Ron Fawcett


Quick Info

Nationality: GB
Date of birth: 6th May 1955
Hardest Boulder (Worked): 8A
Hardest Sport (Worked): 8a+
Hardest Trad (Worked): E9
Hardest Trad (Onsight): E5
Notable Partnerships
Pete Livesey

Ron Fawcett was at the top of the UK climbing scene in the mid 70s and early 80s and one of the first professional climbers in the UK. He took up the mantel from climbers such as Pete Livesey and helped cement the E5 and E6 grade in the UK. He also put up some of the early hard sport routes in the UK with lines such as Sardine, Body Machine and The Prow at Raven Tor.

Ron famously climbed 100 extremes (i.e. routes graded E1 or harder on the British Trad grading scale) in a day in 1986 starting at Froggatt then going on to Stanage, Burbage and finishing at Curbar. This feat is even more impressive when you consider that Ron was not just picking the easiest routes available: Downhill Racer (E4), Heartless Hare (E5) and Ulysses or Bust (E5) feature among the hard routes that he climbed. See [3] for a full list.

References

[1] Rock Athlete, by Sid Perou https://youtu.be/tdRfqD125-g?t=1522

[2] Interview with Andy Pollitt https://www.ukclimbing.com/articles/features/andy_pollitt+big_ron_fawcett-9483.

[3] Ticklist of Ron's 100 extremes in a day https://www.ukclimbing.com/logbook/set.php?id=548

[4] https://www.facebook.com/climbing.in.the.80s/photos/a.270388289694020/282305001835682

Contributors: remus

Quick Info

Nationality: GB
Date of birth: 6th May 1955
Hardest Boulder (Worked): 8A
Hardest Sport (Worked): 8a+
Hardest Trad (Worked): E9
Hardest Trad (Onsight): E5
Notable Partnerships
Pete Livesey

Ron Fawcett was at the top of the UK climbing scene in the mid 70s and early 80s and one of the first professional climbers in the UK. He took up the mantel from climbers such as Pete Livesey and helped cement the E5 and E6 grade in the UK. He also put up some of the early hard sport routes in the UK with lines such as Sardine, Body Machine and The Prow at Raven Tor.

Ron famously climbed 100 extremes (i.e. routes graded E1 or harder on the British Trad grading scale) in a day in 1986 starting at Froggatt then going on to Stanage, Burbage and finishing at Curbar. This feat is even more impressive when you consider that Ron was not just picking the easiest routes available: Downhill Racer (E4), Heartless Hare (E5) and Ulysses or Bust (E5) feature among the hard routes that he climbed. See [3] for a full list.

References

[1] Rock Athlete, by Sid Perou https://youtu.be/tdRfqD125-g?t=1522

[2] Interview with Andy Pollitt https://www.ukclimbing.com/articles/features/andy_pollitt+big_ron_fawcett-9483.

[3] Ticklist of Ron's 100 extremes in a day https://www.ukclimbing.com/logbook/set.php?id=548

[4] https://www.facebook.com/climbing.in.the.80s/photos/a.270388289694020/282305001835682

Contributors: remus

Lists


Pics + Vids

Added at 18:03 on 01 March 2021
Added at 18:08 on 30 August 2021
Supersonic (E5, FA)
Added at 19:02 on 28 February 2021
Lord of the Flies (E6, FA)
Added at 18:12 on 18 December 2020
Body Machine (7c+, FA)
Added at 11:12 on 22 December 2020
The Master's Edge (E7, FA)
Added at 18:03 on 01 March 2021
Wall of Fossils (E6, FA)
Added at 00:03 on 20 March 2021
Ivory Madonna (E5, FA)
Added at 00:03 on 20 March 2021
True Grip (E5, FA)
Added at 00:03 on 20 March 2021
J.R. (E5, FA)
Added at 00:03 on 20 March 2021
Atomic Hot Rod (E5, FA)
Added at 00:03 on 20 March 2021
Hall of Warriors (E5, FA)
Added at 01:03 on 20 March 2021
Crimson Cruiser (E5, FA)
Added at 01:03 on 20 March 2021
Bananas (E5)
Added at 08:02 on 05 February 2022

Ascents

48 recorded ascents.

Year Climb Grade Style Ascent Date
1971 Mulatto Wall E3 Lead 1971
First ascent.
Problem Wall E2 Solo 1971
First ascent.

Ron's first recorded new route.

1972
1973
1974
1975
1976 Slip 'n' Slide E6 Solo | worked 1976
First ascent.

One of the boldest routes on grit at the time.

Supersonic E5 Lead | worked 1976
First ascent.
Cream Team Special E5 Alternate Leads | worked 1976
First ascent.
Darkinbad the Brightdayler E5 Lead 1976

First free ascent.

Cream E4 Lead | worked 1976
First ascent.

During a BMC international meet.

Mortlock's Arete E4 Lead 1976
Second ascent.
1977 Crème de la Crème E6 Lead 1977
First ascent.
1978 Milky Way E6 Lead | worked 1978
First ascent.
Desperate Dan E6 Lead | worked 1978
First ascent.
The Cad E6 Lead | worked 1978
First ascent.

