Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

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Tahoe – Day 2

October 1, 2013

This past Friday Wade texts me asking if I want to go back out to Tahoe and, thanks to my wife’s amazingness, I could!  A good crew of strong climbers and good friends were going and the plan was to get on some 5 star lines starting with the famous White Lines!!  I couldn’t say no!!

Wade, Christian, Jordan, Eric and I plus four pads all fit in one car! and we met up with Max, Clara, Vitaly and Vanessa.  In the end it was the single day with the most climbing I’ve ever done.  Once one climb was over with we’d hike over to the next, put our stuff down, attack and then move on to the next awesome line.  SO MUCH FUN, amazing scenery, awesome company!  A perfect day (I could have done without the In And Out burger though).

I somehow managed to send every climb we got on.  I’d be more tired and my fingers a little more punished when we’d get to a new boulder but the lines were so great that I really didn’t want to leave without having done them.

The highlights were:
Rainbird V8
White Lines V8
Down Syndrome V8
Hotos and Hand Tools V8
Fun House V6/7
Crescendo V7

I haven’t been climbing outside regularly and thus cannot honestly give my opinion about the grades having little reference.  All climbs (with the exception of Rainbird) were EXCELLENT in their own way!  White Lines is simply a 5 star boulder problem, starting with hard body tension moves on flat crimps then leading to slopey chalk-less holds involving a lot of compression.  Down Syndrome is just 2 hard moves from an undercling followed by a hard lunge to a jug.  Hotos is cave-like bodytension.  Fun House … amazing – tracking on crimp rails then hucking to slopers… perfect!

Evolv

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Tahoe – Day 1of many

September 24, 2013

On Sunday I went up to Tahoe with Wade for my very first visit… crazy that I have been living in the Bay Area for 3 years now and never been up to Tahoe (I’ve been kinda busy AND I don’t have a car AND I was just getting to know the climbing community BUT still… crazy).

Wade and I had high expectations as we drove up; conditions were supposed to be sunny and cold and we had several V8’s, V9’s and V10’s to look at and attempt.  In the end we didn’t get on any of the ones we had thought we were going to.  As we neared Tahoe we started to notice a little bit of snow on top of the trees and as we arrived at our parking area there was a solid foot of snow EVERYWHERE.  The boulders would have their tops covered in snow and would be wet even if we cleared them.  In desperation we searched the guidebook for lower elevation bouldering areas and found one small area with some V4’s, a V5 and a V10; we quickly drove there and had the area to ourselves until Kyle O’Meara and his partner (didn’t get your name) showed up.  Wade and I worked Rogue Wave, a technical kinda high V5 which I finally managed to top out after many frustrating attempts trying to find the holds.  Then Kyle made short work of the V10 – It’s A Boy, and we decided that the day was warming up so much that it was time to head back up to higher elevations and hope that some things had dried.

Wade had tried a crimpy V8 called Fresh Tips at the Soda Springs area and though our tips were not fresh he went there anyway and ran into a group of Bay Area climbers including motivated climbers Vitaly Volberg and his partner Vanessa.

Fresh Tips is a great little aesthetic climb on small holds and requiring some good body tension (particularly to not dab on the rock behind).  Wade refreshed his memory from his last visit and sent after dry-firing of the holds once or twice.  I messed up on the start moves twice and then took it to the top on the third try; felt great to climb this classic though sad the challenge was over so quickly.  Afterwards we were coerced by Vitaly to go to “THE BEST CLIMB IN TAHOE”: Soul Glo.

After a gorgeous hike we arrived at Soul Glo, I switched into cameraman mode and captured Vitaly comfortably sending this gem.

So much to climb up in Tahoe!!  Though Wade is psyched for projects in Yosemite… I have got to come back!

Evolv

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Natural Bridge

July 24, 2012

Took a short weekend trip up to Hayfork a week ago to visit more Gainesville friends that have made the transition to NorCal.  Had an excellent time and got to climb outdoors at Natural Bridge.

