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Adrian Japp's Reports

Edition of 11/1/2010

Index to Adrian's reports...
Adrian Japp, Idwal Ice, January 2010
Adrian Japp, Snowdon, January 2003

----- Original Message -----
From: "Adrian Japp"
Sent: Monday, January 11, 2010 8:31 AM
Subject: [] Idwal

Chucked a few pics and vids on the web at:

Snowdon, Adrian Japp, January 2003

From: Adrian Japp (
Subject: TR: A Comedy of Terrors: Central Trinity Gully follies
Newsgroups: uk.rec.climbing
Date: 2003-01-07 02:50:42 PST

A perfect day.

The sun was watery, bright and warm. As we ventured up the pyg track, we were taking off layers to keep cool, till we were down to T-shirts and Helly's!

As we gazed over to the Trinity Gullies it all looked a bit thin. This was expected, and we weren't too bothered whether we bagged a route or not. It was just nice to be out, breathing in some fresh mountain air. We ambled across to the base of the gullies and donned crampons. Inspired by the crunch of frozen ground, and thin smears of ice, we started up the face to the left hand side of Central Trinity. Marek ventured (bravely) up a short face, whilst I traversed round into the gully proper. At first it was relatively easy going, with bits of dodgy thin stuff and bare rock to keep it interesting (and a little unnerving). It started to get harder as the gully continued. I could see Marek hacking away to my left as I dug into the ice and turf to ascend further. Difficult, this, I thought, as I approached a crux move underneath the large block. There was no way to get round it. The rock was bare to the left of it (the normal route as I'm told). Fortunately, there is a nice hole between the block and the right hand gully wall. Unfortunately, you need to get your sack off to get through it! Alpine style (light) was not the order of the day, and my rucksack (full of pies, rope and harness - more of this later) was unwieldy and heavy. I struggled to get it off, but managed to push it through the hole and rest it on the top of the block while I climbed up, axes dangling from wrists. There was plenty of purchase though, and I was soon through, despite my trepidation. I ascended a bit further as Marek took some photographs (see his site at [click] for very impressive shots), and past a difficult small bulge. Axe placements weren't as positive as I would like, and I started to feel a little uneasy about the ground ahead. Marek was in view to my left, about 10m away and ascending up the ridge. As he said it was easier ground, I decided that I would diagonally traverse as a better option to messing around in the gully.

Big mistake.

I did indeed ascend diagonally to my left, only to be met by thinner ground, less frozen turf, and some dodgy front point and axe placements. Shit, I do not like this. I messed around, trying to make some 'delicate moves, on paper thin smears of ice, and small clumps of icy turf, which covered 'some parts of the rock. Shit. Shit. Shit. I came to a scary halt. I had my right foot firmly placed over a small icy rock spike, the left just into the ice with the front points, and both of my axes into a clump of turf. No climbing down, no easy left or right. Bugger. Getting shaky by now, and wishing that I had given Marek the rope that was in 'my' sack, and that I had donned my harness.

It was with relief that two guys (who were sensibly roped and using plenty of pro) started moving past my right, in the gully. Clearly seeing that I was bricking it, the leader (who's name I cannot remember, but to whom I'll be eternally grateful) offered to drop a top rope to assist me in my move back into the gully, and to a point where I could anchor in. He anchored himself in and dropped a loop. I tentatively unhooked my wrist from one of my axes, and now shivering, fumbled with the rope to get it over my shoulders. After much messing, I went for it, and with breath held, made the moves: one axe, and with a monster reach... it bit, and I scuttered desperately across and upwards within twenty ice axe hits to reach a point of safety. Relief. Yes. Thank God for that!!

I moved up with the guys to a safer stance where I anchored in, unpacked harness, rope, helmet, slings and anything else that would 1) keep me moving and not cold, and 2) ensure that I was in a point of safety (although by now, I was safe, I was tired and cold, and just wanted to get past any more difficulty!). The leader, the kindly carried on climbing, and passed the end of the rope to Marek, who expertly belayed from a boulder, to bring me up to the snow field!!

I then unroped, coiled it, and we ascended, through pleasantly steep but easy ground to Snowdon summit. My pies never tasted so good!!

As it was now late (around 15:10). We descended. My heels were bloody killing me by the halfway down point, through much thrutching and scraping on the face where I had become 'stuck'. We got to Pen-Y-Pass car park at around 17:30. Rounding of what was, in summary: an excellent day (in a 'lovely when it stops' kind of way), and a good learning experience (although a 'learning experience' was not on my mind at the time).

Thanks to Marek for his expert belaying, and great photographs of me ;-) and to the two guys suffering the idiot messing about!!!

When my heels have healed (!) up, and the snow and ice has consolidated, (after a bit of snow/freeze/thaw/freeze action), I think I'll have a pop at the gully again!!
Adrian Japp

More of Adrian's writing here

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