Sunday, October 24, 2010

Farley - Sunday

Despite possibly inclement weather and a much smaller crew, Brayton and I met up with Matt and Josh for a short Farley session today. After warming up and coming close to War on Terror, a hard slab/mantle climb heading left from Speed of Life, we all got excited about Prince Paul. Using only a few pads (and some conveniently placed natural vines to anchor one), we were able to safely protect all but the very top of this stunning line. We had a great session working out the moves on this and everyone tried it in great ground up style. I think this climb has only seen one ascent, after heavy top rope rehearsal, and I think it would be very cool to do the second ascent ground up. After a bit of rain, we finished up on Scarab and Pterodactyl but with tired bodies and worn down skin, today proved to not be quite the day of sending that Saturday was.

Entering the crux of Prince Paul

Mid crux of Prince Paul

Farley - Saturday

Despite a few reluctant members, another large crew rallied to Farley from Boston on Saturday. Everyone psych was high and it proved to be a great day of sending. In addition to Dave Wetmore's list of sends, I also managed to climb Appetite for Destruction, Babies with Rabies, and The Wave. I have to admit that Appetite felt a step harder than the three double digit problems I have now completed at Farley but that might just be me. We also had a big session on Speed of Life and needless to say I am excited to try it more.

Brayton on Stereogram

Matt on Babies with Rabies

Sunday, October 17, 2010


On Sunday a full Boston crew got out to Farley. In total there were probably around 10 people I knew at the crag with dozens more scattered throughout the forrest. Turns out everyone else had the same idea when they saw 60 degrees, sunny, and breezy as the forecast. I was able to quickly finish off Pipe Dreams today. This marks my second double digit problem in the last week. I did not climb since last Sunday and its nice to come off a short rest and still feel strong. Next up was Party Wolf. This climb is definitely a level up from the other hard compression problems at Farley. Max put in a proud effort on it and was able to send last second before he had to go. Both of us tried it from the ground up every time and it was cool to see someone climb something hard in such a good style. I will be back for this rig. At the end of the day I was able to get up Big, a cool V8 with one distinct crux. Overall a great day!

Alex on Pipe Dreams

Chris on Pipe Dreams

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Back in New England

The last two days have yielded beautiful fall New England conditions. Chilly but comfortable and dry! The trees have begun turning and the colors are amazing. On Saturday, Max, Gavin, and I headed to Farley. It was my first time there and I was very excited. First of all, Speed of Life is amazing. I did not get on it since we did not have a ton of pads and I was not feeling my best. After warming up, I figured the moves to Pipe Dreams out but it was in the sun and I could not link it together. Next up was Stereogram. Both Gavin and I were able to put this one together. This was my first double digit boulder problem of 2010 and it was nice to realize I was in pretty good shape despite having not been climbing too much. Max and I worked on a compression project for a bit called Midsize Man. This rig is one of the most physical boulder problems I have ever seen. The beta is never the same and it comes down to trying really, really, really hard and refusing to let go. I also came close to Appetite for Destruction but by the end of the day was feeling pretty tired. Today, Max and I headed out to Great Barrington. We met up with some other people and set to work on the Speed boulder. Mark, an old friend of Max's, came as close as possible to Roses and Bluejays, falling off after matching the lip of the boulder. Next time man! I made some good progress on Something from Nothing and am excited to return.

Veterans with Vertigo

Before heading back to Boston, I knew that I needed to go and climb something bigger since I would be mostly sport climbing and bouldering in New England. I headed for the Black Canyon last Friday and roped up with my friend John Schaffer. John is one of the most bad ass climbers I know, having done over 50 Black Canyon routes. He was interested in doing a climb called Veterans with Vertigo, a Grade IV 5.11+ down the SOB Gully. John started us off with the plan of me taking the crux pitch and him taking the first (and harder) or the two R rated pitches. Pitch 2 was my first lead and there was very little information on the topo about it. Near the top was a long, unprotected traverse on less than ideal rock. The pitch felt like it deserved an R rating and knowing we had a couple pitches that actually got R higher up, both of us were curious to what would follow. Route finding was difficult and we moved slower then we were hoping to. By the time we reached the crux 6th pitch, the sun was baking the wall. I took the lead and got to the crux section before reading the movement totally wrong and falling. After a few attempts at working the beta out, I was able to fight my way to the belay ledge. John managed to follow the pitch cleanly in an even more powerful way then I did it. Very impressive! The two R rated pitches that followed turned out to not be so scary and we soon found ourselves on the rim. We considered bombing back down a gully and doing a second route but ended up deciding to call it a day. The Black Canyon remains my favorite place to climb in Colorado and I hope to get back there next spring.