Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Potter's Point

Last weekend I headed out to Potter's Point with Itai and Cody in order to explore a new area and meet up with Joe. Unfortunately we got lost on the way in, and spent an extra hour in the car fighting off feelings of frustration and motion sickness. After our prolonged tour of the Santa Barbara hills we managed to locate the crag with enough time for a solid half day of climbing. 


The area classic, Debra (V8), turned out to be very enjoyable. The line features fun movement, a committing crux, and a proud topout. Itai and I managed to put it down in a couple of goes, and Cody got agonizingly close.


Cody working out the moves on Debra

Debra 

After our session on Debra, we headed toward The Brute (V9). Joe, Itai, and I were able to snag the stand, and began unlocking the beta for the sit. Unfortunately no one got the send, but I have a feeling we will be back shortly!


Working The Brute Sit (V11)

- Eden

Monday, January 18, 2016

J Tree Farewell

Bad weather has never deterred us, (though perhaps it should,) so Cody and I decided to roll the dice and venture out to Joshua Tree despite the stormy forecast. Thankfully, after a slight morning mist/sprinkle, the clouds around Intersection Rock began to clear. Isaac and Alexandra, who were destined to leave California behind for the 'Rado within days, arrived at the parking lot just minutes behind us. This was sadly their last chance to shred some gnar gnar and skin on the oh so sharp J Tree crystals before moving. Wait, what's a crystal?

The Bong in all its glory.
After getting our tranquil warm-up sesh dude-man-bro bombed by a large group of climbers, we knew our only option was to pretend we could feel our fingers and hop on the Joshua Tree crimp test-piece, Bittersweet.

Itai, on a padless send of Bittersweet (V9). Just kidding, this was a photo op. 
The gang made quick work of the bottom crimpers but encountered some trouble at the lip. After scoping out and chalking up the damp top out holds, I was able to press out the mantle and finish the climb, though not without giving my spotters, Isaac and Cody a mini panic attack. Next, Isaac, who has been determined to improve his finger strength, continued his crimpscapade by flashing the classic Thin Lizzy. Bravo!

Isaac, locking things down on Thin Lizzy (V8).
Cody, discovering a new problem just around the corner. 
To finish off the day, we hiked out to the elusive Scorpion Roof, where Isaac demonstrated his horizontal climbing skillz, though once again the top out caused some nerves. It was getting too cold and too dark for any more burns, plus we had all earned ourselves a burger and beer back in town. 

I'm glad we squeezed in that last farewell trip. Best of luck to Isaac and Alexandra in their new adventures! California will certainly miss those lightning bolt IP routes.

- Itai

Monday, December 28, 2015

Vegas

Itai and I headed out to Red Rocks over the holiday break for a nice weekend in the desert. 

On our first day out we pulled into the Kraft/Gateway parking lot and immediately ran into Vitaly, our climbing friend. The three of us spent the day jumping on various hard problems along the canyon. 
However, no one whipped out a camera so the lack of progress went undocumented. 

Unfortunately, the next day was a bit too windy to climb, so Itai and I decided to explore instead. We spent the better half of the morning running around looking for a Paul Robinson climb called "Power Slave". After some frustrating searching we finally found it, but had to leave it for another trip due to conditions. In the afternoon we headed back to town for a relaxing evening. 

Itai looking down into the canyon

On our third and final day at Red Rocks we ventured out to Black Velvet Canyon with Vitaly. Again, we got to sample some of the area's classic hard lines. Itai managed sends of The Fountainhead and Natasha's Highball before we headed back home, but the trip was otherwise fruitless. 

