Thursday, October 25, 2012

Post Desert Tower climbing rest day blog with an extra long title

This past week has been largely occupied with summit bagging and naturally some modeling.

I'm sure you're all exclaiming "summit bagging in the desert?!" well yes in fact there are some pretty bitchin' desert towers that are extra super fun to climb. So on sunday John, Jane, Hayden and I set off up to the Bridger Jacks to throw John at a tower for his first multi-pitch climb, first desert tower, first climbing experience in the desert and first full pitch of rock climbing. Some might wonder if this was throwing him in the deep end, and to that I must respond 'what better way to learn to climb, but on a crumbling hunk of rock?'

Basicly, John slayed the tower with minimal cursing and maximum good attitude. After descending from Easter Island Jane, Hayden and I cruise up the route Vision Quest on the King of Pain which was awesome, as it was a completely new summit for myself and those two are always great to climb with. After getting back down to solid ground at about 5:30 John and Jane cruised off to get cars sorted out, leaving me with Hayden's infectious enthusiasm and desire to climb Ziji a 4 pitch 5.12 and a new route for me. So we set off with great haste as we had to race the setting sun. Luckily I didn't flail too hard and we made it up in great time with only a few hangs on my part allowing my to do the last pitch in the dark hoping the light splotches were decent places for my feet and an extra-memorable ending to the day!

The next day we teamed up with a nice fellow named Troutman and cruised up the North Six Shooter (another new summit for me) with some spectacular climbing, plenty of hiking and a stellar view from the top. While it was a bit windy this only served to maintain the sending temperatures, allowing us to schralp the gnar in the best way possible.

After the North Six Shooter I went in to Moab to meet up with Dan, a professional photographer I met in Yosemite to do some more rock wrestling and picture taking. We wound up climbing Ancient Art in the Fisher Towers and the Cobra Tower (a new summit for me). I got to do a head stand on the Cobra and a partial one on Ancient Art (the winds and some timidity prevented full extension). The Cobra was a bit of a unique experience as I climbed it for the first time at night for a pretty ballin' night shoot, there will be cool pictures in a few weeks I would imagine.

While with those guys I modeled some Feathered Friends products, did some more climbing shots and some trail running shots. Perhaps I'll pick up professional modeling...or not.

Nick is kind of like Alex Honnold but with a Tallboy

A Rock.

On top the Bridger Jack Mesa with the Jacksons and Nick

Down from the Wall as the sun set

Oh your campsite doesn't include a pizza oven? Bummer. 

Classic camp past time, throwing big rocks.

View from Harts Draw

View from top of N. Six Shooter

Flowers in Oct. on top of N. Six Shooter

Six Shooter Crew
Now I'm heading back to the Creek for the weekend lots more climbing, relaxation and great times!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Happily Falling Behind

Well I know that I have not been keeping you all informed perhaps as much as you like and the photos are certainly not on here and my vernacular is certainly not flowery enough to paint pictures in your minds, at least not mental portraits that would do the placed I've been justice.

However, I'm happy to report that the trip in Santa Barbara was awesome and went off with out any major hitches. Afterwards I visited Carl in S.B. to celebrate his birthday and give CA a final rowdy send off before my short term residency in the desert commenced. These things were achieved as well as other adventures and perhaps even a mishap like eating a colossal roast chicken with Carl and going for a 15 mile bike ride but  that's irrelevant and no doubt evoking yawns from you all.

On a lighter note after an exhausting 14 hour drive I rolled into the parking lot at Indian Creek to p.t.f.o. and to awake the the rising sun highlighting endless splitters and the relatively pristine desert which I'll admit almost provoked a tear of happiness.

Since I've arrived I have been climbing at Way Rambo onsighting the Serrator on my first day back, happy to see my OWing skillz were not as rusty as Yosemite made them seem. I have also met some nice new friends, a shock I know. I also got to meet up with the Jackson clan and Mr. Malik for a taste of the good ol' Durango days. Yesterday I finished cleaning and bolting a new climb out at Technicolor Wall that'll probably go at 5.12ish though that's certainly a priority on the todo list!

Looking forward to some brewing in the desert, probably another batch of Ginger Ale pending the acquisition of some yeast.

Oddly enough my fall as been decidedly backwards as far as climbing is concerned as I got strong in Yosemite only to head to the Creek (for non-climbers this is usually done in reverse order) similarly, I did only free climbing in Yosemite, while I have gotten to do my first real aid lead and far more jugging than I care to admit (again for non-climbers aid climbing (which I don't care to define here but can help you out) is more normal in Yosemite where as free climbing (not free soloing (climbing with out any ropes or protection)) is more typical in the desert and probably also has a wikipedia article attached to it which may or may not adequately define/describe this silly sport I so enjoy.

Man that was a lot of parentheses.

El Capitan Meadow

Some big piece of rock

I spy with my little eye Half Dome

Yeah, my van is a village

Diana and I on some choss Pile, maybe Serenity/Sons

Hey that's me!

More of the Valley

The figurehead. Taken by Drew Smith

Munginella 5.6  with Drew and Jenna. Taken by Drew Smith 

Munginella 5.6  with Drew and Jenna. Taken by Drew Smith 

The completely unnecessary top rope dyno on Munginella. Taken by Drew Smith 

Oh and he sticks it! Taken by Drew Smith 

Melvin just kickin' it. Taken by Drew Smith 

Serenity Crack 5.12- Taken by Drew Smith