Sunday, August 18, 2013

The Vacation.

Well a week or so before school started, Ina and I decided to take a short trip for hiking and climbing. For the first two days I worked on War Tactics. I managed to pull all the moves on the first day. On the second day, I made it to the final move. Day three, I consistently made it to the last move, but refined my beta halfway through the session. Sadly, this was my last day on the route. Not only was it my last day, but later that day we were headed to the Devil's Kitchen to climb with David Lloyd and Jesse Firestone. So after climbing from 8:30 to noon, I had a 5 hour break between the time we actually started climbing at the Devil's Kitchen, and boy, did I wish I had just called it quits on War Tactics. Devil's Kitchen is spectacular. The climbing high quality and the scenery spectacular--unlike any area I've been to before.

I left with the desire to come back; I didn't send anything I had on my mind, but the climbing was amazing. Normally, I will leave with a feeling of no success if I do not send. Over the course of the last two years, I've grown, at least, somewhat past that. I take what incremental successes I have and learn from those.

Ina and I drove to Golden CO after leaving the Kitchen Wednesday Afternoon. I was pretty well exhausted Thursday, so I just sat around being bored and content, for the most part.

Friday, Ina, Rowland, and I made the trek to MT Evans. This time, as a result of my increased hiking this summer, the hike felt minuscule and perhaps left more to be desired. Rowland and I started on the Dali, a terrible Warmup. Rowland wasn't feeling perhaps as strong as we both would have hoped, so we scooted the pads to Clear Blue Skies. On my first try, I made it to the final move and pussed out. After another five or so tries of making it to the last move, I began to be concerned. Would this be a continuation of the lander trip--continually making it to the last move of 11's with no send.

Finally, I managed to pull together the send. YES! From there, Rowland and I moved on to Gorillas in the Mist (V10). Last time Charlie and I were here, we worked on this route, both making it to the final move. I was once again in a similar position. After working the last move a couple times, it was decided doing it static was not to my advantage. I geared up and quickly made it to the final move and just hopped. It went together seamlessly.

Rowland wanted to go try Bierstadt (V9/10), so that was next on the list. I had already completed Bierstadt, so I figured I might as well do the left variation, Banksy ? (V9). In three tries, it went down. This route felt harder than Bierstadt and, more importantly, better.

Rowland left around this time to go to a pretty lights concert. Ina and I, planning to camp that night, took a little break and drank some tea.

Subsequently, feeling relatively drained, we went to the Silverback boulder, and I jumped on this friction dependent problem Blackie (V11). I had tried the problem a year earlier; at which time, I couldn't even pull on. Today, things clicked. And I managed to do the route in 15 or so tries.

Having had my most grade-wise successful day ever, Ina and I decided to just hike in RMNP the next day.

Driving to RMNP, we found out surprise, everyone has the same idea on a Friday. Not wanting to feel like we were in a REC center walking laps, we opted out of the hike. We went to Veratis. I managed to complete Mandix (V10) and flash Stripes (V9). I also managed to complete a two move lower start to Stripes.

All in all a good time.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Spectre V12

Spectre is the route I have been working on much of the summer in Cody. The route took me around 7 sessions (only looking at this summer) to complete, and 3 sessions of using my final send beta. I found myself rolling around the top yesterday, Wednesday, two days before my departure. Currently, this route is the hardest on Spearpoint, and potentially the hardest developed route in Cody. The route starts with Tribal Vibrations (V11), right and low, and follows the line of small crimps to the crack. After some shuffling in the seam, you make a large move left to the rail and top out Ho-Down Throw Down (V7). The crux is the move from the crack to the large rail.

Click on the subsequent photo to view it.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Send of the Summer

I finally sent what may possibly be the last project on Spearpoint. It follows tribal vibrations to the crack and then shoots left to the ledge on the top of ho-down throw-down. More on this later.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Subsequent Weekend. Lander

Ina and I took a trip over to Lander for our birthdays. The original plan was one day of climbing and the second day of hiking; that way both our desires would be appeased. As luck, or the lack thereof, had it, Ina injured her foot Friday night and we were stuck with two days of climbing. Bummer! Day one, we went out to the Rock Shop. I wanted to complete the V11 which shoots out to the left after doing the first couple moves on The Giving Tree (TGT). I had fallen on the move to the lip last trip.

