Long time no blog. A relief I'm sure. I could pretend that after punting spectacularly in Spain I'd made a sensible tactical decision to let my mind, body, and now-recurring golfer's elbow to heal, ready for a steady and fresh progression up to full fitness and psyche. Well it was half that and half demoralisation and depression which is never the ideal mindstate for a dedicated climber. I don't need to write any more about that and you don't need to read it. Suffice to say I dipped down enough to realise that progression back would be slow and tentative not steady and fresh, but this did come with the realisation to actually take it slow.....some wisdom has been gained from years battling this shit.
Thus, hopefully, beginner's mind. Accepting I will be initially shit but assuming that all the winter's training and last year's mileage will be lurking and give some latent potential. So I went down to TCA and bumbled around on the circuit wall (how come I did the yellow within a couple of sessions, but now can't get past 33-35 no matter how good I feel? Pffft), and then more importantly went down to Yorkshire lime and bumbled around on trad and sport. Amongst other things I cruised Prime Cut which I'd somehow backed off last year in a fit of sore feet and fiddly gear. So apparently I'm better at Giggleswick E2 than I was this time last year - SICK DUDE.
Anyway...5 days mileage at various crags, I felt a bit weak and a bit awkward having to place protection from bad positions, but other than that I felt reassuringly natural, despite it being the first time on UK rock since Oc-fucking-tober. I think I still have a certain "go for it" vibe in my mind following last year's trad, which shows promise as long as the body catches up. I also really enjoyed what I was doing despite UK inland limestone being my least favourite rock. Actually having fun - yup that's a good idea.
Of course this cruisey start to the trad season has skidded to an icy halt - I went down to TCA in a snowstorm yesterday, and I'll be going to Ratho in a snowstorm today. Still, I need to train and if I didn't lose my trad nouse after 5 months I shouldn't lose it after 5....days....weeks?? Let's hope it's not that fucking long.
Also being out and about on UK rock does have some additional benefits: