So I headed out today with Llion for a climb. I had mention previously about what I thought was a new route at Tremadog on the Merlin Buttress. Having looked at the new guide the wiki and even asked the guide author, I am pretty sure we climbed something new. So I am claiming it as Hippogriff.
As I remember a few years ago climbing what the guide describes as a 4c pitch to the right of Merlin, that goes more or less direct to the belay after a little traverse out right.
Our route traverse right as for this route and keeps going until you are on the very edge of the buttress, looking down Giereagle/Vulture wall. You finished the traverse on some undercuts and good cams. As the slab runs out for your feet arrange gear in the upper break and make a long reach to a sloper and then pull round the overlap on improving holds and move right to the arete to savour more of the amazing exposure.
The route is amazingly only HVS 5a, the crux is like rych y ddin on Pant Ifan. I will undoubtedly be told by someone that I did this in the year 1909, my point is that no one has actually claimed it, and it is probably worth two stars. It was the easiest new route I have done as it require no cleaning and was done pretty much ground up (I remember top roping it about 15 years ago, although it may have been the route to the left, such is memory!)
The photo shows my new route in red, the existing and described variation in yellow and the original merlin in green. The traverse is foreshortened at this angle and comes a good 15 feet right of the yellow line.
Anyway after that we climb another great classic The Fang, which is every bit as good as I remember it. Llion took on the first pitch and I climbed the top.
What I have discovered lately is whilst I haven’t been climbing much, at around E1 I seem to be pretty happy. As if those last twenty plus years of climbing have given me a pretty handy base level.