09/02/2012 12:03:09

Words by tcsh

Winter Climbing in Lakes (Finally!)

Staff from The Climbers Shop have finally managed to get out in the Lakes this past week and get some routes done! Bryan and Helen headed over to Gable Crag last Tuesday and did Pinnacle Ridge which was in the best condition you probably could get it in. The North Lakes seem to have had less snow than what is in the South, and the snow that was there, was very consolidated, certainly made the walk into Gable nice and easy! Panorama below of Green gable, Great Gable, Kirk Fell and Pillar.


The route itself, Pinnacle Ridge, is not so much of a ridge, but more of a Buttress, with really fun icy mixed corners, each pitch provided interest at around Grade 3. The crux of the route was a tricky little
mantelshelf onto a narrow ledge, just above where Helen is standing in the photo below. Thankfully the turf above was bomber. Pinnacle Ridge takes in some fantastic scenery and atmosphere.
Conditions wise, frozen turf throughout and neve to be found everywhere! We couldn’t have asked for better weather and conditions to what we had on Gable.

Another staff member, Chris, was out yesterday (Wednesday) on Great End. We have had great reports coming in from people who have been on
Great End, the classic gullies are in brilliant condition at the moment. Chris and his friend Jake, did Central Gully Left Branch (Grade 3 – photo below of Chris on main ice pitch). Chris was welcomed with good ice and well frozen snow. Custs Gully (Grade 1), provided a good descent for Chris in such conditions. Window gully was also looking good.

Bryan has also been out on a few solo trips, last night (Wednesday evening) he took a quick trip up onto Brown Cove Crags, and went for one of the mixed buttress routes.
The conditions seems to be quite localised, the snow pack around Gable was really solid, yet around Brown Cove, there seemed to be a thick crusty layer on top of a deep softer layer.
There might well be a lot of windslab present, so keep an eye out. Easy mixed routes are likely to be in good condition, but steeper and harder mixed probably not, as there isn’t a lot of hoar build up on the rock.
Hopefully the gullies on Great End will stick around so we can all get out again next week!

Climbing great routes wouldn’t be the same without wearing the right gear for the job!
Much of what we were wearing we sell here at the shop, such as:

Black Diamond Sabertooth Crampons, Haglofs Eryx Pants, Rab Baltoro Alpine Jacket, Black Diamond Speed 30 Rucksack,
DMM Puma Harness and Black Diamond Express Ice Screws!

Enjoy it while it lasts!!