Monday 1st March

Out on The Brack again today with John Jackson. We climbed a probable new line between Hell’s Teeth and The Abyss. It gave three pitches of fairly uninspiring II/III up to a point level with and close to the top of the blocks on Hell’s Teeth. However, it then finished up a superb chimney/cave feature. This required unusual techniques to traverse 15m horizontally over chockstones with a dark, seemingly bottomless chasm below. John’s approach was to downclimb and then perform a long twisting bridge; mine was to perform a full body brace across the chimney and shuffle. Chockstones and the walls at the far end then allowed vertical progress to be made to eventually stand on the top of the huge flake forming the outside of the chimney, before stepping back on to the crag to top out. A very memorable pitch and difficult to grade, we thought IV,4 or IV,5 and would have been less strenuous without rucsacks. John got the crux lead and has given it a provisional name of Chockstone Alley.

John entering the chimney/cave system
John entering the chimney/cave system

The turf was well frozen, although largely buried under a thick layer of unconsolidated, but stable snow. Clear blue skies and a light north wind all day, with snow that had been in the sun forming a crust after returning in to the shade.

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