A little over a year ago I returned to climbing outside after surgery on my knee. It felt absolutely great to be climbing again, but I knew I still had a way to get my strength and technique back to what they were. I did a lot better that weekend than I thought I might, but I did feel disappointed to not get up some problems. So last weekend I returned to Burbage to try those problems again.
I’d particularly wanted to climb the problems on the That Little Piglet boulder. I’m usually good at climbing slabs, but I’d been baffled by how to get up two low grade, slab problems on this boulder the last time I was there. This time, I succeeded in doing one of them – topping out with a big grin. The other one was too green from recent rain, and so will have to wait for another time.
Another problem that will have to wait for another day (as possibly some beta from someone) is Right Whale on The Whale boulder. I spent a fair bit of time at the same, middle-height break on that boulder trying to work out how to move higher, and completely puzzled as to what to do.
The winds were so high the next day that my bouldering pads would have flown across the hills if I’d tried to go climbing, so I decided to do a low level walk north of Hathersage. I thought this would just be a potter through some fields, but it turned out to a great walk. The sun shone, there were some brilliant views of Stanage, and, best of all, there were interesting ruins to explore. I was surprised to find the ruins of an old mill, with a large mill pond held back by a gritstone wall and being fed by channels from Hood Brook. It reminded me that you can still make fascinating discoveries in areas that you think you know well.