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Chockstone Forum - General Discussion

General Climbing Discussion

 Page 4 of 7. Messages 1 to 20 | 21 to 40 | 41 to 60 | 61 to 80 | 81 to 100 | 101 to 120 | 121 to 133
Author
A short story
James
27/11/2004
1:08:33 PM

>The collection would not be complete without Greg Child. Bonnington for
>an insight into the glory days and the military approach to putting a man
>on the summit.

& also read Borkrev's (spelling?) tale for an insight on how to become a human alpine climbing speed machine. Not my style but still an interesting read.

PN
18/12/2004
6:52:19 PM
On 17/12/04 M8iswhereitsat wrote:
>Good one Damo.
>A clean ascent-line indeed!
>You should crosspost it to the Short Story Thread also, ... to make it easier to find in >retro years, else it could turn into a ODH ?

>~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
>Retro edit;
>Given the 'Important note please read' thread; it already has turned into an ODH !


We're going back to the kitchen again to clean it up, back soon

IdratherbeclimbingM9
12/03/2005
10:16:01 AM
>Bump ...
... keeping the consciousness going.

For the uninitiated, my next post is another attempt to share a recent thin-aid experience, and a couple of reflections on what (for me) the whole (?) climbing game is (sometimes) about ...

~ and besides, it is a fitting way to celebrate my 1,111 th post (the next one following), as the symmetry of it appeals.

A starting point ...

Recondite: adj. Beyond the grasp of ordinary understanding. Profound. Dealing with abstruse or difficult subjects.

Musing: To meditate. To think or say meditatively. The spirit regarded as inspiring a poet or artist.


IdratherbeclimbingM9
12/03/2005
11:39:48 AM
M5 Sport-climb. – One persons recondite* experience.

The move; yes that’s it, ease onto it. No point aggressively testing. A hook either holds or it doesn’t.
Glancing at my watch I note that it’s been about an hour to gain this move located some ten metres above the narrow ledge, but time doesn’t matter.
I look down at the six pieces of protection I have placed above the belay and grin to myself when I see that the last piece, a small hybrid-alien, has levered out and slid down the rope to the next placement. Ah well, I shouldn’t expect too much from having only two lobes in, and it allowed me to gain enough height to place this hook. At least the piece before it is sound, though running it out much further will certainly be a test of integrity for the small dollop of brass on a piano wire, should the hook pop.

A playful gust of wind lifts the lower steps of my ettriers and the breeze is cool on my sweat soaked back.
Stepping up to my third steps I fifi-hook into the daisy chain and visually take in the ground ahead. A corroding relic fixed copperhead beckons the way above, but it is still at least an intermediate move away. I ponder the thoughts of the original ascensionist who conceived this line.
‘A3 Sportclimb’ he called it, but so far it has followed natural features and protection.

While crimping right handed on the hook I step up higher and stretch with my left hand to gain a small undercling. It feels sufficiently positive to enable me to stretch a lot further within balance and then with my right hand clip a second set of etts to the copperhead. I marvel that lichen is starting to grow over the metal placement and decide to only test it gingerly, as it appears to be OK from tugging on it.
It is only then that I notice a bolt-head out to my right at waist level.
“Where did that come from?” I murmur, as I fifi short into my daisy and start rummaging through my rack for a bolt bracket. I must be getting tunnel vision by only seeing the obvious as being a protruding wire.
The bolt is a rawl type and is loose in it’s sheath. I easily spin the nut by hand almost off into my fingertips and eagerly place the bracket then spin the nut home again. It may not be great protection for an outward load if I ping, but it should be OK for downward if I use my longest quickdraw on it.
The satisfying snick-sound of the karabiner gate closing over the rope breaks the mental tension that has built up for the time being, and I savour the moment to look down into the abyss sucking at my heels. I can barely hear the wind gust that I can see swirling the tree canopies far below, and the slither of stream threading its way between them appears benign from this height. It’s a falsehood I know, for I have forded its steep bed often enough in the past, where its noisy rush to oblivion seems an incongruous date with destiny.

