Sunday, December 8, 2013

Highlights of 2013


I’ve been on the road for about eight months now. It’s been an amazing trip. If I wanted to I could bore you with every detail, but I don’t want to so I’ll keep it brief. Here are the highlights (good and bad/memorable).

The massive Zion linkup with Scott Bennett that I talked about in my last report.

Doing the Nose in a day with Nik Berry and then deciding to do Half Dome while hanging out in the meadow after getting down. We got lost on Half Dome and topped out in the dark. We then proceeded to get super lost going down the death slabs but somehow survived and got to watch the sunrise as we got back to the car. A 24 hour day.

Trying to climb Mikey Schaefer’s Father Time route on Middle Cathedral with Eric Bissell. What an amazing climb! We slept for two nights in this old crappy portal ledge that sagged in the middle. Probably the worst two nights of sleep I ever had. The climbing was hard and we failed but it was a memorable experience and I’m glad I tried it.

One day I woke up and had a spectacular time  wandering around the Tuolumne High Country soloing stuff.  I climbed On the Lamb, OZ, Hobbit Book, Matthes Crest, Cathedral Peak, Eichorn Pinnacle and the Regular Route on Fairview Dome. It was one of the best days of the trip.

There wasn’t any climb that stood out from the others for the two months I was in Squamish. Doing the Grand Wall at night without headlamps with Drew Marshall was neat. My time in Squamish blurred together into a summer of fun.

All the vertical face climbing at Smith was awesome. If there was anything that really stood out it was probably feeling like a total hero while walking the Monkey Face High Line in pounding rain with gear on my harness and a rope on my back. No one was there to watch it but that kind of made the experience even better.

I was only in Yosemite for a week before getting kicked out but it was such an awesome week. I was trying to figure out what to do one night in Camp 4 when I randomly had the Idea of soloing Half Dome the next day. I thought I would end up bailing on myself, but instead of turning my alarm off and going back to sleep, I found myself getting up and going for it. Like total idiot I went up there in a t-shirt and ended up suffering through brutal cold winds while trying to figure out how to rope solo on Zig Zags. These poor girls who had been on the wall for three days got their bags stuck while trying to get through the Thank God Ledge. Instead of being a manly man and helping them out I quickly climbed past. Sorry girls, too cold.

I snuck back into The Valley a week later and involuntarily paid $175 to climb the Nose with Keenan Waeschle.

Hanging out with Dave Allfrey in Red Rocks for a week. One day I went and soloed Epinephrine and it only took an hour. By far the best moderate climb I’ve ever done.  2000 feet of vertical 5.9!

Climbing Levitation 29 with Taleen Kennedy and  wandering the desert for hours after the climb because we forgot to bring headlamps. Cactus, cactus and more cactus.

Spending a week sport climbing on limestone in St. George and sleeping in Nik Berry’s dad’s office.

The spectacular calm sunsets of Indian Creek.

All the amazing people I got to hang out with!

 

This concludes my 2013 adventures.

I didn’t get many pictures of my travels but I managed to snap a few in the later part of the trip.
Sport  Climbing at The Cathedral
 
Great Fall colors at The Creek

 

The North Six peaks out of the clouds for a moment on a cold foggy morning.

Amir takes the ride on Disco Machine Gun and comes a few feet from decking
video
Grease fire at Creek Pasture(yeah I know it's sideways)
 
 
 
The last day at the Creek
 


Wednesday, May 29, 2013

A quick update



So it’s been a while since my last blog update I’m glad say that I’ve done a bunch of rad climbing in the past few months. There isn’t much to tell about my Winter and early Spring in Boulder. I had a fun time working for my good buddy Jesse Huey hanging and taking down Christmas lights. I made some good money and worked with good people but I didn’t really do a ton of hard climbing while I was there. There weren’t really any climbs that motivated me like last year. None the less I had a bunch fun days climbing in Eldo and I still trained in the Gym to help keep my fitness. Scott Bennett and I managed to grab the Naked Edge Speed record at 44 minutes bridge to bridge. It wasn’t really a planned thing when we started the day, it kind of just happened. We also had some fun days where we linked a lot of classic routes on the Redgarden wall. My Winter in Boulder wasn’t as successful as the year before but I managed to make more money and I still has some good days on the rock, so there really isn’t much to complain about.
 
