Saturday, May 31, 2008

Pain in the Neck

I've fallen off the last hard move of The Buttermilker (V13) three times now. I did the stand start variation last February and for some reason, those extra two moves are killing me. And I keep hurting myself. My neck is constantly sore from the ridiculous head-undercling/headbar that I use for the first move and I managed to tweak something in my wrist about two months ago when I fell off near the end four times in one day (probably some kind of overuse injury, duh). Anyway, I left it alone for a couple months and tried it again on Monday with no expectations. I fell off the last move on my first try that day. So why haven't I sent it? Must be fear of success. So here I am, three weeks from the official start of summer with a forecast for upper 80's and low 90's for the next week. Might have to start trying it in the middle of the night. Has it ever been done in June? Maybe I'll wait a few weeks and go for the FSA (First Summer Ascent).

Me not sending a year ago...

photo - Eric or Jamie or Jim (can't remember)

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Boneyard Action

photo - Jeff Sillcox

Welcome to the Boneyard. This place may have had other names in the past, but with all the bones and animal parts I've seen out there, there's no better name. I feel like I'm being hunted by a mountain lion when it starts to get dark and I just have to squeeze in one more new problem.

I could go on and on about how beautiful this area is, but I'll let the photos do the talking. Let's get the artsy photos out of the way though so we can get to the climbing...

photos - Jeff Sillcox

Eric and I spent an afternoon putting up a few problems back in October. Check out the post here. But the full potential of this place has only just started to be realized in the past few weeks. Andrew Stevens, Jeff Honeywell, Wills Young, and a handful of others have ventured out with me and the current problem total stands around 47 with some very nice lines still unfinished.

If you still think Iron Man is the best V4 on the East Side, you're wrong. You were wrong even before this beauty went up, but now you're very wrong. Jeff H. nabbed the 4th ascent (pictured below) about ten minutes after Wills cleaned it ground up on the FA.

photo - Jeff Sillcox

Eight feet to the left is another 20ft perfect patina face that goes somewhere in the V7-V9 range depending where you start. Here Wills cruises the easier ground above the hard moves on the FA.

photo - Jeff Sillcox

Andrew on the 2nd ascent of nice V2 wave/arete problem that will probably end up with a dumb name like The Wave, La Arete, La Angle, or La Balance.

photo - Jeff Sillcox

Nathan Stevens working a project that he found and cleaned.

photo - Jeff Sillcox

Wills trying to find some holds on the FA of another hard, balancy line. I finally completed the line just to the left of this in the perfect orange patina yesterday. I used a pretty ridiculous sequence that is probably V10/11 and then Wills flashed it with the good beta that might be a grade or two easier. More pictures of that line in the previous Boneyard post.

photo - Jeff Honeywell

One of the few named problems... Twin Dongs (somewhere in the V3-V7 range). Jeff H. works out the moves into the dongs...

photo - Jeff Sillcox

...and Wills flashes it for the FA.

photo - Jeff Sillcox

Lots more to come... Wills and I were getting pretty close on another nice project yesterday and I failed miserably last weekend in the heat on another line that has good holds, but all face the wrong way.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Tribute to Double D's (not those)

I think it seems fitting that Tenacious D would sing these lyrics about our friend:

"This is not The Greatest climber in the World, no.
This is just a tribute.
Couldn't remember The Greatest climber in the World, no, no.
This is a tribute, oh, to The Greatest climber in the World,
All right! It was The Greatest climber in the World,
All right! It was the best muthafuckin' climber the greatest climber in the world"

Well maybe I interpreted the lyrics a little differently, but I am sure they meant to talk about Drew Davis... I mean really, who wouldn't... (real song here)

As our readers may or may not know, today (or yesterday depending on the time of this post) is/was Drew's birthday. To show my appreciation for Drew's futile yet unwaivering pursuit of climbing stardom, I offer this humiliation...errrrr... blog as a tribute to his many abilities!

Drew can be pensive and thought invoking as he stares at Resident Evil at Joe's Valley

Drew can be strong or fuerte (did you know that Drew is multi-lingual???) as he looks calm yet determined on Big Joe V7 at Joe's Valley

Drew can get himself (and your overnight shipments) out of most uncomfortable situations (and by uncomfortable, i mean uncomfortable for me and everyone around) so that makes him practical and thoughtful. Here he is in his UPS outfit on Michaelangelo V4 Joe's Valley.

If you get out of line Drew can demonstrate his ninja-blur-foot skills to remind you "Who's the Boss?" Drew on Worst Case Scenario V9 Joe's Valley

And if that doesn't work, he can show you his muscly arm, that is if he's not using it on Highbrow V7, Happy Boulders - Bishop

Drew is probably the most caring person I know. Here he demonstrates by spotting me as if his life depended on it. (You really thought i could blog without a picture of me... pssh!) Big Joe V7, Joe's Valley.

Drew also has the power to make even the camera drunk... oh and that's a taser, not a cell phone. Even when he is smiling, he never lets his guard down.

Well it seems Drew has many beneficial powers at his disposal but I did leave one out... Drew also has the power to be...


Happy birthday Drew!