I just had one of the most fun weekends and no it wasn't due to sending some epic boulder problem, or summiting a mountain, or even bowling a 200. It was all thanks to the live coverage of the 15th ABS nationals! What a show, I have been watching the world cup circuit for a while as well as other USA comps and I have to say that this was by far the best competition I have ever seen. The setting was aesthetic and entertaining as well as challenging and engaging for the climbers. The finals were an absolute nail biter, just the way they should be. I'm actually struggling with the fact they are over; I grew so attached to coming home and having hours of great climbing to watch. I even knew a few of the competitors! It was a great show and it actually got me really inspired to climb inside (which is something I never thought I would say).
Lately I have been feeling a bit warn thin. A tad stretched I guess you could say. Not burned out or injured, just a little uninspired. I've been climbing a lot at the buttermilks but not the main area. I've been striking out and trying to sample some of the outlying areas like Dales Camp, the Druid Stones, The Secrets of the Beehive area, and the Pollen Grains.
So far I have been able to find inspiration in these outlying areas, just being in a different zone with new problems and a different kind of aesthetic has been renewing and energizing. However, I've been bouldering non-stop and working a full time job for the last four and a half months so a change up has been in store.
Above I am about to wuss out on the Northwest Arete (V.3), not only because it is very high at the lip, but also because having a couple of pads is not ideal for this problem. The sit start to this problem is also pretty sweet but a tad reachy.
This is a sweet little location in the pollen grains that is rather hidden by a large rock burm. This boulder is called the Cracker boulder, which is fitting since we were a couple of cracker's trying to climb it. I'm attempting a V.8 called Supercracker which has some very nice movement on cool crimpers at the bottom and leads to a very neat shallow hueco undercling and a long reach to some very poor slopers and a heinous rock over. Wasn't able to snag the ascent this time but I'm very excited to return.
Here RJ is demonstrating what perfect execution looks like on Swanky Sit (V.9). He absolutely crushed this to very last move before getting spit off. I'm psyched to see him send this very soon.
So the change in pace came in the form of sport climbing in the Owens River Gorge. A mere fifteen minute drive from my front door step. I've been out three times in the last week and have climbed over 13 new routes all onsight in the range of 5.9 to 5.11d. I'm still a little hesitant to start projecting any of the harder lines here but this small break from bouldering has been very refreshing. The gorge is one of the best sport crags in California for sure and I'm looking forward to more good climbing this weekend.
Nicole looks for the next hold on this stunning arête climb called Gorgeous (5.10b).
Sarah on Gorgeous.
The clock is ticking. What started out as a lifetime can now be measured out in weeks, days, hours. Its time to prioritize, gain a little discipline, and focus on the things I really want to accomplish before I leave. I hope you guys stay tuned, I have some pretty sweet adventures planned for my last two months here.