Sat 11th Aug - Sun 12th Aug, 2007
Two Crags Meet
Cratcliffe Tor & Chatsworth Edge
Present at some point: Al Metelko, Dave Dillon, Dave Wylie, Kate Sparks, Rob Allen, Trish Cranston, Trudie Young, Chris Williams, Richard and Mary, Pete, Chris(tine), Chris.
Recommended equipment: Umbrella, ear plug, spectacles, tweed.
Cratcliffe Tor showered with dappled sunlight, edging through the trees was the playground for Saturday. An old black and white photo appearing in one of the guides indicated that perhaps three feet of ground was, and still is, missing from the start of some of the routes.
The grades of those raised routes haven't been altered by later guide-book writers, they presumably assuming the current population has developed an extra three feet of reach in the meantime. Oddly, most of the other climbs where erosion was less evident were given more elevated grades.
Anyway, the assembled parties swarmed over whatever took their fancy.The acoustics of the place lend itself to semi-isolation in each of its stony folds, though for miles further down the valley I imagine you could hear exactly what was going on, even if it made no sense. However, in one's own little bay all that intruded were the gentle squeals of delight from some neighbouring acoustic megaphone. An advance party that went to inspect the Druid Inn were never seen again. When the main troupe arrived, they were rebutted by Guardian wielding punters who'd bagged all the grub. Probably wasn't much of a loss as inside it looked like the pub below Helvelyn, gone all posh and up market.
Headed over to the Robin Hood Inn, next to the Eric Byne camp site. Here, we tanked up on needed resources until the dark arrived. The evening accommodation was a choice of the camp site, the CC hut and the back seat of a car. The camp site was in many ways better than the Swiss camp site at Vicosoprano, it being flatter, not as crowded with brits, no worries about paying for hot water as there wasn't any, no annoying roasting sun in the mornings, nominal camp site fees personally collected whilst in the comfort of ones own bedding. A gentle stroll to crags in many directions. The list goes on.
Chatsworth Edge dappled with showers of something light, dodging in the trees became the adventure for Sunday. Steeling oneself against the sirens in the Robin Hood Inn offering coffee and debauchery, the Sunday melee set off. Rain during the night, seemingly light at the camp site, appeared to have swept the foot bridge aside, leaving a teetery crossing to the crag.
The rock, presumably used to years of rain, was dry in no time. Epics commenced on the Emperor Buttress and later at Death Rattle Buttress. The sun enticed leaders to stay on top and so entice others to have a crack at theirs. Lunch was hauled up and munched on the Emperor buttress summit amongst the greenery.
A final trip back to the Robin Hood for another sample of fine ale in the sunshine.
Thanks to all for coming along and exploring these entertaining crags. And he means ALL?
"Last weekend my friend Mary and I joined Dave Dillon's meet in the Peak. We had been invited along by an acquaintance of Mary who wasn't on the meet. We were both appreciative of the way two complete strangers were welcomed and accepted. We had a really good weekend." (Good work, this is the way to get new members. Ed.)
Saturday on Cratcliffe Tor, Sunday on Chatsworth Edge with an option on staying at the Eric Byne camp site on Saturday night.
Cratcliffe Tor (SK 228623) is south east facing (sun trap), dries quickly and has a modicum of routes at most grades, whilst Chatworth Edge (SK 275720) is north facing (heaven on a hot day), probably doesn't dry as quick but has more routes to temp.
The optional Eric Byne camp site over half a kilometre walk up hill above the Robin Hood Inn on the A619. It is very basic with cold water and a toilet. Bring ear plugs if it turns out to be Duke of Edinburgh weekend. Costs £2.50 per person.