On 2 February 2017, Stephen Tooke tragically fell to his death whilst attempting to climb the crux pitch of Noordhoek Minor. A memorial meet, led by Brian Lambourne on 1 February 2018, was attended by 14 members.
The party met at the Silvermine Dam parking area, where messages from those who were unable to attend were read out, together with the words of the well known English climber Edward Whymper, who said in 1871, “Climb if you will, but remember that courage and strength are naught without prudence, and that a momentary negligence may destroy the happiness of a lifetime.”
After three hours of brisk walking and the occasional scramble the party arrived at the crux pitch. This was roped, as was the following pitch. The top pitch was not roped, however, as whilst very exposed the quality of the rock was excellent, as were the foot and hand holds.
Eight members of the party elected to do the climb whilst the remaining six took the escape route to the south.
All met on top where fond memories of Stephen were shared and a minute’s silence observed.
Thanks to Armelle, Richard and Andy who helped with the belaying, to Isabelle for leading the escape route and to Stefan for the photos.