Sunday, January 27, 2008

Eldorado Canyon's East Draw

Colin working out "Pig Dog"

We felt like climbing somewhere new. The East Draw fit that criteria. The hike is steep. Not awful for the unencumbered, but a bit brutal with a two and four year old. I carried Autumn on my shoulders which took concentration on the slick dirt parts. It pushed my cardiovascular system for the first time since the park season ended a couple months ago. Colin came with us, and helped out a lot by carrying Sierra over the difficult parts. Thanks Colin! We spent most of our day at the Center Ring. Our favorite problem there is called "Pig Dog." It's a very overhanging V6 with big moves. The movement is fantastic even though the rock quality isn't. Most of the rock at the East Draw is sharp and pebbly conglomerate. Only a few V1-V3 slabs are solid, smooth Dakota sandstone. Pig Dog is worth making a trip for, and it is definitely a Winter area. It got a little too hot by the afternoon.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

More Morrison.

Once again, a change in forecast lead us to Morrison when we expected to be in the gym. We weren't the only Ft. Collins climbers down there. Here is a photo of Brian Camp making a quick ascent of Cytogrinder.

My new project is the "Wisdom Simulator" which is a long V7 traverse. In the past I've avoided it because I didn't feel like I had enough endurance. I probably still don't have enough endurance, and will most likely be falling off the end many times before I send it. Autumn and Sierra have been climbing a lot on the slabby parts of the wall. Autumn's technique is improving quickly, and her barefoot chalkless style can't be beat.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Everybody Loves Morrison.

It was a busy day at Morrison today.

We weren't planning to go, but the weather looked so good this morning we decided to give it a try. Quite a few climbers had the same idea. The whole landing area was covered in pads, everyone took turns, and it was a lot of fun. We talked to a lot of people, got some beta, and spent a full day in the sun. I was really happy to get my long-term project-Full Tendonitis Traverse. I got pumped and fell off the last few moves on my first two tries, but it felt a bit easier on my third go.

Ashley working on her project.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Back from Hueco

We're back from Hueco, happy with our trip. The last climbing day on Wednesday was very cold. We put the girls in two layers of clothes, and decided to try our best to get some climbing in. Everywhere seemed too windy, or too shaded, until we found the Terminator Area. It has two little amphitheaters of rock that face south, and are sheltered from the wind. The conditions there were perfect. It has a lot of fun problems too. My favorite was "McBain," a V8 where I had to pull really hard with a left heel hook to make a move that looked and felt crazy at first. I had given up on it, until Ashley did it. Then I began working it again. Competing with Ashley motivates me more than anything, and I learned once again that bouldering often comes down to motivation. It's important to make a firm decision that you are going to do a problem. Once I decided to put everything into "McBain," I worked it out pretty quickly, and it became my favorite problem of the trip.

Ashley climbing "McBain."

"The Daily Grind"

Now back to the real daily grind.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Here Comes the Sun, Hueco Day 3

The weather couldn't have been better yesterday. Bright sun, clear skys, pleasantly cool temperatures through the whole day. We worked on projects in the morning, and then found a problem we hadn't looked at before called "Chris' Arete". It looked good, and climbed even better.

Chris' Arete

Ashley and I each figured out our own sequence to climb it. In the afternoon we hiked around looking at some hard problems, then we spent some time climbing a few easy problems. "Daily Grind" was pretty fun. It finishes by chimneying between two boulders, and is a bit high. My pictures came out dark. I'll fix and post them when I get back to my computer.

The girls bouldering.

The sunset was quite nice. Hiking out, the vast and still space of the open desert left quite an impression on me.