My very first blog post! This is an exciting time in my climbing career. Five Ten is my first sponsor which is great because Five Ten has the best rubber hands down. I am not the greatest writer, but I will try to make my posts interesting, so please bare with me. Today's post will be about the Hueco Tanks trip I took during Easter and Central Rocks amazing Pro comp.
Pullin' Rock and Plastic - Nicholas Milburn
Even though I live in Texas I almost never make it out to Hueco. I usually go out east to climb some sandstone. There is nothing wrong with the east I just wanted a change up plus everyone at my gym was trying to get to go out to Hueco with them. I ended up going with my step-dad, brother, sister and a gym friend. We were originally going to have more people, but due to injuries and busy schedules got in the way. Our plan was to stick to North Mountain for our three day stay which was fine for me because I didn't know any problems out there anyway. I ended up getting on Nobody Gets Out of Here Alive, Baby Face, Daily Dick dose, and some other stuff whose names I cannot remember. I also got on Mexican Chicken which a great route. I thought all the moves were great and it had good flow. Another good one is Fern Roof which I thought was the best route I got on while I was there. I couldn't make the reach out to the jug, so had to use weird press beta that worked for me. I didn't get Fern until the third day. We also tried Diaphanous Sea which I found quite difficult. I couldn't stick the huge throw, but I did all of the other moves minus the top out. I think if I go out in better condition I could stick it. When I got on see spot I also got on Bare Foot on Sacred Ground and Dark Age. I couldn't do too much on Bare Foot, but I did all but one move on Dark Age. Next time I go back to Hueco it will have to be when it is cooler because it was a bit too hot for my taste. We only had minor trouble with the terrible management of Hueco Tanks. Hopefully next time it will be better.
I also had some mile stones on my trip to Massachusetts. This was the first trip I went on without my parents or some other kind of adult supervision. I met up with Alex David Johnson near the airport in a hotel I got. He flew in at 5:00 in the morning (who does that). Anyway we took a bunch of trains and eventually made it out to the gym in Worcester were Alex was going to meet up with Shane Messer. My plan was to head out to Hadley and stay at a hotel. We hung around the gym for a few hours to pass time. I was trying to figure out how I was going to get to Hadley when Joe Hardy offered to let me stay at his parent's house and in the morning we would all carpool together. This was great because as it turns out getting to Hadley without a car is no easy task. Alex ended up staying there also because there was more room there. The next day we made it out to comp an I was impressed with the gym. Good sized walls and great angles, although the amazing cave was covered as to not reveal to finals routes. I was surprised to see all the strong climbers who showed up. I didn't realize I would be competing against people like Daniel Woods, Jimmy Webb, Vasya Vorotnikov and others. The qualifying routes were amazing. The first one was a nice route that wasn't too bad. The second route was one of the most aesthetic gym routes I have ever seen. It was a cool technical route with a ton of volumes. I got pumped out and blew off the latter half. The third route was insanely hard. Almost every fell at the same point except Jimmy Webb and Alex David Johnson. Josh Levin and I ended up tied exactly which was cool. Finals was amazing! The presentation of the finals routes was great. They set up a tarp to fall and reveal the climbers and the routes. I was pretty psyched to be there. The finals route was this long winding up the wall. It had a tricky section to get out the roof onto the last face. After a while I decided it was a bat-hang. Josh wasn't quite as sure about it as me, but it was in his head. I climbed second and when I got up there there was no doubt in my mind about the bat-hang. My body just wiped into place. I blew off about half way up the face. I ended placing fifth behind Josh, Vasya, Daniel, and first place Alex. It was definitely one of the better comps I have been to.