Friday, July 4, 2008

Swoosh Session

The original plan was to visit RMNP yesterday, but it looked really rainy and cool in the morning so we changed plans. We've been hearing good things about the Swoosh area, and it looked like a reasonable day to check it out. As we drove up to Red Feather we got above the fog and clouds. We stopped worrying about rain, and started worrying about heat. The sun was powerful, but a gentle breeze that was slightly cool kept things bearable. Jacob met us up there, and gave us a tour of the problems close to the parking area. Here are a few of them.
Fred's Roof is moderate, but was the most classic problem we got on in my opinion. A spicy landing heightens the commitment as you turn the lip.

From there we went to Hurricane Katrina. It looked great, but a long reach to the first crimp kept us from doing it. Ashley did two crimpy problems to the left, one from a sit start. They looked fun, but felt sharp. My pinky got punctured, and I quit trying them.

Our next stop was The Product aka Chuck's Rail. It was very different than I expected. Photos I'd seen didn't show the angle of the problem. I thought it was a flat sloping rail over a flat landing. It's actually at a 45 degree angle and the landing is at 45 degrees as well. Ashley enjoyed working on it.

I scouted around a bit, and found a nice looking boulder to end the session on. It had three good looking lines on it. The center looked the best and the most difficult. I knew my skin was too far gone for it, but Jacob gave it some tries.

The crack to the left was a great line to end the session with. High quality, not difficult, but high enough to get my attention.

The Swoosh is an incredibly beautiful area, with more patina and a higher problem concentration than you'll find at most Red Feather areas. Yet much of the patina is fragile and sharp. Worth trips, but don't expect rock as smooth and solid as the Buttermilks.


Everything is different in the morning said...

Hey Dave! I went back to 420s today for my second trip. I did the problem next to perch first time this time as a warm-up (a bit of redemption) then I also sped up whatever the 4ish thing on the back is (the one you essentially lie down on.) crazy problem. I enjoyed it. Then we moved onto i think...Hick Man? chase said it was a v7, but it seemed awfully soft to me, is that right?

David said...

Sounds like a good session! I haven't tried Hickman Over the Poudre Bridge yet. I looked it up on the Mountain Project, and consensus there was V6 or 7. I'll try it next time we're up there. Give us a call if you want climb with us next week.