A rad photo of the Naked Edge I found on Mountain Project


Toward the end of March I decided it was time for me to get back on the road. The temperature in the Moab area look great so I packed up the civic, said good bye to my Colorado friends and headed west. I ended up spending over a week at Indian Creek. It had been a while since I did any hard single pitch trad climbing so I only managed to send one pitch of 5.13 while I was there. I did a few really cool 5.12’s I hadn’t done before. The Desert Shield at Scarface really stood out as a rad climb. I also repeated some of the classic routes I had already climbed before, mostly just to get reused to the sandstone. After leaving Moab I headed further west to check out Zion, a place I hadn’t climbed at before. The plan was to meet up with Madaleine Sorkin so we could try free climbing the classic Lunar Ecstasy, a popular aid climb that first got freed a couple years ago by our friend Nik Berry. It hadn’t yet seen a second free assent so we figured it would be a good challenge. The climbing proved to be super splitter but it was of course extremely challenging. We spent a couple days raping in from the top to try some of the crux pitches and it became clear that we would need more time then what we had to free the route. There was a boulder problem crux down low that became a bit harder after I broke a hold. I believe the pitch could still go free but it would demand some insane finger strength. I’m tempted to go back next season to try it again but it would involve a lot of training on the boulders and I haven’t been to psyched on bouldering in the past year, especially after my numerous injuries. After throwing in the towel on Lunar X, Madaleine and I had an awesome day linking Sheer Lunacy into the super mega classic Moonlight Buttress. I can say without any hesitation that Moonlight is the best free climb I’ve ever done. I love finger cracks and Moonlight is basically 900 feet of solid finger locks. I don’t think I could ever head east or west on the I 15 without stopping by Zion to climb that route.
 Moving through the crux on Desert Shield
Michael Pang photo
 
Making a fun repeat of Death of a Cowboy
Michael Pang photo

On of those steep pitches on Sheer Lunacy in Zion
 

Zion is a super good place to do long linkups, so after Madaline had to leave I called Scott Bennett to see if he could fly out from Colorado to meet me so we could try a mega linkup of some of the classic routes. Scotts super psyched on big days but I didn’t think he’d be able make the flight with such late notice, however Scott doesn’t let anything get in his way when it comes to climbing. The next day Scott was in Zion and we were ready to rage. After some brief discussion we decided to try a linkup of Sheer Lunacy, Moonlight Buttress, Monkeyfinger and Shunes Buttress. It was a super exhausting eighteen hour day but it was extremely fun and we managed to do all four routes. Shunes buttress was climbed completely at night but we got it done. I had planned to climb in Red Rocks after leaving Zion but I didn’t feel all the way rested when I got there so I decided to head home to visit my parents for a week to rest up before heading to Yosemite. I’ve been in the Valley for about a month now and I’ve done a lot of good climbing since ive been here but I won’t write about it until my next blog post that I’ll try and write in a couple weeks. I hope you’re all having a good spring season and I hope to see you out on the Rock!

 

Sunday, January 20, 2013

90%


 
 
Just thought I’d check in with the whole blog thing since it’s been a while. The mega road trip I had planned all last year ended up being not so mega as I’d hoped. The Hulk was great and I spent a month in Squamish that turned out so so. I sent a sick trad line called Lake of Fire that I’m super proud of, but after that the weather got kind of bad and I had trouble finding people to climb with. I ended up doing a lot of soloing and bouldering while I was waiting for more friends to show up. I went out bouldering one day toward the end of July and missed the pad on this high ball called Teenage Lobotomy. My foot immediately swelled to the size of a foot ball. It hurt like hell and I knew without question that it was broken. It was clear that this bouldering injury was a bit more serious than the one the previous year on Midnight Lightning. The road trip was over. I would have to spend the next few months recovering back in Socal. A big thanks to my sister Jill for flying up to Vancouver to pick me up and drive me all the way back home to Cali.  I don’t think she was psyched about two and a half days of driving across the whole western U.S in the middle of summer in a small 94 civic without air conditioning. Neither was I for that matter. Also a big thanks to my parents for giving me a place to live for three months while I was in a cast healing.
 A video of someone sending Teenage Lobotomy...


