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NW-003 Glydr Fawr - A Question or 2

I have a few days off coming up in the next couple of weeks and weather permitting may get a chance to activate something (at last).

I have also re-started my rock climbing career although at a much reduced level as to when I finished it. A few trips to the indoor wall have got my hands and feet co-ordinated again and strength is coming back. Now onto the questions.

  1. I have looked at Glydr Fawr as a possible activation using rock rather than paths to ascend. The intended route would be Hope (Idwal Slabs VDiff), Lazarus (Holly Tree Wall Severe), Continuation Groove (continuation slab Severe) and Grey Slab (Grey Slabs Very Severe). Hope and Lazarus I’m familiar with, but the other 2 I’ve never done. Does anyone have any info on these (such as over/undergraded, seriousness, exposure etc) or any better suggestions for a route as there is a bit of a walk between the last two.

  2. Due to obvious restrictions, it will be a handy only with rubber duck activation. Would this cause any problems with a midweek activation. I know the height is there, would the chasers be within reach?

Any thoughts would be welcome.

Ian
G7ADF

In reply to G7ADF:
Hello Ian
Grey Slab has a very serious pitch which is often wet with not much pro. I would be reluctant to do it with a rucksac. May I suggest Central Arete on Glyder Fawr Main Cliff, which is a similar grade to the other climbs.
from Charlie

In reply to G0PZO:

Good point. Just looked at the route and it actually seems more logical too.

If the weather is bad it would still be a radio day in an odd sort of way. The backup plan is to goto The Beacon Climbing Centre. The building was first used by Marconi Wireless Co and in 1918 sent the first morse transmission from UK to Australia.

Ian

In reply to G7ADF:
Ian
If you fancy meeting up at Awesome Walls in Liverpool (I’ve a months pass)during the day or even Warrington give me an e-mail on charlie.jordan@sky.com

In reply to G7ADF:
If the weather is poor an interesting alternative would be to solo the Ordinary route on the slabs and then follow the Seniors Ridge to the summit plateau, this will give a decent long scramble!

My vintage 1974 guide (the Ken Wilson one) doesn’t give Continuation Groove, but if that is the one called Groove Above in my guide it is damnably difficult to start for a severe! Incidentally, Grey Slab is only hard severe in that guide, but the Idwal climbs don’t get any easier with the passage of time!

73

Brian G8ADD

In reply to G8ADD & G0PZO:

It was Groove above Brian. In typing I mixed up the route names with the crag name :). I have found that quite a lot of the “old” classics are undergraded. Having spent my youth having epics on Almscliff V.Diffs whilst cruising E1/E2 on slate. I’m also glad that my attempt at Valkyrie (roaches) never made it onto You-Tube :).

I will probably email you nearer to the time Charlie. I’m off work the week commencing 17th sept. Will look at the weather situation for the Glydr day and will drop you a line. I havent been to Awesome walls so that would be good fun. If we cant make it that week, then I’m sure there’ll be other occaisions (now your semi-retired :slight_smile: ).

If anyone else is interested in joining me on the wall, I usually go on a Saturday morning to Warrington. Its great fun and a good way to keep fit especially in winter.

Best get back to work now :slight_smile:
Ian
G7ADF

In reply to G7ADF:
I suppose its the wrong place for a discussion of this sort, but I don’t think the old classics are actually undergraded at all (except where important bits have dropped off, like the holly tree on Holly Tree Wall!) what has happened is that the techniques that worked so well on them have more or less died out. Try them in a pair of alpine boots with a full plate and you get an inkling of a new perspective, leather boots nailed with muggers and clinkers (I am told!) and you’re there. Still, you can’t really go back, who wants to strike sparks from a pair of boots weighing a few kilos each!?

I have never tried slate: my generation retreated from it shaking their heads at brittle and mobile holds!

73

Brian G8ADD

In reply to G8ADD:

I have never tried slate: my generation retreated from it shaking
their heads at brittle and mobile holds!

Hi Brian

In last weeks “Mountain” on BBC, GRJ was talking to Johnny Dawes in front of Seamstress slab… I’m afraid my only foray onto slate was to do one of the “easy” routes, “Seamstress” which was HVS 5a back then… I see it’s VS 4c now…

…and having done it I didn’t think I’d be able to move up to the “real” slate routes. I never fancied the brittle bits… or the sharp bits you could fall onto!

Anyway back to the post… good luck Ian G7ADF… the Hope/Lazarus combination is one of my favourites but I haven’t done it for years.

73 Marc GØAZS

In reply to G0AZS:

The route on Mountain was “Windows of Perception E6 7a”. A thin technical desperate, typical of slate. Myself I found slate easier for a couple of reasons. 1) My style likes the thin technical slab climbing. and 2) You know where the route goes. The holds are obvious, by the fact that there is only one possible combination on any particular route.

Havent done Hope since 1989, and I did Tennis Shoe Direct + Lazarus in 1992. All three are extremely enjoyable. Back then we used to mix our climbing between easy classics and harder routes. This does lead to odd combinations.
Flying Butress + Cenotaph Corner on the Cromlech (I actually wanted to do spiral stairs instead of the corner but was outvoted :slight_smile: but that is back on my list of wanteds. ).

AS for this not being the place to discuss, at least the subjects are in topics now so anyone wanting to skip over can do quite easily. Also there is a link (sometimes tenuous) between climbing and sota. I personally prefer climbing to walking so I would like to see more rock route up sota summits.

