New Peak District gritstone climbs by Tom Randall
At Hallmoor Quarry in England's Peak District British climber Tom Randall has made the first ascent of Soft Parade E6 6b, while at Gardoms Edge he established Porride Egg E6 6a and Nah'han E8 6c.
The wildly beautiful Peak District national park is wedged between Manchester and Sheffield, two of the biggest and most industrialised cities in Northern England and despite its proximity to these metropolises, even today it is possible to discover and do something completely new. Tom Randall knows a thing or two about this and during the last few weeks the gritstone specialist made the first ascent of three interesting new routes.
The first is called Soft Parade, an "ultra-thin crack" at Hallmoor Quarry which offers a crux move similar to that on the famous Cobra Crack at Squamish in Canada. Fortunately though this new route is somewhat less demanding, somewhere in the region of E6 6b and ever so slightly more difficult therefore the second new route, Porride Egg E6 6a at Gardoms Edge. This crag located between Curbar Edge and Birchen Edge also hosts the third new line, a "hidden gem" called Nah'han which climbs the prow on Crocodile Buttress at E8 6c.
Given the number of highly talented climbers living nearby, it seems difficult to believe that such an obvious, plum line had not been climbed previously and this may in part be due to the fact that other crags such as Stanage, Frogatt and Millstone to name just three exert a bigger draw. "Gardoms Edge often gets overlooked because much of the view of the crag is obscured by birch and oak trees at its base" Randall explained to Planetmountain "but it's a real shame as the quality of climbing is superb and matches many of the other brilliant gritstone edges."
Tom Randall gritstone first ascents
Nah'Han E8 6c
My Kai E8 6c
Captain Cutloose E7 6c
Apoplexy E7 6b
Bird Brain E7 6b
The Jasmine Corridor E6 6c
The Economist E6 6b
Huevo Uno E6 6b
Shape Shifter E6 6b
King Elmore E6 6a/6
06/11/2011 - Century Crack climbed all free