Back to it, and the copperhead shows no signs of shifting so I march on up to my second-top steps and fifi directly onto its wire loop. Its amazing how the bodgy bolt nearby inspires more confident movement on an otherwise ‘iffy’ piece of pro.
Searching for a line of weakness above I note that two more boltheads are marking the way, but precious little else exists in the way of features.
Nature sure can cleave some clean faces on granite in this part of the world.
Studying the dappled lichen more closely I run my fingers over the more symmetrical pieces searching for hidden depressions that may be covered over enhanced bat-hook holes, as the meagre description I discovered of this climb mentioned extensive bat-hooking.
Eureka ! I found one.
If the Cheshire Cat was here, I reckon he’d have to take grinning lessons off me, as this discovery is worth more than gold to me at this moment. I deftly rotated a Talon Hook till I found the tang that fitted it best.
Having found one enhanced hole it ‘proved’ the climb description, and I then knew that there would be more, though locating them would be a test if the first was anything to go by. Obviously the route does not see much traffic I thought as I ascend my etts on the new placement, and clip my rope to the copperhead as my waist drew level with it in passing.
The concentration for this game gets little reprieve I noted after having clipped in, for I then had to adjust the length of my backup loop in the lead-rope so it doesn’t come tight on me before I make it to the next bolt.

At this point the wall I was on, backed off from the evil side to being merely vertical, and I noted wryly that the sport element was definitely there when I found myself top-stepping with one hand placed low and underclinging my weighted hook while stretching out with another hook and pre-clipped etts in the other hand to snag the next hole.

My breathing was now becoming more shallow and rapid as I was starting to put distance between myself and the last clipped protection.
Slow up.
Breath deeply.
Exhale slowly.
Savour the moment, as next high step should get me to the next bolt.

Ahh, this is an interesting ethical dilemma! Did the first ascentionist keep bat hooking all the way to the top only clipping bolts as they were passed, or did they reach up and clip the bolts to make progress?
I opted for the former course of action but ended up spending a considerable time in precarious balance looking for a hole that I never found. Oh well, it is Aid after all, so I lowered my standard and bracketed the bolt to enable me to hook more easily off it!

Soon after, I gained the last bolt on the climb and found it no better than its predecessors, for it too was loose inside its sheath. I noted while clipping my rope to it, that it was placed just above half height between the narrow ledge start and mantle-shelf topout of this pitch. Judging the distances I assessed that if I fell while high on the pitch that rope stretch, assuming the bolt holds, will cause me to deck-out on the ledge in a gnarly shrub; if in fact I did not crash through it into the void beyond for a really good wrencher on my belay.
The sweat started chilling on my back as I eyed the remaining fifteen metres of hooking required to get to the top.

Two moves higher I again pondered on the inner tension climbs like this create, and realised I had already passed the real crux by committing to the runout above, rather than beating an orderly retreat while I had the chance. The exposure was starting to get to me though as I stepped up on the third hook move into this path of inner revelation.

I started considering options and consequences.

If I fall, I can still retreat and take an easier line to the top, but what if I injure myself?
I decided it did not bare dwelling upon and refocused on the task at hand. If it happens then I will deal with it at the time; but meanwhile I know I have the ability, technique and equipment to complete the climb; … it just requires the right attitude and focus.
I realise that it’s a queer juxtaposition, as I crave these moments when anticipating a climb; but when faced hard up with the moment; marvel at the fact that to carry it out successfully is much more than simply switching off and dulling the mind in robot mode. It’s a simultaneous conscious effort at focusing, and also deliberately rationalising fear into submission to enable appreciating the position, rather than just passing through it.
The moves; ... Yes; having a routine to follow helps; ... but the absurd timeframes in thin-aid subjugate the moves to occasional punctuations in mental-time; for the real climbing is in your head.

I took time-out to wet my parched mouth with a small swig from my depleted water bottle, and while doing so deliberately traced the path of Crystal Brook some three hundred metres below, trying to identify parts of it that I was more intimate with from previous adventure.

