Monday, 11 February 2013

Masson Lees Revisited

When faced with the option of having a lie in bed, leisurely breakfast and heading down the wall in the afternoon or getting up early and driving through the snow, shouting at pensioners who cant drive and hanging around in a minging cave, which option do you chose?

Hanging around in a minging cave of course!

And so it was, off to Masson Lees I headed to meet Mr Pritchard. The permanently psyched dry tooler from Stoke-on-Stench with a love affair for all things Masson.

The Masson Ming.
If truth be told it was a pretty miserable day really, driving through the snow past Buxton my psyche was slowly dwindling. Not because I dont like snow, I love it as much as the next winter climber but Masson Lees is a pretty dismal place on the best of summer days never mind in February when its 2 degrees above freezing and rocks are trundling down the gullys and over your head.
Not wanting to let Matt down on I pushed, overtaking the sunday drivers and soon meeting Matt at the parking. The walk-in didnt improve the mood given the sleet and wind lashing against my face but things did feel better once camped inside the cave. Even the temperature seemed to warm-up a little.

Matt prepping for a blast on Sub Rosa (M10).
After getting on with some much needed jogging around and pull-ups to get warmed up we got on with some climbing. The day turned into a session of running laps on things in search of some much needed fitness increases. I also took time to try and work out a new way of climbing The Tenuous Link (M7) which has seen quite a bit of rock falling off it recently and should probably now be called The Impossible Link since after managing to use a micro edge placement to make upward progress to the only decent placement on the lower section I then went and ripped that hold off as well. Matt will probably drill a placement to make it do able again.

Also worth a mention is that the final placement before you turn the first lip on Sub Rosa is pretty much blown out so also needs re-drilling. Meanwhile the line that I put up a few years ago on the far right of the cave, just to the right of Sick Boy has been seeing a bit of action from visitors recently. I never put this on the topo as after bolting, drilling placements and climbing it, the route kind of just felt awkward and not really what I was aiming to create so I left it as a work in progress. Anyway after feedback from a few people who had been on it they thought it was ok so the line has now become 'Heavens Above' M7+.

I'll update the topo soon but in the meantime its the line to the right of Sick Boy, just out of shot on the topo in this previous post.

Used Petzl's Ergo axe today, quite impressed, will write more about them soon.
I managed to balance my camera on a rock and got some footage of Matt on Sub Rosa, here is a very quick edit, speeded up and with bits chopped out where he was shaking out for far too long.....

Matt on Sub Rosa from Tom B on Vimeo.