Updated: May 1
A forecast of unseasonal gales and torrential rain heralded the first WMC camping meet of 2022. This didn't stop the optimistic / bloody-minded coming and going throughout the week. 10 adults, 2 children and 1 dog, made it all happen. The rain kindly (?) fell predominantly during the night / early morning, and the advantage of gales is quick drying rock!
Dave and Patti kicked it all off - the difficulty being to decide which crag to attack first on this incredible coastline
Subluminal is always worth abbing into, and easier to find than some being directly below the lighthouse (I love clever names that even I can figure out 😜 )
As well as the trad routes on the sea cliffs, there are also sport routes to play on
"Youngest" Tom (if you know you know😉) shows how it's done at Hedbury Quarry - who needs rock shoes?!
He was equally delighted to be able to walk back along the coastal path following signs to "Tom's Field" (name of our campsite).
Not only was it a chance for many to get onto rock for the first time in the year, but for several members, getting back "on the lead" for the first time in years - in Nettie's case she had waited 30 years before heading up "on the sharp end".
So lovely to see Becs on rock again!
Ashley was also getting back onto rock..........
but mostly just leading Tom astray
Luckily, Guy, as always, is better equipped than most of us.......how were we to know we would soon be group worshipping his "clip-stick"?!
Here he "seconds" the route he has already put up 😊
Then there was the route which became collectively referred to as "the crux".
Patti kindly invited me to try it....
And here I am "getting some air" which was the repeated result from a variety of attempts
Then Dave (in yellow) having a similar experience....
And, not to be left out, here's Guy who's rashly decided not to take his clip-stick this time
Maybe the boys have got a better plan - a spot of "fossil mining" apparently!
We were very honoured to have Patti's "local guru knowledge", and here she climbs "Hitachi and Girls" - a new route she first put up and bolted in 2006, at Winspit Quarry
Exploring the coastal path gives ample opportunity for kite flying and bird spotting - what is Tom looking at?
Yep - a male stonechat framed by the iconic Portland stone
Exploring Portland gave us chance to visit the Portland Museum (donated by Marie Stopes) in Wakeham, and gawp at views of the impressive Chesil Beach
Here Nettie and Guy "mirror" each other at Winspit Quarry
I'll let you choose the verb to describe what Ash and Guy are doing in this video 🤣!!
Nettie admires the route in this lovely setting
So the WMC Swanage siege was very entertaining and thanks to all who made it possible. Reinforcements will be very welcome to join for a return campaign at some point!!
(Photos supplied by Dave Williams, Patti Flecks, Becs Payne, Andy Truswell, Guy Oliver and lil' me👍)