Back to climbing after a lay-off - gulp!

I'm sure one or two people are wondering, how's the climbing going? As ever, the climbing here in Ton Sai is awesome: super powerful, and always humbling. The grades are as always, emmmm, amusing - meaning that you need an open mind on most routes. Just because you can climb that grade doesn't always mean it'll be very easy or very hard! Under and over-grading seems to be ripe here, although the new guidebook seems to be rectify some of the old queries. As a nice compliment, it's nice to see that one of the routes I climbed has been re-graded to 8a, and a route I down-graded from 7c+ after flashing it has been confirmed at the grade. Jeez, I must have been climbing well last year - nice to see proof that my training paid off.

It's been definitely a bit of a shock having not climbed much in the past few months. Hampi gave a bit of a rose-tinted view; that I hadn't lost much ability from my time off. How wrong I was! O.k., I'm not much weaker than before (although any core strength - critical for here due to it's steepness - is hiding somewhere in my spongy belly :) , but definitely my stamina was left somewhere behind in 2007. So, the hard work has begun and the base level of stamina is being worked on for the first week. It's a bit of a shock being around quite a few routes I've climbed previously with ease, and in the knowledge I'd have no chance on them at present but that's all the most challenge! My forearms are solid, and I haven't been able to sit up for three days now without writhing in agony from the aches in my stomach muscles but it's all worth it - hopefully in a week or two I can actually keep my feet on the steep walls again :) Also, maybe in a few weeks I'll be able to feel like I'm part of Washboard Beach again (Naomi's nickname for the beach due to all the six-packs on the climbers - guys and girls!) LOL
Happy climbing all!!!

Scary trashing of gear in Thailand

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