17 July 2017

Climbing

I wouldn't want to be a rock climber. I am too much of a coward. The idea of falling from a rock face gives me the willies. However, I can "get" the appeal of rock climbing. Your body versus the rock. Mind over matter. Edging patiently upwards. Your fingers seeking handholds, your feet seeking footholds. The adrenalin pumping. Aware of the danger but determined to make it to the top.

The millstone edges west of Sheffield are a mecca for rock climbers. People arrive at these edges from all over the country and indeed from other countries too.
Yesterday I was out there again and with it being a sunny Sunday afternoon, the rock climbers were out in force with their ropes and chalk bags, carabiners and hammers. It is a fraternity but there are plenty of female rock climbers too. They are lithe, light and muscular and they hug the rocks they ascend. Rock climbers belong to a sub-culture with their own vocabulary and shared goals. They know what it means to cling to a rock just as much as mariners understand what it means to face a storm at sea.

You may have expected me to snap some pictures of the rock climbers. You were right.

27 comments:

  1. I panic just looking at the photos !

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're as cowardly as me Heron!

      Delete
  2. I am scared of heights, rock climbing if not for the faint of heart indeed. Great thoughts and photos!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You could write some great poetry after ascending a difficult rock face Mr B!

      Delete
  3. This winter I read a very dumb book on rock climbing.Usually I stop reading a terrible book but somehow or other I finished this one. Rock climbers are nuts.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They do seem to have a "different" attitude from the rest of us.

      Delete
  4. My daughter has recently developed a love of indoor rock climbing and delights in the muscles it grows!
    I am terrified of heights so I couldn't do indoor or outdoor but it must be a great thing to do on a nice day!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I guess it won't be long before your daughter is out on proper rock faces. Gulp!

      Delete
  5. I don't get the appeal, but then I've never seen the "fun" in activities that could kill you. (Or make you feel like you might die). Skydiving? Bungee jumping? Rock climbing? Oh, hell no! I'll stay on good solid ground and hopefully live a long, dull life!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Riding your yellow bike around Florence seems dangerous enough!

      Delete
    2. You're right! Do you know, I still have a tender spot on my elbow from that nasty fall I had...almost three months ago! If I can't even stay safe on a bicycle, you see why I'd never attempt anything as dangerous as rock climbing!

      Delete
  6. My father-in-law used to do it with his wife standing terrified at the bottom! I am too much of a coward to even consider it, let alone do it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is scary enough just watching it. As an A&E nurse in Sheffield my wife saw the results of many falls from rock faces. Some were brought in by helicopter. Some died.

      Delete
  7. I wondered if when climbers are always using the same rocks do they weaken them by keep banging holes in them?
    Briony
    x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Get a helmet and scale a few rock faces to find out Briony!

      Delete
    2. was that a silly question?

      Delete
  8. My idea of hell! I can't stand heights and anything over three feet is a height as far as I'm concerned. ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Are there stairs in your house?

      Delete
  9. Nothing on earth would ever have got me up there. I think my centre of gravity has always been the the wrong place.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Perhaps if there had been a salmon and tossed salad lunch at the top you might have ascended?

      Delete
  10. Some years ago, when I was younger and more lithe than I am today, several of my friends (independantly of each other) suggested I should try rock climbing - they were convinced it was going to suit me, and help me to focus and find peace of mind after Steve's death.
    Well, I never tried it; instead, I focused on running, which is perfectly alright for me.
    All the good locations for rock climbing are far out, impossible to reach without a car, and so it never came about for me; can't say I regret it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think that dedicated rock climbers are a special breed. They become addicted to the sport.

      Delete
  11. To each his own, I guess, but it's not my idea of fun; it never has been.

    It's difficult enough to step over a pebble! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah those pebbles can be nightmarish!

      Delete
  12. Not my cup of tea! I would like to be daring enough to skydive or bungee jump, though. But it will never happen. On the scale of thrill versus life, life wins.

    ReplyDelete
  13. It's definitely not my thing!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, and don't even get my brother started about the environmental scourge posed by all those climbers pounding steel pegs into the rock faces...

      Delete

Mr Pudding welcomes all genuine comments - even those with which he disagrees. However, puerile or abusive comments from anonymous contributors will continue to be given the short shrift they deserve. Any spam comments that get through Google/Blogger defences will also be quickly deleted.