Anna is an up and coming British trad climber based in the Lake District. She has multiple climbs in the E6-E8 range on her CV and favours bold and often unprotectable climbs
Anna started climbing at age 10.
Competitions didn't really suit her, and she quit the sport in her teens for a while before getting into outdoor bouldering age 17.
At 19, on a family holiday, she discovered she had a taste for hard trad and hasn't looked back.
Anna has lived in the Lake District all her life and works as a route-setter at Kendal Wall.
Anna's 2019 climbing spree*
Lake District climbs
8 July, Disorderly Conduct E8 6c, lead, Reecastle Crag, Cumbria
26 June, Hare Today, Gone Tomorrow E5 6b, solo onsight, Hare Crags, Cumbria
27 May, Right Hare, Right Now E7 6c, lead, Hare Crags, Cumbria
22 May, Scrogbank Ravers E7 6c, lead, White Mines, Rusty Wall, Cumbria
20 May, No Nuts (Just Balls) E7 6b solo, Harrop Tarn Crag, Cumbria
4 May, Relentless Rage E7 6a, lead, Gouther Crags, Cumbria
29 April, Hang the Gallows High E6 6b, lead, Black Crag (Wrynose), Cumbria
17 April, Fat Guy Goes Nutzoid E6 6b, lead, Tilberthwaite Quarry, Cumbria
21 April, Big Tree Corner, E1 5b, lead, Tilberthwaite Quarry, Cumbria
Notable climbs from trips away
22 June, Bad Life Choices E7 6b solo, Polldubh Crags, Glen Nevis
17 May, My Halo E7 6b, lead, Serengeti, North Wales slate
13 April, Nosferatu E6 6b, lead, Burbage South, Peak District
Commenting on Instagram, Anna wrote about her challenge:
'Well that's that. Two months ago I set off from Penzance with the intention of linking all of the Classic Rock routes together by bike. I didn't have a clue how to cycle tour, or how I was going to get all the climbs done if the weather crapped out, but bit by bit I learned, and here we are. So that's just over 1,500 miles on the bike, and 83 out of 83 climbs (68 of which were solos, either free or with rope), in a mostly continuous round (I did have to duck out for a work trip at one point).
'Big thanks to @neil.gresham
for coming up to do the last few climbs with me in appalling conditions. The weather has often been unkind throughout this trip, and because of this things were difficult and pretty treacherous right up until the very last second. Still, we had a fun, mildly epic adventure sliding around on the Cioch, and the Cuillin Ridge was, to put it frankly, f**king grim. It wasn't quite the scenic finale I had in mind, but was quite a fitting ending in the sense that virtually nothing about this trip has ever gone according to plan.
'There's been some good and very memorable moments though. Climbing The Long Climb on the Ben in a bubble of mist feeling like I was the only person in the world was ace, as was the watery fight to get out of The Chasm (though that was perhaps more of a type 2 fun sort of day). Routes like The Devils Slide on Lundy and The Clean Sweep on Hells Lum were also highlights, and all that definitely made up for the times I was frozen, wet and off-route, or regretting my life choices cycling up endless hills. It's not been a perfect trip by any means, but I've learnt a lot (mostly about soloing), and I'm looking forward to putting some of that knowledge to good use on future projects. For now however, I'm just appreciating being warm and dry, and I'm pretty relived to have got this over with before it starts snowing.'
Anna was also part of a large expedition in 2019 to climb the prow of Mount Roraima (a giant Tepui deep in the Amazon rainforest).
Take a listen to Anna now!
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- Who is Anna
- Just finishing the classic rock tour
- Her childhood growing up in Windermere
- Where the idea for the challenge came from
- Wanting to try cycle touring
- Telling her friends and family about the challenge
- Wanting to start in April 2021 but having to push it back to August
- Working as a full time climber
- Figuring out how to take 2 months off
- How much would it cost and paying for the challenge
- Why it wasn’t an expensive trip
- Figuring out how to keep costs down
- Filming the challenge and getting pictures of the climbs
- Getting to the start of the challenge
- Feeling overwhelmed by the challenge
- Dealing with the reality of the situation
- Taking it one day at a time
- The biggest challenge on the trip
- Why the Scottish climbs were so challenging
- Being solo on a rock face
- What’s going on inside her head while climbing
- Magical moments from the experience
- The physicality of the challenge
- The challenges of going with someone else
- The rough route throughout the UK
- Finishing in the Isle of Skye
- Celebrating the end of the challenge and settling back into normal life
- What’s next?!
- Advice for women who want to get into climbing
- Working on improving her skills
- What type of climbing Anna does
- Follow and connect with Anna on Instagram
- Her first big expedition to South America
- Connecting with Leo Houlding
- Lesson learned from taking on climbing challenges
- Final words of advice and why you should go and do it!