Ron suggested E5, though he also controversially placed 2 bolts (which were later removed).

Citadel E5 Lead | worked 1978
First ascent.
1979 Lord of the Flies E6 Lead | worked 26th Jun 1979
1980 Strawberries E7 Lead | yo-yo Between 22nd Mar 1980 and 23rd Mar 1980
First ascent.

Ron lead the route in yo-yo style and gave it E5.

References

[1] https://www.facebook.com/photo/?fbid=115863216537231&set=a.115862679870618

Crimson Cruiser E5 Lead | worked Apr 1980
Bananas E5 Lead | worked Apr 1980
Atomic Hot Rod E5 Lead | worked 11th Apr 1980
Hall of Warriors E5 Lead | worked 11th Apr 1980
J.R. E5 Lead | worked 12th Apr 1980
Ivory Madonna E5 Lead | worked 18th Apr 1980
True Grip E5 Lead | worked 19th Apr 1980
Wall of Fossils E6 Lead | worked May 1980
The Big Sleep E6 Lead | worked May 1980
First ascent.
1981 Sardine 7b+ Lead | worked Jan 1981
First ascent.

First free ascent.

References

[1] Peak Limestone North, First Ascents Supplement /file/bc3fd0e4-a3ee-a736-1cbf-d68af9f0910e/peak_lime_north_first_ascents.pdf

1982 Eye of the Tiger E7 Lead | worked 1982
First ascent.

A great effort considering the time it was done, featuring 7c/+ sport climbing on traditionally protected climbing.

Cave Route Right Hand (Pre 2018) E6 Lead | worked 1982
First ascent.
The Vision 7c+ Lead | worked 1982
First ascent.
Cave Route Left Hand 7c+ Lead | worked 1982
First ascent.
Indecent Exposure 7c Lead | worked 1982
First ascent.
Tequila Mockingbird 7c+ Lead | yo-yo May 1982
First ascent.
Imminent Crisis E5 Lead | worked 7th May 1982
Yellow Pearls E5 Lead Jul 1982
First ascent.
The Prow 8a Lead | worked Jul 1982
First ascent.

Climbed in three pitches.

A free ascent covering about 50% of the line of The Prow Routes, approaching from The Prowler and incorporating a new middle section to the right of the original aid route.

The ascent of Britain’s top super route was spread over three days, graded E7 and rated harder than many 5.13s. Lauded in the climbing press as the hardest route in the world. The original (Mecca) and direct starts remained as aid routes.

Jerry Moffatt repeated the route in one day, abseiling off for a whistle-stop brew at the Wriggly Tin Cafe!

The direct start was freed as Revelations in 1984 and the middle section freed as Rage in 1992. Ron’s version was climbed in one pitch in 2003 by Mark Pretty with a final bolt added by Simon Lee to connect to the Crucifixion belay. [1]

References

[1] Peak Limestone North, First Ascents Supplement /file/bc3fd0e4-a3ee-a736-1cbf-d68af9f0910e/peak_lime_north_first_ascents.pdf

1983 Central Pillar 8a Lead | worked Jul 1983
First ascent.
The Master's Edge E7 Lead | worked Dec 1983
1984 Revelations (Pre-1999) 8a+ Lead | worked 1984
Defcon 3 8a Lead | worked 1984
First ascent.
Mescalito 7c+ Lead | worked 1984
First ascent.
Body Machine 7c+ Lead | worked 1984
New Dawn 7c Lead | worked 1984
First ascent.
1985 Zoolook 8a Lead | worked 1985
First ascent.
1986 Toy Boy 7C+ Boulder | worked 1986
First ascent.
1987 Moon Madness E7 Lead | worked 1987
First ascent.
Careless Torque 8A Boulder | worked 1987
First ascent.

Ron tried the moves on a rope before jumping from progressively higher up Not to be Taken Away to build up the confidence to commit to the hard upper moves.

References

[1] https://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/rock_talk/how_was_careless_torque_first_climbed-335185?v=1#x4944420

1988 Knockin' on Heaven's Door E9 Lead | worked Between 2nd Mar 1988 and 20th Mar 1994
Second ascent?

Ron climbed the route in a similar style to the FA and thought it was worth about E7 [1].

References

[1] https://www.ukclimbing.com/articles/features/andy_pollitt+big_ron_fawcett-9483

1989
1990
1991 Jasmine E6 Solo | worked 1991
First ascent.
1992 Ron's Girdle Traverse E5 Solo | onsight 1992
First ascent.
Climb Grade Style Ascent Date Suggested Grade
Revelations (Pre-1999) 8a+ Lead | worked 1984
The Prow 8a Lead | worked Jul 1982
First ascent.

Climbed in three pitches.

A free ascent covering about 50% of the line of The Prow Routes, approaching from The Prowler and incorporating a new middle section to the right of the original aid route.

