Wednesday, April 28, 2010

April at Little River

April has been the month of return to Little River Canyon. It's been nice to switch to longer climbs and fluid movement after a long winter of bouldering. Route climbing is where my heart is. We spent most of mid-April at the Concave repeating all of our favorite routes and venturing onto some of the more obscure lines. This week we took a jaunt over to Unshackled where I finally took down one of those nemesis climbs that has always given me trouble (mostly due to the large and awkward dyno). Below is some pics of Movie Star- a classic canyon 12 that will no longer get the best of me. Also, I was really psyched to onsight Zamfir, 13a- a good sign that route season is off to a good start.
I defy dynos
secret, stealthy movie star beta

Sunday, April 11, 2010

2,249 Clips

I spent this weekend attending a route setting clinic with Chris Danielson, hosted by Stone Summit Climbing Gym. The clinic provided a lot of insight into the art of setting commercial and competition routes and boulder problems. I had a blast putting routes and problems up on virgin walls with the input and critique of one of USA Climbing's best setters. The experience certainly got me more inspired to pursue setting.

The most exciting part of the weekend was to finally step inside the new gym. The awe factor cannot be conveyed. This gym will completely transform climbing in the southeast as it brings in international world cup events and get kids inspired that may not have otherwise found climbing. This is the largest climbing gym in the U.S. and the name of this blog post is real: there are literally 2,249 bolt hangers in the gym! To climb the entire length of the route will wind up being over 100 ft of climbing from ground to anchors. I just can't wait for what's to come- it's an entire indoor crag with unlimited training potential.

Chris giving some constructive criticism on my first attempt at setting on these new walls

The HUGE roof

The Motherlode. . . at the gym

nothing like some giant machinery to make me look smaller

Daniel, one of Stone Summit's owners, and Fernando with buckets of holds


Sunday, April 4, 2010


-(of a substance or object) able to recoil or spring back into shape after bending, stretching, or being compressed

-(of a person or animal) able to withstand or recover quickly from difficult conditions

This word has been my mantra for the past couple months and I feel as though, just now, I have finally regained my original shape after having being bent, stretched, and broken at times. The definition almost completely fits except for the part about recoil or springing back as it gives an image of immediate recovery. I’m in the car with my husband and my dog- on our way to the canyon for a spring day of climbing (no matter the rain). This is the second time this week that I’ve made it outside to climb after over a month of not being able to. Its been a long time since my last blog post- and a hard couple months.

The thing is that, as a nurse, I am constantly surrounded by illness and death and these past couple months have been a little more so than usual. While my work has been particularly stressful, I had a very unnerving experience in early March with my best friend who had one two many close calls during the childbirth of her first baby. She's just fine now, but it only reinforced that constant presence in my life of: Go LIVE Now While You Still Can. People’s lives change on a dime every day. Having this constant reminder in my life is usually a blessing: the perspective it provides me with, and the understanding that comes from being with people in their most difficult moments. Sometimes, though, you can get to feeling a little broken from it all. And while some things are going on in my life that still have me filled with worry, it is amazing how a day at the crag can relax whatever tightness was filling my head.

Much like the Taoist teaching that it is a whole lot easier to go with the bends of the stream than try to redirect its flow, climbing requires a certain yielding or cooperation with the way things are. At the same time it gives the most freedom that I know. Give and take. Resilience.