Monday, June 13, 2011

Black Mt Weekend

This Friday, Brett, our new friend Jenn, and I drove up to Black Mt for a weekend of camping and bouldering on some of the finest granite around. We got up there just in time to pitch our tents in the dark and enjoyed a few beers around the fire while making plans for the next couple of days.
Saturday morning we discovered an amazing slab right in our camp site (group site 3) to start the early morning warm up at around 8 am. From here we headed to the boulders at sites 4/5 so that Brett could finally send the beautiful egg-shaped Soulsnatch (v8), which I managed to un-send in the one attempt I took on it.

Brett Gottdener warming up near group site 5

Myself, two moves from the ego-crushing un-send on Soulsnatch.

The view from site 5

From there we headed down to the YMCA camp area, despite the fact that its lower elevation ought to have made it a little bit warmer, a nice steady breeze kept the temps nice and cool. Unfortunately it wasn't enough to make us send. I managed to un-send both Ghost Dog (7 points) and Beowulf (11 points) and Brett will have to return another day for both of those sends too. This cluster of boulders, although remote, is very much worth the approach, even if you end up hiking out empty-handed.

Brett Gottdener on the opening moves of Beowulf

We were pretty toast by the end of this session, so while we intended to explore the hillside of boulders around the group camp sites, we ended up passing out for a nap on our crashpads back at camp before dinner.

Sunday we took a much more leisurely start and took a pretty relaxed approach to the day. We warmed up slowly at Boulder Basin and ran into the whole Ian, Bridget, Alan, Anthony T, et al crew that I so often bump into up there. A bunch of us headed over to Velvet Revolver, which Brett sent the sit start to 2nd try (v8) with an impressive near-flash. I managed to fall off the top of the sit a couple of times for good measure before deciding to return another day. Apparently getting back into shape after a long break from climbing takes more than just two weeks. Who'da thought?

After Velvet Revolver, we tried a great new problem that Ian just got the first ascent of on Saturday. A new school classic nestled amongst decades old testpieces, it's amazing and so typical of Black. We didn't send, but we're totally coming back for it. It's such an aesthetic line. Not sure what Ian is going to name it yet, but he suggested approximately 9 v points. After Brett completed a cool down lap on the mega classic Where Bonehead Dare (v5) we packed it in and called it a day.

All in all it was an amazing weekend, full of hard pulling on beautiful rocks. Props to Brett for crushing as hard as he did on day two. Hopefully within the next couple of weeks I'll be able to actually polish off a few new sends of my own. As always, I'm full of psyche and looking forward to the next trip. So let's rally and get a crew from LA down there next weekend!

Brett tackling Ian's new line at Boulder Basin

Brett styling his way up a lap on Where Boneheads Dare

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