Sunday, January 31, 2010

Extending My Trip!

That's right, I've decided to stay in Hueco longer then I originally planned. After being encouraged to do so by just about everyone here (especially Melissa) and getting the thumbs up from Becky, I've made the big decision. Today I called my boss and quit my job, found someone to sublet my apartment, and sold my rack and rope to finance this extension.

Phew! What a weight off my chest. What does this mean for the future? Well, tomorrow I'm going out once again to try 'A Single Word'. I tried it on Friday with Randy and the Norwegians, but left without the ascent. I did refine my beta though, and I climbed it in two overlapping sections so I'm still optimistic.

No matter what the result is tomorrow, on Tuesday I will begin the drive home (insert wry grin).

This year my intentions were to focus on climbing diverse objectives with a priority on having a good time with friends. I did not want to get caught up too heavily in any particular project this season, I've done enough of that over the past year or two. As I sit here now typing on what was supposed to be my last day of climbing I can confidently declare that I've met my goal, and then some!

I think a lot of factors played into my success this season, not the least of which was my mental approach. Good weather, good company, training, and experience all played vital roles too. Still, the lure of a good project is there, and it's pull is mighty. Tomorrow will be my fourth day trying 'A Single Word,' double the amount of time I've spent on anything else this season. I'm going back because I'm just to damn close to walk away without another shot, but I'm only going back for one more day to assure I don't get too caught up in the success/failure aspect of it all. Either way its one of the best problems I've climbed on in Hueco. Our relationship has be brief yet rewarding.

That's all for now, see all you Californians soon! Thanks for the great trip Hueco!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Tick List of One

The one problem I most want to do before leaving, 'A Single Word'. Sooo good.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Robert Sapolsky

This man authored my favorite book, 'A Primate's Memoir'. I recommend watching the whole speech because it's very interesting, humorous and ends with a great message. Climbers may find the section beginning at 26:30, particularly interesting as it pertains to one of our sources of motivation.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Halfway Point

Our 'Guardian Angel', she brings us good luck on climbing days

Yesterday I passed the halfway point on my trip, and if the second half is anything like the first I'll be one content little climbing bum. No big news to report other than a few more friends on their way out of town. Theo Merrin was only here for a few days but it was great to see him, and Herm and Melissa were here just a bit longer but we had blast hanging and climbing with both of them too. Hopefully I'll be seeing more of all of them in the near future...

A couple of pictures Melissa Strong took of us climbing on 'Whispers of Mortality'.

Adam Strong

Herman Feissner

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Natural Disaster

Another blissful rest day that has so far consisted of a short round of desert golf, lounging in the sun, and Internet time at Primos coffee shop, oh and Turtle went on a vision quest for 2 and 1/2 hours this morning meaning she's happy to be fully recovered from her Fall health crisis.

As promised, here are a few photos courtesy of young Keenan one of three Davis, CA youths to be hanging out here in west Texas. The other two, Charlie and Alex were once on a junior climbing team that I coached. Its really cool to see them out on real rock now being psyched little goofballs. They are here for 11 days or so and by the end will have only rested twice. Classic. I took a little video yesterday, but was again plagued by shitty batteries. I'll be compiling what footage I get into a single video, so that will have to wait until latter.

For now, here are some sequence shots from my ascent of a great problem called 'Natural Disaster'. This problem has it all, a tricky roof section, a challenging lip encounter, technical face moves, and a dyno finish! Sick!!!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Motivation is (a) High

Apologies for the lack of media. I've either been engaged in climbing, menaced with battery issues, or my camera was eaten by a Chupacabra. One or more of these reasons has kept me from taking pictures or video I swear.

An unfortunate update: Peter's wrist was not happy with him climbing yesterday and so he made the decision to head home early. Leaving under the cover of darkness in the early morning hours saved him from an uncomfortably tight hug goodbye, but will probably allow him to make it back home late tonight.

Personally I'm really excited about climbing right now. Admittedly, I was in a bit of a lull climbing-wise after my near misses in South Africa. Maybe its all the new climbs I get to try here, perhaps its the day to day routine I enjoy, or maybe I'm getting high on the fumes emanating from one of the many meth labs nearby? Regardless, I'm psyched. I haven't really been projecting per se, just getting on a bunch of cool shit and seeing what happens. Yesterday, however, I did try a problem I'm feeling inclined to project (though maybe it won't take that long). 'A Single Word' was established last year by either Jason Kehl or GP Salvo and is basically a sloper climb on a roof. Its totally tubular. Hopefully soon we'll get some more cold (but not too cold) days like yesterday so we can try again.

Friday, January 8, 2010

A Different Kind of Cold

Today is another rest day and another very cold day. Apparently the local meteorologists have been talking about this day for weeks. I find that kind of funny for some reason, one monumental day of cold being predicted for weeks...and the locals here have a hard time accepting years worth of predictions for global warming, but I digress.

Yesterday we had our first day out at North Mountain. We got on with little to no fuss but we paid for it with frigid toes and fingers. Kevin and I got up a classic neither of us had done before called 'Roughage'. We also tried our luck against 'El Techo de los Tres B'. I nearly did it, but couldn't hang on long enough for the final match. Hopefully I'll try it sometime soon in temperatures more accommodating to strenuous physical activity.

Peter attempted to get revenge against a dyno problem he tried two years ago called 'Smooth Move'. Its a big jump, I can't get anywhere close to the top (big surprise I know). Anyway, Peter had given himself a giant flapper the last time he tried it so this time he taped up before he began jumping. Alas, when we folded up the pads he was the proud owner of two new flappers on the SAME finger, and his wrist had started to bother him. CRAP! He came ridiculously close though, a couple of times I thought for sure he had it. He was pretty bummed, which I can completely understand.

Tomorrow is another day though and its all good as long as we're rock grappling.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Sick and Sore

Just about to head to the airport where I'll be dropping Becky off for her flight back to Oakland. She leaves without being able to climb the last few days due to coming down with a cold. Now I have it and I feel like poo. I was able to have a couple of nice climbing days though, before succumbing to the illness. Hopefully it won't last long and I won't pass it on to anyone else.

Hopefully I'll be able to climb tomorrow.