January 16th, 2019 by gep7452

It’s a new year and so now would seem like an appropriate time to layout my plans and aspirations for the coming year. 2018 was an action packed and competition filled year, culminating in the finale of the world championships in Innsbruck in September of 2018 an event that I won and that highlighted a peak in my competition performance so far. Throughout my climbing career to this point competition has been the main focus of my climbing goals, something no doubt motivated by my many years as a competitive swimmer. However while competition in 2019 still remain at the forefront of my aspirations, especially with the World Championships in Tokyo this year, a competition that I am incredibly excited for. I am also looking to turning my attention towards more outdoor endeavours wanting to push my climbing on rock to new extremes. 

 

Climbing outdoors has always been a focus of mine and I’ve climbed all over Britain and the rest of the world. It’s something that I’ve always enjoyed. But due to my hectic competition schedule and the fact I’m still a full time student without a driver’s licence often limited the chances that I had to get out on the rock. However all this is set to change, very soon I’ll be leaving school. New Year’s resolutions have never really been my thing but this year it was time to set some goals. Time to push the limits on rock and travel around the world and adventuring.

 

I’ve always been a mostly indoor climber only going out when opportunity arises. Now I want to send hard and in as many disciplines as I can. I’m looking to get more involved in trad, something I have done once before with my current goal being to lead Flying buttress direct something I nearly managed on my last trip to Stanage, before being rained off. I’m also looking to push my sport climbing challenging myself to climb 7b this year. Most of the climbing that I’ve done outdoors has been bouldering, I’ve compiled quite a list of blocs to tick. Such classics as Deliverance and Captain Hook are problems that still need to be completed. Overall I’m looking to push myself in all outdoor activities and push the boundaries both in the UK and abroad.

One of my first trips in the planning is to follow in the footsteps of Sierra Blair-Coyle and explore the climbing and bouldering that Iceland has to offer. Some areas are relatively unexplored by the climbing community and so I hope come back with a few first ascents.

So a quick summary of what to watch out for in the New Year. I’m super excited to see what the year brings and the challenges that I’m gunna face as I leave school and start adult life for real. A philosophy that I’ve always loved is the idea of creating stories, something that will last when you can’t adventure anymore, something to tell people, something exciting that will last. So here’s to 2019 and creating those stories

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September 2nd, 2018 by gep7452

Please enjoy my Vlog of the Innsbruck Training Camp I attended thanks to Boost Charitable Trust.

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October 13th, 2017 by gep7452

We were very lucky this year to have two World Paraclimbing Cups in the UK. The first was in Edinburgh two weeks ago and in Sheffield last weekend. Both were run alongside other competitions which I think is a good thing as it provides more exposure for Paraclimbing.

The World Paraclimbing Cup in Edinburgh was run alongside the World Cup for able-bodied climbers. The ticketed event was sold out and allowed Paraclimbing to be showcased to a lot of people whom it would not of otherwise been. The competition consisted of 2 qualifying top-ropes and a final top rope. Coming 2nd to the German Kevin Bartake taking Silver.

The second World Paraclimbing Cup was in Sheffield at Awesome Walls This was run alongside the British Lead Climbing Competitions and agin brought a wider audience. This time taking Gold topping out my first route and beating Kevin Bartake on both the second qualifier and the finals.

After the Sheffield competition the Paraclimbing team stayed on in the Peak District for a couple more days to allow for some filming to be done with the team, Epic TV and BMC TV. The first day was spent at Stanage Edge where the team went trad climbing and finishing off on the Flying Buttress. In the evening a spot of night bouldering at Stanage Plantation where multiple attempts were made on Deliverance.

The Tuesday saw the team rained off the Grit and so a visit to Climbing Works was the alternative. Thank you very much to Climbing Works who opened just for the team when we arrived as they were not due to open for another 2 hours. A great time was had by all the team and more filming buy the BMC TV crew.

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August 30th, 2017 by gep7452

For most of July I had the opportunity to visit Australia on a family holiday. No holiday would be complete without some climbing and I managed to sample what Australia, or more specifically Brisbane had to offer both indoor and outdoor.

My first experience of climbing down under was at the invite of Sport Climbing Queensland who were running an All Abilities Workshop (Paraclimbing) at The Rock Climbing Gym in Brisbane. It struck me straight away on arriving how thrilled they all were to have a GB Paraclimber visit their event. Sport Climbing and Bouldering is fairly new in Australia and was only recognised as a sport a few years ago. They appeared to have little experience of paraclimbing but a strong desire to progress the sport. The morning was dedicated to the children and they had over a dozen climbers of all disabilities. After a few demo climbs I had the opportunity to talk to a number of the climbers, some of whom even followed me on social media. The afternoon was dedicated to adult and we had 6 climbers attend. All in all it was good to see so many new climbers trying it out and overcoming their disabilities.

During my stay in Brisbane I had a number of sessions at the various centres which make up Urban Climb, Milton, West End and Newstead. Again everyone was very welcoming and interested in Paraclimbing and Sport Climbing in the UK, but the sport is not as developed than here at home. It is however, growing rapidly.

Finally, I had the experience of climbing outdoors at Kangaroo Point. A great setting along the banks of the Brisbane river right on the heart of the city. A great venue for that winter evening climb followed by a bar-b-q on one of the many public bar-b-q’s. The route were not really technical but hard enough to be challenging.

The sport is growing and quite new but there is a real feeling of wanting to develop it. Everyone I spoke to and met was very welcoming and keen to share experiences and find out about climbing in the UK. I’d like to thank everyone I climbed with and met and especially Maddie Broughton, Youth climber who is 2nd in Australia in Speed and 1st in Queensland for Lead.

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