|On Powerdab - photo Andy Rutherford
After climbing my own Guardian of the Underworld last year at The Works I was keen to try and go one harder. I decided to try and extend Guardian by coming out from the very depths of the cave to join the existing route half way through the roof. This job was postponed when the roof just became too wet to hang under. As much as its amazing to create new routes to climb its bloody hard work hanging upside down for hours on end drilling and bolting the things. At the same time I was drilling the extension Greg and Paddy were creating what was to become Powerdab.
This was right before the winter came good so I gave up on the extension choosing to wait for sunnier days whilst Greg managed to squeeze in a few sessions on Powerdab before he too concentrated on icer things.
Next came the Bolting scandal that saw most of the works stripped, with all except my extension and Guardian being vandalised. Must have been too hard for the perpetrators to get to???? Powerdab got all its draws stolen and unlike the rest of the gear they were never returned. This did not deter Greg who kindly donated more of his draws to the cause.
On the weekend of the meet I'd organised to get folk psyched to compete in World cup events the whole of the Works was a flurry of activity with routes getting sent, left, right and centre. Greg was keen to get back on Powerdab and disappeared with the Scottish contingent. Coming back a couple of hours later with the route in the bag but non commital on the grade.
Having recently joined the Marmot team they were keen for some photos for some posters they were doing for Kendal film festival so I agreed to meet Andy Rutherford down at the works a few days later. Whilst waiting for him to turn up myself and Pete Holder thought we'd have a quick explore of the holds on Powerdab. After a quick bolt to bolt lead I was surprised to climb the route in 2 halves on only my 2nd go. Walking away that day I was keen to get the route done on my 3rd redpoint attempt. Coming back a week later this wasn't to happen, for some reason I was in a really shitty mood and totally wasted 3 goes getting no where. Not happy.
Around came the film festival weekend. I'd arranged to meet up with Pete and Harry Holmes again just to see if I could work the crux before disappearing for duties at the festival that night. Having had a massive week of training and feeling totally wasted I warmed up then managed to fire the crux long reach first go so that only left one thing, I had to keep climbing and finish it. Shortly afterwards saw me shouting a girlie scream at the lower off. Really pleased to get the route in the bag as its now a Marmot poster. Always bad karma I feel to be photographed on a route before you do it.
To get the route so quickly came as a complete surprise, maybe its more my style than long enduro routes?? Time now to get on a euro route and see how the fitness fairs and then the World Cups.