Sunday, January 18, 2009

Thank you Tor, may I have another...

It's not often that the Tor and one's body feel good at the same time. We've all done it: cranked hard during the week, buit up expectations, fostered redpoint hope, and then utterly FAILED at the Tor. And then there are those days where you feel so awful on the drive to Santa Maria that you almost ask Phil to drop you off at In-N-Out so you can whither away the day pounding Animal Style fries. This last Saturday began somewhere in between "blah" and "great". Justin and I arrived at the Tor ahead of Phil and the crew, and we tried to warm up on Power, which was particularly cold after 34 degree temps the night before. The jugs after the ledge were ice-cubes, and I almost fell off the top because my fingers wouldn't kick-start. But as the day progressed, the air grew warmer, and VOILA, perfect conditions: cold rock, warm ambient air temps.

Thus, I redpointed not one, but TWO of my projects, in addition to running 8 laps over the length of the day.

No Skill (5.12c) went down on my third try, and The Natural (5.12c) took two attempts. Thank you, Tor, for not smiting my ruin upon the hillside that day. If anyone knows the proper Tor-oblation, I will gladly oblige.

Here's the rundown of this all-too-rare day:

Power of Eating (5.11d): redpoint
Auto-Magic (5.12a): redpoint
No Skill (5.12c): redpoint
The Natural (5.12c): redpoint
Hell of the Upside Down Sinners (5.12b): 1-hang

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Campusing: the purest form of climbing (so says Phil Requist)

It's been a wee while since I last posted. A bought of sickness and slough of work interfered with recreational blogging. However, no news isn't necessarily bad news, and I've had a fun—if not ostensibly productive—couple of climbing weeks. In several trips to the Tor this month, I've gotten on The Natural (5.12c), No Skill (5.12c), and Chips Ahoy (5.12d)—all of which are well within redpoint range. It feels well nigh productive to get on "hard" routes like these and to not flail my way to the top. I at least two-hung all three routes, and could realistically redpoint The Natural and No Skill this weekend. I'm not optimistic about Chips, however, because that route defies all human hope. And it clubs baby seals in its spare time.

In other news, I'm campusing quite a bit, along with Phil and Elijah. I love it; it's so simple, dynamic, and focused. I'm training per suggestions from Mr. British himself, Ben Moon. His website is a treasure trove of training tips and there are ample testimonies from the pasty, freckled English lads who have benefited from those tips. I am drinking black tea and eating a steady diet of scones with the hopes that I can do 1-4-7 on the campus rungs next week.