Vitaly checks out the frozen river.
Natasha's Highball
Eden on the The Fountainhead (V9)
Eden on the The Fountainhead (V9)
Sunset 

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Joshua Tree


Over the past few weeks, Eden and I have made some trips out towards the beautiful desert east of Los Angeles. Joshua Tree hosts some impressive granite peaks and boulders with equally impressive views. It's been great to get out there with friends and explore some of the classics. Here are some pictures from the last few trips:

Eden, on the small crimps of Vicarious, V10
The classic Undertow, V3
Cody, laying back the crack.
Eden, stemming the gem.
Cody, eyeing the next hold on the tricky Scatterbrain (V6).
The gang, relaxing and enjoying the view after a day of climbing.
The morning light on Intersection Rock.
It's always hard to leave this place, no matter how tired and dirty you are at the end of the trip. We all left plenty of climbs undone, so a return trip is a must.

- Itai

The Creamery

This fall, Eden and I made a quick trip out to Santa Barbara. We explored the area known as The Creamery that sits just bellow the Brickyard and Lizard's Mouth. Our primary goal for the trip was the area test-piece, First Come First Served. This gem of a problem was put up by SB local strong man, Thomas Townsend. Here are some photos from the quick trip:

Eden, sending First Come First Served (V10).
A move with a view.
Itai, topping out the area test-piece.
Itai, warming down in the sun.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Black Mountain

Cody and I set out Friday night to meet up with Joe, Sara and Jason at Black Mountain. We battled heavy traffic the whole way but eventually made it, ready for a night of sleep. Unfortunately, due to recent rain, the dirt road up to the basin campgrounds was too much for our low clearance vehicles. After a short nap we tried our luck at a different campsite and called it a night.

We awoke after very little sleep, so I decided to get the gang on the infamous Big Greeny in hopes of waking everyone up some more. I think it worked.

Cody, a move away from peeling off the wall. 
Joe, staying composed on the committing last move.

After running through the warm-up circuit, I showed everyone some harder moderates including the classics Tour de France and Hopscotch. 

Cody, on a problem I put up several years ago called Captain America.

Joe, on the elevator door move of Tour de France Sit

Cody on Tour de France.

Sunday was hot and we were tired but of course we still found the energy to climb. I took the crew out towards the Lion's Main boulder which I had never been to before. Making committing moves up high in the noon sun was rather draining, and most of the group decided to head home. Cody and I stayed for a few more hours, working some projects and hiking around.

Jason slabbing it up.
Cody, figuring out his beta on Loh Roof.
Chalk Heart
It was nice to get back out to Black Mountain and play tour guide for a weekend with some good friends. I'm hoping they'll be back soon (with better temps).

  - Itai

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Tramway

On Saturday Cody, Itai and I drove out to The Tramway and met up with Isaac, Alexandra and Alex. 
We were hoping that the recent "drop" in weather would lend for a nice day of climbing outdoors. 
It had been roughly a month since I got to climb outdoors, and much longer since I had touched granite - so I was very excited for the trip. 


Before the trip I was itching to jump on Black Mamba (V12) and see if it was a viable summer project. During the day Itai and I managed two separate sessions on it, by the end of which we had completely unlocked the beta and executed every move. Unfortunately we both received flappers/splits in the process and were unable to continue once temps became more favorable. Below is a shot of me staring down the low percentage deadpoint on the Mamba. 


The deadpoint move on Black Mamba (V12)

After the morning session near the Swing Dance and Blue Flame boulders we headed up the mountain to a cluster of boulders that none of us had been to before. It got recommended to Alex because of a "classic" lowball V5 called How I Wasted Your Time - or something along those lines. Since it was a new place, the crew got to test out some of the other climbs in the area, like the one pictured below.


Cody cruising up a V4 with a nice view



We finished up in the new area and decided to search for Emerald City. I had never been to this Tramway classic, and I was amazed at the quality of the line. Emerald City climbs up a 25-30 foot slab face, and offers a beautiful panoramic view as a topping out present. Highly recommended.  We finished up our day with a goodbye lap on White Flight, another immaculate highball. 

Itai working his way up a V5 just to the right of Emerald City

Cody on the last move of White Flight (V3)
I had a solid day trip out at Tramway and can't wait to get back on some granite in the near future. 
Seriously, granite is like the best. I can't even.

- Eden