A Final Recap: Vegas

And finally for the last recap post, then we will be in present time!

Erin and I spent most of January and February in Las Vegas. I had wanted to spend some time there for years exploring Red Rocks National Conservation Area because it looked like there were tons of world class boulders to check out.

It did not disappoint!

The climbing did end up being fairly scattered and there was a substantial amount of hiking involved. This was something we were accustomed to though after having spent a lot of time in Rocky Mountain National Park and we weren’t bothered by it in the slightest. The desert landscape in Red Rocks has a very diverse fauna and the many drastic rock formations are vibrant with various colors making it an absurdly beautiful area to spend time in.https://www.instagram.com/p/BBKyRZ9FBpE/?taken-by=iancotterb

Our main goal for our time there was just to get to know the area and climb on as many sick boulders as possible. We definitely did that! We also climbed with a ton of friends, old and new, which made for an unforgettable and very enjoyable experience.

While we didn’t project anything more than a few quick sessions we still had quite a bit of success and we climbed in most of the canyons the area had to offer. That being said there is still so much we didn’t see. We are undoubtedly looking forward to a return trip, and next time we will surely buckle down and siege more of the harder, and super inspiring lines.https://www.instagram.com/p/BCRlCRElBvi/?taken-by=iancotterb

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The season unfortunately ended for us more abruptly than we would have liked, with uncomfortably warm temperatures rolling in consistently by the end of February.

The cooler Colorado weather and the prospect of working and saving up some cash was too much for us to resist and we made a move.

Happy Easter everyone and next post expect to hear about some haps in Colorado.

Recapping: Bishop 2015/16

And now we continue on with our recapping, to catch up to where we currently are, in Estes Park reeling from a spring snow storm.  It has stopped snowing and the next few days look promising.

Note: The wordpress site doesn’t really work right (aka sucks to use), so I apologize that you have to click on the link text to see a photo or video.

I stopped in Bishop for a few weeks in mid-December with the main intention of helping Charlie Barrett with the new comprehensive guide book to Bishop bouldering.  I did quite a bit of leg work this past spring, finding and documenting around two or three hundred new problems to add to the new book.  Charlie is doing the lion’s share of the work, but regardless it is nice to be part of a project that has significance to me.  Bishop is the place that really ignited the bouldering bug for me.https://www.instagram.com/p/_ZvzxkFBrY

I was out there for a few weeks.  Charlie and I would meet up regularily and we got some stuff done.  I would expect the final product to be out there in a few months or so, but don’t hold me to that.

I did do some climbing indeed.  I had a few problems, all in the Buttermilks I wanted to get done.  Sadly I would walk away with only having done one, but that’s the way the cookie crumbles sometimes.

This time around it was cold! Perhaps too cold at times.  I was car camping and there were several nights where the car would get started a few times to heat things up.  The first hard one I got on was the Michael Caine Sit, a tricky V12 put up by Matt Birch.  I didn’t do it right off the bat but did all the moves.  I was psyched.  https://www.instagram.com/p/_cSUA6lBnh/?taken-by=iancotterbThe second was the Mandala.  It felt hideously sharp and quite hard.  Really just as it had in the past.  Fortunately I managed to escape with no skin damage the first day on these things.

Then I started trying a hard Chris Schulte problem, Constellation, that at the time I thought perhaps was unrepeated.  I was wrong about that, as it turns out it had gotten a couple more sends.  After several days of effort I did manage to desperately send this sweet line, which I was super psyched about.  https://www.instagram.com/p/_0d1vElBni/?taken-by=iancotterbIt is a fairly heady and sustained, with a delicate mantle right at the end (at least the way I did it).  Full package I would say.  I thought it checked in around solid V11 or so.https://www.instagram.com/p/_163_UlBu9/?taken-by=iancotterb

The next day I went back to the one I really wanted, The Mandala.  Sadly after a few goes I sheared the entire pad off my middle finger.  It was deep and bloody.  It became very apparent that I would not be able to do The Mandala or Michael Caine Sit with this wound, due to both having very sharp left hand holds.  It was a psych killer.https://www.instagram.com/p/_2pcyWlBqf/?taken-by=iancotterb

I changed my focus to the Tablelands.  The Sad Boulders in specific.  I knew of a few potentially undone lines there I was interested in that weren’t so left hand intensive.  I worked a super proud and potentially classic project out there that would maybe be a scary V10 or 11 that I never summoned the courage or pads to give a proper send.  Next time…  I then went to a line Charlie and I thought had perhaps not been done that seemed quite hard.  I surprised myself by climbing it quite quickly and dubbed it Resurgence (V9ish).  It was a good one.  I have learned since then that perhaps it had been done in the past and was called Mad Cow, but hey that’s how it goes sometimes.  I suspect holds have since gone missing since it was previously done, but that is just my suspicion.https://vimeo.com/150926693

It was nice being in Bishop.  It was also nice heading to the next destination, Las Vegas, where I would pick Erin up and we would explore the beautiful, and new to us area, Red Rocks.  Stay tuned for a recap of that, and then we will step into the present.  Hope all is well with everyone and Happy upcoming Easter!

 

A recap: Fall of 2015 at Devil’s Lake

Hold onto your hats because we’re going to get this blog thing going again.  As I write this we are in Colorado. The weather has been incredible for climbing though we are expecting to get nailed by a nasty winter storm right about now.  It has been so long since our last post so I figure some recapping is in order.  We will pick up where we left off, last fall.

Erin and I found ourselves in Wisconsin, and while hanging out with our families we were spending a ton of time at Devil’s Lake. I was mainly focused on finding new boulders, and Erin on taking down the old school classics along with putting up a few climbs of her own. Erin did great on the notoriously tricky quartzite, climbing plenty of excellent things. She was also heartbreakingly close to several difficult and proud ones.

I had a lot of success. I established many new lines of all sorts, some of them being very good and quite hard. A couple highballs really stood out in terms of quality and intimidation factor as well.

So that’s about that for words here. Enjoy the photos and videos!

Note: WordPress has changed their blog format and I am unable to directly upload photos so I have to link to our instagram accounts..  Bear with me here while I get this new format dialed in!

Another note: The Devil’s Lake Guidebook is actually going to get done.  The finishing touches are being put on it and advertisers are getting wrangled up, so get psyched.

Erin eyes Big Bud, moments before her send. #bouldering #climbing #highball #big #purplequartzite

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