I woke to "Get up now or we're going without you". I got up and ate breakfast and packed it felt like the middle of the night. I looked at my watch. 6.30! I had been tricked.
We were at the bottom of the crag by 8.15. Dan swiftly dispatched Grand Alliance E4 6a, a route he had gone off-route on a couple of months previously. Then I lead Prana E3 5c, a route that I had failed to get to the top of a few years back. Its good to settle old scores, I got up Twikker at Millstone earlier in the week - a route that I fell off and tore the ligaments in my ankle on last year.
After lunch we headed across the valley to Goat Crag to climb The Voyage a three star, three pitch E3. I can remember walking up there a few years back and meeting a pair on their way back from failing on the route we intended to do, due to heavy vegetation, because of the amount of moss and grime on them we turned tail as well. I wouldn't say Voyage was the cleanest route in the world but it is certainly worth 3 stars and the holds were clean. After quickly doing the first pitch of Praying Mantis we headed back to the valley well satisfied with our day. Maybe early starts are the way forward, it's a long time since I've done that many pitches in a day and still been back in time for a pub meal.
Hopefully I'll be back doing proper racing soon. I've started going to yoga in an effort to improve my posture on the bike. If you look at the picture of me on the Fred Whitton blog entry it shows how much I bend at the small of my back and not at the hips. This is what caused my back injury. My Gleuts, quads and hamstrings are way too tight. No doubt caused by years of running and riding and racing then getting in a car and driving home, seizing up on the way.
I lead a group of people on the Torver - Duddon Valley - Walna Scar (Nr. Coniston, Lakes) mountain bike ride on Sunday. They all have long travel trail bikes and "f*****g hate going up big hills". They did not look happy when I pointed up at Walna Scar from the bottom of the Duddon Valley! But an hour later when they saw the view from the top down to Coniston and were told they wouldn't have to pedal for 1700ft their eyes lit up. Another top day -and no back ache. Stretching and yoga works.