Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Home Wallin'

The winter months here in Washington bring quite a bit of rain. Cortney and I have been lucky enough to get outside somewhat frequently this winter, but there have still been plenty of weekend days spent in the city, doing work for school or hanging out with friends. To temper the madness, we have been climbing on our home wall... I'd like to say we have been training, but my definition of training begins where it stops being fun, and that's when I usually stop climbing.

Isaac Crushing

Our wall isn't the biggest or steepest, but it is nice to be able to climb outdoors, and with no more than a few of your friends. It's also nice to have control over when and how we set the wall (having lots of feet makes me happy). I recently got a fancy Dewalt impact driver, and this past weekend we stripped the entire wall and re-set it. The first time we changed the holds around, it took about an hour; this time it took three or four. I guess we have added a lot of T-nuts and holds! I'm also really out of practice since my days setting at Stone Gardens... I was quite sore, and I didn't move nearly as many holds around as during a four-hour setting shift. I have lots of respect for gym routesetters, it's a job that involves a lot of tough work and not much recognition. Anyhow, here are a few shots of our modest efforts.

Cortney CrushingMe Straining

Hope everyone makes it out this weekend, the weather looks perfect.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Index Projex

Cortney and I went to the Sky Valley this weekend for some fun boulderin' action. Saturday's highlight was heading out to the Five Star Boulder, where I managed to send Ebriosity first try of the day. Nice job me! We had a lot of fun hanging out with Isaac, John Stordahl, and others, and climbing on some of the fantastic climbs on the boulder. It was Isaac's first day at the boulder, and he climbed super well, sending Ross Bongo, the Five Star Arete, Kombucha, and doing well on Ground Zero and Ebriosity. Nice job Isaac! Nice job Cortney and John too!
Cortney On The Five Star AreteMe On Ground Zero
We spent Saturday night with some friends in Index, and awoke to the unfortunate sound of rain falling on the roof. After a really slow morning drinking coffee and watching climbing movies, we headed up into the woods surrounding Midnite to look for more boulders with our friend Chris Henson. We spent a ton of time bushwhacking through serious undergrowth, but did uncover some real gems. Many of the boulders we found showed evidence of a wire brush, and some may have even been previously climbed, but there are a few lines that will require lots of landing work. It was really encouraging and I am looking forward to spending time unlocking the sequences these beautiful rocks will offer! Stay tuned for more...

Me On A Fun Climb Just Past Midnite
Projex In The Woods

Monday, February 1, 2010


Update 2: Now I'm really hooked. I made it out to the Five Star on Friday with Max and Kyle O', and while I made slight progress, I still couldn't put together a send. I think I'll be hiking up the hill to boulder this weekend, but I can't wait to get back to Ebriosity!

Update: I'm hooked. I went out to the Five Star yesterday and made some more progress... hopefully I'll get it next time I go out there. Such a good climb! Here's a video of my best attempt. (Purists will note that I'm not starting on the lowest possible rail, but whatever...)

Cortney and I played hooky from our many responsibilities last Thursday afternoon and headed to the Five Star Boulder for a few hours of bouldering. It had been a long time since I had visited the Five Star, and I was really excited to play on its tall granite faces. The weather was dry and crisp, and the walk felt trivial after walking to the top of the hill a few times during the last couple of months.

The Five Star Boulder

I was really excited to try Ebriosity, the boulder's classic testpiece. The climb ascends a series of sloping rails through a complicated sequence of body-tension moves and a couple powerful right heel hooks. I put a handful of days into the line over a year ago, but smitten with Leavenworth during the summer season, never returned to complete it. While I didn't get the send on Thursday, I was able to re-figure out my sequence and climb the line in two halves... I'm really excited to return and finish this one off! I think it's one of the proudest lines in Washington, and it's a real pleasure to work on such a classic problem so close to home. With good weather and a little luck, I'll be back out there this Thursday to finish it off.

A Few Pics of Me Attempting Ebriosity

Another highlight of the day was spotting Corney on the Five Star Arete. It was her first day of effort on this one, and she was able to get up to the last move. This is probably one of the hardest climbs she has put work into yet, and it is great to watch her progress. Nice job Cortney!

Nice Scenery (For a Clear-Cut)