Below The Belt

I posted a couple of months back about a new endurance project I was working on.

"The project in question was originally proposed by Mr Campbell in 2008, and set up by Mr Steel. It links the 15m Beastly Behaviour 8a/29 into the top 20m of One Hit To The Body 8a+/30, via a 13 move traverse to create a left tending line of epic proportions."

I'd done both routes individually a couple of years ago, but linking them together without a decent rest seemed insane. Beastly is one of the more bouldery and strength-intensive routes on the cliff, and One Hit is a cumulative fatigue route with a dynamic hit-or-miss crux up high.

I almost did it cleanly five sessions prior, falling three moves from the top. Since then, I never managed to get that high again. I was starting to dispair and really doubt myself and my approach. It also didn't help that the hot weather was moving in with a vengeance (32°C days). I'd planned to head to the Grampians in one week, therefore Sunday was my final chance to try the route before I left and it would be too hot once I returned, hence the final chance for the year.

Pressure on.

But no. The thing that had hurt me previously was my expectations around when I was going to do it. I knew if I was going to have any chance to do it, I would have to let all of that go, forget the outcome and just climb. And I did. After nearly three months of working the project and with no expectations, I clipped the anchors yesterday.

Below The Belt 30m 31/8b
  • 29 attempts (+6 on Beastly in 2007, +10 on One Hit in 2007)
  • 21 clean ascents of Beastly in the quest for the link
  • Crap conditions: 29°C and minimal breeze
  • 12 days of work over the ~3 months
The thing I'm learning is that I enjoy the struggle. The harder I have to work, the more it smacks me down and the longer it takes, the sweeter the reward.

One happy camper. Love this stuff. © S Cujes 2009