There is officially snow on the ground! I hope the weather gods allow us to keep climbing a little bit longer at least…
I just got word that Michael Schaffer has done the second ascent of World Peace at Governor Dodge. I ran into Mike the day I put it up and he must have gotten psyched.. Two days later he fired it! Congrats to Mike on a good send. I am under the impression Mike is relatively new to the scene in Wisconsin and from my conversation with him I understood he lives in Iowa and makes the commute. He got the attention of the local climbing community earlier this year when he did what appears to be the first ascent of a very serious new trad route, a direct start to the Good, the Bad, and the Jacked (maybe 12.C by the sounds of it). Anybody that has trad climbed at Devil’s Lake much knows how impressive this is. He went on to free solo it as well.
So… he also shot video of his solo. The video makes my heart flutter! I’m going to share it.. The climbing starts around 7:30. Make sure to have the volume on and note the unknowing tourists talking and singing right next to his camera.. and then they finally notice Mike.. “He’s doing it free hand!” Mike does an excellent job at zoning out the distractions and staying focused..
Yesterday I said screw it and drove up to Devil’s Lake in snow flurries with the intent of trying the Rebel Pride Project. When I got there I brushed the boulder off and let it dry for a little while. Surprisingly the snow hadn’t seeped into the rock at all and the holds felt dry and sticky. It was uncomfortably cold and the light snow flurries didn’t relent. After a few hours of messing around I unlocked a sequence and managed to climb it. It felt maybe in the V10 range and was a pretty darn unique and cool problem.
First of all it is sandstone, and of the highest quality. It is very reminiscent of problem you may find at Horse Pens 40 in Alabama.
It starts below a mini-roof on a jug and a sweet pinch. A few powerful moves on slopey holds leads to a very interesting lip encounter. My way of pulling over the bulge was full body.. let’s just say that. My hands were fully numb when I topped out but I was glad I stuck it out. It’s always satisfying to try things that felt impossible before and suddenly find yourself actually climbing them.
In other news I got word that strongman Peter Bonamici has flashed the previously unrepeated Shredder. Shredder is a traverse along the base of a cliff section up on the CCC Trail and has some balance moves on thin holds. Huge props to Peter on this.. it is without a doubt in my mind the hardest thing that has ever been flashed in Wisconsin (that I know of anyhow:). Peter claims it’s not a boulder problem.. hmm. I’ve heard this argument so many times from people over the years and yeah.. You bouldered it.. it’s a boulder problem. Take that Peter! Here’s a video of Shredder..
Also in case you are interested here is an updated B3 Boulders list. Due to a request I have now tried to put quality ratings on the climbs as well.
Current B3 Boulder Problems at Devil’s Lake State Park
Problems are organized by the date they were established. Ratings are unconfirmed, since the problems have probably only seen one ascent. The area they are located is listed along with the possible first ascenionist. PB is Peter Bonamici, ICB is myself, Ian Cotter-Brown. For our list we’ll only include problems initially graded V7 or harder.
Also the quality ratings are included and they are purely my opinion. I have not done every problem on the list so I am purely guessing on some. Also due to the generally bomb proof rock at Devil’s Lake, I believe a lot of people would find most things at least worth climbing. Quality ratings are very subjective person to person:
* – Fun, worth doing
**- Good quality problem that you should try
***- Definitely try. Classic in a sense of a very obvious line, and/or the movement or features of the climb are very unique and enjoyable.
****- A perfect boulder problem that should be sought out by every rock climber in the world! Not many of these around!
Pi’s Problem, V9? (ungraded) ***, Alpine Club Area, Date?, Pi
Ejaculator Right, V7 **, Ejaculator Area, Fall 2000? Jim Maierhofer
Black Sheep, V7 **, Midforest Circuit, October 2009, Nic Oklobzija
Grasping at Something **, V8, Anchorpoint Area, June 2011, ICB
Falling to Pieces, V10 ***, Super Slab Area, September 2011, ICB
The Ivory Face, V11 or 12? ***, Flatiron Area, November 2011, ICB
Wafflehouse, V8 or 9 *, Burma, April 2012, ICB, possible earlier ascent
by Mike Gasch.
