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A few days at Bishop



The past few days at BIshop have been pretty good – though i’m kinda getting my butt kicked – and sorta not. I’m repeating just about everything I did last time pretty fast – did “Bowling Pin” at V4 third go. and aparently, the only guidebook said the sit-start was part of the V4 for bowling pin, which I did , but the new guidebook says that holds have broken (though not since I’ve done it) and its a V6…so I did Bowling Pin (V6) last time – making it my first V6 at Bishop…thought it felt hard for a V4! I found really good beta yesterday, too, for the upper crux on Bowling Pin. I love using holds that have no chalk on them and making it easier for myself. It makes me feel like all those years of climbing and bouldering have paid off in experience.

I did Birthday Skyline (V3) which was a new one for me, and repeated Birthday Direct first go (which took me a bunch of goes last time.) – I also did the Hero Roof (V0) which was a total classic!

I got seriously shut down on the Buttermilk Stem (V2)…its just a really physical move that I cannot do (well maybe I’ll be able to do it next time – its totally not-a-climber move to get up into it…) Ryan, being not-a-climber did it fairly quickly (just kidding, it took him a few goes.)

I did a couple burns on High Plains Drifter (V7), but got shut down pretty hard.




We did the Happys two days ago – I managed to do Solarium first try (I love that one) but still got shut down on Serengeti. Darnit! I put three burns into “Cue Ball” (V4) as well – a problem I had meant to try my last trip but didn’t; that one is at the top of my list now. I like the problem; its hard for me, has long moves between mostly good holds, but with intricate heel-hooks…the crux is a long move off a bad right hand sloper (good feet) to some intermediates, then a jug. I did the move from the stand-start….just a power move off slopers (yummy)


Last night, we frequented the neighboring campsite where the Canadian and Australian girls cooked us a meal fresh from the dumpster at Vons (I’m not kidding)

Today is ANOTHER rest day…that will make two on the trip so far….rest days are so freaking boring.

Day 3…Bishop…

Day 3:
We had a really good excuse for flailing today – it was day 3 in a row on. Well…we did sort of take it easy the past two days – but well…that’s a good excuse right? Ryan and Hiked up to the Happys this morning. Ryan was —— this close to flashing solarium, but he got it second go casually. We did “Heavenly Path” – a really scary, but good high ball V1.

We screwed around with and both sent this cool V4 arête, to the right of the Hulk. We both meant to put some project burns in on the Hulk – but were both feeling pretty tanked after a combined Roid Rage on Serengeti. We were both extremely close to sending like 30 times…but so close…so far.

When we got to the parking lot, my brakes finally gave out. I had purchased a set of wrenches, however, the critical tool that I needed – a C-clamp was not to be found. We asked nicely and so other boulderers drove into town and bought us one and we got it done in like five minutes!

We meeting Nancy tomorrow early at the Buttermilks where she is hoping to send her V8 project. Man – that girl got strong!

Day 1 and 2 of my Bishop Trip



Day 1:

