|It's that time of year again: gritstone is back on the agenda. And making the most of the cold frition is Lisa Rands from the States, who stepped up the psychological pressure by becoming the first woman to climb gritstone E8 - End Of The Affair at Curbar! |
First ascended by Johnny Dawes in 1986, this 14m route is described as follows in the local Rockfax guidebook: "The archetypal grit arete, technical and ultra committing with good runners at one-third height and the crux at the top. The leader's life might be saved if the second man is prepared to jump off the belay ledge, but timing is kinda critical!!!"
28 year-old Rands is best known for her hard bouldering, both outdoors (Midnight Lightning, Yosemite National Park, Plain High Drifter V11 Buttermilks, California) and in competitions (in 2002 she won the Lecco stage of the World Cup and placed 5th overall).
She stunned the British climbing scene last year by climbing White Lines E7 at Curbar, becoming the second woman ever to have led grit E7 (Airlie Anderson, Masters Edge E7 6c, Millstone). This year she has taken female gritstone ascents into a completely different realm.