Focusing again on the task at hand I decided to counter the doubts and see if I could protect the hooking moves somewhat by placing the tang of a cracknup in the next hole. Up until now the hooks only held the lip of the holes by some five millimetres, and I did not know how deep the ‘enhancements’ were, to possibly enable other protection to be used. The cracknup blade slid most of the way into the hole making it effectively three times more secure than hooking the same placement, although the piece's action in practice was identical. I decided to leave it as pro and clipped a quickdraw and the lead-line, whereupon the mental pressure again subsided to an easily tolerated level.
Due to having a number of these devices I repeated this procedure of leaving one as protection on every alternate hole enroute to the top. The climb still contained its moments though, as to gain each hole required fine balancing in the top steps of the etts while high reaching.

Higher up I found one lichen covered hole contained a spider, and yet another hole was cemented up. This initially was cause for concern as usable natural features seemed non-existent and initially I felt cul de sacked within three metres of topping out, however another hole was soon found nearby.
I can only assume the creator of this climb decided to ‘pull’ the top bolt and backfill the hole, in order to keep the spice going right to the end.

At this point I could hear the banter of tourists arriving at the lookout and a face appeared over the railing above, which judging by the shocked expression had not expected to see this inhospitable place temporarily inhabited! Pleasantries were exchanged and I found myself immortalised on emulsion as they deemed this passing event of more interest than the magic vista surrounding us.
When I was asked how it felt to be where I was, my answer was a practical one along the lines of,
“I am generally too busy to think about it, but the foremost thoughts in my head at the moment are; that my waist is sore from the weight of gear on my harness; and that same gear seems to be quite cluttered despite my attempts to avoid confused racking of it”.
Their response was words to the effect of,
“Sooner you than me, mate”;
... though I had them sufficiently intrigued that they stayed to watch me top out, or maybe fall?

The distraction of the tourists faded into the background as I groped the rounded mantle of the exit lip from my second steps.
There was no way I could mantle off from here and so by palm smearing for balance I stepped up to the top steps to enable visual inspection of what I had been groping.
Hmm, no hooking hole; but from my new height I could reach further back from the edge and feel by Braille minor ripples in the granite forming a crimp type edge within a shallow depression. Not being dexterous enough to swing my feet up to shoulder height off this incipient feature I decided to try hooking again. Going through my hooks I found the irregularity of the feature precluded the Talon, and the Cliff-hanger size barely held. The next size up Grappling hook was not much better, so I opted to equalise it with the Cliff-hanger to provide a little more security when weighted, by sharing bodyweight between them.
Clipping a set of etts to this fragile placement gave reason to check my flimsy line of pro up until this point. The rear tangs of three well spaced crackenups leered back at me, seeming to say that if they did not unzip they would try to gouge me if I flew past them. The lonely last bolt sat squat and mute, just waiting to decide whether or not to hold such a plummet.
A final deep breath and a cautious initial weighting of the placement to see how much it creaked was all that was left before committing to it and stepping up to a height which enabled mantling off cleanly.

Standing on top I clasped the tourist barrier quite fervently and marvelled as the inner tension drained through my fingers into the railing. I realised then that despite emotion being contained to seemingly acceptable levels, it’s still like a pressure cooker; and there is much more reserve heat pent up inside than at first seems the case.

Their curiosity now satiated the tourists departed but my climb was only half completed, for I still had to abseil the pitch and clean my gear off it while jumaring out again.
By comparison to leading the pitch this task is mundane indeed, though it provides a mental warm-down opportunity when evaluating the pro, the control required in placing it, and the sense of achievement that success results in.
The feeling of being ‘out there’ while cleaning is lesser, but this re-ascent process gives full value appreciation on what, and how, the achievement was created. This in turn gives full measured audacity to the game; rather than simply the ‘doing’ of it.
It is still ironic that the magic of the 'moments' can only truly be captured though, by the ‘doing’ of the process!

At the finish of cleaning the climb I noted the whole process had taken close to four hours for thirty metres of headwall climbing. Slow going, but a worthy adventure none the less; as time does not matter greatly to me when I measure the experience in moments.

The playful breeze continued to caress the rock as I departed.
How (I mused), do we measure these combined moments of our lives?
Being aware of ones presence within the moment is a good start; … but the real worth is in the changed enhanced-value-perspective on life; and consequent increased appreciation of relationships, that arise out of this experience of going solo.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Edit;

Some photos of the above event courtesy of I. Kable.