The route up Glydr Fawr, time and weather permiting, would be a great way to combine the two. There are quite a few routes up Tryfan. Theres a big scramble up St Sunday crag that I fancy and Pillar and Gable come to mind too.

Not only is the challenge of the rock there, but also the equipment. Cant lug up lots of gear for the radio really, so will have to work out something with the handie + antenna.

Ian
G7ADF

In reply to G7ADF:

AS for this not being the place to discuss

Let’s see… you’re interested in SOTA and mountains/hills. That fact that you intend to go straight up and/or possibly dangle on the end a rope rather than just walking doesn’t matter. Where else should you discuss mountain ascents and radio combined?

Exactly! :slight_smile:

No problem with the discussion here.

Andy
MM0FMF

So far this year I’ve activated:- Tryfan via Grooved Arete, Coniston Old Man via C Ordinary Route and Cadair Idris via The Cyfrwy Arete.
from Charlie

In reply to G8ADD:
As a non-climber (vertigo) I have no problem with your discussion of ascents of SOTA summits by more direct routes :slight_smile:
I don’t care which way you go up so long as I can claim the chaser points :slight_smile:
Unless its in a 4X4 hi.
Although if Julia had been ahead of me as a distraction I think I could manage just about anything :-;

Roger G4OWG

In reply to G7ADF:
It doesn’t need to be just rock routes, either, think of the buzz in doing one of the Trinity Gullies before activating GW-NW001, or something on the Black Ladders in winter condition before NW002 (I wouldn’t touch it with a barge pole in summer unless things have changed a lot!) No problems with a rucksac either, you would normally have one for snow and ice routes.

Quite a few of the Welsh peaks can be at least partially approached by rock routes before an activation. Lliwedd is a prime example, but how about Outside Edge or Engineers Climb to approach Craig Cwm Silyn, The Pencoed Pillar on Craig Cau for Cadair Idris, something desperately loose on Craig y Bera (or wierdly scenic on Craig Cwm Du) for Mynydd Mawr, and its surprising how much rock there is on Moel Hebog, Elidir Fawr or Pen Llithrig y Wrach. There are even some good routes on the east side of Aran Fawddwy and Cwm Cowarch is just full of rock!

Another suggestion is to approach Glyder Fawr via those lovely crags on Glyder Fach. I remember the rock as being a lot friendlier!

This is getting my feet and fingers itchy!

73

Brian G8ADD

In reply to G0PZO:

Tryfan via Grooved Arete

Oh now you’re talking Charlie… That is just superb. It was my first ever “mountain route” with a rucksack on my back in my formative years.

I particularly remember being high in one of the grooves bridging on some very polished holds with the wind whipping around looking for protection and thinking “this is a v. diff”? …and then you have that beautiful, airy “knights move” accross the slab.

But it was an outstanding day out capped with a jump from Adam to Eve on the summit… A classic mountain day. I’d love to do it again and cap it with an activation instead of the jump!

73 Marc GØAZS …now where are my Krabs? :slight_smile:

Its also worth noting that rock ascents are not limited to the larger mountains.

After a qso earlier today I looked up Bosley Cloud (SP-015) and found that there are 52 routes graded between Diff to E6. The bouldering at the actual summit is reputedly ok as well.

This data can be found on ukclimbing.com

As a quirky coincindence, the moderator for that particular place is a certain “John Read”. Wonder if it is an alter ego of a well known activator?

Ian
G7ADF

Never heard of him. But there are not many of us in the UK with that spelling, so could be a distant relation. Could probably find out more on that Genes Reunited thing, if I could be bothered - which I can’t.

He can’t be that closely related - the bridge over the M62 on the Pennine Way last year was challenging enough for my legs!

No, very easy very mild scrambling, yes. Climbing, no. Still, I guess it’s each activator’s individual choice of person-powered final ascent.

In reply to G0AZS:

Where I did most of my climbing in Derbyshire, we always used to haul our sacks up by rope, if indeed we had them with us. I’ve absolutely no experience of climbing with anything more than a guidebook in my pocket. Even that caused my colleague (another licensed amateur) a problem in a chimney on one climb. The thickness of it (in his front pocket) made the difference between him being able to slip through or not.

Hand held rigs weren’t invented at the time - we didn’t mix climbing and radio - a Pye Cambridge and car battery weren’t exactly condusive to SOTA style operations, though I did drag a 34AH car battery up Kinder Scout on several occasions. At least the rig was a relatively lightweight Trio TR7010.

73, Gerald

In reply to G4OIG:

At least the rig was a relatively lightweight Trio TR7010.

That was my first rig. In many ways I’m sad I sold it. I did think about buying another from eBay but it’s not the same.

Andy
MM0FMF

OK, you rock tigers - who is going to be the first one to activate the only summit (as far as I know) that actually needs to be climbed: SI-002?
I have been up it once and I am not going up again - chicken!

Goodness knows how you would activate on HF and the VHF fraternity are few and far between on Skye.

73

Barry GM4TOE

In reply to GM4TOE:
Assuming you can find a reasonable day with no queue, and you have a climbing companion and a ground helper, once on top you drop an arm of the dipole down each side and the helper tensions it…probably best to have a doublet and small tuner or don’t change bands. Another approach is a long wire tuned against a dropped wire counterpoise, and the helper then takes the other end up towards the summit of Sgurr Dearg.

Either way the helper will need to be steady and with rock experience: the glacis between the Inn Pin and Sgurr Dearg is easy ground but far from safe!

You see, I’ve thought about it, but I’m not sure I will ever regain enough fitness to do it! Shame…

73

Brian G8ADD