Burmese Python, V11 ***, Burma, April 2012, ICB
Catch Me If You Can, V7 *, Smooth Operator Area, December 2012, ICB
Funeral Service, V8 ***, CCC Trail Upper Talus, March 2013, ICB
Snuggle Bunny, V9 *, Grotos Trailside, March 2013, ICB
Tree Hugger Direct, V7 *, Dog Walk Area, March 2013, ICB
SPF40, V7 *, Block Party Boulders, April 2014, ICB
Butter Burger, V10 **, Block Party Boulders, April 2013, ICB
I am NOT a Princess, V7 ** Battle Wound Area, April 2013, ICB
Cherry Underneath, V9 ***, Monolith, April 2013, PB
Purple Moj, V9 ***, Super Slab Area, April 2013, ICB
The Irregular Route, V9 *** (Whatcha think on this one Peter?), Midforest Circuit, April 2013 PB
Lippenstein Direct, V8 *, Lower CCC Trail Talus, May 2013, ICB
Dark Knight, V8 ***, Ghost Talus Field, May 2013, ICB
Stand Tall, V7 *, Happy Go Highball Area, May 2013, ICB
Nebulous Dyno, V7 *, Bulbous Area, ICB, June 2013
The Piano, V8 ***, CCC Trail Upper Talus, September 2013, ICB
Circus World, V11 ***, Greatest Show Boulders, October 2013, PB
Nerd, V8 **, Ghost Talus Field, November 2013, Tyler Thurmes
Full Sail, V10 ***, Ghost Talus Field, November 2013, ICB
Lake Boulder Lunge Sit, V9 **, The Reserve, November 2013, ICB?
Astroidea, V10/11 ***, The Reserve, November 2013, PB
The Winter Booze, V8 *, East Bluff North Talus Field, November 2013, ICB
Reverse Traverse, V8 **, The Reserve, November 2013, ICB?
Battle Cry, V10 ***, East Bluff North Talus Field, March 2014, ICB
Criminal Activity, V8 **, Cabins Area, March 2014, ICB
The Awakening, V11 or 12 ***, East Bluff North Talus Field, April 2014, PB
Twerk Life, V8 *, Peaches Area, April 2014, ICB
Trouser Snaker, V8 *, Peaches Area, April 2014, ICB
Puke Masterflash, V7 **, Massive Vertigo Area, April 2014, Aaron Wait
Angry Squirrel Sit, V9 **, Fat Raccoon Area, August 2014, PB
Tyranny in Heaven, V11 ***, Monolith Talus Field, September 2014, PB
Haunted Castle, V9 ***, Peaches Area, September 2014, ICB
Midwest Dream, V8 ***, Fat Raccoon Area, September 2014, ICB
All the Girls Say, V7 *, Anchorpoint Area, September 2014, ICB
Bananarama, V7 *, Burma, October 2014, ICB
Animated Hands, V8 *, Loompa Land, October 2014, PB
Clear Cut, V8 **, Lakeside Talus, October 2014, PB
Feature Presentation, V10 ***, Birthday Rocks, October 2014, ICB
Mad Cow, V9 ***, Burma, October 2014, ICB
Levitation, V10/11? ***, Lost and Found, October 2014, ICB
Ripples of Time, V10 ***, Birthday Rocks, November 2014, ICB
Twinkle Toes, V11 ***, Burma, November 2014, ICB
Also at Governor Dodge State Park..
Battle of the Midwest, V8 **, Back Bone Ridge, October 2014, ICB
Popalicious, V7 **, Back Bone Ridge, October 2014, ICB
Hope you all have a great weekend. Dress warm if you get after it!