Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Tiff & Tyler: Momentum Climbing Double Date

Tiff & Tyler: Momentum

Tiffany put up some pictures from our "double date" climbing at Momentum last Friday night. We had tons of fun. There is even a pic montage of Tyler "cheating" the V5 - far out!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Angie WERC Promo Video

Good Things Utah ran a contest for viewer-submitted about-town videos "Your Good Things" and we decided to enter with a Promo Video for WERC at Momentum Climbing. WERC = Women Experience Rock Climbing.

While we shot and edited this, the TV Station canceled the contest, presumably because we were the only entrants. We sent it in anyway and now a year later, here it is:

Remember if you're interested in WERC or Momentum, either go to Angie's blog or

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Friday Climbing Wtih Tif and Ty

Last night we used our "bring a friend free" passes to take Tif and Ty to Momentum for a night of climbing. Ty had climbed before at the Quarry quite a bit, and was working V4's by the end of the year there, so this was all quite "simple" for him. Tif was wearing running shoes and going barefoot at times, which limited her a bit, but she did some great climbing and we hope she sticks with it and they can find a way to climb more together.

Ty did this wild trick that a guy there showed us for getting up a V5 about the same difficulty as a V1. Far out if you're tall. He also did a 5.10d on the wall by the future-museum-formerly-known-as-the-cafe, and with a little working out and practicing, he'll be doing great. Good job.

I managed to squeeze out sending that horrible red 8 with the blocky edgy holds on the short wall. Angie had beat the smurf out of herself bouldering on Thursday, so climbed somewhat conservatively, but still managed to get in some great V2 and V3 work. It's so cool that the folks back in the bouldering "cave" are taking her seriously now.

Anyway, we had tons of fun and hope to do it again.

(oh, forgot to mention in my post a couple days ago that I managed to send that black 9 that when I first did it seemed like a 10 to me, but a 9 to Jake, back in the corner by the first 9 crack and old speed routes)

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Wed Climbing Lessons

I decided to tag along for kicks, and since the only other option would be to set Anne free and make dinner for the kids and put them to bed. Besides, Dallin begged to spend the evening with Anne.

We started off getting them belay certified. There was S, who had climbed in WERC before, and her friend who took pictures. Her friend's daughter D, and S's friend from work, J. Neither J nor D had climbed before, and while J had a 6'5" height advantage, and seemed to have at least a minor amount of athleticism that helped him work his way up to 5.9 before he really started hanging, D was like the total opposite.

We gave them all lots of attention, and pointed out different ways to use the tools each had, and got them all into the bouldering room, where S and J both tried their hands at some V0's and even an evil V1 (the blue along the edge of the cafe roof that neither I nor DW have finished yet). In the middle of all this I onsited a V0 and Angie totally sent a V2 on her second try. Amazing girl. One of the other climbers there told her she should be working V3's and she did start one - great project as she lines up for the TEVA games in Vail this summer.

They did great, had a lot of fun, got some cool pictures, and hopefully will come back for more (pretty sure S will, not sure about J and D - but if they read this they need to keep it up - practice will get you to the top).

When all was said and done, it was a ton of fun for us too. Great experience and totally cool to give back to the NOOB community. We both ended up getting a great deal without smurfing off the gym management.

Anyway, just proud of my baby on her V2, and happy I did some bouldering for the 2nd time in this year of healing. I decided to take Thursday night off from Dallin's basecamp climbing team and heal my hands some. Instead I stayed home and did a workout while watching the other kids, so DW could boulder or help the team or treadmill or whatever.

It's kindof fun because I work out in the basement, and the kids came down to play with their Thomas Train Table together while I rode the elliptical. Afterward we went to Costco together to catch up on supplies and got home just as DW and Dal came home. They had a great time, which I'm sure she'll mention on her blog when she catches up.

Friday night we're going to climb with Tif and Ty. I'll keep you posted...

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Miscellaneous Climbing Post

Since the last post I've been knocking off some of the 8's and 9's that have been troubling me for a bit.

There is a grey nine that is a bit "short". I did it once with great struggle and effort and thought I was at the top. Then I discovered I was one move shy. A few days later I did it with that one more move, only to discover there is actually just one more, way off to the right. I haven't finished it yet.

I finished the grey 8 on the wall facing the former cafeteria, now unstarted climbing museum project (garage cleaning project for Jeff I guess). The last few holds suck, but I got past them with only minor struggle.

I finished the brown 9 next to that evil short grey one on the first go. Not bad.

I finished the grey 8 that DG set for the kids on the lead wall to the left of the window. It wasn't too bad and I imagine if I weren't so tired last time I could have done it in spite of the little flat pyramid holds that seem to abound on the left hand.

I onsighted the yellow 8 that was the speed route at the comp. Didn't really like it though. Too many "flat" holds at an angle that's tough on my left hand.

I started the orange 9 from the speed comp, but got stuck at the cup-handle jugs below the dyno. Couldn't see my feet. Oh well, maybe down the road.

I started the new dark brown 9 by the kids wall, but fell off about halfway and decided to bail - the holds are new and have fiberglass fibers sticking out - ouch. I'll try it again when they wear down a bit. The holds are small crimpy jugs and work good for two-finger pulling.

I might have tried a few 9+ and 10, but can't really remember anything memorable except I probably failed since I can't remember them.

