Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Lancashire's Finest

Today I took a trip over to Bolton to visit Ousel's Nest and specifically one route, Pigeon Toad Orange Peel E5 6b***.  This was first climbed back in May 1985 by Geoff Hibbert and has probably not seen too many more ascents since the end of the 80's.  Elliot had been a hero and spent an hour cleaning the route at the end of last week, but I still had to put in a good half hour myself to get the holds through the crux free of their greasy film.
Technical and physical starting moves

Poor sidepulls as you start the long crux section

One more hard move to finish the crux

Why bother? I here you ask, when there are so many other routes that are already clean out there.  Firstly, I stupidly entered into the Lancashire's Finest Ticklist on UKC, and quiclky realised that I could probably do them all.  Secondly, this has taken me to crags I would most likely have not bothered with and climbed some outstanding routes, this one being another.

The climbing on Pigeon is steep, powerful and technical, so it plays to 1 of my strengths at least.  From the start to the end of the hard climbing at 3/4 height it just gets harder, bit by bit.  there have been a few holds break off at the start, but this did not really effect the route.  I fell of on my first go trying to get gear rather than push on to the jug, but took the winning option second time around.  This is an absolutely brilliant route, and well worth doing if you are in the area or combining it with a trip ti Wilton or Egerton.

It was getting really warm by 1pm, so I called it a day with the one route.  My apologies for the extreme whiteness in the pics.