A Question of Ethics

It’s been almost exactly 1 year since my knee op. It was the 2nd of October last year when I went under the knife. I have been training hard and going through loads of rehab to get back to my former self. I hit quite a high point with my send of Rolihlahla, but since then I’ve been fighting quite an uphill battle. Been spending a great deal of time at Chosspile, working on finalizing Shadowfax (8b+) but due to the early onset of summer, I abandoned it for the season.

As a result, I started heading through to Boven a bunch. Jumped on Backcountry Butcher (8b) and was getting really close to the send when I broke the key hold. The result of this was that I had to abandon the climb for the weekend. It did inspire me to get back on Rodan and I’ve been obsessed ever since.

I did head back there and fix the hold at least. Now this is where the ethic issue, should I have fixed it or left it as it became?

The broken hold

The broken hold

The absent hold

The absent hold

The tiny gaston that was revealed

The tiny gaston that was revealed. It feels much worse than it looks and it looks small and slopey

I tried the move a few times and it felt pretty impossible to me. As it is, the boulder problem is in the vicinity of 7B+/7C and that is with the butcher’s hook in place. The butcher’s hook is a sharp, nasty little pocket that is pretty tough to hold on to and left me with a huge blood blister last time I was on it.

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My poor finger tip

So this was the result. I had the hold in my hand and I was asked by the first ascentionist to glue it back.

The back of the hold

The back of the hold

A little bit of sica and a lot of of effort later, the hold was back in place pretty much as close to perfect as I could get it.

The fixed hold

The fixed hold

The tiny butcher's hook

The tiny butcher’s hook

Last weekend I was able to capitalize on my effort. I got the third ascent. The thing feels seriously hard still and I really can’t imagine doing to climb without the hold. My conscience is clear, but the peanut gallery sure has a lot to say… A group of guys who have never tried the climb or shown any interest in the climb, until I’m fixing it.

Oh well, what’s done is done.

On to the next big thing!

David Wade snapped a few shots of my on my current obsession. Just need one good day on it and I should be able to wrap up my long-term nemesis: Rodan (8b+).

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The awkward gaston cross

A little snatch

A little snatch

The butterknife crimp

The butterknife crimp

Crossed over

Crossed over

Snatching the intermediate

Snatching the intermediate

Ready to launch for the final hold

Ready to launch for the final hold–I just need to get here!!!

On a side note, got to hang out with DMM UK athletes Mina Leslie-Wujastyk and Katy Whittaker. The two of them are in Boven and then heading to Wow Prow. Mina climbed Monster, flashed Lotter’s and then flashed Snapdragon on the same day. Not bad for a boulder! She’s pretty damn awesome. Hoping to get back there this weekend and hear how she did on Godzilla! The psych with the British team was unbelievable!

Mina on Monster (7c+) photo by Nick Brown

Mina on Monster (7c+) photo by Nick Brown

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