August 1st, 2011 by rob s

crag Carmen had gone to do battle with the trains on a trip home and Julie is busy building stuff in her garden so Simon and I had planned a w/e trip somewhere. Friday am we decided on Lakes, by about tea time we had decided on Dow so we drove over and camped on the Walna Scar road. Up early (not Guido early) we were first to the crag, beating those camped at the tarn, it's only 30mins to the tarn and another 15 or so to the base of the crag. It's east facing and qute high with a reputation for being cold, hmm we were in full morning sun being burnt!

I had walked up three times before with my eyes on Eliminate A (*** VS 4c) – surprisingly not a Classic Rock route but highly praised, only to be met with a rope from bottom to top – not this time. 6 pitches are described with two crux 4c sections P3 & P5 which I got. Starting off quite boldly there is good spaced gear and steady climbing to the huge ledge belay. Climbing continues up a groove with better gear to the excellent pedestal below the roof and it's easy to combine these into one, as most people do including the two teams behind us.

It was rather a hare and tortoise affair, they would rush along then wait for ages to be joined by team 3 – as we pitched it all and worked out the way but I wasn't going to let them through! The next pitch is a slightly wild but well protected traverse left and up onto a ledge and cave and Simon leads through the excellent continuation traverse. The team behind's suggestions that these two pitches can be combined are politely ignored 🙂

pitch 5Next is the allegedly bold second crux, a traverse right above the overhangs. It says unprotected, unless you have a rock 4 and a friends 1 and 1/2 and another medium sized rock! Plenty enough gear and good incut holds lead across a great little pitch and up a groove to another huge ledge. Simon takes the last pitch, be hard to combine these and we faff trying to find a decent descent route — seems now everyone goes to the top before descending a chossy gully that had seen a number of ascents during the day.

chimneySeeing as we are over that side of the crag, Simon suggests the three star Arete, Chimney and Crack (*** S) and dispatches P1 up the quartzy arete – nice. I scramble up the next 2 pitches in one to the common belay ledge and Simon gets P4s excellent chimney.
Another route shares P2 & P3 so we ab back down to the ledge and I lead Gordon and Craigs (** S) top 2 pitches together including a wild traverse giants crawl pulling on some dubious looking blocks. Back at the bottom we opt for P1 of that route to get the full tick, but it's not great. Abbing off the huge flakes brings us back to base, with just time for a romp up the huge quartz slab of Giants Crawl (*** D/VD).

We wander back to the car/tent, cook, drink some wine and chill out, chat to a few folks. Forecast is low cloud and we ponder what to do. A lazy start the cloud is quite low so having had a great day we decided to head far from the madding crowds – Trowbarrow – where hardly anyone else is (quite normal Simon tells me).

It's warm and sticky and I nearly grease off Jean Jeanie (*** VS 4c) a few times while fighting to get the gear sorted – jammed hexes, cam wires messed up, nut stuck but not safe – you know the sort of thing. The climbing is steep, straightforward on good holds (a bit like Peak scar but better) with one harder wider section.
We both felt a bit wasted after that and we messed about (slept in the baking sun) for a while before doing Ramp Ant(* S and cleaner than it looks), Coral Sea (** VS 4c) and Jomo (*** VD) with no gear at all for the first 15m!

We call it a day and leaving at 5 we were back in York at 7 – long way around via the M62 but quick! Great weekend and injuries not playing up too much – result.

Simon's pictures.
Rob's pictures

One Response to “Eliminated”

  1. Simon C says:

    A brilliant day on Saturday, wish I'd been feeling more confident on Eliminate A – all the fault of Peak Scar a few days earlier!

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