02
Apr
14

All Creek’d Out!

 

 

Its the 1,000 mile stare without the suffering on a high peak or bigwall for days and days. Its the closest to a crack climbers zen. Its really just a supreme achievement in being relaxed, physically fit, and in touch with the nature. If you find yourself in Indian Creek for longer that just 4 or 5 days, you may end up creek’d out.

With all the everyday things even climbers deal with, yes we have real responsibilities too, sometimes its not quite the escape to go climbing for the weekend at a popular, yet five star, busy area. Even though the Creek is definitely busy by today’s standards, you can still go to any number of walls and never see another soul the whole time you’re there. That’s a part of being creek’d out for sure.

If you happen upon someone who has been down there for more than week they may seem to be stoned and spaced out. They may be, but it would only be a small part of it. They wont know if there’s been a new war started or joined, who legalized marijuana today, or if they have a newborn niece or nephew in they’re life. They have been basking in the sun and cranking on perfect parallel sandstone cracks all the day long, having apres’ climbing in the parking lot, and staring at campfires.

There are people there from china, california, michigan, canada, spain, germany, etc… All with a common interest in getting a little dirty and feel the pain and pleasure of this one of a kind crack mecca. The most climbers I usually see is around thanksgiving. There is usually warm temps this time of year before the winter really kicks in. Tons of turkey and libations. People drawn together for an orphans’ celebration. Its a place for connecting with climber friends new and old. A meditative place. A place for just being…Creek’d out.

 

To sustain being creek’d out, avoid Moab and Monticello at all costs. To do this you need steady rations brought in or stocked up for, of:

water

beers

food (whatever you may deem that is)

chalk

Its that simple actually.

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16
Mar
14

Creekends

Get out the cams and Carhartts, it’s creek season again. After a winter of random days on the rock and a lot of screemin barfy’s on sketchy ice pillars,the weather in the desert regions is P R I M E. For those of us within a 4-5 hour radius of Indian Creek we are truly blessed. We make a pilgrimage almost every weekend to plug cams ranging in size from 000 tcu’s to fat #6 cams into perfect parallel orange bliss. This has become known as the “Creekend”.

Nowadays you can just show up solo and find a plethora of partners for sure. Just make sure you bring your rack and plenty of PBR’s. Its almost like the situation a Rifle now. There’s plenty of routes and climbers.

I think there is a special vibe going on at the creek. Your gonna get dirty, acquire a “scent”, and most likely, bleed at some point. You could also wander for miles when your not climbing. Its a place to get away from the rest of the world and zen out for awhile. This a place where I see friends from all over the U.S. and from abroad. Everyone’s happy. If they seem worked and out of it, they’re definitely happy.

Last creekend was a good one. I posted that I was going down there on Facecrack. Before we knew it we had a nice group going. This time I happened to be the center point of the gathering. I knew everyone at least a little. After the introductions we all climbed ourselves into some pretty good friendships over the next 2 days. It was as warm as summer and everyone cranked until the very end.

No matter how long your at the creek, it’s never long enough. I’ll be back real soon though. For now, swollen knuckles on the wheel, coffee on my hip, peddle down for Colorado.

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18
Feb
14

it’s on!

Yesterday I was able to pull off a 2nd ascent of a 5.12 crack called Howl Roof (f.a. Jeff Achey) at Main Elk, in New Castle, CO. It’s only 5.12 I know, by today’s standards, but still a hard squeeze chimney O.W. out a roof! I am just hoping this is the start of a send-fest this spring, whether its on a cragging route or a long free route. Its definitely time to wrap up some old projects that are still haunting me and get putting up those F.A.’s ive been waiting to do!

squeezey!

 

16
Jan
14

updates?

Well, I haven’t posted in a while. I’ve been just cragging a lot this summer and trying to raise my power for routes. I did get back on Moonlight and did pretty good. Led every hard pitch and only 2 falls.

Going into winter around here now and am looking forward to doing it all! Ski, ice, and rock! Just gonna enjoy it all and find some projects for the spring.

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28
Jun
12

The Land of Tuffas, Pockets and damn good Cafe’

Well, I have just returned from a 3 week climbing trip in Spain!  We basically tried to hit as many areas as we could in that time. Some we definitely had to stay at for awhile, or go back to, more than 1 day.

