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Thursday, 16 April 2009

It's classic...Gogarth. Friaday 10th

Chris Wilson and Paul West-Watson made the long journey south form Aberdeen on Thursday night. We met up at the camp site on Holyhead island, as planned. We headed up to Holyhead mountain to warm up. After an short while i put forward to Paul that we head to Gogarth, knowing he was as keen so we left the others at Holyhead.

Gogarth is impressive steep and intimidating mass of rock the rises out of the sea for 100m. the route we planned to do that day shares the name coming in at E1 5b it's a classic in Ken Wilsons hard rock book. the decent to the cliff (below).

The views to the south stack (below) and surrounding cliffs were brilliant as we geared up below the route with the main cliff soaring above in great grooves and towers.

Paul led this first pitch. Easy climbing on good holds get you in to the flow of things.Next up was the 5a traverse pitch first right (below) to a hidden groove then back left to the slab belay.
A chossy pitch followed where Paul belayed at the foot of the big open groove (below). I'd seen this in books, it was big. I led off placing the only big cam we had low down in the crack, bad move! I had to run the rope out for a half the pitch, good job the climbing was easy.
A game of paper scissor stone was played the last game coming to a draw many times before the winner was decided, much to the delight of two climbers on Resolution direct. Paul won, jammy bugger. He set off on the airy traverse (below).
This takes you to the foot of the crux. Pumpy and over hanging with a good dose of exposure to top it all of it's easy to see why this is a classic.
We headed back to Paul's parents, talking most of the way back about the climb. It was good and deserved classic status. A BBQ was started and as the others arrived the food was plentiful and the beer flowed with talk of the days tales 'til late in the night.

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