Froggatt Edge Climbing
Sun 5th Aug, 2018
Meet Report – Froggatt - 5th August 2018
Present :- Andy Stratford, Gowry Sisupalan, James Meakin, Dave Wylie, Colin Maddison, Mary Stuart, Andy Pierce, Tony Major, Steve Graham, Sheena Hendrie, Sabina Cosulich, Rich and Julie Johnson out for a walk along the edges, and meet leader Roger Dyke.
It was a special treat to welcome Sabina and Sheena, after a long “no see” due to the attractions of Cambridge and golf.
A fine sunny day and dry rock – just like last year!
Andy S and Gowry made an early start on Trapeze Direct HS 4c, then Gowry impressed everyone with her cool lead of Allen’s Slab S 4a. Andy S put in a swift impressive lead of Diamond Crack HS 4b (another Froggatt gem) followed by Gowry and Dave. Gowry made a steady lead of Congestion Crack HS 4b and Sickle Buttress S 4a.
James took the meet leader off for a gentle amble – as befits his age and inability - up Heather Wall, HVD.
Tony Major and Andy P ticked off Trapeze Direct HS 4c then attacked Heartless Hare E5 5c but gave it best after a long swing and vanished off to Sunset Slab HVS 4b. Tony led Pedestal Crack HVS 5a and the classic 3-star Hawks Nest Crack VS 4b. Finally, Andy couldn’t resist the even-more-classic ‘Top 50’, Chequers Buttress HVS 5a. Well done that team!
Sheena and Sabena warmed up on the old KMC favourite, Bowdon Black’s Green Gut HS 4a; then Sabina shot up Allen’s Slab S 4a, pausing only to drop a wire onto the heathery ledge to give Sheena extra interest when she followed.
At this point the meet leader had to leave to attend his young brother’s Golden Wedding celebration, where the champagne inspired him to shatter the peace of the Cheshire countryside by charging round the paddock on his nephew’s offroad motorbike.
Meanwhile, back at the crag, Colin & Mary made up for their late arrival by knocking off Heather Wall HVD, Trapeze VD, Sickle Buttress S, and North Climb – a 4a VD to the left of Sunset Slab.
To round off the day Andy led Gowry up Green Gut HS, Sunset Crack HS 4b and the bold Sunset Slab HVS 4b
You'll just be back from the Alps? Then you’ll be keen to get back on lovely sound grit again....
Plenty of parking in the National Trust’s Haywood Pay+Display car park just off the A625, 400m S of the Grouse Inn. Free if you have your NT Membership Card with you.
Or if you are early enough, free at the side of the A625 near the start of the track to Froggatt Edge, at 255775.
Fifteen minutes gentle level walk to the crag.
Or if it is absolutely tipping down, 5 mins to the bar of the Grouse - and don’t panic, the crag dries quickly after a shower and indeed after heavy rain.
Something for everyone here – twenty routes at Severe and below, some superb HS’s, several days’ climbing at VS and above: and classics at all standards.
Six of the top 50 routes in Eastern Grit are here.
Plenty of trees to give shelter from the sun, and it’s child- and dog-friendly too.
For this special occasion, I’ll have my mobile switched on.
Meet 10.30 onward below Allen’s Slab (a delicate S4a) and Slab Recess, the slightly bold Diff.
Just to the right from here, two athletic moves get you up Trapeze Direct HS 4c. Or traverse right for Trapeze itself – the popular VD, well-protected at the top only if you look carefully.
Further right is “arguably the best line on the crag” which our own Nat Allen and Bowdon Black dug out of the ferns in 1948: Green Gut HS 4a.
Further right still, a good collection of strenuous high E numbers (more Elastoplast) then a final classic – the delightful Chequers Buttress, HVS 5a, which gets my vote as the best route on the crag. I always used to fall off the move onto the arête. I doubt if I can get that far these days, but I'm sure you will.
Going left from basecamp, Sickle Buttress S 4a only needs one jam but does need confidence in friction on the little curved ramp that prompted its name, and careful thought to leave the comfortable ledge at the top of the ramp. It may only be Severe, but the route is far more polished below the ramp than above it….
Further left, Broken Crack VS 5a demands good jamming or a good first-aid kit.
Then there is the superb, Diamond Crack HS 4b, scene of one of my scary moments, and the superb classic HVS 5a, Valkyrie.
Further left still you can entertain the crowd as you struggle to gain the slab of Tody’s Wall HVS 5a or test your nerve on Three Pebble Slab – another classic HVS 5a, with a KMC story behind it.
Then there’s the classic well-protected VD, Heather Wall. You’ve made the first two moves? Good, you’ve passed the crux.
The juggy delight of the steep Terrace Crack, another HS 4b is not to be missed as you move on to the well-protected pleasure of Sunset Crack HS 4b, or the unprotected thrill of Sunset Slab HVS 4b.
Now, as we head back to the cars, there are the Froggatt boulders……