I usually go climbing in Zion or “the Creek” when I take my spring trips. This year, at the last minute, I decided to meet Mary in Barcelona as she had already committed to going there. I hadn’t been on a “sport climbing” trip in about 10 years. I’ve never been to Europe at all either. I knew the reputation of the climbing there was that it was “world class” and now the “Yosemite of sport climbing”. It is!

We started out in Barcelona where I flew in and stayed 1 night so I could get some sleep after the huge fight. Barcellona is cool city that bustles with locals, students and tourists. It has tons of restaurants and historic architecture.

Iglacia in Barcellona

As weplanned we then rented a car for 3 weeks and headed to Rodellar (row dee ar). I knew I would love it there, Tuffas and/or jugs on almost every route! We stayed there and cranked and drank cafe’ con leche’ ‘s for a week! Then it rained and so we moved on to the Lleida area which has “much o escalada”!

Tuffas on the “Aquest Any SI” wall.

The bar/cafe’/cocina in Rodellar.

Camarasa Canyon.

Next we stayed in house that some acquaintances had a deal on in Lleida. Thats when we hit up some climbing in the Camarasa, Santa Ana, Santa Linya and Margalef areas. It doesn’t matter what areas you go to climb in Spain, they’re all good! Margalef is little diferent because it’s a conglomerate rock and has pockets and cobbles and cracks on the same route!

Margalef.

Multi pitch in Santa Ana, Camarasa.
We then hit a cave with the longest and hardest pitches in Spain, the Vena Cova!
The "Vena Cova" cave

The “Vena Cova” cave

Then some much needed resting on the beach in Tarragona.

Then we went to Suirana to finish the trip off. Suirana is awesome! Good camping, walk to everything, and a restaurant and bar on site.

The wall with “La Rambla” on it.

After Suirana we hit a heat wave for the last 2 days of the trip. We did do one more route. We went in search of a multi-pitch route since we hadn’t done one yet. We found the perfect route for tired and hot climbers  to do. It was a 4 pitch .10 alongside a river in Sharma’s town (yes, another Shwarma name drop). It had HUGE cobbles and was vertical and FUN! The perfect end to the month long Spain trip. I can’t wait to come back here…SOON!

The river under the route. Shwarma where are you!

Cool grafitti in Tarragona

A cool door in Tarragona.

Old school church in Tarragona.

Good times in Suirana.

27
Feb
12

The Silverback

10/2011

Or should I say, Sunburned-back? We got to Zion late Thursday night and the next day got a noon start on the Silverback, a .12+ that faces totally, sunny,  south! With the late start we only did the first 5 pitches, but man it probably only got better! A couple pitches of chimney and off-width got us to the headwall. Pitch 3 is a sweet 5.11 mixed dihedral “outing”. The cruxes are bolted on that one because of it being thin enough not to allow any pro. The next 5.10+ is also mixed becausee of the poor, sandy rock face climbing, that takes you to a squeeze section for a bit. The next is the “MONEY” pitch of the route for quality. There are soo many #2 cam hand jams in the 100′ flake on the wall! There are few bolts so you don’t have to bring, like 8-10 #2′s! The day was getting late and the sun had been hot so we decided to head down. Next time up we will have to continue by tackling a 5.12 off-width and then a 5.12+ tips crack that ends out a roof! Another classic in Zion.

This spring we are, believe it or not, going on a sport climbing trip, to SPAIN! I think its gonna be a blast!

The start

The “Money” pitch

15
Aug
11

The obsession continues…

Ya, I’m pretty obsessed with the “full-on” adventure of climbing in the Black Canyon! Mary and I were able to go climb there together this weekend because our “little man” is at the grandparents house for awhile. We have to go multi-pitching separate nowadays because of our duties with Sam (Boo).

We went to the South Rim, which is the north facing shady side. We jumped right in, after sleeping in, and did the top pitches of  Astro Dog .11+. The next day we got on an older route put up by Leonard Coyne and Keith Reynolds, Dragon Rider .12-. This is one of the best routes I’ve done there because of all the “perfect hands” pitches on the route. The hardest, and crux pitch of it, was the .12- off-width. That thing beat us done a little but we got up it. Another memorable pitch (they were all good! except for one crumbly peg pitch) was a .10 that traversed left under a roof and then exited the roof via perfect hands! The route was in the shade all day too. It was a perfect outing, lots ‘o hands, a beat down by a wide crack, and a “last minute of  light”  top-out!

Starting the .11- (really .10) off-width

Sunset “artsy” belay shot.

The 9 p.m. top-out





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