Last week I set off up a little E6 at Ilkley called Shock Horror. It was cold, really cold. The problem with having more psyche than sense is that I often overlook small things like conditions and tactics. This can work in my favour sometimes. Not this time.
A full on blizzard started when I was halfway up the route! I was momentarily worried that I'd put myself in a pretty stupid position, but found I was just about able to reverse to the floor taking the gear out as I went. With numb hands and feet I skulked home with my tail between my legs.
A few days later we headed back for an early morning hit before uni, the sun was shining and the ground still covered in snow. It felt harder than expected and I had a pretty hairy moment at the top when the finishing jug was covered in semi-frozen green slime. Afterwards my housemate Jake decided to have a go, this was the first E6 he'd ever been on...
Shock Horror from Jacob Cook on Vimeo.
A few weeks ago I headpointed the route Deathwatch, an E7 6b also at Ilkley. I always find the process of headpointing a bit odd. We had a rope down it anyway and I was thinking about going for the flash after watching my mates on it, but basically got scared and had a go on the rope instead. Of course it went first time on toprope and I regretted not tying straight into the sharp end, but there you go...
Deathwatch from Jacob Cook on Vimeo.
Monday, 18 March 2013
Sack off the PhD and go climbing?
I've never been very interested in having much money or a conventional career, I don't want to be rich or famous. I've always thought I'd be happy with an interesting life. I'd like to be able to look back and think "that was cool".
I'm sitting in my office, motivation to work on my PhD has dwindled to an all time low. It's not that I'm apathetic or depressed, in fact it's the opposite. I'm full of ambition and excitement, I'm probably enjoying my life right now more than ever before.
If I think about my heroes from the past 50 years, most of them lived on the dole and went climbing every day. Maybe I should just do that!?
"Its not the same these days, you can't just live on the dole."
This is probably true, but it's also the case that if climbing and adventure is what I want most, then there are many situations in which I could do more climbing and have more adventures than I'm having at the moment.
Currently looking at New Zealand work visas... :D
This is now.