Monthly Archives: April 2015

ARE BLISTERS PSYCHOLOGICAL?

Strange day really, a good friend called in late morning and after coffee we decided on a walk up Longridge Fell. Whilst putting on my boots in the porch I recounted how I last year I unexpectedly developed a blister on my toe despite having walked for miles in these admittingly  cheap boots. He replied that his more expensive well worn in Meindl boots never gave a problem.

Off we went up the fell in a cold Arctic wind, hail storms were blowing in across Chipping Vale and the Yorkshire peaks looked alpine from here, not that you can see them in this photo.

Snow showers across Bowland.

Snow showers across Bowland.

Within 20 mins –  ‘Just need to check a sore spot on my foot’  spoke the Rockman. Why?  When he  removed his boot there was a large sore blister on his heel.   Despite my usual systematic preparations I had no first aid kit in my sack. However being an ex scout he had some tape on his poles. Boots off , tape on, boots on. There was no obvious reason for his blister apart from the curse I must have put upon him by our earlier discussion.

A good few miles were then explored through the forest, A bit of fitness for me before a longish walk and for the unlucky Rockman something to reflect upon –  are blisters psychological?

PS. Nepal needs all the help we can give following the disastrous earthquake. 

Why don’t you donate now at       http://www.dec.org.uk

ROCKING ON AGAIN.

Crowshaw Quarry.

Crowshaw Quarry.

Since my last post I’ve survived a heavy week of birthday celebrations [21 again!] and a trip along the Silk Road in Uzbekistan [more of that later] but ‘mysteriously’ gained about 7 pounds in weight. I blame the latter on the Uzbek Plov, surely not the vodka!?  So with the arrival of all this beautiful warm sunny weather I had to get out and flex my muscles on the rock. Craig Y Longridge has had all the usual suspects training away – I struggled. The strong winds also had the unfortunate trick of blowing your mat away just when you were getting scared of the drop. So I found my way up to the recently developed Crowshaw Quarry for some new boulder problems on the cleaned low wall to the left. These were in perfect condition in the morning sunshine yesterday but unfortunately my soft skin, unused to climbing gritstone, soon produced a couple of finger flaps.Taping up always unravels for me and bleeding soon ensured leading to an early lunch – will be back.

Starting Tweeter and the Monkey Man.

Starting Tweeter and the Monkey Man.

But that was only bouldering. Because of my toe operation its over a year since I climbed with Rod, or did any routes. I could not let this warm April weather go by without getting out onto some proper climbs. Over the phone the choice was Giggleswick or Wallowbarrow. I went for the former to avoid the long drive, could have been a mistake. Today the sun was soon warming the limestone which I found to be far steeper and more polished than on my last visit. We had the whole of Giggleswick to ourselves, maybe everyone else had gone to Wallowbarrow.

Thanks to Rod’s leading I managed to second half a dozen 5’s – [memo for tonight – no food and definitely no vodka]. The day was superb and the heat built up as the afternoon progressed.

Over the garden wall.

Over the garden wall.

From the anchor chains I had time to appreciate the situation in the valley and had some superb views over to Pendle and up to Buck Haw Brow. The motor bikes were screaming past.

Golf course, Giggleswick and Pendle.

Golf course, Giggleswick and Pendle.

Buck How Hill.

Buck Haw Brow.

Could be stiff in the arms tomorrow.