I cut my teeth and learnt to climb on the Peak District gritstone and ever since I just love climbing on gritstone. I bumped into Steve many years ago at Cratcliffe, he was climbing an E2 on a shunt. We swapped numbers (before FB/computers! Probably!) and he basically taught me to climb.
Over the following 10 year period we got into a very definite routine, we would meet Kev, Sue and Dave at Steve's cold house in Winster (lovely house but he was too tight to have the heating on!) most Saturdays and Sundays. I can still remember it clearly now, he'd sit in his kitchen in his big duvet jacket to keep warm, we'd have a brew (often 2), go through guidebooks before heading off to climb somewhere in the Peak, obviously favouring gritstone, but also limestone if we had to!
It was a fun, and climbing wise very productive time, and I ended up climbing some E3's (my climbing high point!)!
|Phil's first grit route I think (Heather Wall)|
Eventually change was in the air (?life happened) and the whole group disbanded the same summer/year. Kev and Sue moved to France, Dave moved to Brussels, Steve fell in love and moved to Somerset and I resigned from my job as a telecoms engineer and moved to the NW to go to University and study to be an Occupational Therapist.
I see Dave most winters for skiing now, and Kev and Sue pop back to England regularly (and bring wine - big thanks), but I'd not heard from Steve since he left 10 years ago.
|Hargreaves Original Route|
|Me on BAWS crawl (couldn't let Phil miss this)|
|Right unconquerable from other side|
|top of right unconquerable|
It was a fantastic day, I think we were all on form as we cruised 3 classic VS's, 4 classic HVS's (Goliaths Groove, Right Unconquerable, BAWS Crawl and Eliminator) and 1 x E1 (The Link).
|Goliaths Groove (the tricky bit at the start!)|
|Phil learning to 'feel the force'|
|Steve - chopper man!|