Bright but overcast in Langdale
So we kicked off the morning with the classic Holly Tree Direct. This HVS is still good, no matter how many times you climb it. I also still always manage to climb too high on the traverse on pitch 3, one day I shall learn, but until then I will mince about before down-climbing and making the relatively straightforward if delicate step across.
Dan negotiates the traverse on Holly Tree Direct
On the descent we spied a couple of lines above the Oak Tree traverse that we had not been on before, Muscle Crack and Campaign Crack. Both worthwhile E1 lines that are reasonably short and well protected. Muscle Crack is given 5c, perhaps a bit keen, but it nonetheless has a fairly commiting and furious start. Campaign Crack on the other hand, looks very amenable, in fact straightforward yet is anything but. It’s steeper than it looks, its sustained and contains a good number of mediocre holds, crimps and jams. Its great. I blame the rucksack for it feeling harder than it should!
After that it was look at Odin. A VS 4c to the left of Evening Wall. Perhaps a little contrived but worth a look and the moves up through the grooves and overhang are good value.
Dan on pitch 2 of Odin – VS 4c
I also thought I was beginning to halucinate as I neared the top, for I was convinced I could smell the waft of cooking bacon in addition to the rather ripe Sheep at the base of Raven Gully. It turned out to be some folks who were preparing to set up a top-rope on Muscle Crack and who were having an impromptu BBQ on the descent path! Best not to say anything I thought. The two lads looked like they were trying hard to impress their rather cold and dis-spirited looking girlfriends.
Rich and Dan, feeling a little damp atop pitch 2 of Mendes
And to finish, Mendes in the rain. We should have realised we were pushing our luck after missing the previous rain shower. Alas we did not take heed and a cracking VS climb was all the more entertaining for the large quantity of water being dumped on it.