
  • Old Man Of Hoy - proper rambly rubbly adventure with more fixed gear and most sport crags.
  • Moy Rock - an even better sport climbing stop off en-route back. What a great mid-grade crag this is, just feels so nice pottering and pebble-pulling there.
  • Ratho Quarry - got straight on one of the old but now-cleaned trad routes as soon as it was rightly debolted. Really enjoyable climbing the whole way.
  • Cambusbarron - got on some harder challenges at another Central Belt dolerite quarry. No threat of retro-bolts here yet, just ace trad.

A purely positive experience of a cool trad route

And that is something that gets lost in this. We're all climbers, doing something we love - well, I bloody well hope so, *I* certainly am. I don't want to argue, I don't want to see routes trashed, I don't want any of the hostile bullshit. I just want to keep enjoying climbing....but then again that is why I'm arguing, I'm arguing for that positive experience of climbing as it now stands in Scotland and the UK, without it getting spoilt by changing unduly without balance and perspective.

Off to Ratho wall soon, to go training...

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Challenge #6 - Purrblind Doomster.

It's been a wee while, but I've finally got on something challenging, something intense, something that got my heart racing, my hands sweating, got me committed and sketching...

And that was just the warm-up, sandbagged in the sun thanks to Geek "well if I'd told you it used to get a grade harder and is quite sketchy, you might not have got syked for it". Fair enough, it got me fighting a bit! And then it was retreating into the shade for the main event. The Purr-Blind Doomster had gone from "looks cool but well beyond me" in the previous Lowland Outcrops photo, to "maybe I can aspire to that" after doing Chisel and Big Country Dreams in 2009, to "I need to do this" this year. Old inspirations....

So, as well as being a fairly hard climb for me, it was also a Fairly Big Deal, the biggest this year at least. Which explains why I'd gone up to place the early gear and re-warm up, downclimbed, and was now standing on the ground, intensely analysing the chalk crystals I was crushing, and trying to stop shaking inside. "It's alright to be nervous, but not anxious" Jerry said, and I was definitely fluctuating around that border. The butterflies in my stomach were of primordial proportions to match the jungle atmosphere, I tried to sooth them by drip-feeding them little nuggets of truth: "Get stood on the finger jug, place gear", "Layback over to the big sloper, place gear", "Fingerlock with the right, left heel-hook, over into the pod, place gear", "Stretch over to the arete, shake out". That was where my plans stopped and the blind committment started, curiously that was where I started to relax, after hyper-ventilating through the sloper and crack pod. The solution to being so nervous about doing the the climb. Still, stepping off the ground was the fairly biggest deal. Doing it was a big deal in a different way, it was all about the combination of challenge with pure quality, and after all THAT is why I stepped off the ground....because it's bloody great...

Monday, 9 September 2013

How much do I want this??

I'm squatting on a small overhung ledge, shaking out on two decent crimps. Above the wall barrels out slightly, but I carefully lock my right hand onto a sloping rail, match feet and stand up through the tension of keeping my body in to stay on the rail, and leaning out nervously to see the higher holds. I stretch up towards the obvious good pocket...5 inches too short. I shuffle my feet out....4 inches too short. I twist slightly....3 inches too short. It hasn't changed in any of the tentative attempts. I feel a small two finger pocket for my left hand, I look down at the small footholds a lot further in than the balancing ledge, and know I'll have to do a dynamic slap into the pocket. I also know I can do the move...

...but there's a slight problem. There's gear at my feet when I'd start the move, clipped 2 feet lower due to necessary extension. This is not a bad position, but the gear is two reasonable wires in a hollow flake that flexes when I use it to rock over, backed up with a small cam in a very shallow slot. I guess it would slow me down. 2 metres below is the good gear, a couple of solid wires, but off to the side from the perched ledge ensuring a clattering fall onto the lower rocks if something went wrong (but at least if/when the flake ripped off, it would miss me). I'm probably "safe", but the prospect still feels pretty terrifying, not least hanging around working out the steep moves after the pocket. And I'm 5'8" +1 AI, and it's obvious this guidebook-described "longish reach" is done by just that, reaching, rather than an extra and dynamic move. So it's harder and more serious than I had planned for. So...

