Let's see here, it has been a month or so since I last spoke of my tales of adventure... Life has been rolling along quite well... I just got home from two short trips to So-Cal and Alaska.
Along the drive to So-Cal, I stopped off at the Ballin' Alley just north of Las Vegas for a day of rock gripping. I had found and bolted this Ballin' Alley area while I was living in Vegas for the past couple years, and had bolted a really beautiful line that I was unable to fire the first ascent of. The last time I climbed at the Ballin' Alley, 8 months ago, I had a gnarly soup can explosion on my face. I was psyched to return, this time with a sandwich instead of soup.
I ended up sending the project, and dubbed it "Die Gute Sheisse" (The Good Shit, in German)... It's by far my favorite 5.14 in the Vegas area, and one of my top 5 favorite routes of all-time. It's actually the second all-natural 5.14 I can think of in all of Southern Nevada. The other 30 or so are all chipped. Jason Campbell bolted the first all-natural route out near Mt. Potasi. Anyways.... SUPER AMPED....frothin' if you will. Speaking of frothin', I've been watching the Triple Crown of Surfing online quite a bit over the past month or so.... I don't have a TV, and surfing is the only sport I actually like to watch. It's been REAALLY good online viewing lately. Pipeline should be a killer finale to the surfing season...
Getting back to the story, I culminated the day at The Ballin' Alley with another first ascent, a 13a? that I entitled "Captain King Pin." At the end of the day, it was frigid and dark, so we headed onwards to Joshua Tree, to surprise my mom for her Birthday. Each year, for the past 10 or so, my parents go to visit their best friends who live in Joshua Tree, so I thought it would be a good surprise to show up. Worked out well... My mom was joyful.
I climbed briefly in J-Tree, the highlight was doing "Equinox" (12c) for the first time. It's always been a dream of mine to try that route. It's one of the most classic splitter finger cracks in Southern Cali... SOOOO GOOOD... Go do it.
I had a nighttime bouldering session with my good ol' buddies from Ramona at Mt. Woodson, across the street from where I grew up in north-east San Diego. After San Diego, I drove back to my home in Gunnison, CO so that I could catch my flight to Alaska. (see photos)
I stayed with the Barcom family who help run the local climbing gym in Anchorage. I did some setting for their annual ABS bouldering comp and helped out with their youth climbing team. They have a great community of climbers up there, and I had a really fun time visiting. This was my second trip to Anchorage; I did nearly the exact same weeklong trip to Alaska about two years ago. Except last time, I went snowboarding for a few days after the comp, and this time I went ice climbing.
Now that I'm living in Colorado, I'm minutes away from some of the best ice climbing in the World. I'm looking forward to dabbling around on the ice this winter season, so I was really psyched to go climb a couple classics up in Alaska and learn some of the tricks of the trade. Fortunately, a few really nice folks offered to take me out for a couple short days (not much light up there right now). We did a 3-pitch route called "Three Ring Circus" and another stellar climb called "Ripple." I have some axes and crampons Petzl hooked me up a few years ago, but I've never used them, because I don't have any ice boots. Gotta get some, ASAP.
Thanks to the Barcom family, Josh, Tanya, Dusty, Todd, and the whole Alaska Rock Gym staff for another fantastic trip.
Back here in Gunnison, I've been bouldering a bit. The other day, we lugged a gigantic 6 X 10 gymnastic mat on the top of my buddy's truck out to this new "secret" bouldering area just outside of town. Over a couple days, I put up a few really nice FA's, along with Will and Ellis.
Our local ski resort, Crested Butte opened up over Thanksgiving. I've spent three days riding up there so far. Enjoying the winter so far....
I'm heading back down to So-Cal next week to soak up some much needed sun and to shoot a short Evolv video. I'm looking forward to that. I'm also hoping to hook up with my good ol' buddy Damon Corso for some climbing-time too.
Happy Holidays ya'll.