Sunday, March 30, 2008

Spring has sprung

Getting home from Norway last Monday it was still cold and snowy in Helsinki. Tony and I even went out on Thursday night to check andicefall I had seen earlier in the winter but it hadn't reformed. Tony headed home, I swung past the airport icefalls and bouldered around a bit at the bottom, not getting up enough bottle to actually solo something. But Friday was well above freezing and the sun shone strongly all day so I decided rock climbing was the thing for the weekend. Saturday morning, I resorted all my rack from winter into summer mode. Ice screws, bulldogs, pitons, screamers and other associated winter paraphernalia were boxed up for the summer and all the rock gear retrieved from the shed and re-racked for the warmer months ahead. With a cup of coffee at hand, sunlight streaming through the window and listening to the Slate Political Gabfest as I did it, I really can't think of more relaxing way to pass half an hour. It's sad I know, but I'm easily satisfied.

Ready for summer (for climbers noticing the abnormally large numbers of quickdraws, please see here)

In the afternoon we headed to Kvarnby, always a quick drying crag. I felt weak and climbed like a donkey, but the deep white snow, bright blue skies, and warm sunlight made up for it.

Simon races up another route

Your correspondent not making much headway on the horribly crimpy Isidor, 6a+

Deep snow on the ground but warm dry rock

Your correspondent losing the battle with gravity off Isidor (6a+) yet again

I never did finish Isidor - oh well, it's a redpoint target for future weeks - but in the sunshine and quiet forest it didn't seem that important. I just need to regrow the skin on my finger tips before trying again! Thanks to Tony for snapping the pictures of me.

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