Natural Bridge is a stunning little place.  Nestled in a surrounding of tall redwoods and lush poison oak you find an explosion of limestone settled over a dry river (dry in the summer that is).  Native Americans of the Wintu tribe called this place Kok-Chee-Shup-Chee used this as a sacred site and, unfortunately, it is the location of a famous massacre of 150 Wintu by dumb palefaces.  Anyhoo.  We came to enjoy the lcoation and to climb on some of the gorgeous formations.

Here are some pictures of myself climbing The Crystal Knight, V8, put up by Randy Hill a few years ago; very happy to have done this in a day.  You start under the arete, hugging the bulge and some burly moves take you onto the overhanging face climb where some sharp crimps await.  A logical sit start makes this a V11 and adds a few moves on beautiful pinches.ImageImageImageImage

A few intimidating sport climbs exist on the side of this cave (and a nice project up the middle for A.O.) and Max Z and Randy H focused on a project in the 5.13d/8b range.  Here is some footage of that being worked on (there is still another section with 2 cruxes after where Randy falls):

Enjoy and keep climbing!

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Mortar Rock

April 5, 2012

It has been a while since I posted with any regularity on this blog.  Climbing indoors really hasn’t motivated me to film and post with that much enthusiasm.  The indoor climbing/training has been going great, and I’ve considered posting videos of training routines but what really motivates me is outdoors and I’ve been reluctant to switch this spot to a chalky indoor video blog.

A month and a half ago I went on a 3 day trip to Bishop which got me psyched, frustrated and motivated.  Psyched because I feel stronger, frustrated because I felt unaccustomed to climbing on real rock, and motivated for training outdoors.  The Bay Area isn’t known for its outdoor climbing spots but it does have one (or two) randomly placed boulders: Mortar Rock and Indian Rock.  Just Mortar Rock (one boulder) has a hundred (or 180 according to 8a) lines and variants.

Despite Mortar Rock being the opposite of a bouldering Mecca (1 boulder, sharp, painful, and located in the middle of a city) it has been the proving ground for many of the finest climbers of the previous generation; hard climbs have been established here by high-profile names such as: John Sherman, Greg Loh, Randy Puro and Chris Sharma as well as lesser known yet strong local climbers.

Here is a video of Full Fever:

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Areola Peninis

February 6, 2012

Here is a little video from a day at Sonora, CA, with Ryan Moon and Brian Hedrick.  Some really pretty blue rock out there.

Meanwhile, I’ve been trying out the Shaman climbing shoe from Evolv and have been really impressed.  In my opinion it is by far the best bouldering shoe Evolv has yet come out with.
Evolv has made steady improvements over these past 6 years and they have definitely tried several different shoe designs; the wide and stocky-feeling optimus prime:the high heel cup of the Talons: 

and now the Shaman: 

It is great to see Evolv reaching this point; this is a shoe that can stand its ground when put head to head against the new models from Five-Ten and La Sportiva.

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Sonora – The Third Rail

May 2, 2011

It has been a while since the last update.  The regular training has continued, with its motivational ups and downs, and the outdoor trips have been occurring with a little more frequency (which is sooo great!).

Here is a clip of Ryan Moon working hard on his ex-project The Third Rail – V11 – in Sonora, California.  He returned and got the first ascent of this line less than a week later.

I will be posting a couple other clips soon, one of Brian Hedrick on his first ascent of Areola Peninis – V11, also in Sonora, and one of Max Zolotukhin on The Force and Thriller in Yosemite.

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Three From Yosemite

February 23, 2011

And here are three more climbs from the valley – Yosemite!

All three climbs are gorgeous.  Thriller and The Force both have perfect moves and are on one of the most beautiful granite boulders I’ve ever seen.  Heart of Darkness is another perfect line, tall with clear movement, and it is only obscure because it isn’t as easy to get to (though it’s right off the road).

I hear that only a fraction of the valley has been explored…

Enjoy the movie!