Wednesday, March 23


The Red River Rendezvous went off well despite some kinda heinous conditions. I taught a Redpointing 101 clinic on Saturday and had a blast with a killer group of motivated climbers. We ran ropes up the entire crag, endured some gnarly wind and straight up had a great time hanging out. I was thoroughly impressed with how psyched everyone was and it seemed like everyone made tremendous strides in just a day. Stoked!

the BEST group!

LaSportiva was there demoing a fleet of great shoes as always and there was a healthy crew of ambassadors representing! Big thank you to Sportiva for bringing me out to this event and getting me involved. We raised money for the accessfund and got hundreds of stoked climbers out for a couple days of great clinics. Hope everyone had a killer time!

putting a cleaning on 'em

regal Zeke

Last week I got out to one of the newest Red Rock additions, the Secret 13 wall. This beautiful wall exhibits the highest concentration of hard sport routes, including the two hardest, in the Park. It's a rad hang, far from crowds and road noise, and the routes are super enjoyable. It's about 50-70 feet of generally very consistently bouldery climbing on aesthetic albeit fragile sandstone. I warmed up on a bouldery little 13a called 'DNA', before checking out the wicked and sustained 'You Are What You Is' 13b, 'Ambushed' 13a and finishing the day on my favorite of the group, the compression problem 'Go 100' 13b. It was great day of onsighting at a seriously cool new crag.

BEAU is in the house

big crew in town

A bunch of great friends made their way out here for the festival and monday night we had an awesome night out on the strip, celebrating a successful Rendezvous before everyone took off for home. This week I'm hopeful to finish up some business and then I'm potentially headed out to Bishop and Owen's for a couple days with my homeboy Kevin Jorgeson and Andy Mann... we'll see!

view from the XS...

A passing storm left a blanket of snow on the foothills and was responsible for the adverse weather over the weekend, but now we're emerging and the forecast is looking perfect. I've spent the last couple of cold and windy days out trying to make the best of it, and somehow managed to put down 'Yoshimi Battles' 13d at Red Rock yesterday whilst suffering from a hangover and a severe lack of sleep... geezzz Vegas. This route put up quite a fight though - a wicked long move, nice edges, bouldery and brutal.. I even broke a key hold on one burn.. I was stoked to send.

Wednesday, March 16


Exactly three years back I made the spring break pilgrimage to the St George area for my first time. It was on this short trip that I first met an up and coming photographer, Andy Mann. We hit it off immediately as friends and shortly thereafter as industry partners.
'Hope' 13a, circa 2008, Mann photo
Andy and I shot together nearly everyday on that trip, capturing some great images of the Utah hills and surrounding areas. He experimented with off camera lighting, new photo techniques and jugging a line, meanwhile I had one of my first breakthrough climbing trips. Over the course of the week, I climbed 8 5.13s (mostly 13a's), which was at the time above and beyond the best performance I'd ever had. I remember the trip fondly.. late nights around the fire, long mornings beneath the blazing desert sun and tiresome climbing on impressive limestone.
radical movement on 'Planet Earth', Mann photo circa last week
Now, in a bustling Las Vegas coffee shop, I'm sharing a table with Andy and looking back at how far we've both come. My climbing has developed dramatically with every year and Andy's photos and video have taken amazing strides to stand out as some of the best work in the industry. Through the years we've worked side by side on countless projects and grown to become great friends. I'm stoked that he's hanging around Vegas for a while and in only a few days hard work we've already captured a variety of rad footage and images.. stay tuned!

high on the Planet Earth wall.. Andy Mann photo
In-between heinously hot days, I did manage to put down Randy Leavitt breathtaking classic, 'Planet Earth' 14a, one of the first 5.14s in the area and a hard one at that. The crew and I spent another long and amazing night on the town enjoying the unparalleled nightlife - can't be beat. I even did some bouldering (!) and put down the Red Rock classic sport climbs 'Sunsplash' 13b and 'Monster Skank' 13b - wicked, HARD, rock climbs. It felt like an eventful couple of days.
Speaking of events.... RED ROCK RENDEZVOUS is THIS WEEKEND!
Already the number of visitors is crazy.. it's easy to imagine this being the largest climbing festival in the country. I'll be teaching a Redpointing 101 clinic on both Saturday and Sunday. I'm stoked to get out at the crag, enjoy the sun and meet some new people. The weather looks great as well.. should be a rad weekend!

