Tuesday, November 8, 2011


Some more back blogging, this time from Washington.  After getting rained out in Squamish, I bailed to Leavenworth for a couple of weeks in October.

Rob Guinn flashing Pimpsqueak v9.
Maybe the best problem in Leavenworth.

Rob and I also spent a day in Gold Bar.  It was cool to see the area and climb a few problems.  The rock quality in Gold Bar was very good, just like I had been told.  The rock and the setting, specially in the forest, reminded me quite a lot of Squamish.  Will be nice to get back there and also check out Index.
The moss covered forest of Gold Bar, WA.
Karma is probably thinking, "why am I suppose to stand on this log?"

On my last day in Leavenworth I managed to do the first ascent of a project on the backside of the shield boulder in lower forestland.  Autopilot starts on Cruise Control, and climbs up and left across the face.  I think its around v11, but I'm never very sure about grades.  Perhaps it is more difficult.

Sam Johnson put together a nice video over at Koan Bouldering

Autopilot FA from Sam Johnson on Vimeo.

I also made a quick stop at an area called Tum Tum.  Named after the nearby city, Tum Tum is a small area close to Spokane.  The rock there is ok, and there are some cool problems.  It's not a destination, but if your around Spokane and want to do a little bouldering, check it out!

Here is a photo of a fun new problem I did in Tum Tum.  I'm calling Rule of Thumb, in reference to a key thumb catch (kind of a week connection but whatever).  It's probably around v10.
Rule of Thumb v10, TumTum, WA.
Photo Jon Eastman
Now I'm back in Colorado for a month of work.  Then back west!


View of Squamish from on top of the Chief

After going without a computer for a couple months, I finally have a new laptop. Now I can share some photos from my time in Squamish during the summer and early fall.

By the water
Alex Savage attempting the very tall "World of Hurt", v10
All you can eat sushi in Vancouver!  (sorry about my bad aim Asher)
Me working on Black Slabath, v8.
Photo Brooks Walker

And more sushi!
Sarah Clark warming up on Titanic, v3.

And then at the Fuzz, contemplating the nature of the universe?
Me climbing Ride the Waves, V7.
Photo Alex Savage

Mr. Chipmunk

Monday, September 26, 2011

The Rain

I haven't been blogging lately, but I have a pretty good excuse. My computer stopped working and I haven't found a replacement yet. I'm writing now from the public library, which works well enough.  I can't access any photos from my camera though, so I don't have a whole lot to share.

So what's going on right now? Well, I'm in Squamish, and it's raining. No real surprise there, but this time of year when it starts raining, you start to question if it will dry up again before the rainy season is in full force.  It's no mystery then, why so many climbers have fled to inland areas, seeking dryer weather.

For now though, I am sticking around. I'm holding out hope that some good fall conditions are still to come. Perhaps it's that my elbow has been hurting, and I figure a little rest will do it good. Or maybe it's that I'm just not ready to be done climbing here.  I have always been a little uncertain about which bouldering area was my favorite, but my recent time here in Squamish has crystallized my view on the matter.  I have come to believe that Squamish is the best bouldering in North America, and I'm not leaving without a fight!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Mt. Evans 2

Echo Lake

My time in Colorado is over the for the summer. Moving on to Squamish, one of my favorite bouldering destinations. For now though, I still have some things to share from some great least weeks in the Colorado alpine area, Mt Evans.

Lincoln Lake

I put up a fun problem on the smallish boulder behind Guillotine. It's called Lincoln Egg, in reference to its remarkable similarity to the Egg in Squamish. Just a bit easier at around v6.

Jason getting ready to do the crux.

Paul sticking the lunge to the lip.

Jason and his pup.

This summer so far has been mostly about getting back in shape, but I managed to get one of my projects done as well.
Bebe Wolverine v12

Bebe Wolverine from Paul Nadler on Vimeo.

I spent several days climbing up at area E also. I repeated a couple of problems and put a few new ones.

This problem is on the back side of the Cell Block E boulder.
FA of Entangled V7

Entangled v7 from BS on Vimeo.

You can see some other awesome problems on the Cell Block E boulder at on Ben Scott's Vimeo page.

A little further up and to the left you can find this amazing compression problem.
FA of Boomerang v5.

Boomerang from Paul Nadler on Vimeo.

As expected, there were plenty of goats wandering around.

What I didn't expect however, was I would be adding to my list of less than ideal ways to be woken up. Previously the list included other people driving into my car. Now I can also add, waking up to a bear walking across the roof of my car. I was parked at Echo lake and woke to the car moving around. Karma was alert and I saw a big black object hop down and wander off to the nearby dumpsters. Several days later I again woke, this time to the sound of Karma barking. I saw mr. black bear peering right into the window at me. I doubt he could see with the tint, but was clearly curious. I grabbed my camera, but Karma's barking scared him off before I could take a picture. Would have been a cool picture, but was definitely happy to see the bear scared off. Go Karma!

Paw print.

Some scratches on the window.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Mt. Evans

It's been a couple months since my last post, but thats just the way it is sometimes. I've been busy with all sorts of things, working, climbing, helping family move things across the country, etc. Increasingly i'm spending more of my time at Mt. Evans, my favorite of the alpine bouldering areas. Lincoln Lake has been the primary destination. Getting the finger back to strength, hanging out with friends, and avoiding rain.

