Winter Training Begins

With the winter season fast approaching but with no sign of its imminent arrival it was time to forget about rock climbing and focus on bolted chalk in order to get strong. Mike and me headed to Saltdean. I put a message out to climbing partners and my London Mountaineering Club forum. To my surprise I managed to muster up enough interest for a total of nine climbers to park up at the Badgers Rest. To put this into purspective this is more people that I have persuaded to go climbing anywhere.

I warmed up on Day Dreaming (C5) again in order to get comfortable with the chalk medium. With confidence growing in both the protection and my climbing technique, I proceeded to lead Back Off Back On, Back in Time, and Back Up (all C5). Rick, another climbing pal of mine, further heightened my confidence in the protection my taking a decent whipper on a route further left called Back to the Future (C6). The route climbs through a short roof to gain a steep 10m wall. Rick was above the difficulties by the time he popped off but then often the transition from steep chalk to sloping chalk requires care as the latter is never as solid.

I was happy with my efforts today however Back to the Future looked a bit too steep for me and still lacked confidence in my grip strength. Mike had no such fears and made efficient work of the route. By 5pm we were ready for the mandatory drink at the Badger's Rest.

Noah (left) climbing Strangeness and Charm of the Quark (C5) with Mike (right) climbing Back Off Back On (C5)
Laurence climbing St Jerome (III), Saltdean
Mike climbing steep hooks on Back to the Future (C6) 
Mike climbing steep hooks on Back to the Future (C6)
Sunset

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