Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Eastward, ho!

I'm heading out to Virginia to visit Mary this weekend. That's right: I'll be hanging—and climbing—with the famed Skokut, a woman who is, per Elijah Ball's description, a true "crank-muffin". She and I will hit up West Virginia's best at New River Gorge, and I'm hoping to score some legit sweet tea while I'm there, and maybe even a sumptuous Chick-fil-A feast. A Krispy Kreme chaser wouldn't hurt, either. Thank god for the South, capital "s".

For the first time in my sordid climbing career, I will utilize air travel to arrive at my destination of cranking. Don't worry: meager overhead bins won't keep me from packing my entire rack and rope. The New (as I understand it is called) vaunts classic routes of a mixed nature, and I've felt the trad itch lately anyways. Come to think of it, it's about time I mentioned my new goal for the year:

By next summer, I hope to lead a 5.12c or harder.

On gear, that is.

Indian Creek is potentially out of the running as a location because the cracks are so hand-size dependant, and lack the "sporty" nature I'm questing after. Said challenge must by engaging, powerful, sustained, hopefully a mix of crack and face, and of superior rock quality and position. Basically, I want to climb a work of art, something unequivocally inspiring. And it can't be a giveaway. I've got to earn it, every single inch. I won't suggest a length, but I would prefer something longer than 40 feet. I'm looking at routes in Yosemite, Tuolumne, The Needles (yikes!), and the for me as-yet-unclimbed Little Cottonwood Canyon in Utah. My ear is open for suggestions. Bring em' on!

That's my Christmas list.

Merry Memorial day, and a Tradly new year.


Brian said...


Andy Patterson said...

Ooh, good idea. Any lines that you know of? I'm opting out of the "R" rating if possible...

Brian said...

Bachar thinks its a choss pile.

I haven't been there, yet. It is 1 hour from house, but there is a lifetime of rock 30 minutes from house.

Travis said...

Nice ambition! I'll offer a belay anytime (and follow with jumars ;)

Needles: Romantic Warrior. Not quite .12c, but proud all the same.

Yosemite: The Rostrum, Alien finish. Also .12b, but proud.

Suicide Rock: Caliente (12b) or Paisano Overhang (12c) if you like overhanging offwidths, or The Pirate (12d) if you like it thin.

JTree: Equinox, 12c.

Celestial Gate or the Wasp on the Rock of Ages (hard 12 and 13a).

And while you're at it, why not tick Moonlight Buttress in Zion (12d)? You could meet your goal multiple times over on one climb!

Travis said...

Oh, and there's a lot of proud lines in Eldo, but many of them have the "R" rating...

Travis said...

Another proud route would be the Original Line on Rainbow Wall in Red Rocks...