By the end of September I was slowly starting to climb again. I decided to leave California in October and head to Indian Creek to finish up the rest of my trip. There’s not much to tell as far as hard sending goes but the three weeks I spent in the Moab dessert was just what I needed. My ankle still hurt to walk on and jamming my foot in cracks was anything but comfortable, but it’s impossible to be depressed in the calm aesthetic atmosphere of that place. By the end of October I left Utah and headed to Boulder CO. Since then I’ve been working for my buddy Jesse Huey hanging Christmas lights in all the suburbs around Boulder and Denver. My ankle has healed to about 90% and I’m just now starting to climb harder more serious stuff. It wasn’t too much effort regaining my physical strength. I’m almost at the fitness I was at before the injury. However, getting my mental strength back up is proving to be rather challenging. I’m not nearly as bold and sure of myself as I was this time last year. Hopefully by the time May rolls around I’ll have eliminated all the irrational fear I’m currently experiencing on the rock.

The past month has been extremely cold on the Front Range and I haven’t gotten outside climbing too much.  Ian Cavanaugh and I have gotten out a couple times to try the famous Eldo testpiece To RP or Not to Be. An X rated Derek Hersey face route. The climbing is spectacular and the rock is just about perfect. However, there’s only a few spots for thin wires that I don’t think would hold a fall. If it were bolted it would be one of the most traveled 12a face routes in all of Eldo. I cant say for sure but I think the route has only seen two repeats since the first assent back in 87.  Neither Ian or I have yet summoned the courage to lead it yet. I think I’ll be well on my way back to mental recovery after I’ve head pointed the route.

I plan to stay in Boulder for another three months to train and save up money. Then I hope to start a new road trip. I’d like to go back to the Black Canyon for a day or two and then head out to Yosemite Valley to spend the rest of the Spring. I’m not totally sure what I want to do with the summer. I’d like to go back to Canada and then maybe check out the climbing up in the Sawtooths in Idaho. In any case the main climbing goal for this next road trip is to….Stay uninjured!!!

Have a good Spring! Here’s an interesting video of Legendary Johnny Dawes and John Redhead considering the lead on the famous E9 testpiece, Indian Face. It gets me psyched for my personal inevitable future headpoint…
http://www.ukclimbing.com/news/item.php?id=67747

Friday, June 29, 2012

Leaving Boulder


I’m back to living life on the road. Since leaving Colorado I’ve been doing a ton of driving. On my way back to California I took a quick stop in Rifle for two days, where I actually climbed alright. I always imagined rifle would totally kick my ass if I ever went, and it kind of did, but I feel like I fared ok and got a few fun climbs done in the short amount of time I was there. I would have stayed longer but I had very important things to do in Socal such as eating junk food and sleeping in a bed.  I got back to Cali toward the end of May and spent over a week at my parents place where I ate a ton of food and gained ten pounds. I didn’t really care much however as I knew I’d lose the wait really quick again when I went back to Yosemite.

For the second season in a row I didn’t really get anything done while I was in the Valley. I spent a month there and nothing really happened. My Yosemite tick list is pretty much limited to elcap, and finding motivated partners for such a big task is a little hard. It’s also difficult to muster the motivation in myself. The more time I spend on the Valley floor the harder it gets to put forth the energy required to complete an elcap project.  I get sucked into this vortex of laziness. In the last few days I was there, Eliot Carlsen and I hiked to the top and played around on the Salathe Headwall. The position in amazing and the crack is one of the best rock climbs anywhere. The moves came together really quick but the difficulty lies in its sustained nature. It’s about 200 feet long and about half of it is slightly overhanging. Endurance is a must. I thought it would take a lot of work to actually get through it without resting on the rope, but surprisingly I managed to get a TR send of the whole thing on my fourth try. The Salathe might be in the game plan for next fall! I just have to stay out of that vortex! After jugging back to the top I was tempted to drop in on the Nose to try my luck on the Changing Corners pitch but by that point in the day it was simply just too hot. I looked across the Valley past Half Dome and saw the snowy mountains and rounded Tuolumne Domes in the distance. Immediately I knew I’d be leaving the Valley to seek to cooler temps of the High Country.

