We’ve been climbing outdoors just about every other weekend. And I’ve had some big wins! We went to Nerriga three weeks ago and I lead my first climb. It was only 3 bolts and really slabby – but I did it!
So what’s lead climbing? I started trying to write a description, but wikipedia does it much better here. It’s a bit more dangerous than top-roping, because you are responsible for clipping the rope into protection as you go up. This means stopping, putting a clip on a bolt or a cam, pulling up some slack in the rope and clipping it in. If you fall just before you clip, you’ll fall twice the distance from your last clip – particularly scary when you’re still near the ground!
Then last week we went bouldering. I find bouldering quite demoralising – it’s full of long, powerful, dynamic moves, and leaps of faith. And there’s no rope to trust! But I got up one good climb. For the rest of the day, I just enjoyed being out in the bush. Climbing is taking us into patches of wilderness we’d never otherwise get to see.