Hashtag: Trad is Rad
The Current Project:
A quick update on my climbing project - the 5.11a route called "Psychogenic Fugue Thus Far" out at Vantage, WA. I am happy to announce that I finally sent it on lead! Although, not cleanly. I fell once at the crux move under the mini roof. My goal down the road is to redpoint the route. For now, I'm stoked to be able to pull all the moves on the sharp end of the rope. It's a major milestone for me in my climbing ability. Here's a celebration photo with my mini beer after the send. :D
Quick climbing definitions:
- Onsight: climbing a route on lead, no falls or hanging rests, and without seeing anyone do it before
- Flash: climbing a route on lead, no falls or hanging rests, but seeing someone do it at some point before you
- Redpoint: climb a route on lead, no falls or hanging rests, after already trying many times. (These are usually projects that climbers make for themselves and spend time working out the moves in sections.)
I've continued to train in the climbing gym about 2x a week, mostly with my friend, Mike. Over the past few months, I've learned to take more efficient rests and stay aware of my breathing on the wall as I get pumpy. Cheers to climbing harder than I ever have in my entire life!
Hashtag: Trad is Rad
Over Easter Weekend, I went up to Leavenworth, WA to climb with some friends and checked off a number of "first experiences" on my list of adventures. Leavenworth is known for its beers and brats. But outside the small town center lies the beautiful alpine and array of snowy peaks. Climbers head here for its tall granite slabs, boulder meadows, and hikes inside the Wenatchee National Forest.
My friend Jeromy, an all-around extremely talented climber, guided my friend Steve and I up the granite faces for the day. It was fantastic to watch how Jeromy navigated the routes and set up our rope systems. He was quick and concise with placing gear and anchors and showed me tips and tricks every moment he could. We started with a few 5.6 trad pitches up to a 5.10b crack. I got my first taste of slab climbing, which was hell. But also got practice with hand and finger jamming in various cracks. I worked to absorb everything that day and learned so much about placing pro (if I ever get into trad climbing), managing the rope on multipitches, belaying efficiently, rappelling, crack climbing, and that ticks are real nasty bugs.
I ended that day with a humbling solo climb up a 5.6 to the top of another 5.10 crack that Jeromy and Steve were going to climb. I posted on a ledge and snapped photos of them sending the route with the jaw dropping background. We finished our day with some beer, AND kombucha on tap, in the cute town of Wenatchee and proceeded back to the Tri-Cities. What an awesome day outside.
I recently learned that one of my photos of Jeromy is getting published in the new Frenchman Coulee, Vantage WA climbing guidebook. I took photos of him last fall as he climbed some trad route there and they came out really well. This photo to the left was him this past weekend in Leavenworth. Big shoutout to the guy for showing me the way of the rock. Follow him on Instagram @jeromymarkee for a look at his latest adventures.
As for me, I plan to climb locally. My friends and I will hit Smith Rock in a few weeks for some sendy adventures.