Canada 2017

T -5days

It is only 5 days till we fly out to Calgary and we still dont know if Del will make it.

We visited him in hospital today and while he seems much better than even 2 days ago (when I’ve seen him last) he still cant really bend his injures elbow.

I guess by Tuesday it should be clear what its going to be. One thing is for sure: he wont be able lead hard grades ice, which is a big bummer, especially for PG, who has been training so hard those last few months in preparation for some serious adventures and now he doesn’t have a partner to join him there.

Lar and I on the other hand are pretty much set. We have discussed gear and I started packing today. Besides one more rope we gotta get we are set. The Norway trip showed that PG’s spare icelines are really EOL, and my 50m half ropes are too short for Canada.

Canada 2017

Prep for Canada 2017

Some months ago we’ve decided to go back to Canada in 2017. I was quite reluctant at first (been there done that?), but now with just over a week left till we go I think it is actually not such a bad idea. We have a nice group (more about it in a minute), we know the area already (more less) and it is actually a good thing to have a goal to work towards.

  1. Team
    – The same bunch as last year (PG, Del and I) + our last year’s dropout Lar.
  2. Training
    – At the start of January we all got multi month passes for Awesome Walls and planned to climb 3-4 times a week.
    – This was complemented with lunch time gym (at work) sessions (mostly cardio). I’m pretty happy with the results and I think I’m strong enough for what I want to climb in Canada (lead WI3+), follow up to WI5 or whatever PG is up to.
  3. Final test – Norway
    – At this point it is a tradition, Feb is a month when we go to Rjukan, Norway to see if our training made us strong. Unfortunately this year (due to scheduling conflicts) I wasn’t able to attend, however PG got a strong team of 6 who represented Ireland pretty well.
    – The conditions weren’t perfect and unfortunately it didn’t go without hurdles, and Del fell of on a lead during one of the climbs on the last day. At the time he seemed ok (didn’t break anything), shook it off, and actually restarted and finished the climb.
    However upon return home it turned out that he developed an infection in his left elbow, that quickly started spread to his body.
    For reference here is a photo of him snapped just before the fall. He stopped, elbow first at the ledge some 6-7 meters below him:


    He is currently recovering in a hospital in Dublin, where I went today to visit him. Here is a clip of him talking about the climb, the fall, and some other general  thoughts.

  4. What’s next?
    We are flying out March 3rd. We all hope Del will be able to  travel with us, and join us on this yet another epic adventure. Regardless I’ll be keeping regular updates during the trip, but this year there will be more video material! Stay tuned!