Academic at Avon

Now this was just getting silly! 22 days with no climbing! On Sunday I just had to go climbing. The weather forecast was bleak but me being the eternal optimist dragged Hannah up a wet and slippery grass bank to belay at the base of Academic, a short bouldery 8a that Gav Symonds’ had said was very good.

First go to warm up, place the clips, check conditions and work the moves. After a quick play I had worked out some super techy beta involving lots of leg trickery (exactly my bag) and I was warm. Standing at the bottom waiting for the arms to be fully primed I was hopeful it would go down next burn. Rain clouds loomed, it was time to give it a bash.

Easy traverse done, quick shake, clip. But wait a minute, I was already boxed. How come? The traverse isn’t harder than 6c. I pressed on, kneebar, drop knee, drop knee (the legs were working well!), squeeze, slap, slap and I was off (the arms were working not so well!).

The rain was coming you could see it just the other side of the suspension bridge. “Time for one more quick go?”

I this time I fired it with only a few screams. Happy days. We ran away just as the rain came in and spent the rest of the day training at UCR. Over all it was a good day and I was happy to climb Academic 2nd repoint after such a long break.