So what started out as the long hoped for winter of doing every problem in the Sydney basin could more aptly be described as the winter of mysterious ailments, including a suspected spider bite that got a bit out of hand. While illness is usually not seen as a good thing, its humbling effect seems to bring the important things in life back into focus and makes you appreciate what you have. So although I couldn't always try the hardest problems, I rediscovered the unadulterated fun of climbing for its own sake without expectation, just enjoying being outside and moving over rock. And in the process I did a crush of lesser known but high quality boulders and had a great time doing it.
None-the-less, I neglected to fall off some none-too-easy boulders in recent weeks including Swoosh down at the Villas. This is quite a journey of over 20 moves with a burly butt-scraping start, a foot-first crux and a bulgy highball top out. I've certainly done routes that were shorter than this, and as at route it probably wouldn't be far off 32. Weirdly, when I actually did it I had no intention of doing so, I was just trying to get some linkage on the first section, but by accident I somehow ended up at the top. Luckily Sharik was there and could abandon his child for long enough to spot me as I sketched my way over the final bulge.
|On the crux moves of Swoosh, V11 (32?)|
I also did Fight Club at the Den the other day. Although this crag doesn't get much attention, it has some of the better rock in Sydney. The week before doing it, I went to try it one afternoon and as I did a u-turn to park I got pulled over by the police. It is illegal to do a u-turn at any set of traffic lights in NSW apparently, as the good constable informed me. This put a slight (and expensive) dampener on my session, but I got the moves worked out at least. The following week I did a legal u-turn on a side street and in between cups of tea and filling in the cross-word, managed to string the moves together from bottom to top in a climbing-like fashion as illustrated below.
|Working on the winter tan on Fight Club, V10|