I campussed the V2 jug run that finishes TGT twice. Proceeded to run through the final sequence of the 11 twice, First Contact (V4). Then I jumped on the 11 and completed the route first go. It did not feel hard whatsoever. More than anything, this pissed me off. I came with 5.5 all shoved in my subaru and walked this route. I wanted to struggle for it. I honestly think this route is a V10 and TGT is a V9. They're just big moves on good holds. After this, Ina and I walked to the project on the Paralysis wall, which had shut Charlie and I both down the last trip. I managed to complete the route in 3 burns. It felt like a V7 or 8. I also managed to complete the route from the lowest possible start which adds 15 additional feet of easy climbing. In the Akasha

The day came to an end relatively early due to quick success. We rolled around in Lander for the day. I like Lander. That evening I went and played around on War Tactics. I learned that it is definitely a morning route.

Day Two. I wasn't overly motivated to work on War Tactics. I was slow that morning, and I expected it to be in the sun already. We just went and climbed at the Cabin Boulders. Ina even climbed and, most importantly, had a good time doing it. I managed to climb Honest Joe (V8). I started on the sharp crimp and threw high and left to the standstart left hand edge. With my arms at full span, I threw a heelhook in on the start crimp with my right foot. In an explosive barndoor, I caught the undercling and then powered through the two large upper moves. The route is now a favorite of mine, a redeemer of the cabin boulders, which I have thought of in contempt since my first trip there 3 years prior. Three years prior I kinda did a route called the Camera (V8/9/10). I was concerned I did not complete the route from the appropriate start holds, hence I worked on repeating it from a full sds (butt on the dirt). I managed this in 4 tries and was happy. Personally I think this route is a V8. It's one hard move that you just gotta get angry with. There's one picture of me on it from quite a while ago.

The day ended with us rushing out of there because of the Fairfield wildfire; we saw some of the first smoke.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Lander Cruisin'

I would make this a photo essay, if I ever took any photos. ha. Alas, it must be a mix of both. Charlie and I went out to the Rockshop with David Lloyd and Danny Baker, amongst others. First of all, thank you David for Taking us out there. It was an amazing day of climbing on superb rock. We started off at the paralysis wall, which is home to V1, V2, and V3 warmups. After pussing out on the V1, I looked like quite the pebble wrestler. In addition to these three warmups, the paralysis wall was home to a project on the right side of the face. We all gave it a couple of burns. I know that both Charlie and I felt close, but the send remained elusive. Next, everyone circuited Starry Night (V7). Danny, Charlie, and I all managed our first ascents of this route. Subsequently, Charlie and I went to jump on Gem Thief (V11), my hope for the day. I managed to do the route in approximately 45 min. This was miraculous and unexpected. It was two brutal and powerful moves followed by a couple of relatively easy moves.-----
Danny Baker Photo-----
From there, the troop went to a gorgeous V2/3. As the day began to wrap up, Charlie managed to crush out The Giving Tree (V10). No photo on the internet does this boulder justice. It is miraculous. I am jealous of both Jamie E and Chris M for putting down proud first ascents on this boulder. Perhaps of note: There is supposed to be a stand start on the giving tree, a V8. Charlie and I climbed something of and eliminate (I would not call it a pure line) that does not hit the good left hand sidepull (the hold you slap to on the first move of the V8). It also does not use the flaky jug out to the right. It was hard.-----

The next day, Charlie and I went out, wrecked. I managed to complete The Giving Tree. And Charlie flashed Zef. And we both sent Lord of the Flies in our tennis. The two days were glorious.

