Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Rest Dayz

Today is a much needed rest day.  My body is tired from all the climbing and running plus my shoulder and lat are still recovering and I don't want to push it to hard.  I was reading blogs and catching up on what my friends have been up to across the world and I found a few cool things that you may find interesting or lame... or interlamesting

Jimmy is in CO, here is his 5.10 post -

(CO is currently on fire, best guess is it has something to do with hippies, global warming or possibly chupacabras.  Seriously tho, I wish everyone the best who lives out there.  To all the climbers still doing your thing in CO, perhaps now is the time to strike down your projects as they may be firey lava when you return.)

Sasha is being Sasha and winning..  -

Zach Lerner NOTORIOUSLY under the radar, is crushing rock in Swizzy.  Here is a video of Zach climbing at the Lake in CO.

Zach Lerner climbing Bebe Wolverine V12 from Bearcam Media on Vimeo.

Pat Goodman is training and killing it in the NRG -   Pat has a big trip coming up soon.  He and a team of guys will be traveling to CA to establish some new routes up there, A.

Brad Jackson (aka Big$$$$$$ Jackson) of Summit Strength (Fort Collins, CO.) finished shooting an exciting project for the reel rock with some people in Vedauwoo.  So check that out when it comes to your town.  He also tells me that his new facility is up and running.  If you are looking to get serious about taking control of your diet and stepping it up with training, Brad is has the knowledge, direction to get you to your goals.  They put plans together for athletes across the country so check them out before they burn down.   Just kidding about burning down.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Bakers Dozen

Thursday I made the five and a half hour drive back to Fayettville WV to spend another weekend in the New River Gorge.  During my last trip, I was gifted with low temps and low humidity.  This trip was the quite the opposite.  June 21st was the summer solstice and conditions reflected it.  
We got into Fayettville late on Thursday, had some dinner and decided to make a plan for Friday.  The forecast looked grim with rain in the afternoon and highs in the 90’s.  Our plan would be to spend the day at Summersville lake.  Its been awhile since I had been to the lake as its 20min outside of the gorge and gets crowded during the weekends.  Rightfully so, the lake boasts climbing of all grades 5.9 - 5.14b not to mention the fact that while in the coliseum, you can climb all day in the shade and take a swim when things start to get too hot.  Its a beautiful place to climb.
We lucked out being that it was a friday morning the crowds had not descended onto Summersville yet.  We shared the entire crag with a handful of climbers and found ourselves spending most of the day completely alone.  After the mid-day summer storm rolled through we were literally the only climbers in the entire place.  In 15years that is a first at Summersville.  We hammered out 11 or 12 pitches that day including classics like Apollo Read, World at War and many others.  
World at War is one of my favorites at the lake.  Its vertical with a very bouldery crux around the 3rd or 4th bolt.  A big move will get you to some jugs and fun climbing to the top.  It is directly next to two other great climbs, under the milky way to the left and another 11ish climb to the right that is just as fun to climb.  All three are worthy of your time if ever you find yourself at the lake looking for something to do.
We stayed late and hiked out that evening in the dark.
Saturday morning we woke to the news that Meinhold would be rolling back into town for another shot at sending Still Life.
Still Life is a proud line that ascends the far right side of the coliseum.  The climb is  three separate boulder problems with a crux finishing move to gain access to the anchors.  I had gotten on it the day before to work out my beta and it has two tough moves for me.  The first is low at the third clip.  You move off of two underclings that are good but have to reach big to a crimp bucket with your left hand.  Its a move that I am not consistent on.  I am at full extent to reach the left hand hold and its gonna be tough on red point to not slip up on that move.  After that you have a crimpy, bouldery section of moderate climbing.  V4ish climbing gains access to a rest jug and starts the business.  From the jugs at the steepest part of the climb to the top is a v9ish boulder problem.  It involves heel hooks, crimps and slopers and a shouldery move to a good edge.  Its a great climb and we wanted to see it go down.  
Stephen has got some crazy tall guy dyno to the start of the crux at the top instead of heel hooks and foot witchcraft.  I have never seen anyone try it that way but it looks awesome when he sticks it and works great for him.  He was so close to the send on saturday, it came down to sticking the low percentage dyno at the top.  Stephen came as close as you can get to the firing that rig, falling at the last bolt but no one walked away with the coveted send that day.  Still life is one I will be looking forward to this fall when temps cool off.
Our last day in town Pat and I had a training day.  We woke up early and started what was to be a 12 mile run.  The run went up and down through the gorge and culminated with a series of 830+ steps up the side of the Kaymore mines.  If anyone has been to the Kaymore mines they know what I am talking about.  We stopped at butchers branch (Kaymore crag) and cleaned up 10 pitches of climbing and finished with the rest of the run from butchers branch to Pat’s house.  From start to finish it took us roughly 5 hours at a moderate pace.  On our way out of town we stopped for a swim and I decided to run two more pitches to even up at 12pitches, 12miles, a solid dozen.  The goal being the bakers dozen, 13miles, 13pitches of 13+ climbing.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Mid Atlantic Revisited

Over the past few weeks I have been in contact with a few people discussing projects, boulders, new rock old classics and it got me thinking about all the great climbing that we have in the Mid Atlantic.  Its probably never gonna get covered in the media, or sprayed on 8a but thats ok with me.  I speak for many when I say "I am just trying to have a good time, whatever that means".  

Its true tho, PA, WV and MD are loaded with rock. Some good, some not so good and some world class rock.  One thing is for sure, each area is unique and each area has its own charm.  Gtown and Jtown host large quantities of high quality rock ranging in size and difficulty, Stables is the only field other than the south with easy drive up access and Elk tops my list of favorite places to climb in the country.  Not because its considered a home crag even tho its over 3hrs away but because the rock is some of the best I have climbed.  The New River Gorge is LOADED with boulders.  It makes sense tho, with all the cliffs around the area that the bouldering would be so good.  The list goes on and on.  We have a lifetime of rock, it comes down to how hard you want to look for it.

With a little research, I found a few blogs that have pics and media to areas around north west PA that I have yet to visit along with a few areas in the south west.  Once the weather cools off and I return from my adventures out west this summer I plan on checking them out.

Here is Travis Gault crushing a line at coopers rock.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Goodman and the Bad Cat

Pat Goodman FA (Cigarettes, Bacon and Hatred)
A cat pissed on Pat's climbing ropes this past week. Not cool.  In good style tho, Pat sought no lethal revenge upon the creature rather, he took out his frustrations on a new gear route out a proud overhanging arete.  (Mother nature again posed another obstacle, this time not as cat piss but a tree, which blocked almost every move on this rig from my vantage point.)

Mono Loco - NRG

Contrary to popular belief Mono Loco at Beauty Mt. New River Gorge does not have a single mono pocket on it.  It does have a heart breaker move near the top which makes me love it similar to the way I love to put a 9volt battery on my tung..  its always the same result, yet I continue.

If you are psyched on steep, hard sport climbing its worthy of your time, you will not be let down.  Classy FA Mikey.