Wednesday, March 9

stoke train

There are so many variables in rock climbing that when you do it full time there will inevitably be ups and downs. Weather, partners, conditions, skin, psych, etc. are constantly changing.. making for sometimes narrow windows of opportunity and frequently resulting in last minute plan shifting. As hard as it is to see your project or favorite wall running with water, have a series of partners bail on you, or tear a mega flapper on the stupid warm up, it's all part of the game. It's easy to let pessimism reign.. but psych always returns if you give it time.
Kenny Barker remains psyched.. putting down his first 5.14, F-Dude. Visser Photo
Jorge Visser captures myself on 'Don't Call Me Coach'
After a gnarly wet season, quite a bit of the stone around here is damp (or soaking) to some degree unfortunately. After finishing off the Blasphemy wall with heartbreakingly close flash attempts on both the overlooked crimpy masterpiece 'Don't Call Me Coach' 13d and the long, footwork intensive 'Erotic Jesus' 13b, I was ambitious to turn the corner and check out the Planet Earth wall. Unfortunately it has been running with water and for a couple days I found myself back at the Blasphemy wall waiting for the unprecedented water level to drain. I even checked out a rarely done 12c called 'Sins of the Flesh' on the left side (which actually turned out to be pretty good!) in between repeat laps on F-Dude, Dude and Dark Boy. I spent an afternoon at the Black and Tan wall as well, which turned out to be seriously underwhelming albeit in a great setting. I did a short and powerful 13a, and sampled some of the harder routes, leaving without too much desire to return.. except for this wicked route.

Zeke and Chris Weidner: always psyched.
Marisa Ware on 'High Flames Drifter' 12+. Visser Photo
My short period of low psych came to a screaming halt yesterday when I decided to give an 'oh-what-the-hell-why-not' try on the still dripping Planet Earth wall classic 'Captain Fantastic' 13c. The entry 12+ pitch was damp to say the least, and the top required some fresh chalk, but it was totally manageable. I surprised myself with a second go send on this sandbagged, amazing test-piece. Inspired, I made my way up the neighboring 'Planet Earth' 14a and cleaned off some grime, revealing an incredible Randy Leavitt route that is just dry enough to warrant some effort. Psyched to get back!

Speaking of psyched, the Red Rock Rendezvous is rapidly approaching and I'm super excited to check out this huge get together. I'll be leading a clinic on the behalf of Sportiva for the event - I'll post details soon. If you're not familiar with this event you should definitely check out more here. As far as I know it's the largest rock climbing festival in the country - come check it out!

Wednesday, March 2


Having the pressure of Necessary off my back has allowed for FUN to once again saturate my climbing day... and the quality of climbs at the VRG makes this an easy target. I was egger to check out the other 5.14 on the wall - 'F-Dude' 14a - which opens with a challenging boulder problem, and continues through the cruxes of two 13b's to finish some 40 meters above the deck. It's an awesome pitch, and I was psyched to get it done.. but not before making the mistake of fumbling some 5.11 on the upper section of 'Fall of Man' 13b.. (rookie mistake!).. gotta laugh - we all make em from time to time. Yesterday I did a nice, albeit short little boulder problem route called 'Swear to God' 13b, and cleaned up 'Dark Boy' 13b, finishing the long day with a headlamp ascent of 'Dude' 13c. Awesome. The Planet Earth wall seems to be quite wet after this seasons rain, but I'll keep my fingers crossed and hope for the best, heading back to the Gorge tomorrow!
killer view of Red Rocks from the summit of Turtlehead Mtn

I finally broke down and ordered a little HD video camera - I'll try and put together a few little handheld videos, but I'll leave the quality film making for the likes of Andy Mann.. who, it just so happens, arrives in Vegas next week. Quality videos to come!