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Fairhead 1st March 2009

Date: 1st March 2009
Submitted by: George Carleton

On Sunday the 1st March I met Michael at Fairhead. We headed around to the small crag to catch the morning sun and be out of the sharp west wind. The rock turned out to be reasonably dry considering the rain the evening before.

I kicked off proceedings by leading Bullrush* 14m VS 4c (my first lead of 09), a nice wee climb with a few technical moves. I steered Mike in the direction of a neighbouring climb The Sting HVS 5a/b, aptly named. There was a struggle just to get off the ground, the slick rock not helping matters much. Mike eventually got the hard first move, (on the fifth go) and finished the climb in good style.

Then to Fuchsia 18m S 4a, easily the most severe SEVERE (if you know what I mean) I’ve ever climbed, a good solid HS by anybody's standards, but good climbing and well protected. Mike then led Hometown Jam* 18m HVS 5b, then I led Lir’s Scoop* VS 4c both having the same start.

During a heavy shower we sheltered at the middle crag and pondered the moves on a few extremely hard looking E1's.

After the rain the rock was even slicker than before, I had the idea of top roping One Crack Mind an HVS 5b I had cleaned around New Year. We set up the top rope and abseiled down the 20m climb. On reaching the bottom Mike decided he would have a go at leading it. Rather you than me said I, but if you're game tear on.

I don’t think there was an easy move on the whole route; it would be a hard and sustained climb at the best of times but being damp and greasy it was desperate, but the gear was good though and with a fair bit of effort Mike eventually tamed the beast. I then followed Mike glad of the security of the rope above me.

Another great day's climbing at Fairhead, we left the crag feeling enthused about the climbing to come in the year ahead.

Photo of Route