A neat video of Mayan Smith Gobat climbing the Salathe Headwall

The next day I met my buddy Nik Berry in Tuolumne Meadows where we spent the day soloing some of the classics. We started off by climbing West Crack where we passed Alex Honnold and his mom on pitch two. He recommended a no hands knee bar over the roof. I declined. It was then off to go solo OZ, a route that had been high on my solo tick list for a while. Its maybe the best 5.10 anywhere. There’s a unbelievable corner on pitch three that’s absolutely perfect. Its steep and splitter and it looks like 5.13 from a distance. The positive footholds and bomber finger locks however make it casual. There’s a 10+ face pitch down lower that I remember feeling really easy even when I did it three four years ago. Without a rope and semi blown out shoes however it felt a bit above casual. The bolts became painful monos as I converted the pitch into a 5.9. Nik hiked the pitch in much better style. After OZ we went on to enjoy the beautiful climbing on Hobbit Book. On hike down we confirmed plans to go climb at the Incredible Hulk the next day.

 Some climbers on OZ


The Incredible Hulk!

Nik is one of the best granite climbers I know, and if theres someone to do a big granite linkup with its him. His fitness is insane, and I don’t think he’s ever been scared. We decided to try and link two amazing routes of the Incredible Hulk in a day. First Airstream the hardest route on the cliff at 5.13 and then Venturi Effect a stunning 12+ I’d done with Scott Bennett a few years back. The hike up was beautiful and went really quick. We got to base camp and set our alarm for 5am. It was amazing watching the last golden rays of light hit the white sheer granite of the hulk. If all went well the next day, we’d be climbing the Venturi  Effect’s splitter headwall in a golden bath of granite. We started climbing Airstream at 6:30 the next morning. All went smooth until the first 5.12 pitch, an almost featureless corner that I had a lot of trouble trying to figure out. I thought it felt miles harder than the 12+ corner pitch of the Venturi. I kept falling at the end and would have to lower down the pitch to start it over, so as to get the true red point. I ended up climbing it completely sideways with both my hands palmed out on the right wall and both feet walking up the left wall. Definitely not the beta but whatever works I guess. Nik used his superior footwork skills to send the pitch a bit quicker and with less effort. The next was even harder but we both managed to send with Nik leading and myself fallowing. We were soon at the top having redpointed all the pitches. The day was only half over and it was clear that we would have enough time for the Venturi Effect.
A topo of Airstream

The climbing on the Venturi went pretty smooth for the first half but I was quickly feeling fatigue set in from so many hard pitches. My toes especially hurt from all the tecky granite stemming. I began to climb inefficiently and stared to plug in gear in unnecessary spots. Nik appeared to be a little tired but this didn’t seemed to hinder his climbing. He still made everything look easy and was running everything out as usual. Like a total boss he would end up onsighting the route!). On the last crux pitch I kinda shut down and ended up taking on the rope a few times. Nik fallowed it clean as if it were 5.10. He then lead the last long pitch by head lamp and belayed me up. We rapped down the route in the dark and made our way back to camp to make dinner. The day was long and stressful but extremely rewarding. Those kind of hard days in the mountains are some of the best I’ve had. They make life so worth living!


 Climbing the Venturi  few years back

I’m now in Squamish were I plan to hopefully spend the summer. The climbing here is amazing and it’s a perfect place to have fun but still build fitness. It’s raining like crazy right now but hopefully it stops soon so I can get to work on all the countless projects I have here.  Hope you have a great summer! If you get board come to Squamish so we can climb!