After closing on my house, (9am – 9:50am,) I picked up Ryan and we hit the road. We drove for 25.5 hours, from Charleston WV, to Rifle, Colorado. (1540 miles) – It was pretty rough – and let me tell you – Kansas is the WORST state to drive across…the only thing worse is the first half of Colorado which is just as bad.
So one major bummer – I left my entire toiletry bag at home. Thankfully, I stashed some extra contacts and bought the rest…
Today we climbed at Rifle. W were literally FOJJ….step out of the car and fall of “Feline” (11a). I managed to do the route second try, but I finally understand what the “Rifle” thing is…you spend so much time trying to figure out all the moves that you pump out on the crux which is the last move….well at least that’s what happened 3 goes on this 11c “GET NAME” – I was really close on it though…seriously. really close.
“All the rock in Denver is choss” – James Glover.
My verdict on Rifle. This place is rad and I want to come back for sure – spending maybe a week or two next summer here. The climbing and movement is quite unique; the holds, yes are polished, but the feet stick better than I thought they would…the crag to car to crag is amazingly short.
After a short lay-over-night in Rifle, Ryan and I are heading to Indian Creek.
I’m having a little bit of brake trouble…well a lot – the front left brake makes this nasty grinding sound every time I drive less than 40mph…
Day 2:
After Rifle, we were planning on going to the creek, but ended up just pushing it to Bishop! I’m definitely getting a little irritable at Ryan’s expense, but I’m trying really hard to think about how bad my brake grinding is getting. I need to get those brakes changed today or tomorrow – or soon. My Rotor is getting pretty grooved…
Ryan was a freaking trooper last night – he did MOST of the 10 hour drive from Joe’s Valley to Bishop…while I lay in the passenger seat in a somewhat half conscious stupor (listening to an Audio book – Ender’s Game) – I missed several big parts, so I’m pretty sure that I passed out.
Joe’s Valley was rad and definitely gets a check mark for “Come back to visit this place”
We went to “Area 51” at New Joe’s; we were taking it easy –
We did a handful of easy problems – though some of them weren’t that easy! The climbing felt similar to Red Rocks a little bit – no where near the type of Sandstone climbing we get in the East – which is MUCH grittier. It was, in-fact, closer to limestone than to the sandstone that I’m used to.
We ended up getting chased out by a nasty rain storm. I was working this V6 Dyno problem – coming CLOSE to the hold, but maybe an inch below it. It was cool for me because it was such a long move – that I really had to focus my brain into pushing and pulling as hard as I could at the exact right time…I watched a couple other guys do it; They were hitting it, but coming off…So I don’t think I was really close to sticking it…definitely a fun one though!
We ran into a group and shot some photos of them – it was great watching some peeps crushing hard problems.



So I think we’re doing the Happy’s today – its COLD (and perfect) here in Bishop.

Gearing up for a big trip…

I have about a week before I leave on my trip – about 18 or 19 days away from home. The major destination is Bishop, CA, but with stops at Indian Creek, Rifle, and in Boulder (Clear Creek Canyon?)

I am leaving either Wednesday night or Thursday morning (27th or 28th of October.)
I will be blogging daily on my trip with photos.
The biggest drive will be the first – from Charleston, WV to Denver or Rifle, Co – about 22 hours or 26 hours depending – not including stops. I’m hoping to get a day in at Rifle, but am not really counting on it; We (Ryan Smith and I) will most likely be stopping for at least a day at Indian Creek – maybe a couple depending on how much Ryan likes it.
Likewise, Joe’s Valley is a probably – either coming or going or both stop for a day or two.
What I am really looking forward is Bishop though – and have a handful of projects/goals for the trip. I’m not really in great shape, but decent…I’ve been in better, but I’d like to try and project the following problems at Bishop
1. High Plains Drifter (V7)
2. The Hulk (V6)
3. Strength in Numbers (V5)
4. Seven Spanish Angels (V6)

Coopers Rock..


Friday, Andy and I walked out to “Two Big Rocks” at Coopers Rock – a sport climbing area…we managed to find it first try and were psyched!

Then, I got this crazy idea – that I wanted to try and repeat the old classic “Pump It Out” 5.11d R – which was put up by Cal Swoager in the late 80s? or early 90s?. We were not sure on the “R” rating until Mike Paugh try the route as well – fell at the crux and ripped both pieces of gear, hitting the ground. The gear was placed well, but the crack shattered (and trashing my cam.)
Thankfully, we had a handful of crash pads – that coupled with the gear ripping slowed him down enough that he didn’t get seriously injured.
I’m really glad I didn’t fall…and don’t know if I would lead the route again – though I may consider bouldering it – since its only about 30 feet tall…of course the crux is the last move…

A harrowing trip…


–Steve Lovelace on Lock-Smith (V3) at Grayson
Its been a while since I’ve posted – I’ve been keeping on the DL the route development which we have been doing at the Meadow – mainly because a lot of my projects got snaked at the “Feed Lot” which we developed this Spring.