~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

* Recondite:
1: Dealing with abstruse or profound matters.
2: Removed from ordinary knowledge or understanding; abstruse; profound.
3: Little known; obscure; put away / hiddden.

hangdoggy
13/03/2005
5:43:55 AM
well written...you convey the experience and tension of being on thin aid very well....you almost had me wanting to try aid...almost

climbau
14/03/2005
8:37:02 AM
Fantastic reading Rod. A good writing style and you really described the emotional aspect of thin aid well. A good read, I thoroughly enjoyed it.

PN
14/03/2005
10:42:38 AM
Great work M8, I enjoyed that a lot. It captures the solitude, the exposure and the thoughtful nature of it all

Cheers
D
gfdonc
14/03/2005
9:56:21 PM
Thanks M8 for a sterling post .. keep up the good work.
- Steve/gfdonc.

LittleMac
23/03/2005
1:06:41 PM
A short story from my early days of climbing.

Having done my first lead the week before I was filled with the exuberance and self confidence that is, the new lead climber. I'd successfully negotiated Phoenix (11, Tiger Wall) as my first multi-pitch and felt sure that I would be able to cope with Arachnus (9, Watchtower).

I headed off for the base of the climb with two of my fellow newbies who on reaching the base informed me that they didn't feel comfortable to lead any of the climb. Not a problem I thought, glancing briefly at my watch, 2.30pm plenty of time to get up and off. It was at this point that I got my first clue as to the epic I was about to face, one of my fellow climbers who was attempting to flake out the ropes had managed to tangle both of the ropes together in a massive snarl. Fixing this took some time and it was after 3pm before I left the ground.

The first pitch went reasonably well, nice gear, nice moves and a fantatstic belay ledge. Belayed the first of my companions to the ledge and instructed him to reflake the rope in anticipation of the next pitch. The second climber began climbing and after about the first 6 meters called up to announce that he was stuck. After some mild coaching and coaxing he finally arrived at the ledge somewaht frustrated and visibly shaken. Not a problem I said traverses are always the worst bit the climbing won't be any harder further up. Time 4.45pm.

The second pitch was somewhat confusng, after surmounting the inital difficulties and passing the crux I was confronted with what at the time appeared to be a blank wall with no obvious route. I called down to the belay to ask them to consult the guidebook. Just go up and when you get up a bit head right until you can find the cave. Ok seemed simple enough. Hang On, Hang On you can go right from there and then straight up if you want. For F#@#'s Sake which way do I go just tell me which way seems easiest. Ok just go up and then trend right. OK climbing. As it turned out the climbing wasn't difficult (although finding enough gear (with my miniscule rack) proved somewhat challenging. I quickly set a belay and called down for the first climber to start climbing. About 10 meters up I heard some shouting and what sounded like an argument, not being close enough to hear I continued to belay wondering what the hold up was. When the first of my comapnions reached the ledge I was to learn that their had been more rope problems. Time 5.45pm

The second of my companions began to climb in the now failing light. I was still fairly confident having heard that the final pitch was fairly starightforward jug hauling. My confidence was shattered when I heard the shout, I can't get the piece out take my weight. Waiting, waiting............................ Just leave the piece let's go. He reached the ledge finally just as the sun made it's final descent.

LittleMac
23/03/2005
1:06:56 PM
Leading off on the last pitch, panic began to set in as I was forced to race the last of the sun's feeble rays up the cliff before the darkness set in. Throwing in a single Hex and one other nut I rigged a hasty belay and wedged myself amongst the boulders at the top of the pinnacle. On Belay, Climb When Ready. Nothing............On Belay, Climb When Ready Nothing........................ (this is a common problem on the last pitch of Arachnus) A number of swear were hurled into the growing wind when finally I felt some movement on the rope. The first of my companions climbed quickly (much to my relief) and was soon standing next to me. I commented that the wind was getting quite strong and that it was now pitch black. Time 7.50pm

