Sunday, June 15, 2014

Potential

The obligatory Equinox post. 

Me flashing Artifact (5.12d), making the crux clip before the last boulder problem.
 
Well, I guess I had to do it, or felt obliged to do it anyway.  I have been spending a lot of my time at this ‘new’ (to me anyways) crag called Equinox.  I know the history surrounding the crag so I won’t go into access details and you will be hard pressed to find any beta on how to get there on this blog.  Instead I’ll just spray mercilessly about how incredibly good it is. 
I was lucky enough to be good friends with some of the locals and thus was introduced to this incredible black/white/grey/green/brown striped overhanging chunk of sport climbing goodness by experienced hands. 
Projecting The Magic Machine (5.12d).  A variation of Green Machinist that climbs the bulk of GM before linking into the last boulder problem on Black Magic.
 
Equinox is a small paradise.  Its a stunning piece of overhanging rock that is absolutely stacked with intermediate to hard lines.  You can get an idea of the crag from this well done video segment documenting Jonathan Siegrist's short crushing FA spree during his time in the PNW.

 
The crag is not just an overhanging bouldery power circuit but it also has quite the variety of climbs, from gently overhanging technical crimp master pieces to varied powerful tech-slabs on highly textured black rock, to aesthetic head walls and arêtes that loom above the popular single pitch routes. 
There is a nice deck to hang out on and belay from below, a perfect viewing/beta spray station that meets the main arena at mid height so you can rehearse the moves on your project or make fun of your friends as they struggle to the top on any number of the 5.13+ extensions. 

Steven climbs through SuperDrMega (5.12b) to give the extension Fight Club (5.13c) a go.
 
Its constantly cool down below where the majority of the routes start and the rock stays pretty dry because of the overhanging nature of the entire crag.  The only downside is all of the stagnant pools of water left over from the rainy season that are also guarded from the sun because they lurk in dark corridors formed by the giant stacked boulders and slabs of rock that form the viewing platform.  These pools of water are perfect mosquito nurseries, so its nice to have a citronella candle at the ready.

Jamie Chong climbs the Green Machinist (5.12c)
 
The climbs are strictly power endurance oriented affairs.  You're hard pressed to find anything easier than 5.12a/b in the main arena of the crag, and all of the 5.12's basically have extensions that all go at 5.13a or above. 
Of course there are other easier routes but I get the impression that they aren't quite as stunning or as classic as the harder lines in the main arena.  However, I have only been four times so far and since there isn't a guide book I can only vouch for the lines that I've been shown or have tried.

Forest climbs the ultra classic crimpy test piece Clip it or Skip it (5.12a).  A magnificent slightly overhung face climb on seams and good crimps.  Bomb proof rock and a very delicate and fun sequence make this a stellar line.
 

Jimmy climbing through the technical boulder problem crux of Black Magic (5.13a).  Blakc Magic has to be one of Equinox's flagship lines.  It's a crazy roller coaster of a route that starts off climbing out of a small cave type of feature on a V.6/7 boulder problem!  It follows a very neat black water streak up and out of an overhang and onto a small vert section before one last overhanging boulder problem.  A must for the grade and area.

Jimmy on an impressive flash of Green Machinist (5.12c).  Right off the deck you have to tackle a V.5 boulder problem with high quality movement, afterwards you get to climb a pumpy 5.11c.  This is such a good line!!


Forest makes a tough clip on SuperDrMega (5.12b)

Me on a difficult rest before climbing the extension to Skip it or Clip it that I decided to name Stick With It (5.12c). 

Shaking out on the last rest before the final crux boulder problem on Stick With It (5.12c).  This extension is one of my favorites, amazingly straightforward climbing on relatively good holds, the pump is manageable and the length of the climb is very attractive. 

Jimmy hanging out before one more boulder on Black Magic.

Will gets his warm up on.

Kevin celebrating his birthday on a good burn of Fight Club (5.13c).


This is Will climbing the very neat crux section boulder problem of Groove Tube (5.12b/13a depending on the variation.)

 







Welcome to Equinox!

The viewing platform and the main arena.

Groove Tube

2 comments:

georgef said...

Wow! I don't think I've ever seen pictures of America that actually make me want to go there!








I still haven't.

Love from,

The UK (your friends)

p.s. I'm joking relax.....it looks genuinely awesome and I'm simply boiling over with jealous rage

Micah Bryan Humphrey said...

that's why I love you George.