Neil Dickson – Hollow Man E7/8 & others On-Sight

by Jack Geldard – UKC Update: Posing Productions Photo Gallery Here “Well I hadn´t been trad climbing for a while, but I wanted to get some routes done this bank holiday.I was climbing with my girlfriend and she hadn´t really done any climbing outside before, so the first day I did CockBlock (E5) and the next day I did Satsuma Wrestler (E6), then the following day I did Over The Beach (E7) and the day after that I did Gravediggers (E8 – ground-up) and yesterday I did The Hollow Man E7/8 and Sex & Religion E7.” Not a bad bank holiday of On-Sight climbing for Neil Dickson so far – and it hasn´t finished yet. The most impressive ascent from that list is The Hollow Man – Andy Pollitt´s North Stack Wall test-piece.Although still graded E7 in the old Gogarth guide, it is considerably harder and more dangerous than The Bells! The Bells!, and Neil thinks that it could be E8: “Most E8´s haven´t been climbed On-Sight, so the grade boundary between E7 and E8 hasn´t yet really been defined or established, so the grade of The Hollow Man really depends on where you draw that line.” Andy Pollitt climbed The Hollow Man after he repeated The Bells! and said it was harder and graded it E8.John Redhead made a repeat and down graded it to E7.There was some politics and rivalry between the two climbers. Neil´s ascent is the first to be done in the On-Sight style – twenty two years after the first ascent.This gives an indication of the routes difficulty and seriousness.