Sunday, December 14, 2008

Every day is Christmas at the Tor

Yeah, it was just a typical Saturday for me on the Central Coast: Jack Johnson himself called me to see what was up, so I gathered some hip, young, earth-loving-funky-dread-wearing-bongo-playing college students and we all grooved out at Jack's place. During the introspective bonfire portion of the evening, Jack and I jammed out on the guitar and Uke, and MTV recorded our live session for posterity. It will appear on television next month. Purdy sweet.

I'm lying, of course.

But I DID see Jack Johnson in front of California Pizza Kitchen with his kids. I didn't talk to him. I think he would have been pissed.

Oh and I also redpointed Hell of the Upside Down Sinners (5.12b) at the Owl Tor. I took me about 4 or 5 days of effort to tick this thing. While not a true epic, Hell was certainly a project, and I fell on THE LAST MOVE more than a few times. Of all the routes I've done at the Tor, Hell has the biggest holds you're likely to fall off of. Justin and Phil also had good days, and Justin pitched off the last throw on Power about 3 or 4 times in a row. Next time, Justin.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

The Crag That Time Forgot (or The Crag That Most Santa Barbara Climbers Forgot)

As an appurtenance to climbing at the Tor on Saturday, Micah, Elijah and I often climb somewhere locally on Sunday. Sometimes it's for gits and shiggles, and at other times it's serious cragging. On this particular day, I was amped to be at Green Dome. If you've never been there before, you should check it out for its remote location, interesting rock, and RAD steep routes. The easier climbs don't stimulate the imagination very much, but the steeper stuff is really pretty inspiring, especially for the area. We got on Monsters in the Maze (5.12b), a technical, crimpy, and consistently strenuous journey up a beautiful green-blue wall. The location? Amazing. You feel like you're, well, not in Santa Barbara.

I tried to onsight Monsters in the Maze, and managed to climb into the crux without falling. After that, I pitched. Because of the sharp nature of the rock, each successive attempt worked me. You don't get too many go's at Green Dome before your skin catches up with you. As such, I didn't redpoint, but I got real close. Next time.

Here's me climbing through the crux on my onsight attempt.