Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Blood and Bone

Crazy day today! Nate was psyched to finish Whispers of Wisdom (v10) at Emerald Lake. We hiked up there... I was psyched to try Nothin' But Sunshine (v13) in lower Chaos Canyon. We hiked up there... We were both psyched to try Eternia (v11) at Upper Chaos Canyon. We hiked up there... We were both psyched to go home. We hiked back to the car...

But I'm leaving things out. We met up with Ben Tsui and Phil Wiygel, two friends from back home before we hiked to Upper Chaos. After I climbed Eternia the four of us headed back down to the Jorge boulder so that Ben could try Right El Jorge (v9). He worked out the moves extremely quickly and took a little break. v9 would have been a new grade for Ben and I was excited to see him send. But it never happened.

On his first try from the bottom Ben's right foot blew and his shin in some ungodly manner was split open. I could see bone. My mind was racing, "We are at least an hour and a half from the car and I don't have any first aid training. What the hell are we going to do?" I grabbed my only first aid supplies, an alcohol swab, some gauze, and tape, threw them to Phil and hurried to pack our things. We left pads under the boulder and headed down. Luckily, Ben could still walk, and the bleeding was minimal. Just as the last light was fading and the storm clouds were rolling in we made it to the parking lot. Ben's leg was repaired at the Estes Park emergency room and that was that. I'm hoping he will be able to get back to climb the problem before he leaves in a week and a half.

Ok so I know that I've been slacking when it comes to updating this thing so here is a list of the things I have been climbing the last few days or so.

Gangbang Arete (v8)
Dead Raccoon (v11) - 5th try
Left El Jorge (v11) - 4th try
Right El Jorge (v9) - 2nd try
Aristocrat (v9)
Skipper D (v8) - 2nd try

Tommy's Other Arete (v8)
Whispers of Wisdom (v10)

Eternia (v11)

Also, here are some shots from Mt. Evans last week. I dragged Jo Beth up there for a second time so I could get a little climbing in before the rain.


Thursday, June 25, 2009

Pics and Vids

First things first, here is the video Jimmy shot of John and I climbing at the park last week.

Also, I took a couple pictures of Jimmy climbing Pink Think (v6 or 7) which I flashed.

On another note, Jo Beth got in Sunday night and on Monday we rolled out to Mt. Evans to do a little sight seeing and a little climbing. Here are some pictures I snapped on the summit of Mt. Evans.

No one was actually gored but I was amazed at how people seemed to ignore the goat's razor sharp horns. One mom was even encouraging her daughter to stand closer to the goat so that she could get a picture.

After our trip up the mountain it was getting late in the afternoon and conditions were getting good at the boulders. Just before dark Nate sent Seurat (v8) and I was able to quickly dispatch Child Stars (v12) a Chris Schulte problem originally rated v13. I'm not sure if this one sees too many ascents but I was very happy to complete it.

Here is a photo of Nate sending Seurat:

Since Monday at Mt. Evans I have been trying desperately to grow skin and heal my bruised fingers. I'm looking forward to some climbing tomorrow at the park. Until then...


Thursday, June 18, 2009

Mt. Evans Video

Here is a video Jweb put together after a trip to Mt. Evans the other day. In it I climb Bierstadt (v9/10) and Ground Control (v12), John Gass climbs an unknown problem, and Jon Glassberg climbs The Hume Problem (v9).

Thanks Jimmy...



The boys and I were up at the park again last Tuesday ticking off the classics. We warmed on Autobot A.K.A. the best warm-up of all time, and some others A.K.A. the worst warm-ups of all time. My ticklist for the day included The Gobot (v11), Skyscraper (v5), Tommy's Arete (v7), and Deep Puddle Dynamics (v9).

They went like this:

Gobot - 2nd try
Skyscraper - flash
Tommy's Arete - flash
Deep Puddle Dynamics - 3rd try

Jgass also climbed Skysraper and Tommy's Arete first try. It was a fun day full of classic climbs and I am really looking forward to climbing other problems in the park once some snow melts.

Pics from the last couple days:


Sunday, June 14, 2009

I Was Groppled

Mt. Evans

The last three days have been a little crazy - lots of climbing, lots of hiking, no rest. Oh, and it snowed today... and yesterday. I haven't visited an alpine area without seeing snow yet. It doesn't really stick but what? I mean, its mid june!

Jweb and Jgass showed up this morning at about 4:30 A.M. and after very little sleep they met us out at Mt. Evans. It was a quick warm up. I was very happy to climb the classic Seurat (v8) a beautiful and very pure crack climb.

Then the 5 of us walked back to area B to find the Hume Problem (v9). Jon, Jimmy, and I all sent 2nd try. Silverback (v11) was also on the hit list today but a little snow made a difficult problem nearly impossible. As always the snow moved on and cold temps moved in. Jimmy and I proved that we were in control of the ground on Ground Control (v12) a lowball sloper thing that I swore I would never try. I think this one would be more like v10 back home. Whatever... I also flashed Bierstadt (v9/10) today. That one was really fun. Nate easily climbed Bierstadt also. And Jon had a great day sending 3 v10s in addition to the Hume Problem.

