Sunday, April 27, 2008

No Sending Day

We went to Hobo Cave today, and worked on a couple projects, but we didn't finish anything. It was a nice spring day at the cave. The color is returning to the Frontrange. Wildflowers are coming out, and the plum blossoms smell sweet.

Since I don't have much new information to share this week, I'm going to share some information on area sport climbing. This will surprise many, but Vedauwoo has some great sport climbing. It should be coming into season very soon if it hasn't already. My favorite sport crag at Vedauwoo is The Cove at Brown's Landing. Information can be found in both guidebooks, but only Zach Orenczak's guide has all the routes. It's a small crag with one 5.10, about 5 good 5.11s, and a 5.12. The rock is nothing like other Vedauwoo areas. It's smooth blocky granite that climbs like a bolted version of the Shawangunks. The rock is really amazing. If you climb 5.11, you'll love the place. If you need something harder, "7 Delusions" and "The Rusty Trombone" are really cool 5.12s right next to each other on a beautiful patina covered cliff at the Roof Ranch Area. Many sport routes at Vedauwoo are scary, painful, crystal pinching slabs, but if you check out the outlying crags and bouldering areas, there is great rock to be found.

Colin Mills climbing at the Cove.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Poudre Canyon

Our original plans in Poudre Canyon were changed due to lingering snow. The 420's were clear, and it was a beautiful day to hang out in the woods. We decided to give "Rasta Font Trainer" a try. It is one of the more obscure problems in the area and feels about V7/8. It doesn't look very inspirational, but the slopey holds are unique, and the movement is fun. I got shut down by the high sloper, and hope to get back on in better conditions soon. Ashley was climbing strong, but couldn't reach the high sloper no matter what she did. Then she tried the mantle from the intermediate two finger crack hold, and just popped right up. She didn't even need the sloper. With this new move the problem went from impossible to relatively easy for her. She climbed it three times for video, but her new beta didn't work at all for me. I'm starting to get used to this chain of events. Here is the video.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Wedge Overlook, Triassic, and the LCC

We've had a busy couple days. Yesterday was cold and windy so we drove to the Wedge Overlook while waiting for the rocks to warm up.

I'd wanted to check out Triassic for a while, and it looked like our best bet for warm temps.

The wind was howling, but in between the boulders it was tolerable. Triassic has some great features. It's sheltered, the problems are concentrated, and it's a neat place to hang out. It has some not so great features too. The tops of the boulders are weathered and the sandstone turns "sugary" up high at the top outs. Quite sketchy. The harder problems use very thin, fragile, sharp flakes, or tweaky two finger pockets. For difficult bouldering it will never rank up there with Little Cottonwood, Joe's, or Ibex. Some of the V1-V5 problems are great though. Golden is one of the best V1s I've done and "Some People Get Two Fingers" V5 was fun as well. Ashley also liked "Bacardi Silver" a V4 traverse.


Some People Get Two Fingers

Bacardi Silver

This afternoon we went back to Little Cottonwood Canyon. Ashley worked on some projects, and we both climbed "Lance's Dihedral" V6. At first it felt ridiculous, but with the right beta it isn't so bad. It was a great problem to end the trip with.
Lance's Dihedral

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Joe's Valley

The weather online looked really questionable yesterday, but we decided to check out Joe's anyway. It turned out to be some of the best weather I've ever climbed in. Sunny and cool. We began at the Man Size Area, and warmed up on the Triangle Boulder. Shown below is a sharp, but good V3.

Facing this on another boulder is the "Brawny Dyno", one of the funnest problems I've ever done. We got video, but no photos. We spent some time falling off the V10s there, and then moved on to Area 51. We climbed too many moderates to list, and Ashley made a very quick ascent of Big Boy. I was so busy climbing, I forgot to take photos. Late in the day I tried Pocket Rocket. If I were three inches taller it would be such a fun problem. It felt like the length of my right arm was holding me back at the top of the jump.

Sessions don't get much better. New boulders tomorrow.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Little Cottonwood Canyon

Yesterday we began our Utah trip with a stop at Little Cottonwood Canyon. The Secret Garden looked like a good place to start. The granite really impressed me. Solid and featured, each boulder has a lot of problems. White and gray wave patterns cover the rocks. We started on "Shingles" doing the stand start first, and then working on the sit-start. Ashley made a lot of progress on it after getting some beta from friendly locals. We'll find a way to get back to the Secret Garden soon.

Shingles Sit-Start

Working a shouldery arete.

Ashley loves traverses.