Monday 27 June 2016

Wetter than an otter's pocket

The met office forecast for Glen Nevis was a tad optimistic today (unlike recently when its often been nicer than expected). It rained. We got wet. I was working for Glenmore Lodge on a day with Staff from Kilbowie Outdoor Education Centre. They were looking for some input on their climbing movement and some tips for dealing with anxiety on the lead on trad gear.
We began the day at Three Wise Monkeys Climbing Wall where we revisited some earlier work we've done on movement of slabs: shifting centre of gravity, use of hand holds to help this, where to initiate the movement and momentum from and performing an efficient rockover. We went into a corner and looked at bridging, using opposing forces and pushing rather than pulling. We also looked at slightly steeper walls and twisting and reaching and using the legs to provide upward motion. The surfaces and angles visited were all selected to reflect what they might experience of the kind of trad routes they are leading.
We had a chat about anxiety. About making things easy for ourselves rather than hard through route selection and reading, designing an efficient personal racking system, use of different types if self talk and breathing and not avoiding or denying anxiety but confronting it and working through it. Then we went outside. I don't know if the team were anxious but I was looking at the water coursing down the rock wondering how it was going to go. I needn't have worried. Glynis, Keith and Fiona took a pitch of the Gutter each and made it look easy. Then Keith and Fiona led Styx Buttress Right Wall in style whilst Glynis followed even though the water was coursing down it and the rain descending in sheets!
Interesting work and good fun if a little cold (almost forgotten what that was like) and damp!
 Glynis happy even on wet schist
 No problems for Keith
 Fiona getting another runner
Wet V Diff? No problems...

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