Tactical Error

Last Dance

On the last random problem of the day, I rocked onto my right heal and my knee just popped. It's kinda stiff now. Does anyone have experience with this kind of thing?

Yesterday was our first real day in the park - we hiked to upper chaos canyon to climb on the green 45. After 2 crazy snow storms Jon and I both sent Wildcat (v12), Nate and I did 1000 Shades of Green (v9), and I finished off the day by climbing the roof problem Two Ton Tongue (v11).



With or without climbing, RMNP is the coolest place I have ever been. I can't wait to go back. Oh, and I finished off Hard Boiled (v11) on Thursday.


Saturday, June 6, 2009


The rain has let off for the last 4 days or so and we have been able do get down to some serious business. Here is an account of my recent Colorado adventures.

Thursday: Jon, Nate, and I got up to Boulder Canyon hoping to climb Cage Free (v11) and Hard Boiled (v11). After battling direct sunlight and getting a serious sunburn, I sent Cage Free. Here is the full sequence:

Afterwards, Jon was able to finish off Hard Boiled, a climb that begins under a small roof on sharp holds and climbs out onto a beautiful face. 

Nate climbing Hard Boiled v11

Nate and I didn't manage to send but we will be back. And with beta. 

Friday the three of us walked up to Mt. Evans. My goal was to do the classic v11, Super Gui. After surviving the hike, warming up, and catching my breath, I decided to try and flash Dali (v9). I did, and after trying it years ago, Nate also climbed Dali first try. Here is the video:

After a little extra work, Jon and I both managed sends of Super Gui. The same day I also sent Gorillas in the Mist (v10). 
Saturday was the first rest day for Nate and I and the three of us drove to Vail for the World Cup. The climbing was impressive and the sun was hot. I added a sunburned face and neck to my already burned back. This is what I turned into after standing in the sun for a solid 6 hours, eating only granola samples, and being jostled around by hundreds of photographers and all their equipment.

It was fun, though, and it reminded me what a small part of climbing I really am.

Yesterday we were at Mt. Evans again and I was psyched to get back on the Dali boulder and try No More Greener Grasses (v12) and Clear Blue Skies (v12). Morning temps were perfect and I after a couple goes to sus out the beta I sent Greener Grasses. Check the video:

For those of you who do not know my climbing style, this is it: small holds, big moves, steep terrain.

Afterwards, I was determined to give a good flash go on Clear Blue Skies. I fell on the last move and the last crimper sliced my finger. I slapped on some of that yummy tape, did the last move, and tried from the bottom a couple more times. No send but I can't wait to go back with fresh skin and finish it. 

Then it was back to area B to do the Jason Kehl highball Last Dance (v8). I managed this one second go and just as I was topping out at 25 feet the snow started falling. The snow continued for the next 30 minutes before blue skies reappeared over the top of the mountain. 10 minutes later the topout was dry and Jon was also able to climb the problem. Video should be up soon.

Today was my first visit to RMNP, and though we had planned to hike to Upper Chaos to try Wildcat (v12), the weather had other plans for us. Instead, we decided to try and find Stinkbug (v10/11). After some scrambling we found the problem and Jon and Max managed ascents. I had no psych for the problem because it lacks a distinct line. Afterwards, we drove down to Veritas assis (v11). After about an hour of work I managed to send. Sorry, no pics. 

Though I am extremely happy with my climbing endeavors this past week I am ready to challenge myself. I am ready to fail at something in order to get stronger. Now, with only 1 day of rest in 8 it is time to relax and heal my skin.

Thanks to JG for the pics and video.


Wednesday, June 3, 2009


Its been raining on and off for the past couple of days but this afternoon Nate, Matt Kerr, and I hiked up to the satellites to do Turning Point (v8). We all sent quickly.

Afterwards we went to try another v8 called Face Full of Brian. I sent fairly quickly. Here are some pictures of Nate trying.


Tuesday, June 2, 2009

We Have Arrived

Nate and I have finally arrived in Boulder, CO after 20+ straight hours in the car. The highlight of the drive was the arch in St. Louis. I took some shots...

After driving through Tennessee, Kentucky, Illinois, and Missouri in the dark, Kansas and eastern Colorado in the morning, we rolled up to our new apartment at about 2 pm. By the way Kansas is the flattest, most boring land I have ever seen. Here's Nate trying to stay awake.

I don't exactly know how I would describe our home for the next two months, the first word out of Nate's mouth was "ghetto." But the inside is actually pretty nice. Check out our toilet...

...the handle is a little high. And we are upstairs.

The living room.

After moving our things in, we decided to head up to Boulder Canyon and do a little climbing. We got in three warm up climbs before the rain started. It hasn't stopped yet and the forecast isn't looking good for tomorrow. Exciting times...