Gresham on Indian Face – Further Comments

If you´re keeping up to date with the going on´s in the UK climbing scene you know that Wales has been the place to be over the last few months. One of the biggest news stories was Dave MacLeod´s look at Indian Face (E9 6c) on Cloggy. This iconic route was first climbed by Johnny Dawes well ahead of its time in 1986. Johnny talks about his ascent and his personal feelings about the route in the updated Stone Monkey DVD. For those not old enough, Indian Face has always had a controversial history. Before the first ascent John Redhead had climbed the lower part (to give Tormented Ejaculation) and placed a bolt, feeling that the climbing above was unjustifiable. After that, Jerry Moffat removed the bolt and headed off right to give Master´s Wall E7,6b. Johnny Dawes then further straighten the line and headed straight up to create Indian Face E9,6c. In the subsequent 21 years only 2 repeats have been made – both in 1996 and within days of each other by first Nick Dixon & then by Neil Gresham. Indian Face has always held a special aura in UK climbing – be it because of the history, the mountain crag it lies on, or it´s ability to scare the bejesus out of the most talented of climbers. When Dave MacLeod spoke honestly about his reason´s in not attempting the climb on lead it led to a number of comments from the full spectrum of the British climbing scene. Indeed Neil Gresham emailed planetFear to defend the route at the time with Dave MacLeod subsequently replying with his further thoughts and his reason´s at not attempting the lead at that time (read full news story here>>). Today, Neil Gresham has emailed us with some further comments:”Regarding Dave´s reply to my comment, if the motivation for doing or not doing a hard route is so personal then why the need to for all this justification at the expense of a great climb? It is selling the Indian Face SO short to suggest that the only reason to climb it is because of history.I would hope that anyone who has stood below the route could see that it has a little more to offer than a trip down memory lane. And regarding the dig about the route not pushing his limit – How, on one hand can you decide not to lead a route because it invloves ´meaningless death´, and in the next say that it wouldn´t push your limit? I reiterate that the difficulties on Indian Face are 100% psychological and Dave´s remarks are no more helpful than if Ben Moon were to take shots at a Paul Pritchard route.”Neil has strong and honest feeling about Indian Face and it´s refreshing to see him stick his neck out and comment on it. It seems Indian Face will continue to hold its controversial and special place in UK climbing. Related News: Gresham & MacLeod Comment on Indian Face>> MacLeod Climbs Trauma E9>> Indian Face Onsighted>> please note this was an April Day Joke – we did have some emails on this ; ) North Wales Climbing Action>>