Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Pro Day

Today I went bouldering with my friend Beth. Beth has recently discovered a passion for the pebbles and is psched to boulder while her husband, Tommy, works on a project on the Big Stone. I did not intend to document our day of bouldering in the manner that soon follows but I think it turned out nicely. Enjoy.

A day at the boulders with a "Pro Climber" begins with an aborted attempt at warming up. This attempt was so brief in-fact that I was unable to capture any photos of it. Shortly thereafter we found ourselves at my house drinking tea and shooting the shit. An hour or so later we try again. This time we go the Cathedral boulders. The picture above shows Beth and Tommy, not five minutes after we arrived, asleep on their pads. Tommy has a legitimate excuse for napping, he's saving his strength for the next couple of days on his project. Beth's legs were sore from hiking yesterday, but I'm don't know if it earned her a nap.

Beth has never considered herself a "boulderer". Up until recently I don't think she would have gotten much of an argument about that from anyone. In the past six months or so that has started to change. Sure she's still a heck of a lot more accomplished at climbing routes, but she's begun to enjoy working on problems with the same tenacity with which she works on the bigger stuff.  For evidence of that, please see the photo above where she is sending "The King".

Despite her recent improvements, Beth never seems to be very confident about her chances at sending various problems. Even as we were leaving the Cathedral's to go to our goal for the day at the Woodyard she remarked at how she "doesn't climb v9's". "The Tombstone," the problem we were headed to next is of course a v9. Needless to say, her attitude is not the typical boulderer's optimism.

Brushing the holds on "The Tombstone"

By the end of our session on "The Tombstone" Beth had climbed the problem 3 times, topping out without Tommy's assistance on her last attempt. She may have whimpered her way through the tricky (and tall) top out, but she did it none the less.

Once Beth had safely returned to earth from her lofty perch upont the summit of "The Tombstone" boulder we had to hustle down to El Cap Meadow for a photo shoot with Corey Rich. Corey was shooting some profile images of Tommy and Justen Sjong for an upcoming article in some magazine. Beth wasn't planning on being photographed today, but Corey used her as a stand in for some test shots and then ended up taking a few that really capture her new found zest for bouldering. I'd say more but I'm sure those images will see the light of day somewhere and I don't want to spoil it for anyone.

Finally, how does professional rock diva Beth Rodden finish of her day of cranking on the boulders? With an abdominal workout of course!

This photo is not posed


Mandi said...


JohnClimbRok said...

I'm all over step-2 of this pro-climber program. You should do a series.

Robyn said...


shannon said...

now i know her secret to success - it's the ab workouts! soon i will crush like beth!

Susan said...

name dropper perhaps but the author has known the diva since they were in kindergarten together.
the things only moms remember........

Robyn said...

i'm just jealous i didn't get my own special posting when i was in yosemite last year. :( I'll have to work on sending v9!

sock hands said...

swift foot nudging seems to work wonders to motivate some pro/fools i know around my neck of the woods.

it's super rad that beth is bouldering more now and a little success goes a long way for getting the head into the game for subsequent projects. word.