Friday, February 27, 2009

Cole's Problem

Here's an unedited video of Joel Campbell climbing a short problem Cole Allen put up in the Forest a year or two ago.


Gold Bar Forest Day

I headed up to Gold Bar a week ago with Cortney, Drew, and Joel, hoping to hike up to the new spot and climb on some projects. We did get to hike up there, but the forest was covered in a residual layer of snow and we simply turned around and hiked back down. We climbed in the Clearcut on Saturday evening, camped at the top of the hill, and then had a nice day in the forest on Sunday.

We spent most of the day on the Funpuppet boulder, another small boulder below El Navigante, and the Midnight Lichen boulder on the trail to the Sanctuary. It was a nice day with lots of climbing...

Sunny Morning Cortney Warming Up Attempting Funpuppet Joel on Dookie's Direct

Cortney on Jer-Bear's Hug Cortney on Midnight Lichen

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Winter Pics From The Archive

Here are some photos from the winter of ’04, a long time ago in a place far away…
One winter's day, my friend Erik Lambert and I headed out to Brandon Gap, VT, about a two hour drive from Hanover, NH, where we both lived. We had heard rumors from the local learned climbing mystic John Joline of piles of rock tumbling down a steep hillside… our research turned up mention of some area climbers hiking around roadside boulders, with promising tales grey masses lurking in the forest across a small pond.

We headed out to explore the area in January, which in Northern Vermont brings temperatures in the 10-20 degree range… we had full snow gear and snowshoes, and made our way quickly across the frozen ponds to the rolling deciduous hills below the hillside.

From our first foray into the woods to our last visit a few weeks later, we were not disappointed. Large schist blocks were hidden over each ridge and knoll, and each yielded some unique movement. A few even yielded top-outs. I don’t think either of us had bouldered in the snow much before that winter, and it took some getting used to, but the climbing was worth it. The pictures speak for themselves...

The Hillside at Brandon Gap

Boulders Lurking In The Woods… One 20’ Monster, With 3 Undone Projects

Erik Lambert Enjoying The Winter Conditions The True Grit Arete, A Five-Star Highball Problem Erik Lambert Climbing Black Ice Erik Lambert Working The White Ice Project
Me Making The FA of White Ice – Another Five-Star Line
My experience in Brandon Gap was amazing… It is the sense of adventure, isolation, and intrigue that I felt on trips like these that has gotten me so hooked on climbing. The weather was clear and crisp, and the stone was fresh and abundant. After we made four or five visits to Brandon Gap, the snow began to melt and we were able to climb at other, closer spots like Etna, Rumney, and Pawtuckaway. However, that short season of exploration and development we experienced in Brandon Gap was wonderful, and holds a special place in my heart. I think the sense of inaccessible abundance I felt looking up at the hillside in Brandon Gap is part of what drew me to Leavenworth, and this great state as a whole…

Monday, February 16, 2009

Starburst Video

I want to give a big congratulations to Johnny Goicoechea, who just tied for 6th place at ABS nationals in Boulder this weekend! It seemed like a really strong field of competitors, and I'm not at all surprised that Johnny placed so well. His performance is a great representation for the Northwest, and validation of all of his talent and training. Nice job Johnny!

For now, here are two more test videos, I'm still working on the video hosting... This video is me climbing the problem Starburst in the Upper Labyrinth area in Leavenworth over two years ago. If anyone knows who put this one up, drop me a line.

This next video is an old one I made of two good friends from New Hampshire climbing two classic problems on North Mountain in Hueco Tanks. The music is by Nico Muhly. Enjoy!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Glen's Problem Video

I'm looking for a new site to host my videos in an effort to get away from YouTube and all the BS that comes with it. As a test, here's a re-post of Johnny climbing Glen's Problem in the Clearcut in Gold Bar. Hopefully the quality will be slightly better than before, although the real problem is my tiny camera and poor editing software... For now, here's the video:

Exploration Pics

Here are some pics from our exploration during the last two weekends. Not much else to report, just that we are headed out climbing this weekend and I'm PSYCHED!

Laddermonkey Joel
Joel Campbell's Sacrificial Dance of The Chosen One
Funky Fungus
Serious Expidition Tactics
The Uber-Proj
Mean Mr. Joel
Forest Light
Cortney on a First Ascent
Me Attempting the Lacuna Project
Cortney on Another FA

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Gold Bar Pics

Here are some pics from Gold Bar last weekend. The weather has turned a bit sour, but it has forced us to start exploring... a new stash was recently discovered deep in the forest, which will surely be the subject of many spring and summer adventures.

For now, here are some pics from a nice day spent enjoying the winter sun...

Joel on the Green Boulder
Me on the Green Boulder
The Clearcut Boulders
Joel around the Corner
Me on the project below
Drew Schick on The Bricklayer
Max topping out The Garden Elf
SchickD on Gates of Fire