After the relaxing days in Cape Maclear we were all keen to get back to Mangochi and try some of the hard lines we had been working on. Ben & Mel only had one and half days left to finish off they projects so the psych was high when we arrived at The Seminary. Ben gave has roof crack project a solid go and almost send it! On one go he tried the 2nd move and ended up topping it out… if only he had started from the beginning – such a pity! With that go he managed to reopen his hands and it was over for this trip for him, so sad 😦 It was already to hot so Mel decided to rest and give it a go the next day…

Ben preparing for another crack a his project at The Seminary

Ben preparing for another crack a his project at The Seminary

When we arrived the next day at Mel’s crimper project it was already 30 degrees and after a few tries we all knew it was not going to happen. In high spirits from an amazing 3 weeks, we packed up and headed down for a final dinner together. We said our sad goodbyes, we had all formed an amazing group during this adventure!

Melissa going for the crux crimp on her 'Razor Grass' project

Melissa going for the crux crimp on her ‘Razor Grass’ project

I had played around on Ben’s roof a few times but the difficulty and seriousness of the jamming had always stopped me from committing. But now that Ben had left I felt that such an amazing line needed an ascent as we were probably never coming back. I had figured out all my beta and just needed the motivation and bear through the pain to link it through…

Julie on the first ascent of Clemont's Chin at The Seminary.

Julie on the first ascent of Clemont’s Chin at The Seminary.

After a morning of filming random shots we headed to The Seminary. For a warm-up we stopped and opened a new line called The Sex Machine.  Julie opened a cool prow called Clemont’s Chin and we brushed a new wall with three cool lines. It was getting dark so I grabbed a pad a headed for the roof. It was nice to be warmed up and I did all the individual moves then rested 10 mins and managed to send it 1st and would be last try as I topped out the narrow chimney as the sun dipped behind the horizon. Tom Norris 8a (Ben’s nickname for the trip) is a hard fought finger/hand destroyer!

Brushing another new line...

Brushing another new line…

Oh, and let me not forget to mention that Ben, after cutting his finger rather badly and disinfecting it, left a bottle of hydrogen peroxide which looks like water on the table… i’ll let you guess what happened next… yes, I came in after a hot walk on the beach and downed about 200ml of the stuff! Kinda like Stroh 80, those of you who have had the unfortunate experience will know what I’m talking about…


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