Friday, March 21

a show, a wall and whatnot

Last week for my slideshow in Vegas I presented something a little different than I usually do. Typically my slide-shows are trip focused, or just a slew of geographically focused climbing porn to get people stoked and show off some rad images. On a few occasions I have also done the 'here's how I got into the whole climbing thing' show, which I really like presenting. But after a conversation over drinks and a game a pool with my roommates here in Vegas a month back, they convinced me to try something a little more meaningful. At the time I was expressing to them my nervous / excited energy about my goals, and about preparing and also looking back at failures and successes. Maybe it was the hard cider but they thought that this could become an interesting topic for my upcoming presentation and after several hours of deliberation and collecting images, collecting my thoughts I came up with a slide-show about failure, accomplishment and ambition. I presented it to an awesome crowd last wednesday.

I'm really happy with the way that the show turned out and with the feedback I've received. We raised nearly $2,000 for the Las Vegas Climbers Liaison Council to help fund rebolting among other efforts. My sponsors came through in a great way as they always do. Maxim Ropes, Smith Optics, La Sportiva and Metolius all made sizable contributions to the event and the LVCLC had beer and pizza on the house. My always rad friends at the Access Fund helped promote the event and sent some give-aways as well. It was cool to raise money and try to inspire the community but the main win for me is just to see over a hundred climbers in one place - a rare occasion in Vegas - and share a beer with a passionate group. I wanted to say a huge thank you to everyone that attended and donated and heckled and everything. Thanks. Photos are here. 

Brilliant Andrew Burr photo of an effort I had with Tommy a few years back. 
Otherwise I've been training and climbing and preparing. I went back out to the Cathedral and finished up 'Slaughterhouse Five' 14b/c, I got back out to a rad little spot called the Grail (Lime Kiln) and started bolting an enormous pitch out there. I also got fired up on this incredible wall in Red Rocks - the route is called Crystal Dawn and it's a truly amazing free route on the Buffalo Wall. I tried the route one day a few years back with Tommy Caldwell and loved the experience. It had been in the back of my mind for the last couple years and I'm so happy that I revisited it. All three of the hardest pitches have super reachy sections so it ended up being actually something of a battle to figure out. I spent a day sussing on mini-trax and then came back yesterday with the help of my good friend Seth Lytton to finish the route up. On paper the route breaks down to pitches of 12a, 13a, 13c, 12c, 13a, 11 R, 11, 10 R but I would not hesitate to bump all 3 of the 5.13 pitches in difficulty for my size, most notably the crux, which felt like it could have been 14a honestly. I had such a rad day up there yesterday finally taking this thing down. Thanks so much to Seth for the support and also to homeboy Nik Berry for sharing beta and large cams and whatnot! - Nik did the route a few days back as well. I really love getting into long routes and walls from time to time... always such a cool change and just dealing with logistics and all day fatigue offers such a unique and interesting challenge.

Andrew Burr photo

Seth Lytton turns the corner on the first 5.13 pitch. Sick. 
what rope?

Alright, now I'm off to Ibex! See you in the west desert...