Bullock F.A. VIII/10 on the Ben

17 December, 2011
Nick Bullock on the first ascent of the The Ride of the Wild Bullhorn VIII/10. © Dougal Tavener

Nick Bullock and Dougal Tavener have added a very steep new route to the East Flank of Tower Ridge with The Ride of the Wild Bullhorn, at VIII/10. Nick had first spotted the unclimbed overhanging groove last February while making the first ascent of The Pretender (VII/9) near-by.

The main pitch of The Ride of the Wild Bullhorn is very technical and super steep. Nick said: "It's well enough protected if you can hang around to get the gear in but you have to fight for everything because it so overhanging."

He added: "It's a bit like a George Smith route but in winter. At one point I was hanging off a double knee-bar and double hand-jam in a small pod."

Leaving the pod Nick writes on his blog: "At last I cut loose from my quasi-rest and torqued like crazy using a will-it-or-wont-it-rip-torque. Heel hooking and sketchy bridging and flailing found me out of the pod and pumped stupid."

The route came as a bit of surprise since Nick had been planning on a couple more winter warm-ups before trying anything spicy. So it'll be interesting to see what he gets up to once he has really warmed up and shaken-off a chest infection he's suffering with at the moment.

More details about the ascent over at Nick's blog. You'll also be able to read about the champagne reception he attended at Buckingham Palace before leaving for Scotland. DMM Climbing Team member Silvia Fitzpatrick was also at the reception for 'Adventurers and Explorers' to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Scott's final expedition to the South Pole and included luminaries such as Sir David Attenborough and Sir Chris Bonington.