Again yelling for the final climber to begin, I could get no response. As it turned out he hadn't noticed a knot in the rope which had become jammed in a crack above him so th e rope wouldn't pull tight. Finally after much pulling on the ropes I somehow managed to free the rope and pull it tight and he began climbing. The problem now was that the knot kept hitting pieces of gear and would stop causing the rope to go slack and so the climber would stop. eventually we worked out waht the problem was and we manged to all arrive at the top of the cliff. Time 8.45pm

Ok lets go, let's just check the guidebook first. Where's the guidebook???? I thought you had it............ The guidebook was on the last belay ledge (someone returned it to us the next day) so I would have t do this from memory. Getting across the gap between the watchtower and the ledge proved somewhat difficult as it was now so dark I couldn't see how far the gap actually was. In the end I just took a chance and leant out over the gap having faith that the ledge had to be there. Success, we were now on the main walk off ledge of the watchtower.

Now as most people are aware there is a rap descent on the watchtower which in the daylight is quite simple to find, we couldn't find the anchors (mainly because we were to afraid to walk close to the edge). It was also so dark that we couldn't see more than two steps in front of us and never having been up here before I had no idea what the ledge was like. To solve this problem we gathered up handfuls of small rocks and threw them towards where the edge was (irresponsible I know but we were desperate). Judging by the sound we were able to jusdge how close the edge was. Eventually we reached the descent gully. Time 11.00pm

Now we had to make a descision, because we had planned to rap we hadn't bothered to check out how to descend the gully. The only thing we knew was that the pole leading down the gully eventually led up to the tower, so up we went until we reached flat ground and headed off through the bushes searching for a track (unaware that the tower was a mere 50 metres away) eventually we found the tower and the road and made our way to the summit car park. On our arrival we came across a guy in a beaten up old combie van looking for the Pines, we told him if he gave us a lift we would show him where they were and relieved we piled in.

We got back to camp to find our other friends sitting around a camp fire, eating and drinking etc apparently unconcerned as to our whereabouts. On questioning they replied, Oh we were coming to have a squiz shortly. Top mates those. Time 12.10am

IdratherbeclimbingM9
23/03/2005
2:45:33 PM
Hmmm.
Your 'story' contains much food for thought LittleMac, and should be mandatory reading for newbie adventure climbers, as there is much in it that many of us can relate to.
Good to see that you have kept it together for the long term to be able to post in hindsight!

LittleMac
23/03/2005
4:01:07 PM
On 23/03/2005 M8iswhereitsat wrote:
>Hmmm.
>Your 'story' contains much food for thought LittleMac, and should be mandatory
>reading for newbie adventure climbers, for there is much in it that many
>of us can relate to.
>Good to see that you have kept it together for the long term to be able
>to post in hindsight!

Yes fortunately for me I did make it through to tell the tale and in a way it was the best thing that could have happened to me. Firstly I learnt a lot about climbing in varying and difficult conditions. Apart from this I also learnt a great deal about myself and was thus inspired to improve my climbing (kinda became an obsession) to the point where adventure routes became feasible. getting into aiding was also a by product of all this as mainy a great adventure route is entirely or partiually aid.

rhinckle
23/03/2005
4:20:06 PM
an experience from 1997
originally printed in "Off the Wall"

I spoke to Gordon recently. He's been away, working on Lord Howe island, but that's another story. Gordon saved my life. Sounds dramatic, but it's true. Him belaying, me falling. Off Bastion Buttress in the Warrumbungles.

I asked him if I really had ended up stationary, upside down, about a body length above a ledge. He affirmed this to be the case. If that was where I ended up after a 20 meter whipper, my margin was seriously small, and the green bag rather than the painful walk out was too close to having been a reality to bear thinking about. Means I must have decked too. No wonder the walk out was so painful.

Gordon also said that the most unnerving thing for him was the dripping sound as my blood pooled on the ledge.

I was unconscious for long enough not to hear him calling my name. But I did hear him exclaiming, repeadedly and plaintively, a popular Anglo-Saxon expletive. I looked up to see the blood covered rocks, looked down to see the sky, took stock of my limbs, found enough of them to get myself upright and waited for Gordo to lower me the last little bit and tie me off. And for him to get the first aid kit out of the pack, but not the camera. (A thought in both our minds, but not one either of us acted on. Foolishly tasteful, dammit!)

