The Promised Land!
I pull into the top crack of The Promised Land as the evening sun bathes the crag in golden light. Friends from Chamonix who have just arrived abseil down beside myself and Nick and shout over;
‘What route is that?’
‘Promised Land’ I shout back, followed by ‘Welcome to climbings Promised Land!!’ and laugh.
Maybe it’s not the Promised Land but I lost count of the number of times over the weekend of the Fairhead Meet the proclamations and exclamations of the quality, beauty and world class standing of the climbing at Fairhead…and the words didn’t come from Irish lips…we already knew it.
Words and pictures can never do justice so such a place…pictures can inspire however, so here are a few!
Nick on Hells Kitchen Arete. A stunningly positioned and sculpted piece of rock!
Maiden Voyage. An immaculate techy wall split by thin cracks, exceptional climbing! I first tried this line with Caff a few years ago but he backed off due to loose blocks at the start. Last year I spent a day and a bit cleaning it but got shut down on the lead. Paul and John then did the subsequent 2nd and 3rd ascents. I returned this year with this top of my list climbing better and inspired to give this my best effort…which turned out to be just enough!
LoLo on Primal Scream. A particularly good effort as she had only ever onsighted E3 and wasn’t too knowledgeable on placing wires…shows what sport climbing and a calm head can do for you!
LoLo about to top out on Primal Scream. A beautiful, inspiring wall. The direct on this route, The Complete Scream, is a sensational piece of climbing…Un Jour Peut Etre!
Nick starting off up Un Jour Peut Etre. A route John and Paul climbed the previous year. John rated it as the best route he had done at Fairhead…strong acclaim from someone who has done nearly every route there!
Myself on the first of two 6b pitches. Sustained, technical intricate climbing of the highest quality! Photo: N. Bullock
Trying to find a decent jam after pulling through the roof on the third pitch. Wild, exposed and strenuous! Photo: N. Bullock
Myself trying desperately not to fall off right at the very top of the route…its not over until its over! Photo: N. Bullock
Will Sim on the immaculate slab of Buttons and Bows
Mizen Star…a classic E2
Dave Pickford pulling through on the incredible Wall of Prey.
Nick going Above and Beyond on the Pat Littlejohn classic. A joy to climb this one again as it remains one of the most stunning pitches I’ve ever climbed.
Dave Pickford topping out on Salango. Not your average E3!
Thanks to Swaily and Sean the farmer for another great meet and to Nick Bullock for a great trip and indulging me on my favourite piece of cliff!