Here’s a hilarious website I often entertain myself with when I get board. Enjoy…

http://dontevenreply.com/all.php




Saturday, May 12, 2012

Out of the Blue and into the Black



My time in Boulder has come to an end. I’ve more or less lived the last six months as a normal human would. I made money and spent money. I’m a litttle scared and very excited to leave this comfortable monotony behind. The cold winter is gone and the time for sending in here. I’m not only going to challenge myself to difficult rock climbs but I’m going to live like less of a dirt bag on this next trip. If it means less time on the road then so be it. My days of penny pinching are over. I want to find a way to use my talents to make money. Not a ton but just enough to make my life on the road more comfortable. The first major destination on my tip will be Yosemite Valley. My life goals lie on the 3000 foot chunk of rock known as El Capitan. I feel like I’m finely at the stage in my life where I’m ready to test myself to these goals. I’m going to spend as few days as possible on the Valley Floor, away from the Rangers who are so eager to hand out tickets and the hordes of tourists who just make me want to leave Yosemite.

My final week in Colorado has been both amazing and awful. I made some bad decisions in my eagerness and stress to leave boulder. What should have been a happy time for me has turned stressful and problematic. None the less I feel I learned a thing or two that will hopefully influence me to improve my future lifestyle. All in all however I’m proud of the time I spent here. I met my financial goals in an extremely difficult job and still found the time to do some amazing rock climbs. On top of that I made some awesome new friends who share my passion for the sport.

After clocking out and saying good bye to my fellow co-workers at the West End Tavern I headed down to the Black Canyon with Madaleine Sorkin, one of CO’s most accomplished trad climbers. Our goal was to free the 2000 foot Hallucinogen Wall 5.13R VI. I checked out the climb a few weeks prior with my good buddy Cody Scarpella and the climbing on the route seemed within my ability. The numerous R rated pitches had me a little worried but in a way in kind of made the climb more desirable. When Madaleine and I showed up to the North Rim it was clear that the wall would be backing in the sun all day with temperatures in the 80’s. Those sustained runout face climbing pitches where going to be no joke. Our plan was to spend a day stashing food, water, sleeping bags and a portaledge on top of pitch 12 just before the pitch 13 crux. We would spend the first day on the wall climbing up to our stuff on pitch 12 then spend the night. The next day we would climb the remaining four pitches to the top. That night I set my alarm for 5:30 am and tired to go to sleep thinking about how all those scary pitches would feel in the heat.

I feel like I had just closed my eyes when the alarm went off on my phone. I got up and made a hasty breakfast in the dark. I met Madaleine at her van and we thrashed down the poison ivy cover gully. It was a bit scary to see the dark towering walls rise above me as we descended lower down the gully towards the roaring river. Was I really doing this? Was I ready for such a challenging scary climb? This was the first time I ever climbed here. Was it such a good idea to be going for the hardest route? This climb had only seen two ascents  by truly badass climbers. Who was I to think I was in the same leauge as Hansj√∂rg Auer and Joe Mills. The Hallucinogen seemed to scowl down at me as we racked up at the base. I could see our stuff hanging on pitch 12, fifteen hundred feet up. “You’ll never get to me” it seemed to say. “Screw it” I thought. This is why I love rock climbing; The Adventure and the unknown. It’s time to put my skills to the test. Up we went with good progress. Yes it was scary, the rock was loose, the protection was far apart and the climbing was challenging. By the time I got up to the harder more serious pitches, the wall was fully backing in the sun. I fell once on a tricky 5.12 move on pitch seven that proved to be real reachy and hard to protect. The remaining five pitches to our portalledge went smoothly and quick. There were many times where I felt like I was going to come off but I managed to hold on and not take any savage whippers. After a restless night on the poralledge we were ready to go to the top. We had both sent all the pitches up to that point. It was time to gear up and lead the crux. I was so sore and tired but I wanted to send this climb so bad. I felt like I was going to come off on almost every move on the pitch but I held on and managed to send the entire thing on my first go of the day. The route was in the bag! Like a champ Madaleine followed the pitch clean. She would be the first female to send the route free! Three more pitches of scary loose climbing brought us to the top where we high fived in the baking sun. The third and fourth free ascent of The Hallucinogen Wall had just been made!

