Friday, June 25, 2010

A List

Summer is here and things are chugging along at full speed. Work and family keeps me busy, though I have been juggling climbing and bolting in the mix whenever I can. Motivation has been high but focus has been blurry lately, probably due to a late spring sinus bug brought on by raininess and temp fluctuations. The recent heat seems to have dried everything up and my head is nearly clear now.

Many people over the years have talked about lists they have prepared to help them zero in on and complete climbing goals. I have always been interested but alas too lazy to actually compile a list. I always feel like there IS a list for me, its just not written down. Yeah right! Last summer it worked pretty well because each time I completed something, I knew right where I wanted to go next, and things moved along. This year I was having trouble knowing where to begin. So... I compiled a list. It is only for Tensleep right now, and only for the upper canyon stuff. It includes routes from Metropolis all the way up to the Whiny Baby wall. The routes are only ones I have not done and range from 5.11b to 5.13b. My list has 35 routes. I do not expect to do them all this season, but now I have something to shoot for. It feels different to have actually written down what I want to accomplish.

My fitness level is still lacking and my endurance is coming back, however slowly. I am a bit scattered in that I have been on HB&S a long 5.13 at the slavery wall twice now and my new granite route in Cody which is 5.13-. These routes both feel doable but I have also failed narrowly on two 5.12b's in Tensleep, but done everything else I have tried in one go. My power level is about as good as it is gonna get, I just need to wrap my head around fighting through the pump. Hopefully things will start to fall into place soon.

My new bolted routes in Tensleep are fantastic. I have bolted, cleaned and prepped four lines but am still trying the first and easiest(?) one. I thought it would be 11+, but 5.12b or c seems closer. I fell on the flash attempt at the last bolt and then again going for the hold to clip the anchor. Next go for sure. The one to the left, in the center of the pillar got cleaned and prepped last night and is even better than the arete line. It seems harder and more sustained. I installed two more anchors, one for CK and one for me, both just left of the other two routes. This should almost fill the backside of this formation, and there is still plenty of room on the side and front.

Charlie and JB are in full swing at the new area as well. CK has bolted and sent two lines, a 10+ and 11-. JB has bolted four lines on a different formation, one of which could turn into two pitches. I am psyched that there are over ten routes there already. I may be able to do ten myself this season. New routes are cool and fun to find and establish but they take a toll on me, cutting into climb time and wearing me down physically. It's definitely worth it though!

I have some more media and info on the local bouldering but I'll save it for a later post. Ciao!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Summer is finally here

I spent a day a few weeks back climbing with my friend BJ, we tried the undone lines bolted on the granite in the lower canyon. He had his sights set on an old project called The Labor of Hate. A cool 12+ line of crimps up a steep wall to a stopper move to reach the anchors. He worked out and chalked up the line and found a plausible sequence for the final burly move. He practiced it but never actually stuck it, damn close though. I worked on the line around the corner from last fall as well hanging the draws and reworking some sequences. Unfortunately there was a key jug that had a puddle of water in it, and though it may not have mattered I didn't have the strength to power through it and just wipe my hand afterwards. Oh well, draws are hanging.

My new job has me over on the other side of the Big Horn Basin in Worland a couple days a week, developing new referral sources. This puts me frighteningly close to Tensleep Canyon which holds many lines I have yet to climb and a massive amount of virgin pocketed rock to bolt. My good friend Alli gave me permission to plant my pop up trailer in her side yard to use as a home away from home. It has become my office for work and a staging area for bolting missions. I finished equipping two routes on a steep bulging formation at a new area. One is a managable but sustained rig that will go at 12+ or 13-. The other is similar with several brutal cruxes, so probably harder. I began aiding my way up a free-standing pillar, my intent to leave a sport route in my wake and reach the top to access the other gems waiting to be bolted. These routes will be superb with unbeatable position - very psyched!!

Now that Alli is back at home, the climbing and training has begun with much vigor. She has folks staying with her already and more showing up in the coming weeks. She has draws hanging on Heart Balls and Swagger, a 19 clip long 5.13 that her beau Kevin bolted and sent toward the end of last season with James. They graded it 13c due to its length and one bouldery move. I took one run on it and climbed to the crux move only to sag and fall before even trying it. I rested and did the move. I also found an unchalked pocket that provided a workable sequence after that leads to the only jug on the upper section. It is sustained 5.12 climbing to the chains from there. I have no endurance whatsoever, so I was psyched to do all the moves, but daunted by the idea of sewing it together.

Bouldering continues to excite and amaze all who venture onto Cedar Mountain. I always try to shrug it off as the heat rises in the summer and concentrate on rope climbing, since the season is short. I am inevitably drawn back though, because the momentum doesn't fade with the locals but rather accelerates due to the longer days and cool evenings. Speaking of locals, they are all stronger than ever pushing individual limits and completing long standing personal goals and projects. I wish I had some footage of Clint mowing down all the V8's on the mountain or Kerrek completing new lines like the V11 direct start to Spear Point Crack or the left sit start to the Wilfords Wretch, but alas none was shot. Instead here is a video of Dan demonstrating that you really can climb on sandy choss, Dylan in mid circuit doing More is Better V4 and Clint sewing multiple old problems together to create something a little different.

Any Given Thursday evening on Cedar Mountain from Mike Snyder on Vimeo.

My camera is busted so now I have an excuse to not post pics. I'll keep shooting with the little HD though so I'll try to post up some more media.