This is the third year in a row that I’ve visited El Chorro now, it was my least productive trip there but also my shortest and possibly the most enjoyable. Heading there with friends Dom and Tegan after exams finished we only had a few days there before we had to head back for lectures.
Day one I felt exhausted after only having an hours sleep but I decided to get straight on El Complot, my nemesis 8a+ which I just can’t seem to pull together. On my first go up it I managed to get through the crux but fell high up on a slightly technical section. I decided to leave it and have an onsight attempt on Hamunaptra, a nice long 7c+ which I’d wanted to do the year before but never got around to doing it. I went on it just as it was getting dark and managed to pull off the onsight to clip the chains in the dark.
The following day I felt really weak and tired so I took it easy and just played around on a few routes before falling off the onsight of Mamacita, 8a at the last move when I tried to grab a sloper not spotting the huge jug an inch right of it. It was all fun though as I got to have another go up it the following day.
On day four I had my first trip up to Makinodromo which turned out to be amazing and I was so happy to get up there and have a play on one of my dream 8c’s Cous Cous. I started by warming up on a new 7a route which turned out to be nice and pumpy and then got to work on Cous Cous. The first go went really well and I thought I may be in with a shot of doing it in a day, I figured out the sequences and felt really strong on it all. After an hours rest I got back on it, only know it was really hot and I struggled on most moves. I just felt uncomfortable and too hot to keep climbing. I hoped that it would feel better when it got back into the shade but I felt an instant power out and exhaustion. I think at this point I felt the past few days of climbing and the lack of sleep caught up with me and I was out of energy. It was a shame that I couldn’t get it done but I can’t wait to get back there and give it a go when fresh! I then had a flash attempt on the classic 8a Lourdes but just didn’t have any fight in me and fell off on one of the harder boulder sections. It was great fun to have a play on these routes but the trip had come to an end and its left me very eager to go back as soon as possible to get Cous Cous finished!
Thanks to Mammut for the continued support, The Olive Branch for being great hosts as always and to Jacob Cook for the tour of Maki, belays and tonnes of beta!