Monday, December 3, 2012

Frustration Creek, 11/24/2012

On Saturday once again we headed up to Frustration Creek to do some climbing.  I figured that now I really need to start working on my other route so that I can get it redpointed before we move back to Utah in a couple of weeks.  When we arrived we found that the route was still in the sun, and Amy wasn't feeling very well, so we decided to climb one of the routes on the middle tier so that she could belay down by the waterfall where there was still some shade.

I roped up down by the base of the waterfall, climbed up to the second tier, then decided that the third route from the left looked fun, so I started up that route.  It turns out that the route is a 5.10c called Burning Bush. Burning Bush turned out to be a pretty fun route.  It was very technical and balancy with the crux at the second to last bolt as you pulled over a steeper section on holds that all slope the wrong way.  I got the onsight of the route then rapped back down to the second tier.

Because we had the kids with us and due to the rope length we decided that it would be best to have both Amy and Gwynne start from the lower tier while I belayed from the second tier.  First up was Gwynne, she climbed the route without any major problems (even though she did have to take a time or two), then Amy also climbed the route with a take or two, then we decided that Danny would like to try climbing the approach to the second tier next to the waterfall, so I set up the TR and rapped back down to the lower tier.

Danny did really well climbing the approach route.  He kept complaining about the rock being too slippery, but he ended up climbing the whole thing without any help.  I hoped that Danny would be able to lower off all on his own again, but he didn't want to so I had to climb back up to him and help him lower off.

Approach to the middle tier - 5.2



Danny waiving from the anchors.


Amy still wasn't feeling very well, so she didn't really want to climb anything else, but I figured that Gwynne needed to do another route, so we decided to run up The Natural (5.10a).  I ran up the route and got the redpoint, then Gwynne TR'd the route getting the TRedpoint, then Amy decided that she was feeling well enough, so she also got the TRedpoint of the route.

Finally I decided to give my new route (Primal Quest - 5.12b) a go.  Although I still am nowhere near redpointing it I am getting better with each attempt.  I've finally found a leg position that allows me to get a good knee smear to help keep my body into the wall during the crux which makes that move much easier, and I am linking more and more of the moves together and hanging on less bolts, so that's good.  On this attempt I think I only hung on the second, fourth, fifth, and last bolts (and really I shouldn't have hung on either the fourth or last bolts because it wasn't due to being too tired).  I still have a ways to go, but it is certainly coming along.  Next, Gwynne decided that she'd give the route a go on TR, so I power belayed her up the route.  Between the power belay, and pulling on a few choice draws, she was able to make it to the top of the route.

Below is a sequence of the crux section of my new route Primal Quest - 5.12b






It was now time for us to go, but Danny wanted to "swing" before we left, so we hooked him up to the rope, hauled him to the top of the route, let him swing around, lowered him back down, packed up, and headed home.

Frustration Creek, 11/23/2012

So, I had to get back up to Frustration creek today after my failed attempt at the First Ascent of my new route The Expedition yesterday.  All morning I was feeling anxious and nervous about attempting it again because I didn't want to blow it again today.  On top of that, my legs are really sore from the two games of football that I played yesterday morning, but I knew that if I could put myself in the right mindset it would go down.

We finally left the house at around 10:45 and headed up the canyon.  After we arrived I took my time getting the gear out and ready, getting the camera set up, and just looking up at the route contemplating the moves.  Eventually, I decided that standing around wasn't going to help anything, so I roped up and started up the route.  The first four bolts are easy climbing at around 5.8, but once you hit the fifth bolt there is no stopping until you get to the anchors.  Because of this, when I got to the fourth bolt, I clipped it, then just stood on the good juggy holds below the fourth bolt for a few minutes as I prepared myself mentally for the send.

After a couple of minutes of standing there preparing myself mentally, I felt ready, so I just went for it.  I ended up not having any problems at all.  The crux felt great and I didn't get pumped at all, at the last bolt one of my feet skated off of it's hold, but both my hands and my other foot were great, so that wasn't a problem, and I reached the anchors easily.  It felt great, especially after my failed attempts from yesterday.

Starting the easy juggy section.

Waiting, relaxing, and getting my head in the game.

Pulling through the crux.

Finishing the crux.

Clipping the chains.

Lowering after the FA of "The Expedition" - 5.11b.

After getting down and cutting the red tag off the route I decided to give my other new route (Primal Quest) a try.  Unfortunately that didn't go as well as I would have hoped.  I had my usual problems with the crux move (all though I do seem to be getting a lot closer), then there were a bunch of wasps all over between the fourth and fifth bolts, so I opted to just lower off so that I wouldn't get attacked.

Amy wasn't feeling very good at this point, so I decided to try soloing one of Brent's new routes, a 5.2 called  Just the Tip, while Amy rested in the shade.  That went well other than the fact that the entire route was completely covered in lots of nice loose dirt which made it quite exciting for a 5.2 especially since I was free soloing it;)

Since Amy wasn't feeling very good, but still wanted to climb something, we decided to do the first pitch of The Dead Terrorist next.  Amy didn't want to lead, so I roped up to run up and set up a TR for her, but when I arrived at the anchors to Rumble in the Rubble, Amy asked me to just clip them and come down because she really wasn't feeling well.  I came down, Amy rested in the shade, then she TR'd Rumble in the Rubble.

Rumble in the Rubble - 5.7



Now of course Danny had been begging to climb his route the whole time we were up there, so we finished off the day by letting him climb it twice.  One awesome thing was the fact that on his second time climbing his route we were able to lower him and he did great.  Normally I have to climb up to him, clip him to myself, then basically drag him down (which he loves by the way).  It's exciting to see him learn to lower himself though since that is much easier for me.

After Danny was finished climbing we packed up and headed home for a Thanksgiving Dinner leftovers lunch and naps for the kids.