A bit of a quiet week really. The usual one day out climbing on Sunday saw us visit a new (to us - it's actually about 200 million years old) crag - Castlebergh at Settle. Developed by the Leeds Mafia a couple of years ago, we'd heard varying reports about it not all of which came from reliable sources. Plus there is a lot of The Emperor's new Cloth about new developments and it's usually best to let the hyperbole settle (no pun intended) before trying it for yourself.
So it proved - those routes to the left of the steep part are mediocre at best, crap at worst, definitely not worth the multiple stars that the download from the Leeds Wall website would have you believe. Perhaps more of note was the average age of the teams there - probably close to sixty - we felt quite young! The youngest person there was in their forties.
By the time we'd worked our way in to the steep bit we didn't feel up to the bouldery starts so decided to head over to Giggleswick North as there were some friends there. As it turned out there were lots of cars at the layby so quite a busy day. Our friends were on the first buttress so we nipped up an F6a we hadn't done before and then wandered over to the further buttresses which to be honest offer better climbing.
It turned out that we knew most of the teams on the crag, again most of those present were in their fifties, the only people that weren't were those in the only team we didn't know. A sign of the times I suppose.
Simon fancied Bad Genie at F6c. We'd looked at the start of this before and couldn't figure out just how to make it go at the given grade. Moving a metre or so to the left proved easier. I seem to have trouble with getting going on F6c, I'm fine at F6b+ but as soon as I move up a grade all the smoothness and ability seems to desert me. It has to be a mental problem as the moves themselves aren't difficult but I don't seem to be able to convince myself of this. I couldn't work out the final move over the final bulge on to easy ground so lowered down. Simon managed to get it first go, making a move out right at the top rather than straight up as I'd been trying. I was definitely tired though as even on a top-rope I struggled. Time to call it a day.
I don't know if my knee is definitely worse or I just think it is now that I know the problem. It may be that I sought medical analysis just at the time it was getting worse. Alternatively I may just be subconsciously focusing my attention on it. Whatever I'm wincing at times even when walking and occasionally when setting off cycling. I still haven't settled on a strategy to handle the arthritis other than continue to lose weight. Joint supplements are often recommended but a recent study casts doubt on their effectiveness. Best save my money then. Maybe it's all in the mind.