This past week I have sampled some of America’s western sport climbing destinations including the VRG, Cathedral, and Moe’s Valley in Southern Utah, and also Jailhouse in the California Bay Area. I have not been at any of the areas for more than 2 days but I have really enjoyed experiencing the different crags and I know that I will certainly be returning as soon as I can. While I was at the VRG in Southern Utah I was filming with Keith Ladzinski and Andy Mann. Three Strings Media is putting together a Five Ten clip from the trip, featuring Five Ten athletes Mayan Gobat-Smith, and Ben Spannuth as well. Along with the Southern Utah climbing, Jorge Vissar took us Canyoneering, which was really fun and quite the experience!
I plan on returning to Southern Utah to climb at the VRG and at Cathedral in April, following SCS Nationals in Colorado. There are several lines that have caught my eye and I am looking forward to working on some of the beautiful lines that I didn’t have enough time to climb in my few days.
After Southern Utah I flew to San Francisco to meet my friend Vian Charbonneau. Her and Brad have spent a lot of time climbing and developing at Jailhouse. Finally, I got to see the crag that Vian had raved about it and it surpassed my expectations. I know that Jailhouse is not aesthetically regarded as “world-class,” but the climbing there is really cool and new to me. At Jailhouse, there is one main cliff line composed of blocky rock lines up a sustained steep wall.
The climbing is very intricate and involves full-body movement. I do not generally knee-bar often, but a lot of the climbing there is much easier with knee-bars. I found the climbs really hard to onsight because they are very beta-intensive and there is a lot of precision involved in grabbing the blocks in the proper spots and having the best body positioning. While I was there I enjoyed a variety of the classic lines. Anthony Lapomardo of Dead Point Magazine also filmed me on several routes there and will be creating a video about me climbing in the Bay Area soon. Included in this video will be me sending “Assassin,” which is an 8b that I did my 2nd try and that follows a steep, bouldery sequence up the middle of the Jailhouse wall.
Another cool feature of Jailhouse is its location. Before hiking up the trail to the cliff you drive through farm land. In this enclosure are lots of horses and while Vian and I were driving through, the horses took a particular interest in our car. As we rolled through, 13-15 horses gradually surrounded us. We got out of the car and fed them some of our food. They were all very friendly and it was a fun little experience =]
My last day in San Francisco I went to Mickey’s Beach before my flight to Seattle to climb at the “Surf Safari” sea-side cliff.
Now I have just arrived to Seattle, WA to coach a PCI Clinic with Steven Jeffery and Kevin Jorgeson in Bellevue.
More to follow as the trip unfolds =]