How much do I want this??

There is a small amount of genuine danger and a large amount of genuine fear involved. A small amount of frustration and a large amount of inspiration.

In the end the desire is not enough and I back off, removing gear as I go. But then I'm lying in bed at night, thinking. Maybe I should go back on a fresher day. Maybe I should discuss with my partner how much of a challenge it's going to be. Maybe I should arrange for a running belay down the fine grass slopes. Maybe I should take some skyhooks. Maybe I'll be back. Maybe I'll do the move, because maybe I *do* want it enough??


Friday, 6 September 2013

It's a trap.

It's a trap to do some practice falls and feel comfortable enough that I don't bother doing any for the rest of the session.

It's a trap to do practise falls and then get on a tricky lead and just shout "take" when I'm tired because I think I've done enough falls.

It's a trap to do a few good leads and assume next time out things will go at least as well and I can just coast along.

It's a trap to do some great routes and feel like I'm achieving what I want and don't need to train as hard.

It's a trap to feel strong and fit down the wall or gym and think that that is strong and fit enough and I don't have to go down as much.

It's a trap to go down to TCA and feel I've done enough and not go for my pathetic but essential 10 minute micro-run afterwards.

It's a trap to think that any single burst of exercise I do in a day (wall, gym, walk, run, route) is enough and I don't have to do more.

It's a trap to be lured into comfort and complacency by any of the above.

Climbing is not about being comfortable and complacement. It's about being in uncomfortable and challenging situations and being fit, strong, determined, inspired and desiring enough to not only cope with those situations, but relish and thoroughly enjoy both the challenge and intrinsic pleasure of those situations. To prepare for that in climbing, I need to be sensible and aware in training and exercise, and avoid those traps.

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

O yeah.

Aberdeen climbers are a bunch of choads. They have a typically insular scene so common in Scotland, made worse by a core of hoary old-timers as dour as the granite city itself and attendant scyophantic acolytes who try to keep the coast on lockdown. Their undue pride in and myopic devotion to the pokey little crags and lineless boulders of greasy schist and grubby granite blinds them to the realities of the area and excludes all else especially the input of outsiders. Their determination to keep Aberdeen climbing as an esoteric backwater extends to  obtuse guidebooks and obstreporous grading and works only too well to keep the crags as offputting as possible.

Aberdeen climbers are a great bunch. They are the most thriving and active trad scene in Scotland but also relish the full spectrum of climbing from cragging to mountains to bouldering to sport. They extend the mix-and-match approach of the off-shore scene to a welcoming vibe that includes offcomers into the melting pot of climbing partners. Their dedication to local cragging extends to cleaning, developing, and sharing conditions and advice. They have the vision to develop new sport lines near trad venues without them spoiling established routes, and new trad venues that are wholly appropriate, and the decency to publicise these venues so others can enjoy it.

Which ones of these statements is true?

Are they both true?

Are they both false?

Is it a black and white statement of a climbing scene? Or more likely, is it shades of grey? Perhaps shades of gay(lord) in some cases...

Suffice to say, having been to Little O Wall with ex-weeg and now-local PJ the other week and quite enjoyed it, I went back with ex-weeg/ex-burg and now semi-local raider Geek this week to chase up a remaining inspiration there. In what seems to be a typical Aberdonian style, Little O has been discovered recently on the doorstep of the alarming sport venue Orchestra Cave and thoroughly developed into a fine, if rather slanty, trad venue. If the Central Belt sport climbing hordes had got their hands on it no doubt it would be a great shit and pointless sport climbing crag, but up on the Coast common sense still prevails and it's a very worth addition to the coastal trad (just like the Johnsheugh refurbishment last year). Of course it's still as fickle with conditions, sometimes tricky protection and rock, and as an extra bonus for this crag, a distinctly evil tilt to the holds sloping down leftwards. A good test of balance and persistence - including Timpani Wall which was a good challenge, quite reasonable but still slightly arduous for a series of hands off rests!

All good stuff. I wonder what they have up their sleeves up there next...

