Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Snow arrives in North Wales, Yipppeee, and a story of how viking burns your hands


Sunday 4th Dec
Yep the snow has arrived, bit slushy this Sunday but it's the White stuff all the same. A bit of  playing arround on Siabod testing out Helens new 'Kahtoola Micro Spikes' they worked really well for when the full crampon is a bit overkill. They did tend to ball a bit on soft snow but other than that really quick to put on and take off.

Little else to talk about so hear's a completely unrelated story below about luverly Viking rope

The scene
Nineteen 70’s ish....a late hot summers afternoon  somewhere in North Wales, well ok a bit more clarity, Nant Gwynant area. Three 17 year old lads staying at a local hut still a bit pi**ed from the night before.
There is a suggestion that we might try a bit of rock climbing. One of us has slightly more experience that the rest, in that he once abseiled off the roof of the school, and nobody died. Therefore we trust him without question.
We salvage some rope from the back of the hut and a few nuts, no ‘real’ nuts and a bit of sisal. Fully equipped, we potter off.
We head off up the back of the hut toward a bit of a crag and some trees. ‘Mmmmm, looks like it might be more than one pitch’ are the confident words from our leader. This means nothing to us, only vaguely hinting that we should have possibly packed more sandwiches.
After a short scramble we edge out onto an airy ledge approx half way up a large bluff of rock. Below us lies a patch of conifers and above us stretches... well nothing just rock. The two of us remaining on the ledge have been given full instructions on what to do, HOLD THE ROPE, DON’T LET GO OF THE ROPE, NEVER LET GO OF THE ROPE. Seems pretty straight forward. Our intrepid leader sets off, and is soon out of sight... then shouts
 “I can’t move, when i said hold the rope’ i meant let it go through your hands as i go up”
This clearly conflicts with the initial advice so we decide to remain flexible on the HOLD/DON’T HOLD the rope bit.

Ages pass.........“What do you think he’s doing”
“Dunno, i’m getting cold, and  i’m hungry, and i want a sandwich, pass me a sandwich”
“I can’t i’m holding the rope”
“Well so am i, one of us will have to stop holding the rope”

We settle the dilemma via rock, paper, scissors and then consider that neither of us has held the rope for about 5 minutes, and nothing has happened.

“Maybe he’s gone off”
“Yeah.... no wait he’s started climbing very very fast, look the ropes movin really fast”
A shadow briefly passes
“See that massive bird then”
“Nope”
“Well it was massive”
“Ohh he’s stopped again, wait...no no he’s moving fast again”
“Do you think we should hold the rope”
“Yeah, probably for the best, he did ask us to”
“Feckin hell the ropes getting hot, ow, ouch, feckin ouch”
“I got some gloves in the bag”
The rope is still traveling as we don the gloves
“That’s better, ahh no wait he’s stopped again now”
Ages pass.......
“You know nothing’s happened for ages now, i recon he’s definitely at the top”
“Yeah, shall we go down ”
“Yeah, any sandwiches left”
Passing the foot of the crag below, there is movement in the trees, it must be that massive bird.
The massive bird then shouts
“Where the f**k are you two going, you were supposed to be holding the f**king rope”
The massive bird then explains that he’s been crashing through the trees for the last 5 minutes and is quite pleased to have come to a stop at last.
We shrug and reply that were going to get more sandwiches, and does the massive bird want one.
The massive bird says no, but he would quite like an ambulance.

Hard to tell but once we had removed all the branches and twigs from various orifices it only looked like a twisted ankle. Lucky bird
This rock climbing stuff, it’s alright

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