Another beautifully sunny evening (albeit a very windy one), another evening trip to Stanage with Mr Dan. We mixed things up a bit by going to the popular end this week. I led Rubber Band, which was ace - kind of like an easier, but longer version of Ellis' Eliminate. I did manage to place one of Dan's cams in a foolish position which it was very reluctant to relinquish, so he had to abseil for it whilst I soloed a very easy VS.
Dan seconding Rubber Band
Next I managed to gently coax (or mercilessly bully depending on your reading of events) Dan into doing Retroversion. He had a slight hand-puddle interface scenario mid-crux, and ended up sitting on the rope to dry out, but pressed on through on his second attempt. A very nice route, and probably just about worth HVS.
Near the top of Retroversion
Finally, in the somewhat fading light I boldly flaked the ropes out beneath Cave Arete before I'd had too much time to consider what I was doing. I had really wanted to do the VS round to the left with Harding's Super Direct Finish, but that was covered in bawdy student losers, so I manned up a bit instead. I'd seconded Sophie up the route a few years ago and remembered thinking it was hard then. Oh well. As it happened, other than a couple of tactical downclimbs (Dan seemed to think this equated to cowardice, I thought it was strategic genius) things went well, although the crux felt very arm-y, and I could really feel the previous day's exertions at Citybloc. I managed to power on through, however, which was pretty pleasing. A new high-water mark in the Stanage graded list. Get in.