James McHaffie repeats Face Mecca (E9)
- Thursday 13th August 2020 at 5.33pm
June 7th; 2016
James McHaffie finally ticks all of the E9s in North Wales with a repeat of Face Mecca (E9) on Cloggy.
This was the 3rd ascent of Face Mecca, a route first climbed by Nick Dixon in June 1989 and repeated by Johnny Dawes in 1995. It takes a line to the right of the top pitch of the classic Great Wall on the East Buttress
Nick said this about the route in the Clogwyn Du'r Arduu guidebook, 'I'd practiced the crux on abseil many times, and afterleaving the belay with just one krab on my belt, it flowed as in a dream until I was on the upper wall after committing through a 6b sequence (15 feet above the poor lower-only RURPs and 70 feet above the belay) I found moves to finish that I hadn't practised; why? why? In desperation, now fully here and awake, I slapped and groped with a python's span of rope between me and a grinning Darril (his belayer).
We caught up with James after his ascent and he had this to say: "Did the 3rd ascent of Face Mecca. Last E9 in North Wales I had to do. Cleaned on abb and checked the crux moves sunday afternoon then led it in the eve." He added, "Brilliant balance climbing. Lots of thumb spragging, Probably F8a ish with big fall potential high up. It's a 3 star pitch for sure. Very Nick Dixon."