Katy Whittaker – Grit E7

by Dave Brown – Hot Aches Productions Dave Brown of Hot Aches Productions gives us the latest low-down from team Whittaker… The route hungry Whittakers were back in the Peak after a trip to Spanish limestone and were waiting for good weather to get onto their latest projects. The last time we filmed Katy Whittaker she succeeded on her hardest trad route ever, flashing E6. Now she had her sights set on climbing her first E7, a Johnny Dawes route called Kaluza Klein at Robin Hood´s Stride. Coincidentally Katy´s brother Pete had climbed Kaluza in 2006 when he was just 16. In fact his intention had been to onsight it, but he settled instead for a very quick head-point. Also at the time Pete had spotted an ´unclimbed´ line on the arête to the right of Kaluza, and after some research (and cleaning) it seems that the first ascent was indeed up for grabs. The team had recruited a new belayer for the day. The usual custodian of the ropes was Jill, their mother. Pete explained though that Jill wasn´t particularly happy when the belay duties required stage diving off the ledge, in order to take in enough slack to stop the climber hitting the ground. Ryan Pasquill seemed far more at home in performing this particular role. The ascent was swift. A ´big moment´ near the top when Katy didn´t get a hold right – she span out rightwards ? a moment of decision for the jumping belayer? – then she got it right, reached up, and pulled over the top. Next up was Pete, who was equally matter of fact the ascent ahead of him.After lots of brushing he headed off and totally cruised Captain Calamity. ´Hard E7´ (E7 6c) was the verdict. Another impressive first ascent from the the very keen youth. Interview and Photo´s on the UKC Articles PageFor More Info and Photo´s: Hot Aches Blog Katy is Sponsored by Marmot and Zero-G, 5:10, Hitch n Hike, The Edge, Valley Gym, Lafarge