2008 Hound Ears Competition

posted by dpm on 10/06/2008


They say, “You can never go home,” because the places you live will change and never live up to the memories of times past. This statement hung heavily in our minds seeing the urban sprawl that has devoured the once quant mountain town of Boone, NC, in which we once lived. We came back for the 15th annual Hound Ears Bouldering Competition, the first stop in the Triple Crown Series. The Hound Ears competition is one thing that has remained a constant in Boone each year. It has changed only in its increased level of refinement.


            Held just outside of Boone, in a gated golf community, the Hound Ears competition draws climbers from all over the United States. They come, not just to climb, but to enjoy the fall foliage and pristine setting of the event. A thick canopy of oaks trees and rhododendrons cover the Hound Ears property and the boulders are spotted with emerald and brown lichen. This richly diverse vegetation is fed by over fifty inches a rain per year, but this year’s competition was blessed with cool temps and glorious sunshine.  



          Over 500 competitors were in attendance, including a strong field of women, with appearances by Alex Johnson, Lisa Rands, and Alex Puccio. The men’s field was a “whose who” list of strong climbers whose names are still flying under the radar. Climbers such as Max Marlowe, John Glassberg, and Andy Salo, among others, came to flog themselves on the sharp chalk covered crimps that adorn the boulders at Hound Ears. 



         The day commensurate with coffee and pancakes before buses, packed with crash pads and climbers, creaked and groaned, to the top of the mountain. There, the they unloaded their cargo for a day of masochistic fervor on the boulders of Hound Ears.



            Climbers wasted little time warming up. Within minutes of starting the comp, the ground beneath problems such as Flash or Trash, were blanketed by crash pads, and shirtless bodies flailed from improbable holds and contorted body positions.



          Alex Johnson boldly stepped into the herd of testosterone that had lined up under Fuc Yo, a popular V9. Plopping down her brightly colored Organic crash pad, she pulled off the ground with confidence and quietly flashed the problem. She went on to rack up nine other difficult problems, and found herself walking away with top honors in the women’s open category.



         While the women seemed to blend into the wooded environment, the “boys” created more of a scene. The strong contingency of men worked together as one cohesive unit going from project to project, battling for supremacy on the steeps. John Glassberg, a local from Boone, who recently made finals at the Mammut Bouldering Championship in SLC, played the black sheep role during the comp. He detached from the gaggle of strong male climbers and fired off a ten-problem circuit in a systematic fashion, producing an unmatched scorecard to take first place overall.



        When the chalk dust settled, only bloody tips and bruised egos were left behind. They were replaced by laughs, beers, and war stories about battles won and lost on the boulders, as the 15th Annual Hound Ears Competition came to a close. Our sincerest “Thanks” go out to Jim Horton, Chad Wykle, and all the volunteers and sponsors who made this year’s event such a huge success! This year's event raised over seven thousand dollars for the Carolina Climber's Coalition, helping them get even closer to the aquisition of Laurel Knob.





1 Calvin Wagner 3600

2 David Eisenstadt 2934

3 Morgan Saylor 2515


Beginner Women

1 Cecelia Spearing 2033

2 Olivia Rappe 2018

3 Abi Wright 1961


Beginner Men

1 Gregory Humburg 2203

2 Kris Peters 2138

3 Bryan Mathew 2081


Intermediate Women

1 Kati Hetrick 3147

2 Jennifer Chang 3017

3 Jamie Rice 2998


Intermediate Men

1 Brian Jones 4032

2 Mathew Shreve 3999

3 Ed McLenaghan 3935


Advanced Women

1 Amanda Berezowski 4976

2 Carrie Cooper 4734

3 Francesca Metcalf 4628


Advanced Men

1 Mathew Christie 7934

2 Brian Clevanger 7483

3 David Tucker 7424


Ancient Hardperson

1 Howie Feinsilber 6370

2 Mike Bacon 6180

3 Jason Young 5674


Stone Master

1 Hilary Cohen 2403

2 Tracy Meazell 2206

3 Luke Howard 1887


Star Chaser

1 Santana Wilkinson 66 Stars

2 Nathan Fedor 43 Stars

3 Tom Quigley 36 Stars


Open Women

1 Alex Johnson 8745

2 Kate McGinnis 8462

3 Alex Puccio 8153


Open Men

1 Jon Glassberg 12,788

2 Jimmy Webb 12,425

3 Wills Young 11,250