Hands have been up and down a bit - I've experimented with working out and climbing, and have had some trouble recovering. I noticed recently that most of the 50+ crowd there has a ton of fun doing the 6's and 7's and making them look really tough. And actually, they're all lifers just keeping the climbing muscles going. I don't think too many people my age actually start climbing from scratch and keep with it for very long. It's really tough on the body. When you're young making your tendons strong is fairly easy and just takes time under tension with little regard for recovery. When you get old your tendons get tight and dry and it takes a lot of work.

Speaking of which...

We went to Jake's B'day party and Matt and Shannon showed up. We loaned them shoes and harnesses again and got them going on a few routes. They were working the grey 8 that DG set for the climbing camp kids when Matt stressed his pinky. It was swollen and hurt his forearm, so we got him some ice from the museum-formerly-known-as-cafeteria (thanks Ty!). Since the night was still young we took Shannon back to try her hand at bouldering.

She didn't mind falling off, which I think is half the battle. She did some great work on some V0's. Afterward she said that DW and I are great coaches. Thanks.

Last summer my son Tristan came down from MT to visit and we had a great time climbing, and I remember coaching him to do 10's in the gym and even lead a 7 outside in AF Canyon. I remember his great lead fall trying to lead a 10 on Draper Red Rock too. He did a soft-bounce foot-first deck in the little cave under the 9 next to the infamous rock of head-first death. That's where that gumby with the inside-out upside-down harness flipped over while his belayer had about 8' of loop hanging out. They resisted being rescued too. Oh, well....

Sometimes climbers can be so funny. They can accept a 19 year old who is 6'2" and 150 lb working 10's within a week as being a "climber" but resist a 30+ year old woman at 5'2" and of average build onsighting 11's after two years very hard work and training, and will actually pick a fight and almost coming to blows in front of everyone at the gym over it. And to think - she's starting to work 12's now.

In my case they generally don't think of me as a "climber" of rock, simply because though I'm working 9's and 10's, I am 50ish and haven't paid my dues like the other 50ish guys and gals at the gym, who are working 6's. ;)

But I do get some grudging respect from them over my glacier and high altitude exploits, though those are on semi-hold at the moment. I'm working up to doing Liberty Ridge on Rainier this summer, and that's going to be dang exciting sustained exposure on mixed terrain with no way out except up.

More later....

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Back to Climbing Again...

It's been interesting.

After getting my Aztecs I immediately felt a world better. I practically ran up the "Maple Canyon" green that they finally established at 5.10. Everyone I talked to said it's rated correctly, though I joke "if I can do it there's no way it's a 5.10".

After that I cooled my jets some and have been doing some of the more evil 5.7's and 8's - with a 6 or two tossed in for good measure.

With my arches fully supported I can actually stand on holds and use my leg power to raise myself, rather than my arms.

Toadally Kewl.

Tonight I did try a 5.10b(?) that didn't look too bad, but I fell of about 10' up on some really smurfy sloper. Smurf it - I decided to bail after that. Coincidentally to that DW was being poked by a somewhat "friend" and didn't know I fell till I hit the end of the rope - so good belay - it worked.

Then she took a turn and came off just above that spot - but did finally get up it - it was a Jeffries special - side to side slopers. Oh, well.

I redid an evil 5.8 then, and called it a night - good enough for me.

I've been working my legs to improve my strength in standing up on the holds, and my hands - after finally getting a handle on some of my tendon issues and working to improve it.

More tomorrow maybe at DW's amazing "Rick's in Mexico and I'm Lonely Party"...

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

DW Tag Q's

Okay, fine - my "FIRST"s...

1. Who was your FIRST prom date?
Didn't go
2. Do you still talk to your FIRST love?
3. What was your FIRST alcoholic drink?
Strawberry Dacquari at my uncle's in Illinois at a family party - I think I was 12
4. What was your FIRST job?
Tie - Paper route for "the Milwaukee Journal", and kitchen help at an A&W in Lake Geneva WI - think I was 10
5. What was your FIRST car?
First one I owned that ran was an Isuzu Trooper in '85. Till then I used borrowed cars.
6. Who was the FIRST person to text you today?
7. Who was the FIRST person you thought of this morning?
Me - I said "holy snot - you're still alive?"
8. Who was your FIRST grade teacher?
Miss Ring - and she was dang hot!
9. Where did you go on your FIRST ride on an airplane?
From Milwaukee to Chicago - I was on my way to San Antonio.
10. Who was your FIRST best friend & do you still talk?
Gosh, it was so long ago - maybe kindergarten, and no, I haven't talked to anyone from my pre-20's since the year it happened.
11. Where was your FIRST sleep over?
I don't remember ever having one, but I did go to camp a few times with the YMCA.
12. Who was the FIRST person you talked to today?
Angie (aside from Q 7 above)
13. Whose wedding were you in for the FIRST time?
My sister Cyndy AFAIK.
14. What was the FIRST thing you did this morning?
Checked to make sure I was intact and able to crawl out of bed without causing too much damage.
15. FIRST tattoo?
Lol, Never...
16. FIRST piercing?
Lol, Never...
17. FIRST foreign country you've been to?
Tijuana! While in San Diego.
18. FIRST movie your remember seeing?
Doctor NO - my dad took me when I was 6, then bought me all the toys from it. Far out.
19. When was your FIRST detention?
I was an odd child - I got like these perfect grades all the time so they just let me do whatever I wanted so long as not too many people got hurt.
20. What was the FIRST state you lived in?
Wisconsin, if you can call that living. Poverty, if you can call that a "state"