This fall – I’ve slowed down – drill maybe about 20 some routes…but this post isn’t about the New.

I had a pretty rough (in a good way) weekend – lots of driving – and climbing – and hiking – HIKING – I hate hiking…truly.

Friday, I did Grayson Highlands State Park – where I met some rad locals – did a bunch of boulder problems – that place is cool – check it out!

Saturday – I climbed at the new at Summersville lake – and unfortunately, I took a really ugly lead fall and I think fractured or badly bruised my heel.–Raina doesn’t think that 8 miles is a long hike (at 3 months old)
I promised Matt, though, that Sunday, I would check out this “new” crag with him – from Google Earth, we could see this 200? foot tall limestone pillar. It is near Seneca Rocks, but the unfortunately fact is that its OUT IN THE MIDDLE of no-where….so (on my fractured heel), we hiked about 8 miles (lots of up-hill and stream crossings) to check out this pillar…the most obviously appealing line was the front face of this giant pillar.

–Another heinous hill on the way in…
So we hiked around the top (the climb being quite crappy.) – well…The top of the formation was narrow and extremely loose. So we decided to rope up and traverse the skyline, placing bolts as we went.

–Matt and Katherine at a stream crossing
It ended up being a major epic. Neither of us fell, but it took quite a while – and we ended up wasting 10 bolts (and the battery to drill them) in 3 150? foot traverse pitches. At one point, I realized that if I fell, I was a dead man…or at least would have hoped to be – no good rock to anchor…just as I grabbed a block the size of a refrigerator – and it teetered. I managed to keep my balance and push the block off the otherway – it was really really scary though….–The gorgeous river.
Finally, when we reach the front face (there was some spectacular trundling involved!), we drilled an anchor and rapped the face. I got about 5 bolts into it when the driving rain and dead batteries ended the day (we had more batteries at the base, but screw it right!) – well, we left the rope hanging – the route is going to be about 160 or 170 feet with intermediate rap stations.

–All chossy limestone looks good up close.
its pretty spectacular.
–After a couple stream crossings, its lunch time.
This weekend, I’m shooting some photos for a friend in Pittsburgh and hopefully doing some bouldering up there…not sure about the weather and the whethers….

P90x…

So I officially started my P90x workout Sunday evening – I climbed Sunday, but not really enough – so I did Arms and Chest…I’m glad that I pregamed last week – I didn’t TOTALLY suck with that workout.

The plyometrics workout was the one that I was the most worried about (last night) – but It went MUCH better than it did the previous week as well – I was pretty excited that I only had to pause it once (or maybe twice I don’t remember) – The abs workout wasn’t so bad either – I had to pause it a few times and I couldn’t do all the workouts to the max reps, but it went much better than the previous day.

P90x Workout

As with the energy it takes to workout and lose weight, I’ve greatly improved my dietary efforts as well. I had 3 eggs for breakfast this morning, and a slice of Pies and Pints Pizza. I bought a bunch of fruit at the store for lunch (and probably finish off the Pies and Pints Pizza) – Dinner will be a salad at Panera.

Tonight’s P90x is going to be Shoulders and Arms.

So – Those of you that know me – know this – but its funny because I’m a pretty crappy climber for one who does it with his life…I’ve sent one V7 – and it was a while ago – and have only RPed a handful of 12ds….I’m really hoping that this workout will push me into being more solid on 12+ and maybe – just maybe I’ll send my first 5.13a this fall? I sure hope so.

I’m planning a two week trip the first two weeks of November – I’m thinking about driving out to Bishop, with a stop at Joe’s Valley on the way there and back (its like an hour and a bit out of the way!)

My P90x workout will take me to about two weeks before that. Also, I’m getting a hangboard in the mail here soon and am hoping to add a weekly hangboard workout to my P90x routine.

so yeah – life is hard (not) – I’ve been going to sleep at 830 – so I can wake up at 530 – to go to work – then I come home, train and then sleep….(I only work four days a week though.)

I’ll keep updating on my P90x and if/how its improving my climbing.

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