Taking a break for a finger injury has given me a chance to catch up on some other stuff. Here's a rough edit of some first ascents Kris Taylor and I did last September. Enjoy!
Here's a few new problems from Mill Creek. Enjoy!
For now things are quiet, just relaxing for the holidays and getting ready for the next training cycle. I have some more leftover video from this year, and I'll post that up as I get it edited.
Like many 8a.nu scorecard cliches, "the last ditch effort" gets thrown around with great frequency. Well, the weekend a few weeks ago I spent in Leavenworth was the epitome of last ditch effort. Crap weather, horrible driving conditions, wet boulders, and all around desperation. More than once I found myself thinking, "what the hell am I doing? I could be in Portland eating cream cheese stuffed french toast right now." Saturday morning when we woke up, it was raining. The entire canyon was wet, so we drove to the other canyon. It was wetter. We spent most of the day driving around looking at rocks and climbing the few dry ones. The Hueco Crimper (and the other boulders in that zone) are highly recommended, and not just because it was the only time we saw the sun.
We wandered back to Icicle Canyon and after a side jaunt to the Unearthed boulders for Yusuke to crush the Lion's Den, I found myself trying the Peephole. Maybe I didn't invest as much in this problem as I have in some others, but it was a welcome change of pace to find my way to the top of it at the end of a long, cold day. The sky was rapidly darkening - November's 4:30 sunset is penance for those long, perfect summer evenings - and I was torn. I could save skin and energy for more tries the next day, or I could go all out while I knew the conditions were prime.
I actually gave up and started packing my stuff, betting on dry weather the next day. But, as tends to happen, I had a second wind of confidence and decided to give it a shot. On the final move, I remember looking at the hold and thinking, "Oh well, I tried," 100% sure that I was about to hit the pads. I hit the wrong part of the hold, but somehow adjusted to the good part mid-swing and held on. The next day we awakened to a canyon full of snow and darkness. Here's some uncut footage from Yusuke's camera.. mine came out too dark, and I didn't feel like editing anything together. Thanks Yusuke!
(As usual, yelling warning. I yell a lot.)
Funny how I walked past this one for so long, assuming it was sharp and unworthy. In reality, I think it turned out to be one of the coolest boulders I've done. The movement is creative, subtle and at the end downright burly. A good reminder to take a second look at the problems or routes skipped over.
PS, if my memory of high school serves, the term "last ditch effort" refers to either succeeding, or dying in the last ditch to be taken by the enemy. Bit dramatic for a boulder problem, no?
Took a nice weekend trip to Leavenworth. Got rained out on the second day, but that's par for the course this year.
I did a few new problems, but mostly tried harder stuff. I wound up falling off the end of Trickle of Silence quite a bit, which is a super fun problem.
Also had a great rainy session on the Peephole and worked out the beta. For a long time I overlooked this problem, but with it being one of the only semi-dry climbs it seemed like a good time to try it. Finally I understand the hype: it may be a bit sharp, but the movement is seriously one of a kind. I climbed from the start up to the holds at the lip, but it was soaking wet. My method is pretty crazy and I can't wait to get after it again!
Some photos by Jessie Little.