Monday, February 22, 2010

Bye Bye Hueco ...

Saturday was the Climbers of Hueco Tanks Coalition's (CHTC's) 5th annual climbers' clean up. Groups were distributed around North Mt and the back country cleaning chalk, picking up glass, and laying rocks for trail. That night the CHTC provided burritos and a keg of Amber Bock for all volunteers, including yours truly.

The only thing that sucked was that we were leaving the next morning

That's right, yesterday we left Hueco Tanks, America's bouldering Mecca. It's always hard to leave a place that feels so magical, but I need to get back to the Real World (the place in which most people live their day-to-day lives, not the show). I haven't been taking a lot of photos the last week, because honestly, I've just been trying to send my projects. Both Down in Flames and Rumble in the Jungle eluded me this season, so at least I have two 4-star roofs to look forward to climbing on next winter.

Here is David (from Sweden?) crushing See Spot Run

And here are some mega classic V1s up by Baby Face. 4 star lines exist of all grades in Hueco.

Here I'm going for my third repeat of Loaded with Power, on our last climbing day, but the sloper was suuuper slimey this session. I'll blame the Slovenians, who were at the problem when we arrived. lol.

I'm headed back to LA, where I will hopefully be employed by next week. I am super psyched on a few art project ideas, so stay tuned for those, plus some SoCal climbing action in a few weeks.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Best Day EVAR (of bouldering, for me personally)

Yesterday, Maya and I went to North Mountain. After basking in the sun for more than an hour at the top of the chains, I decided to try Loaded Direct to see how it felt, since I had just done Loaded with Power the other day. After a few tries I stuck the first pinch, made it to the angry crimp and fell trying to snatch the second crimper. After some rest I topped out, my celebration on top of the boulder witnessed by people below the chains. Maya didn't take any photos, since it was just the two of us up there and something about that boulder implies that you should have a spotter (it isn't too tall, but a fall from up high could be potentially dangerous).

After a few PB and J tortillas, we went around to the front side and hiked up to Diaphanous Sea, which I climbed a little on last week. I didn't really think I had a chance, but figured that I would give it some effort to get the beta really sussed. Maybe it was chick power, but I sent after about an hour and a half of on and off attempts. Needless to say, I was psyched. I'm really happy Maya was here to share the day with me.

The guy whose name I keep forgetting on Terre de Sienne (tear de skin!)

Myself on the second move of Diaphanous Sea. PSYCHED.

White Sands, NM

My friend, Rick Oliver, told me to borrow his dune board for a quick day trip to White Sands, NM, and we were not disappointed with its performance.

What a great rest day.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

El Techo

Today I opted not to go on tour to Down in Flames or Rumble in the back country. Instead, Josh and I waited in line from 8 till 11:30 to climb on North Mt.
After a somewhat epic session, I found myself topping out the former big boy testpiece "El Techo de Los Tres B." I say former because a miserable hold in the roof broke and now it is roughly two "V Grades" easier. Meaning I was actually able to climb it. Here are some photos.

Friday, February 12, 2010

North and East

Dev Ranjan crushing Chbalanke


Josh trying John Cooper's (Chris Schulte's first?) low start to The Locksmith

Me, getting ready to go for the jug

Cooper hitting the Jug

Me holding the swing

Josh on The Manly Bulge.

Cooper almost sending Down in Flames. He'll send next time for sure.

More Hueco Tanks

Last week we went on tour a few times. In one day Daniel did "The Machinist" (v13)

and "Rules of Chaos" (v10) with fairly little effort.

On the same tour, I made high points on two problems that had stumped me in the past, Rumble in the Jungle and Better Eat Your Wheaties, So I was psyched about that.
The other day we went to Bloodline, which is a sick tufa, and I did Loaded With Power, a boulder problem that sticks out and just begs to be climbed, right by the chains on North Mt.
(Ben Elkon on Loaded with Power, winter 2008)

I'll post more photos soon.

Not much time left here, want to climb a few more things on North and in the backcountry before I leave.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Hueco Tanks

Josh Jurinek on Hector in a Blender

Josh on the über classic, Guns of Navarone

James Morris from New Zealand sending Babyface, contender for North America's most classic V7.

Drew sending the obscure, new-school classic, The Peanut, FA'd by Ty Foose a few years back. This classic (though somewhat sharp) line is behind the New Meadow, through the boulders left of Anal Intruder #10 (who names a boulder that anyway?)

Johnny Goicoechea "squeezing juice out the rocks" on one of Fred Nicole's numerous North Mt testpieces, Alma Blanca.

Sam Tingey showing us how to get shit done on BJ Tilden's Down in Flames ("V12" but more of a sport climb.)

Matt Tschol executing the send of the same. Homeboy drove from Colorado for two days just to send this rig. Nice!

Jason Kehl on the same

Tingey placing the topout kneebar.

Josh Jurinek attempts The Manly Bulge, across from Down in Flames