The ascent of Britain’s top super route was spread over three days, graded E7 and rated harder than many 5.13s. Lauded in the climbing press as the hardest route in the world. The original (Mecca) and direct starts remained as aid routes.

Jerry Moffatt repeated the route in one day, abseiling off for a whistle-stop brew at the Wriggly Tin Cafe!

The direct start was freed as Revelations in 1984 and the middle section freed as Rage in 1992. Ron’s version was climbed in one pitch in 2003 by Mark Pretty with a final bolt added by Simon Lee to connect to the Crucifixion belay. [1]

References

[1] Peak Limestone North, First Ascents Supplement /file/bc3fd0e4-a3ee-a736-1cbf-d68af9f0910e/peak_lime_north_first_ascents.pdf

Central Pillar 8a Lead | worked Jul 1983
First ascent.
Defcon 3 8a Lead | worked 1984
First ascent.
Zoolook 8a Lead | worked 1985
First ascent.
The Vision 7c+ Lead | worked 1982
First ascent.
Cave Route Left Hand 7c+ Lead | worked 1982
First ascent.
Tequila Mockingbird 7c+ Lead | yo-yo May 1982 E6
First ascent.
Mescalito 7c+ Lead | worked 1984
First ascent.
Body Machine 7c+ Lead | worked 1984
Indecent Exposure 7c Lead | worked 1982
First ascent.
New Dawn 7c Lead | worked 1984
First ascent.
Sardine 7b+ Lead | worked Jan 1981
First ascent.

First free ascent.

References

[1] Peak Limestone North, First Ascents Supplement /file/bc3fd0e4-a3ee-a736-1cbf-d68af9f0910e/peak_lime_north_first_ascents.pdf

Climb Grade Style Ascent Date Suggested Grade
Careless Torque 8A Boulder | worked 1987
First ascent.

Ron tried the moves on a rope before jumping from progressively higher up Not to be Taken Away to build up the confidence to commit to the hard upper moves.

References

[1] https://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/rock_talk/how_was_careless_torque_first_climbed-335185?v=1#x4944420

Toy Boy 7C+ Boulder | worked 1986
First ascent.
Climb Grade Style Ascent Date Suggested Grade
Knockin' on Heaven's Door E9 Lead | worked Between 2nd Mar 1988 and 20th Mar 1994 E7
Second ascent?

Ron climbed the route in a similar style to the FA and thought it was worth about E7 [1].

References

[1] https://www.ukclimbing.com/articles/features/andy_pollitt+big_ron_fawcett-9483

Strawberries E7 Lead | yo-yo Between 22nd Mar 1980 and 23rd Mar 1980
First ascent.

Ron lead the route in yo-yo style and gave it E5.

References

[1] https://www.facebook.com/photo/?fbid=115863216537231&set=a.115862679870618

Eye of the Tiger E7 Lead | worked 1982
First ascent.

A great effort considering the time it was done, featuring 7c/+ sport climbing on traditionally protected climbing.

The Master's Edge E7 Lead | worked Dec 1983
Moon Madness E7 Lead | worked 1987
First ascent.
Slip 'n' Slide E6 Solo | worked 1976
First ascent.

One of the boldest routes on grit at the time.

Crème de la Crème E6 Lead 1977
First ascent.
Milky Way E6 Lead | worked 1978
First ascent.
Desperate Dan E6 Lead | worked 1978
First ascent.
The Cad E6 Lead | worked 1978 E5
First ascent.

Ron suggested E5, though he also controversially placed 2 bolts (which were later removed).

Lord of the Flies E6 Lead | worked 26th Jun 1979
Wall of Fossils E6 Lead | worked May 1980
The Big Sleep E6 Lead | worked May 1980
First ascent.
Cave Route Right Hand (Pre 2018) E6 Lead | worked 1982
First ascent.
Jasmine E6 Solo | worked 1991
First ascent.
Supersonic E5 Lead | worked 1976
First ascent.
Cream Team Special E5 Alternate Leads | worked 1976
First ascent.
Citadel E5 Lead | worked 1978
First ascent.
Crimson Cruiser E5 Lead | worked Apr 1980
Atomic Hot Rod E5 Lead | worked 11th Apr 1980
Hall of Warriors E5 Lead | worked 11th Apr 1980
J.R. E5 Lead | worked 12th Apr 1980
Ivory Madonna E5 Lead | worked 18th Apr 1980
True Grip E5 Lead | worked 19th Apr 1980
Imminent Crisis E5 Lead | worked 7th May 1982
Yellow Pearls E5 Lead Jul 1982
First ascent.
Ron's Girdle Traverse E5 Solo | onsight 1992
First ascent.
Darkinbad the Brightdayler E5 Lead 1976

First free ascent.

Bananas E5 Lead | worked Apr 1980
Cream E4 Lead | worked 1976
First ascent.

During a BMC international meet.

Mortlock's Arete E4 Lead 1976
Second ascent.
Mulatto Wall E3 Lead 1971 E3
First ascent.
Problem Wall E2 Solo 1971
First ascent.

Ron's first recorded new route.

Climb Grade Style Ascent Date Suggested Grade