Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Area Reports

Getting all our climbing sessions in has been difficult, and finding time to blog even harder. We've been getting out after school, and we spent a couple sessions on Fairfield Hill in Sinks Canyon.

One rainy afternoon cleared up as soon as we drove up the canyon.

Fairfield Hill Granite Bouldering

"Light and Shadow" is known to be one of the best V2s in the Lander area. It is an excellent problem, but I'd never call it V2. It could be V5!

"Optimus Prime" is a nice tall warmup on the Plastic Green Head boulder.

The book lists no known problems on the Godwhale boulder shown below. We found a good V1 on the left side of the face with clean, but unchalked, holds. I also climbed a V6ish problem that goes up the center of the face beginning on indentations in two slopers. One key crimp was clean, but I had to clean one more before I could do it. I'm not sure if it's new or not. I'm calling it "Rolling Mario" until I learn more about it.

Fairfield hill is quite scenic, and most of the rock is solid. Only "Light and Shadow" is significantly overhanging. Most problems are vertical or ascend slabs. The area doesn't provide a quick forearm work out, but the harder problems in the area like "Doctor Gorpon" and "Rolling Mario" are fun tests of power and technique.

Wild Iris
We had a good weekend session at Wild Iris a few weeks ago. I redpointed "Poker Face Alice" a nice short and powerful roof route. The photo below is of Nick Iverson posing on the route. I found the photo on the Omega Pacific website.

We didn't get any photos of the route, but I like the one we got of Sundance.

Cabin Boulders
After a year in Lander we're still finding ways to keep ourselves occupied at the Cabin Boulders. We did a chalked low start to "Mr. Bigglesworth" which makes it even a little better and more of a sandbag.

Ashley made up a traverse that follows a feature from "Cherokee Dudes" to finish on "Ship's Prow." A good variation.

Lost and Found: After leaving the coat and water bottle at the boulders for a week they are now in my garage. Contact me if you know the owner.

Up the hill, south of the Cabins, is this nice roof problem. It looks like an established problem, but we cleaned some intermediate holds, and discovered a sequence that lets it go at V6 or 7.

Over Labor Day weekend we took our first trip to Tensleep.

The climbing there is world class, and it appears that the word has already gotten out.

From a distance the cliffs look similar to Sinks, but the rock feels much more solid and has cooler features. "Great White Buffalo" has hueco like pockets

The canyon is huge.

We had good weather, and there weren't mosquitoes, so we slept under the stars. They were so amazing...I've felt insignificant all week.

We weren't able to get any photos of Tensleep climbing, but you can check out some good ones at Aaron Huey is a Photographer. The climbing exceeded my expectations and I'd have to agree with Aaron's guidebook introduction that we will be entering "the period in which Tensleep is recognized as the greatest limestone climbing in the Western Hemisphere!!!"

I was worried that the climbs would all be too long, but it turns out the bolts are just close together. The tens felt hard and the twelves felt easy. It's hard to tell if the higher grades are soft or if it's just that much easier to climb hard when you aren't scared. If you go, check out the Circus wall for high quality short routes in a cool side canyon.

On the way home we stopped at the hot springs in Thermopolis. Here I am after two days climbing, one night camping, and twenty minutes in mineral water.

Enjoy the Autumn weather. I'll be out there, and I'll post when I can.

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