This climb was a great achievement for me and a perfect finish to my stay in Colorado. It was an excellent adventure that was both challenging and enjoyable (in an odd sort of way). With Colorado behind me, I look forward to the inevitable challenges and adventures of the next six months. I’ll keep you informed. Peace!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Little Talks

The road calls

Life continues on here in boulder Colorado but not for much longer. I told my boss I’m leaving at the beginning of May. Work started off great but now after five months I’ve had enough of bussing tables and pretending to be friendly to stupid drunk customers. I need to answer the call of The Road! I want my next road trip to be similar to the last one. Only this time I plan to not break my foot. Hopefully the Honda can handle all the driving. I’d like to leave Boulder May 10th and head to the Black Canyon with Cody Scarpella to make a free attempt at the Hallucinogen Wall. All my training done in Boulder has been to prepare me for this wall. If accomplished it will be without doubt the greatest climbing achievement of my career. I’m skeptical but we’re both feeling very fit and capable, so maybe we have a chance. Fingers are crossed! We’re going down to the Black to make a recon mission in a few days. This will hopefully give us an idea of the chance we stand at getting the beast done in May. After the Black I’d like to go to Rifle for a week are so. I hear it’s the best limestone sport climbing in North America.  I’d be cool to get a little endurance training in before the bulk of my road trip begins. I won’t get into the details of everywhere I plan to go because frankly I’m not sure of what those details are myself. And I want it to stay that way. Just take it as it comes. I’m trying to learn from the mistakes I made on my last trip! Two places are a given however, Squamish and Yosemite. That’s all I’m going to say for now.


The free topo for the Hallucinogen Wall 

My time in Boulder since my last blog update has been amazing. Work hasn’t been all fun and games but I’ve made some good money that should make my time on the road a little more comfortable. The climbing has been great. The weather turned really nice and the days got longer. Spring in Boulder is awesome! It doesn’t get dark till 7:30 or so, so I have time to go climbing after I get off work. I’ve been going to eldo and soloing a bunch of the easy classics there. Outer Space and Alice in Bucketland are two climbs that really stand out as good scrambling routes. The rock there is super interesting; it climbs like a mix of both granite and limestone but it’s actually a tough kind of sandstone. Eldorado canyon is what I’ll miss most when I leave Boulder. I would say I’ll miss all the cool people I’ve hung out with while I’ve been here, but luckily for me I’ll see most of those people when I’m out on the road for the next seven months. I love the climbing community!
The Redgarden Wall in Eldorado Canyon-photo by Kris Gorny

Probably the most exciting day I’ve had in boulder so far came about two weeks ago when Cody and I decided we wanted to climb one of the notorious eldo 5.12X routes. This is an idea that formed in my head while I was at work. I was working the day shift and I knew I’d get off around 3pm or so and I thought it be cool to go give a toperope inspection session on a route called The Lion. A horrifying 5.12x route with poor protection well below your feet. A fall would mean many broken bones without a doubt. After I got off work I gave Cody a call and asked him if he wanted to have a safe afternoon of toproping.  He was game. We got into the canyon at around 4 and went to work on getting the TR set up. We ended up both flashing The Lion. It felt insecure and balancy at the crux, but doable. And then all the sudden there we were picking out the gear we wanted for the lead. Leading a 5.12x route was not in the plan for that evening but there I was telling Cody he was “on belay” as he stepped off the ground. Like a boss Cody stuck the crux and managed to clip the anchors 60 feet above his last piece of protection. Cody would not be leaving the canyon in an ambulance. It was now my turn. I of course couldn’t devastate my ego by backing out of the lead, so there I was trying to breath and stay calm as I pulled my way up to the crux. Below the cuxy face sequence there’s an insecure mantel that isn’t reversible. After the mantel your committed to the climb. Your either clipping the anchors or your taking the wild bone breaking fall on the low angled slab thirty feet below(if the gear holds). Before I could psych myself out I was pulling the mantel. It was now time to crimp the crux hold and stab out for the sloppy pinch while trying to not barn door off the foot holds. I reached up for the crimp and right away I knew I wasn’t sticking the next move. I was going to fall. It’s as if the crimp got twice as small and grease had somehow oozed out of it since my TR go. Somehow my legs didn’t do the Elves dance they sometimes do when I get gripped. I was strangely calm. It was as if I had accepted the fact that I wouldn’t be climbing for the next year or so. I noticed a small audience down the path way out of the corner of my eye. “Your about to watch me die”, I thought to myself. After about a minute of sitting there at the crux (which felt more like an hour) I knew I had to at least try the move. My fingers where getting more sweaty and I was in too much of a balancy spot to chalk up. I was going to fall in the next twenty seconds if I didn’t do something fast. I thrutched out for the slopper with my sweaty fingers. By some miracle I stuck the hold without swinging off. A couple of more tricky moves brought me to the first jug. I was going to live. We drove out of the canyon just as it was getting dark feeling like we had concurred the world. This concludes my story of the closest call I’ve had in climbing.



