Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Updated blog

I updated the blog and have embedded it onto theshortspan.com.
Let me know if you think that was a clever idea?

Monday, November 28, 2011

Article about Gravity in the Sunday Business Post

I wrote an article for the SBP about Gravity.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Glenmalura explora

Spent the day in Glenmalure. Revisted the line I found during the summer. Often these things aren't as impressive on second viewing but this was. Its a great line. Quite indoor in style, 25 to 15 degrees over on quite distinct holds either incut edges, large sloper or slopey edges, around 12 hand moves so quite long. I did a bit of patio-ing, cleaned the holds, tried the moves and then chalked the shit out of it to try and clean it. Going to leave it for a month or two, keeping training then come back, ideally with a spotter and another pad or two.

Checked out a huge roof clearly visible from the road. Impressive but too tall to be a problem and a bit scrappy to be a route.

Then went up the valley to check out some very white looking blocks. Long walk up but I had Sherlock Holmes for company. There are about 6 boulders with potential only one was of interest but it was pretty nice. Furthest from the road. Best way to approach would be on a bike but it won't be easy. Tried a few problems on it, will be 2 easy ones, a lovely tricky traverse, a nice medium problem, a v hard line and an amazing dyno. On perfect Mall Hill rock.

Spotted a few other boulders on the walk but left them till next time. One of them was your standard granite blob but it had a very thin diving board, about 6+ foot long jutting out of one side, mild bushwack. Oh and a large, overgrown but also overhanging crag!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

The perfect boulder problem?

From www.westcoastbouldering.com
For my money Spectre in Bishop may well be the perfect bouldering problem. Having said this I think there no such thing as a perfect boulder problem, and as such the only problem with Spectre is that it is 8b instead of 6b.

Only line up a huge boulder. Steep hard start on beautiful slopers up an smooth wall. Tricky moves to turn the lip and highball finish. All you could ever want.

Check out the vid. Bit of an ad for 5.10 but shows the problem well.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Where is the adventure in bouldering?

My climbing is moving focus at the moment. Though I'm still very interested in bouldering I think I will start doing more routes especially multi-pitch i.e. the kind of climbing that would be considered adventurous.

Climbing isn't fundamentally adventurous. No activity is. Take driving a car, at one end of the spectrum there is nipping to the shops, at the other, I don't know, driving across siberia in my piece of shit Polo. Or in climbing terms toproping Paradise Lost versus soloing a new route on a big wall in Antartica.

I looked up the definition of adventure cause thats what you do. Here it is

"An adventure is defined as an exciting or unusual experience; it may also be a bold, usually risky undertaking, with an uncertain outcome."

Not very satisfactory for me its lacking something about pioneering or isolation. Adventure isn't just about risk taking nor novelty. Anyway.

With the world mapped and well enough trod there is no new, only new to you. Which should be enough for most people. I link bouldering and exploring/searching for new boulders unextractably. The physical side of it holds less for me but I do get it. Walking around wondering what around the corner, hidden in the hollow or over the ridge is exciting. Usually turns into disappointment but that's just the way it is.

I suppose adventure is wandering around outdoors and whether you have a pad or rope or kayak on your back is secondary. So if you don't think there is any adventure in bouldering you are just doing it wrong.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Gravity Climbing Centre is OPEN

Visited Gravity today. Its incredible, absolutely massive, cavernous really. Huge variety of angle and lots of beautiful little details such as tapering undercut running across the change of angle in the slab and walls with multiple triangular platforms. When I think of the time that was spend bouldering on the steep board in UCD, it seems a bit ridiculous. Those days are over now though.

I hope that Gravity will turn into bouldering HQ and it will be a great place for climbers to climb and socalise. It feels more like a bouldering venue rather than a wall, the potential is great problems is staggering. Its also really tall so it going to suit climber looking to get a stamina edge as well.

The purpose of the visit was to talk to Angela and get some information for an article in the Sunday Business Post, they sent out a photographer and we got some savagely cheesy staged photos.

I haven't been to a climbing wall for just over 2 years but I had no hesitation joining up there and then. See you there.

I took a video to show what I'm talking about.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Glendo - Glenelo

Went to Glendo as had spotted some boulders on the hillside W of the crag. They were in the sun while the boulders on the floor of the valley where in the shade all day and I'd say some were quite damp as well. Incredibly mild in the sun. Most of the boulders turned out crap but did one nice problem on some edges with a nasty mantle.

I try to go in hope rather than expectation so wasn't disappointed. Was tempted by the boulders above the crag but decided to have a look at the Main Face. Started up Prelude but didn't go far. Was surprised at how polished the rock is. Its not bad but definitely a popular route. Also started by Holly Tree Shunt - I think - but came down as I wasn't into going all the way and reversing would of been a world of pain.

I did do the sublime Expectancy. Incredible granite jugs with a nice section smearing up the groove. The slab has just come into the sun so it was warm but the rock was freezing, prefect conditions. What a great route.