One of my favorite ways of charting progress is by returning to projects that I'd cleaned and tried in the past and finding that they're all-of-a-sudden doable. Colorado is where I learned to climb and Colorado is the place I've explored the most in the pursuit of things to climb. On more than one occasion my eye for boulder problems has exceeded my abilities at that moment in time. I always leave humbled but I don't forget these boulders. I bide my time, get stronger, and have another crack at them. One such boulder is a very steep prow over a very awkward landing at one of my favorite Colorado areas, Newlin Creek. I had first cleaned the holds of this steep belly on the Wall of Despair three or four years ago on one of my first visits to the canyon knowing that someone could compress their way between the grips. I made a very ramshackle landing (mostly just stacked pads), tried the opening moves and got completely shut down. I knew it was possible though! I returned to this prow in the Spring and resurrected the ramshackle landing. After a couple years of getting stronger and gaining experience from traveling wide and climbing much I made quick work of the moves and felt close linking them together. I had to wait until a few weeks ago to get another day on this project. It was a snowy day and I had no hope of topping it through the ice coating the boulder but it was good to reacquaint myself with the moves and start cleaning the topout. Perfect conditions arrived on a Friday a couple weeks ago and I made the long drive to Newlin Creek, picking up my friend and local crusher, Max Krimmer, along the way. After working on the landing and the topout (and some beta refining) I was able to pull out a send! Very rewarding. Newlin Creek has another boulder added to its already impressive circuit of hard climbs! Adaptation is somewhere close to V11 and quite fun. I would recommend it to anyone venturing to Newlin. Here's Max's video of the send as well as some other Newlin classics!
The life of a Working Athlete: Juggling Climbing, Work, Training, Overtraining, Rest and Life. - Melissa Strong
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