After the Lion ordeal I got serious about trying to do a climb in Boulder Canyon called China Doll. A 14a R route that goes up an amazing arching crack/seam for 130 feet. I’m glad to say that on April 14th I succeeded in sending the route without clipping the bolts. Psyched on sending my first 5.14! Enjoy these pictures of the route taken by Rob Kepley.




 Another one of Musta Been High that I really like...
Thanks Rob!


This update is deticated to Brandy. My best friend for thirteen years. She was my childhool. R.I.P... 

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Boulder

I’ve been living in Boulder Colorado for the past three months. After spending seven months on the road, I decided to end my nomadic lifestyle for a while. Boulder seemed like a good place to live due to its close proximity to the eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains. Plus I finished my roadtrip in Moab Utah and Boulder was only a short drive away, or at least closer then Orange County. The people here in Boulder are very into exercise, healthy(expensive) food, Outdoor sports, and being eco friendly. I sometimes catch a whiff of snootiness in the air, but for the most part the Boulder folks are really cool. I got a job working at a nice restaurant where I’m making some good money. Work can be extremely demanding at times especially after climbing all day but the friendly co-workers and good tips make the hard hours well worth it.

The reason I moved to boulder is the same reason I do anything. Great climbing! There’s a ton of awesome crags super close to town. Eldorado Canyon, just fifteen minutes from where I live is a personal favorite. Eldo has a bunch of spicy trad climbs that are plenty exciting. I recently just sent Musta Been High 13c r/x one of the famous hard trad testpieces in Boulder. I also sent some of the other classic trad lines in the same area such as Free Line 13b, Surfs Up 13a, Fraid Line 13aR and the Evictor 12cR.  I’m psyched to start doing some longer routes now that its spring and the days are getting longer and warmer. I’m especially excited to get down to the Black Canyon, a massive granite canyon just five hours south of Boulder. My biggest goals in Colorado lie on those massive dark walls. The climbing there looks terrifying and epic. I recently just bought a 600 foot static line I’m hoping to use in the Black next month. Hopefully the comfortable days cragging in Boulder haven’t softened me up for epic all day adventure!
Dreaming!

Living in Colorado has been great but honestly it hasn’t been too exciting and there isn’t much more to write about. All I can say is that life has been comfortable and relatively normal.  Some of my good friends have better stories to tell for how they spent their winter. Enjoy some fascinating blog updates from Kevin Molar, http://dirtbagliving.blogspot.com/and Mason Earle, http://masonearle.blogspot.com/2012/03/kids-with-guns.html

I’m a little worried about Kevin to be honest. He’s as dirtbag as they come and I know he doesn’t have much money to survive off of. He Hitchhiked down to Patagonia a few months ago and he’s been down there since. He’s posted facebook updates like “surviving a Patagonia storm in a three season tent” and “living off a free bag of rice”. I also heard he broke his knee and he hasn’t been doing any climbing. Hopefully he makes it back to the U.S in one piece. Hitchhicking from Chili to the U.S with no money and a broken knee doesn’t sound easy but if there’s anyone who can do it, it would be him “the King of the Dirtbags”. Go Kevin!




Here are some awesome photos taken by my buddy Rob Kepely. Enjoy!

 Flashing Brothers In Arms 12c at the South Platte

Musta Been High 13c r/x. Not my tick marks!


The last crux move on Musta Been High

Thanks again for these photos Rob!