More soon. I will attempt to make a post every day this, so as to catch up and cover some topics I've been meaning to.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Mt. Evans and the dyno comp with Charlie... more to come

A week back Charlie Barron and I, on a moments notice, drove down to Mt. Evans on a Tuesday at 4:30 PM to climb. Arriving at Echo lake around 2:30 AM, after having done some late night grocery shopping, we kicked the pads out of the car and crashed in the back of my Subaru. Our prime choice of sleeping location was due to the lake's prohibition of overnight camping (the only type of camping?). Waking up the next morning, I was stoked to already be positioned at the trailhead. We kicked it off, and proceeded to hike the moderate 2.5 miles to the boulders. Day one consisted of Charlie and I climbing a V6 on the Bierstadt in entirely polar styles... he just jumped. Then Charlie jumped on Bierstadt (V9) and oddly did not crush it. It was even more surprising due to the fact my last trip out here, 2 or 3 weeks prior, I had managed to do it in 5 or less tries. Charlie, only slightly fazed, went on to destroy the Dali (V8) quickly. I had done this route in the fall of 2012 and was glad he punted it out just as easily. Next we both completed this silly campus V9 on the boulder with Seurat. In addition to this, we completed Seurat, a deceptively difficult V8. __________________________________________________________ I was also very close to sending Clear Blue Skies (V11). The last move. __________________________________________________________ Day 2 Charlie and I were wrecked. We tried to send Gorillas in the Mist. Every move was worked out, just no linkage. Also of note, The previous time I was at Mt. Evans, I managed to complete Public Execution (V10) quickly. __________________________________________________________ After the hike out, we drove to Lander WY, and once again arrived at 2:30. This time it was raining. Charlie somehow passed out comfortably in the passenger seat, as I shifted uncomfortably in the driver's seat. Around 5, I was pissed, but it had stopped raining, so I set up my tent and slept in it until 8. With minimal sleep, Charlie and I just meandered for a day, friday the rest day, Come night however, and it was game on. Charlie tied for 2nd place in the dyno competition with Matt Fultz, being barely edged out by Ethan Pringle. __________________________________________________________ Photo credit to Danny Baker __________________________________________________________ Next will be climbing in Lander the next two days.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Time to actually make a post.

The last year has been what I can hopefully call progressive. I feel that having a semi-functional, the school's, gym year-round was of benefit to me. If I'm not mistaken, and in accordance with Charlie's views, I am stronger. Thank god. Since the summer after sophomore year of high school, my progress in terms of climbing has felt dismal. Grade wise, I have improved none at all. But maybe, I've just been looking at it all wrong. This lead me to a re-evaluation many of the first ascents I've completed in Cody. Opening my eyes to a more objective critique of many of my first ascents has come, first and foremost, from traveling to other areas (not just Joe's Valley), and another person sending many of my routes (Charlie Barron). Many of my routes need downgrades. Thinking back... Armageddon Savior is a 10, not an 11. Green Glass Door is a 10, not an 11. Hate Satan is an 11 or 10/11, not a 12. Dope is Chrome aka Grim Ripper is 11/12, not 13. Heart of a Masochist is a 10, not 11/12. Pookster is a 10, not an 11. The stand start on Pistol Whip is an 8. Approaching Infinity is an 11 or 10/11. Routes that we should all consider accepting the downgrade on: Riding a Deadman's Harley: v10 Deadman's Harley: v7 Studs: v6/7 or 7. When Life gives you Lemons: v7 or 8 Tribal Vibrations Stand Start: v8. Spear Chucking Baby Throwdown Ho-Down: v10/11, previously v12. And potentially v10/11 or 10 for Tribal Vibrations. Please nobody take any of that offensively. I stand entirely behind the first part, being that they are all FAs of mine, and for many of them, this has been a process of bouncing thoughts between Charlie and I after having traveled to many different areas. As for the second part, I feel that these are adjustments so Cody is not soft in comparison to other areas. Give me another day or two, and I will actually update on my climbing. First and foremost I've has two fantastic days of bouldering at MT. Evans this summer. Similarly, two even better days of bouldering in Lander WY. I've almost completed one of my Cody projects.