My first day at Lincoln, just after the summit road opened up, I was actually planning to ski at A-basin. For whatever reason, I ended up going to Lincoln instead with Ivelin Penchev. I had no crash pad with me, but I did have my skies, and the hillside above the lake was still covered with snow. What better way to approach?

Ivo took video and provided me with a screen capture. You may have to click on the Image to make it big enough to actually see me.

As I got towards the bottom, I noticed Karma running across the hillside towards me. I had sent her with Ivo, thinking it might be hard for her to follow me, but I guess she got pscyhed and wanted to join in. Karma followed behind me the rest of the way and we cruised right up to the beginning of the boulders.

Snow on one side, beach on the other. After enough snow melts, the water level rises and this boulder goes under water for the remainder of the season.

Me climbing Beach Party Sit v4.

Photo Chad Nichols

Me climbing Lincoln Pinch v6, while snow is still covering the death landing.

Photo Ivelin Penchev

Nik Vukovich doing backflips off of boulders. For some reason...

Rest days are great for exploring the other parts of the mountain. There are always more boulders to check out if your willing to hike far enough. Usually the view is pretty nice too, and lots of wildlife.

Chicago Lakes.

John Gass sticking the lip, instead of crushing Karma.

Taking in the view.

The other side of the mountain.

Chilling in the meadows.

Can't forget the goats!

A little one.

A big one.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Three days on the front range

I have been keeping pretty busy during my down-time from climbing. Getting out and having fun in the mountains in ways that don't require pulling on rock.

Day 1: The Monastery, near RMNP.

I went with some friends to the Monastery to hang out. The Monastery is one of the coolest (mostly) sport climbing areas on the front range. It doesn't see a lot of attention perhaps because of the fairly long hike, but there are some amazing routes there! Anyone that likes to climb on ropes and hasn't been there is missing out.

Jeff Giddings climbing Contortionist's Forte 5.11c (mixed)

Dusty Ross working The Quickening 5.13c

Day 2: Gray Rock, Poudre Canyon.

Gray Rock is an obvious choice for a hike near Fort Collins. It's so close, just a little ways up the Poudre Canyon. Mike Engelstad, Karma and myself got up early on a windy day, and made our way to the summit.

Gray Rock getting into view from the trail.

Another view from the trail.

Mike climbing on the meadow boulder.

Me on top!

Photo Mike Engelstad

Day 3: Fern Lake, RMNP

There are a number of places I want to hike to around on the front range to see if there might be some good boulders to climb on. Fern Lake was on the list because the rock along the trail (Rock of Ages / Both Sides of the Spectrum) is so good. I thought, if there were more at Fern/Cub lakes it might be worth the long hike.

So when deciding where to go skiing, Fern Lake trail head seemed like a decent enough choice. Again with Mike, we got some skies and skins and started on our way. In the end, we didn't see enough boulers to make me want to go back, but we did have an amazing time skiing! The trail itself was a mix of hiking at lower elevation, and then skiing when the trail turned to snow up high.

After arriving, we made our way across Fern Lake to check out a couloir on the nearby mountain.

Mike skiing across the snow covered Fern Lake.

The couloir looked promising, so we slowly hiked our way up. After getting pretty far and starting to run out of snow, we stopped and converted our skis to downhill mode. We then made our decent which was definitely the highlight of the day.

Mike taking off down the mountain.

Mike carefully navigating between the trees and scree.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Pre-Injury Joe's Recap

When I first got to Joe's this spring there wern't too many people, but my friend Enzo Nahumury was there already.

Enzo and I crossed the stream to go clean snow off of Moment of Truth. On the way back we found that the ice we walked over on had broken and fallen into the river. Jumping was the best option.

Photo Enzo Nahumury

Enzo demonstrating how to gather firewood.

I started working on Black Lung right away, and other projects and climbs I hadn't yet done in Joe's.

Working Black Lung, before the finger decided otherwise.

Photo Ivelin Penchev

I did manage some of the climbs on my list for the spring. I did Jitterbug Perfume v10 quickly, after climbing to the lip 3 times last winter and backing off due to an icy top-out. I climbed Bowling Ball v4 for the first time. It was amazing! I also climbed Eden v10 while Alex Savage was there filming. He didn't think he would use the footage, so he gave it to me to post.


Eden from Paul Nadler on Vimeo.

Most people find the crux of Eden to be this half one-arm pull off a hard to figure out how to hold split finger crimpy thing. I however, couldn't manage to stick the "easier" big move to the split finger. Coming close with beta that my friend Criag Berman was using, I decided to focus on his method. After eventually sticking the big move, I immediately realized I wanted my foot higher. I put my foot in the big pod, my hand slipped, but I managed to hold on. I was then able to lock off to the hold people usually jump to. It worked for me, but I don't know if it would be good beta for many others.

Alex getting way up into a tree, attempting to get the best angle at Trent's Mom.

Tom Camillieri going into the crack on Trent's Mom ;)

After hurting my finger, I was considering staying a few days and hiking around, but Joe's had other plans. We woke to a camp covered with a couple inches of snow.

John waking up to a surprise!

Karma not being opposed to the situation.

Ivelin enthusiastically taking a photo?

The Denver crew managed to get get some things dry and have a good climbing day. The hiking situation still seemed bleak, so I made my way back to the front range.