He bandaged my head and pulled the ropes. We spent some time regaining our composure. I had to make no more decisions. Was wanting to get down, but not wanting to addle my scrambled brains any further. Was thinking about to whom to give the rest of my rack, as there was NO WAY I was going to climb again. Was thinking about the walk back across the scree and the couple of of k's back to Balor Hut. (And the six further kilometers back to the car. And the drive back, as Gordon doesn't have a license, does he?) Was thinking about the helmet in my pack at the base of the climb. Was thinking a lot about that.

Gordon could make the decisions. He could do the finesse. My job was determination. There would be a time for rest, but it was not now. The foot hurt, the body hurt, but it was the head which was the worry.

Partly abseiling, partly downclimbing, we descend, Gordon taking care of the details. There would be a time to rest, but it was not now. Shouldering my pack and picking up my stick, I follow Gordon across the scree. There would be a time to rest, but it is not now. We move along the path as the afternoon progresses, reaching Balor Hut after 6pm, after having fallen around 12.30. There is a time to rest and it is NOW! I would know by morning if i'd done any real damage.

Time passes. I wake in the wee hours and can see nothing. Not one photon. Fumble for the torch. Where the fork is it? I will stay calm, but will be seriously relieved when I can see something. Got it! Click. Nothing. "Shee-ite!" "OK stay calm." I lever myself up, hobble about, find the door, and see stars. Phew.

OK in brief.
Saturday
Climbing on double ropes. A couple of moves away from setting up the belay for the third pitch, a bar fridge sized rock pulls, behind which is my top piece of pro. The block misses Gordon, does not cut either rope and explodes off the belay ledge and into the trees below. As I fall, I see my top piece in space in front of my eyes and I keep falling & hiting things & falling & etc.

Concussion, grazed and cut head, bruised and grazed shoulder, bruise foot and cracked talus. Lucky, Bloody lucky. We descend and eventually achieve the hut. There I crash for the night amid great concern from a group of Newcastle climbers, one of whom, thankfully, carries my pack out the next day.

Sunday
We drive home to Armidale. Visit casualty. Have to remove the blood caked bandage scabbed to my scalp, in a shower, ith the stuff diluting and flowing and spattering, 'shower scene from psycho like' around the cubicle (the worst moment, because now I could allow myself an emotional response). It's too late to stitch the head, but Goedon's done a good job with the first aid. Thanks again.

Monday
I make it to work, and keep my rack.

MORAL:
You can kill yourself on a grade 13 climb.
When you fall off an easy climb, you hit rock, not space.
Helmets are a really good idea.

LittleMac
23/03/2005
4:33:33 PM
Top story, having climbed in the bungles, I can relate to the story a lot. When you fall off in the bungles (which I don't advise anyway given the rock) you tend to hit things.

Thanks heaps for the story, makes great reading and some good lessons as well. Hope the experience didn't put you off the bungles

IdratherbeclimbingM9
23/03/2005
6:01:18 PM
Excellent contribution rhinckle.
Thanks for filling in the detail with this post, to a verbal anecdote of yours on our once only meeting at a Chockstone Gathering (of sorts).

rhinckle
23/03/2005
6:12:19 PM
Mr 8,
really enjoyed your account of solo aiding. like being there. i get scared 'boulderaiding' but i spose there comes a point where you just have to go for it. slowly, of course.

IdratherbeclimbingM9
6/04/2005
3:25:04 PM
Onsight
5/09/2004
10:23:56 AM

>Work in progress...
?

>A Short Story. By S.Carter
>______________________

>The wowsers were right of course.

>And so the self-proclaimed expert wiped a tear from his eye, blew his brown nose, and packed his camera bags yet once again.

>He walked out the door mumbling something under his breath. But nobody could say for sure what it was.

>If questions were asked, then he never knew it.

