74 is the twenty first distinct biprime, and the eleventh of the form (2.q)

In some ways I wish I wasn’t writing a blog entry for today, but unfortunately I am. What happens when you go out to the crag without climbing shoes on purpose because you want to save your skin and be fresh for the following day? Today, in my case, I ended up thrashing my skin. I spent the morning doing stats work, but eventually the blue skies, warm breeze, and glowing sunshine won me over and I decided to head out and meet Neil & crew. They were up at Cuisiniere, where I found them sat underneath Hale Bopp. I’d come out with only my video camera and tripod, with the intent to get some nice scenic shots and perhaps some footage of hale bopp. Unfortunately I’d arrived a little late in the day and the team was waning. I got some footage of failure, but it might turn out well since I shot it via a method that will yield excellent slow motion properties (the video equivalent of shutter priority and highest frame rate). Perhaps I’ll post a sample up when I get the scripts sorted and have a chance to test the process. I hope that will satisfy the raging homo fathers that might be reading this blog (what a demographic).

Before leaving the hale bopp area Louis wanted a go on Chatterton, 7B/7C/8A, which is the run and jump problem next to hale bopp. After filming them all trying I decided it was worth a go for a laugh. I’m not lying when I say I then proceeded to have upwards of 50 goes. I was getting progressively closer, but it felt like I was at the limit of my jumping ability, whilst my fingers were about 1cm from the top. I needed another 4cm to be able to actually get my fingers over the top and hang on. I had so many goes, slapping the top, but only having a mm or two of skin over the top. I just felt like I couldn’t jump any higher! I’d tried various run ups, varied the angles, varied the speeds, but to no avail. I was getting jaded, tired, and hungry. By this point I’d probably spent about 90 minutes trying it. I know, I’m a fool, I get succored in too easily sometimes and then the will to succeed takes over. Running and jumping isn’t normally so complicated, and I am going to the first to slag this problem off for being stupid. But I am also going to the first to admit it’s complexity. Perhaps if you’re tall it is simple because the top is nowhere near your limit of jump, but for me it was at my limit. I was getting more and more process as the goes went on, but lacked consistency. Sometimes it just felt completely wrong and sometimes it clicked, resulting in tickling the top. My left quad was beginning to really hurt from the leap onto the right foothold. I expected it to be the other way round, but even now my left quad is painful… Eventually I found the key to that extra couple of cm. I had a great angle of attack but my speed was a little low (mainly because speed was inversely proportional to accuracy with the right foot). However, I’d now had so many goes that my accuracy rate had increased, meaning I could afford to dabble with a little more speed. I set up for one more try, went tops off for power/glory/style, and hit it! My run up was well executed, I took off my left leg well, my right leg landed perfectly on the foothold… winding up as I transferred my weight forward and then springing upwards as I reach the balance point. BOOM! I was holding on the top, very much to my relief, but also pleased! I wasn’t sure if I could find that extra height, but when I hit everything perfectly it gave me just the height I required. I’m sure if the top was another 2cm I wouldn’t be able to do it, that’s how close it felt to my limit of jumping. Regarding the slash grade, and the large discrepancy at that, it all comes down to how it felt for me. As I say, I know people who’ve flashed it and found it easy, but I also know there are 8C climbers who would NEVER be able to do it. Some people are of the opinion that you can’t grade dyno’s or stupid jump moves like Chatterton, but I think you can. Since grades are only a personally subjective opinion on difficulty, you can compare it to other things that took you the same level of time/energy. I put it on my scorecard as 8A, not because I am grade chasing, but because I think it was at my absolute limit of jumping ability. I could not do a similar style of problem that was harder, therefore 8A is probably about right. It took me far more goes than other 8A’s I’ve done in font, but that’s because of the complex nature of running and jumping (that’s not a joke). However, i am still of the opinion that this is a stupid problem, and given climbing boots plus a day at the rocks I would never, ever, try such a thing. But the combination of being up there, seeing a problem that was possible in trainers, and then wanting to find out if it was actually possible for me just fed my psyche levels and spurred me onwards.

Of course, I got video footage, and even some amazing looking pictures courtesy of Louis, so if I can get them off him tomorrow I’ll update the blog. I’m sure they’ll look cool. However, my skin is not primo, so tomorrow WILL be a rest day. I say that now, but who knows what I’ll be writing in 24 hours…


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