Monday, 2 September 2013

Sendtember??? the plan, theory, dream, inspiration, aspiration, ambition. I've sated my need for exploration at Pfalz and Orkney, abandoned Lewis to the weather gods and postphoned Berdorf until hopefully crisp autumn conditions. On my recent jaunt with PJ I found I was able to cope equally with spreading my considerable load across sandy decaying choss and hauling it upwards on small pebbly crimps and flakes, leading to the possible conclusion that I am climbing okay again and might be able to capitalise on that. Of course the forecast is very mixed, especially in North West Scotland, and the sometimes reliable Indian Summer is nowhere in sight, but then again it's cooled down a lot, it's getting out of midge season, and in the meantime I am also syked for training thank fuck.

On the subject of training I have tried to think how I can balance having fun doing it but also tailoring it to what might just be a little bit useful for the remaining routes I want to do. Which ends up like this:

Neart Nan Gaidheal - general stamina, steep wall endurance
Burning Desire - steep wall endurance, sidepulls/flat/angled holds 

The Gift - general stamina,  sidepulls/flat/angled holds, steep bouldering power 
The Screamer - finger/crimp strength, general stamina, steep wall endurance
The Road To Nowhere - static face climbing stamina,

Glen Nevis:
On Some Beach - finger/crimp strength, static face climbing stamina,  
Triode - finger/crimp strength,   
Risque Grapefruit - static face climbing stamina,
Tomag - general stamina,  sidepulls/flat/angled holds 

Creag Dubh:
Colder Than A Hooker's Heart - finger/crimp strength, static face climbing stamina,  
The Final Solution - finger/crimp strength, static face climbing stamina,
Ayatollah - finger/crimp strength, static face climbing stamina,  

North West:
Each Uisge Direct - ???  
Wall Of Flame - finger/crimp strength,
Instant Muscle -  finger/crimp strength,
Cat Burglar - finger/crimp strength, static face climbing stamina,
Tellaidol - finger/crimp strength, steep wall endurance
Stand And Deliver -  finger/crimp strength, ???

North East:
Bat's Wall - general stamina, steep wall endurance 
Cocaine -  general stamina, steep wall endurance
Senakot Rose - general stamina, steep wall endurance    
Running Wild - finger/crimp strength, steep wall endurance, steep bouldering power
Bob's Overhang -  finger/crimp strength, steep bouldering power
Timpani Wall - finger/crimp strength, general stamina, 

Central Highlands / Belt:
Edge Of Insanity - general stamina,   
Short Sharp Shock - steep wall endurance  
Velvet Glove -  general stamina, steep wall endurance
Ivy League - finger/crimp strength, static face climbing stamina,
Purrblind Doomster - general stamina,  sidepulls/flat/angled holds 
Anger Management - general stamina,  sidepulls/flat/angled holds 
Empire Of The Sun - finger/crimp strength, general stamina, 
Lady Charlotte - finger/crimp strength, static face climbing stamina,
Screaming Weem - finger/crimp strength, general stamina, steep wall endurance

....which leads to the conclusion that apart from the usual very obvious aspects to train like falling practise, falling practise, and falling practise, general fitness and general stamina, there are common themes to train:

Finger/crimp strength - many routes are on small fingery holds that I haven't trained so much.
Static face climbing stamina - many routes are maybe not so pumpy but have either enough thin climbing or bold climbing that necessitates hanging around long enough that I need to train hanging around long enough.
Steep wall endurance - some routes are obviously steeper and safer but pumpier and need a shorter term climbing endurance on steeper ground.
Sidepulls/flat/angled holds - a few of the less crimpy routes are on other non-generous holds, sometimes as part of aretes or whatever, and training their usage, compression and pressure etc, will be useful.
Steep bouldering power - a few rogue routes are obviously just bouldery bastards.

Ratho bouldering last week, that was mostly finger/crimp strength as far as the abrasively new holds allowed, with a bit of steep bouldering power thrown in. Ratho routes tonight which will obviously be general stamina but I should try to mix it up with some shorter harder things for fingers or steep wall endurance.