>For he was already gone.
>____________________

PN
29/04/2005
11:22:43 AM
This relocated for posterity

On 28/04/2005 Bob Saki wrote:
>The atmosphere was one of expectation at camp VI, I watched the ash tumble
>down the Abruzzi Ridge as I knocked out the remnants of my Ivory Pipe.
>(a relic from my hunting days on the Rhodesian plains) Today was the day
>to summitt Mt Godwin Austen.
>
>The weather was permitting and as I adjusted my tweed slacks and deerstalker
>hat I began in earnest. Budworth would accompany me today as will my manservant
>Fordington.
>
>It's damn hard to breathe up here and each step waa quite a trial, even
>smoking my blessed pipe saps my energy. But push on we must, lunch on the
>summit is the aim.
>
>I felt the wind whistling up my waistcoat, another possession from another
>life to this day I still belive it's the only waistcoat made entirely of
>Indian Hemp in the world.
>
>the summit was now in sight I belive another hour two should see us well
>ensconced in the feast I'd planned for today. Fordington rushed ahead to
>prepare..................
>
>As is always the case in these parts wwethaer changes faster then the
>lead during the Grand National. I could see a storm massing.
>
>However, we have come this far and drive on we will. The final step in
>any journey is a releif as much as an achievement and a time for all men
>to reflect and thank the Almighty he permits us to undertake such tasks.
>
>Fordington was a Godsend and as we sat down the final condiment ( Fortnam
>& Mason cranberry sauce, no less!) was placed on the table.
>
>It trully was a marvellous spread turkey, ham, pickles, cob loaf, black
>pudding, custard, scones and Spanish Claret - well you can't have everything.
>
>The wind was really on the job now. I had to button up my Tweed! But three
>well regaled men are ready for anything. I thought it prudent to leave
>the summitt and in a hurry conditions had deteriorated savagley. We might
>just be in a pickle.
>
>Then Budworth (great man in a crisis) suggested we turn our foldaway lunch
>talble upside down and descend by horseless sleigh (so to speak) to the
>relative safety of camp 6.
>
>We lashed ourselves and our supplies to the table .............Tally Ho
>could be heard from the roof of the world as we descended into the void
>gaining frighteneing speed all the while.........................................
>
>
>PART XV to follow
>

IdratherbeclimbingM9
16/06/2005
8:56:13 PM
This too copied for posterity from another thread.

HEX
16/06/2005
8:46:21 PM
>---------------------------
>UH-OH !!! --- look-out !! --- 'Chris Sharmaz' online ! ...
>Hope you like my latest short-story, Ben ;-)

>Hey ! --- M-ate ! --- whenareyagunnapostitonDamozthread?........pleaze ...
>-----------------------------

>Cheers bro:-))
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

HEX said;
12/06/2005
2:24:25 PM

On 12/06/2005 JCP wrote:
>>hexy where did ya learn russian?

>Twas quite awhile ago, now, Mousey --- on Mir would you believe..................I didn't really have much choice ... you see Damo had been on the 'station for 3 years before I had even arrived---in one of those pre-programmed-transport-ships... me being the only organic cargo --- and he keep making all these embarrassing-jokes about me to the Soviet crew, who had taught him Russian--- pidgeon-Russian anyway ...By the time I had sussed-out what they were all laughing about, Damo , and then Edward Frilly Pantz, were scheming-up&letting-rip with the next one ! --- all very frustrating, initially ... But I learn quick, and soon had them squirming in the political-machinations of my own making ... MuHa ! .......we all began to gell, jovially, on one particular 63-hour-day, (oh, did I mention that Mir was actually towed-out to Alpha-Centaurii, to be an orbitting-photographic-survey-platform ?), when Ben Cossey pulled out his climbing-rack ! ... Oh !, the "ooohhhss& aahhhs" this ellicited !!! --- Ben knew that the barren wastes on Alpha could never match the pristine, primal beauty of the Blueys , back home , so he had smuggled cams, nuts,and of course brackets& drawz.....the vibrant orange,pale-blue,shimmering-green of the cord threaded thru the #10 hex , had everyone --- even the usually dour-potato-headed Russkiz --- mesmerized, with a deep longing for a more familiar-Earth-grounded-paradigm ... the relentless looping-around this strange celestrial-space-body was beginning to drain-away any hope that *any of us* would ever-again breathe-in the rich-stench of Eucalyts, while gazing out across the Grose Valley or Wimmera Plain ... tears of nostalgia began to seep quietly down the soft, pink-hues of Climbingjacs delicate cheeks ... Voytekvladimirspunikskiwobblevodka noticed, and as if in a trance, he slid one of his huge arms around her shoulder .............."OK !!! --- so I admit it !!! --- I DID chip Mechanical Animals --- but whogivesafark !!! " ... Ben's sudden-Aussie-out-burst snapped us all into our tightly-deliniated-roles on the 'station ...Mike was the first to respond ... and almost harshly ... " Look !!! --- enuf of this squeamish-sentamentalism !! --- we all know why we are here ! --- if we don't concentrate on trying to find Hex's secret cyber-lair ---with all this photographic-wizardry that Simey has installed in the station---then itz going to be the Woomera-Baxter-Gulag for ALL of us !!! --- understood ??!! " ... I muttered "whatever..." , like everyone else,and wondered-off with Philby, who was dribbling-on about the cane-toads only being 30kms from Darwin, or something ... whoopee ... the big news was, of course , that The HEX was right here --- on this centrafugally-balanced-tin-can, spinning almost imperceptibly on itz axis, piercing the vacuum of space, thru a thin-misty-haze of titanium dust, which glowed&speckled&reflected as the distant-now-weak rays of Earth's sun reached-out, scattering a limited-spectrum of colors in thru the triple-glazed port-hole...



