Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Wintertime Inspiration

I am typing right now with buzzing fingertips, fresh off a 10 day trip to Bishop California. I am sunburnt, sleep deprived and sore, but in other ways refreshed and inspired. I love eastern sierra: the gigantic boulders, stellar sunrises over the mountains, ice-cold PBRs over the campfire. The buttermilks is still my very favorite place to boulder, more for the scenery than the razor sharp rock.

Above is the Grampa Peabody boulder, home of Ambrosia, Kevin Jorgenson's gigantic highball.
On the trip it was great to meet up with Kevin and Alex Honnold, then witness Alex casually stroll one of the most impressive boulder problems I can think of.

Here, KJ and Alex spot the landing zone, arrange crash pads, and strategize.

Then Alex threw down, as he always does. Impressive.

Right now it's hammering rain in North Van. I leave in a month for the Utah desert, so training is in full effect: Time in the Edge Climbing Center, dark nights under the bright lights of the gym, conditioning and plastic, all the while dreaming of big granite.

Jeremy Blumel, Klemen Mali, Sonnie Trotter and I spent some time snooping around obscure spots of the Chief this winter.

Could this be Squamish's next hard crack? All I know is that it would be way, way harder than the Cobra. Approximately twice as hard. I'll be back in the summer to investigate some more.

On this recon mission I ripped off an important hold, but I'm still keeping the faith.

Andrew Boyd, granite magician, tops out a blank slab underneath the Grand Wall after the sun has set. Nobody, not anyone, knows Squamish granite like this guy.

Subtleties. Intricate, little subtleties.

Boyd polishes it off, which always begs the same

What's next?