Over the past month, I've been climbing and competing a lot. I've been training hard to recover from a back injury from over the summer, so I wanted to go to as many comps as I could to train and get back into shape. It's also helpful because I can get on new problems and stay psyched to climb and train.
The first two were a youth comp at The Gravity Vault in Chatham, NJ, the first weekend of October, and an open comp at Elite Climbing Gym in south Jersey. I placed first at both of those, and I was happy with that, even though I thought I could have climbed a bit better. The Monday after the comp at Elite, I went out bouldering at the Gunks with my friends Jesse and Maddy Grupper and Eleanor Wright. It was great weather, and nice to get a chance to just relax and hang out for a while.
I didn't have any comps the next weekend for the next two weekends, but the Saturday before Halloween I went down to Philly for the 17th Midnight Burn at the PRG. It's an awesome comp with a great atmosphere, and really cool route setting. I'd recommend anyone who's in the area I went down in the morning for the youth comp to climb and hang out with my friends, and then stuck around during the afternoon until open finals. I had scored high enough in the youth comp to bump my score into finals, and placed first there. I was and still am really proud of that; it's easily one of the best and the best-run comp I've ever been to.
Finally, yesterday I drove down to New Jersey Rock Gym to compete at the Gravity Brawl. I went to it two years ago to watch, but they didn't hold it last year so I couldn't compete. This year I competed in open, and placed first there as well. The problems were really cool, and the crowd was super excited. I'm really happy to have done so well so far in the competition season, especially in the last two comps, where I feel I've climbed better than I ever have. Next month is more training, and the USAC regionals coming up in mid-December.