mousey
16/06/2005
9:32:50 PM
well since steve doesnt know where the paste is, i thought id do mylittle part for the community....

>Topic Date User
Havachatwithhexy... Thursday, 23 September 2004 At 6:03:05 PM HEX
Message
After drinking from the mind-altering-Addax-watering-hole, HEX wrote : I need to SCEEEEEEEAMMMMM !!! , I can't ! --- Is this real ?! or is it one of those dreams where your're aware that your're dreaming , but you have no control---even when you try to wake your self up, so you can stop the pain ! Dalai has managed to get my right-elbow into the wood-working vice and is slowly , clinically crushing flesh , bone and assorted jibblets , into a mind-spinning,nausi-ating , bloody pulp --- his facial-expression is devoid of any maliciousness--- this is just the way things have to be... ;mercifully , things warp under-water , I can breathe , I note with calm satisfaction ; I look up thru the surface-chop and can see a twisting/distorted view of Tel&Setha , high above , desperately simul-climbing their way to glory on The Fear (17) ; She clips the belay and moments later , Tel swings wildly out into space---a lump of choss-of-a-jug , under the massive roof has snapped ; Tel is laughing!!!,like a naughty boy who has just lit a newspaper-full-of-shit on the door step of the primary school teacher/witch who caught him bouldering across the urinal ; @&*#$ !!-- there's that pain again , it grows in intensity as I slowly turn to find that Mikl is poking a cheat-stick into a giant clam , provoking it to ' bite ' my right-elbow ; blood wafts into the watery breeze & tiny Joemor-fishy-things gleefully lap it up, I can only watch in resigned fascination and hope that..." GET OFF ME $#%^* ARM FOR %$#@$ SAKE !!! " --- at last I think I'm awake ! A blotchy , blood-shot-eyed face greets me with hung-over indifference--- it's Neilmont---and he's been sleeping on my elbow , in such a manner , that a nerve has been pinched against a knob of sandstone , at the back of the cave we grovelled into after a frenzied/debauched late-night session at the Mt Vic pub.; "What's that stink ,ya big sissy ?! " ; Neil quickly ,tho slurringly , explains that Damien and BA had been squirtting him with water-pistols full of 'aramis' and just as a pub-fight was about to erupt , Kent had dragged him off to this Mt Piddington cave to avoid any further trouble . " Who the F*** are you, anyway---aw nevermind who cares ---I'm gunna find Jono, for some Freezer-action, before Kent forces me to belay him on more Gr 12s at The County, again..."
Clicketty-clack-clicketty-clack ; the Lithgow to Sydney winds it's way down around the contours , below the cave , as I finally get to re-balance my aching body and stretch my tortured arm , in the lovely , warm, morning sun : AAAAHHHHHHHHHHH !!!!
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



nmonteith
5/07/2004
4:18:53 PM

i like it Hexy! Some serious acid munching ideas.


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