Thursday, March 25, 2010

Joe's Valley

As many of you know, I tore a ligament in my ring finger last October while trying to complete a project in Joe's Valley. I was very close, falling on the last hard move on the previous attempt.

Driving back to Joe's Valley, I had more or less a single goal, to complete this problem I hurt myself on last fall. Its normal for me to obsess like this, but usually I am not so nervous about a climb. Not knowing whether my finger was ready was worse than knowing it wasn't.

My first day in Joe's, I got warmed up and went strait to the problem. I pulled on and did the initial campus move into the slot pinch. I felt good and not out of shape. I adjusted the pinch to get ready for the crux move. I started to pull, but felt a little pain in my ring finger. I hesitated for a second, telling myself everything was fine, but I knew better. The finger wasn't ready and the consequences of continuing would be severe. I dropped off, and put the project on hold again.

Being unable to do this climb right now, I'm turning my focus to other climbs. Climbs which I had neglected so I could climb on, or rest for my project. I was able to do a cool mono crimp problem (Hydrogenated Oil) that I first tried after my injury, since I pretty much only need my pointer fingers. This is an interesting problem and very difficult to grade. Consensus seems to be about v11, yet I know of at least a couple of strong climbers that find it very difficult. Yet there are also a couple of climbers that find it quite easy, including one that can do the crux moves in his approach shoes while talking to me about how easy it is :) Thats bouldering for you.

Also this past week I have done a number of very good problems up to around v9. Its been a lot of fun climbing and hanging out with friends, and I'm looking forward to my remaining couple of weeks here. Almost I have forgotten about the project... almost.

No photos to share yet due to the camera situation, but I was able to take some photos with a friends camera which may yield some decent photos in the near future. For now I have a video of a very cool climb I did yesterday called Playmate of the Year v9. Aptly named. Enjoy!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Leaving Las Vegas

Tomorrow I leave for Joe's Valley. I'v been in Las Vegas most of the winter which is longer than I usually stay in one place, but now its time to move on once again. When I first got here my goal was to rehabilitate my finger and get back into shape. This last month or so everything has been coming together and I'v been able to climb lots of great boulder problems. I feel ready for the spring climbing season!

Unfortunately, there is also some bad news. A couple of days ago my I broke my camera. I don't know how it happened exactly, it was in its protective bag, but my LCD screen is broken and inoperable. Probably I dropped it or bumped it into something, these things happen when your out climbing, its just a matter of time. I just wish it wouldn't have happened so soon! Technically the things still works, I can still take pictures, but in a very limited way. The screen isn't just to review your shots, its also the access to the menu system which allows you to change all the settings, delete photos, etc. Also a while ago, my main lens stopped auto-focusing, which wasn't a big problem; but now combined with the screen, the camera seems barley usable.

Probably I need a new camera, but it could be a long while before I'll have money for that. Perhaps I'll find another broken D50 that I can pull the screen out of. Anyone know of one? I may try sending in the camera to Nikon for an estimate, but I have the feeling that fixing the screen and the lens would cost about as much as a new camera. If anyone has other ideas I would love to hear them. Until I figure something out, I'm not likely to be posting many photos.