Thursday, October 27, 2011

Another Update From the Castle Dale Public Library

Over the past two days the highs dropped into the mid 40's and though it made for a cold camping situation, the rock felt amazing.

Tuesday we started off in Dairy Canyon where fellow road tripper Matt Pincus cleaned up some unfinished business on the bulging cliff band and Lib made an impressive flash of Vertical Ice V6.

Once good and warm we headed up the canyon to a beautiful black face right off the road. I had wanted to try Black #1 V12 since I had first seen it a few days ago and was happy to find that it climbs as good as it looks. If I were staying longer I would definitely put some more days into it.

In the afternoon Matt convinced us to hike up to what he called "One of the best boulder problems in Joe's." Pretty hard to pass up. He was also kind enough not to sugar coat the enormity of the hike. After about a 30 minutes charging directly uphill over loose rock and sand we finally turned the corner to this prize line.

The photos and video won't do this line justice. It might be the most beautiful piece of rock I've climbed on. Perfectly smoothed out other than the bare minimum to climb on, remote setting, the only line on the boulder, interesting holds, fairly proud, and sustained enough to keep it spicy. I could go on, but by now I think you get the idea.

After a few minutes recovering from the hike Matt laced up and gave a warm up burn, slipping off a crux sloper toward the end.

Matt Pincus on his first burn of Godsend V9.

I waited until I couldn't take it anymore, taped up my finger for the opening campus move to a mono (yes, you read that correctly) and pulled on to the boulder. With a lot of luck I managed to stick each move perfectly and before long I was on top of the boulder. Breathing hard and still in shock, I realized I had flashed one of the most stunning boulder problems I have ever attempted. Look for the not so smooth flash footage in our Joe's video.

The opening campus move to a perfectly sculpted mono pocket.

Yes, campusing to a mono...

Matt sent next go in much better style, and we basked under the boulder until a brewing storm kicked us down the hill.

We finished up the day with a lap on the very classic, but seemingly overlooked Shadow of Death V6.

The following morning was cooler than the last. After a quick breakfast we fled down the canyon to New Joe's where I had hoped to try Ghost King V11.

I was happy to see a crowd around the famous problem, and quickly found myself working out the involved movement.

As soon as I had everything figured out the group moved out and I was alone with 3 pads and a gigantic boulder problem looming over me. After a decent attempt, falling at the crux campus move over the lip I rested until the sending breeze blew in and it was time to try again.

Ghost King, featured on the cover of the guidebook.

After a series of rebel yells I managed to stick the flat ledge over the lip and assumed the hardest part of the climb was over. Technically it was, however I had not practiced the top out (as the video will clearly show) and found myself death gripping holds as my fingers numbed out and the wind whipped at my back.

In the end I somehow I managed to claw my way up for a an ugly, scary, yet memorable ascent of this classic line.

More updates from the Castle Dale Public Library in two days time.


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