"There's something truly enchanting and indescribable about being alone on a beach. The only sound is coming from the rolling waves of the ocean, they are rhythmic and predictable, soothing. I have never really been a water person, but as I climb my way through this world, travel, and explore, I am being more and more drawn to climbing destinations that are on the waters edge. This spring I went to Malta and climbed over the most tumultuous ocean I have ever seen, it was a wet and exhilarating experience to say the least. I want more.
This November, while on another roadtrip with my wife Lydia, we made the very wise decision to take a few days and explore the magical miles tracing the rugged west coast. From Northern California to Southern Oregon, we drove, stopped, hiked and climbed and if you haven't done it yet, do it as soon as you can. You won't be disappointed.
The rock quality was surprisingly high. Black and compact, complete with slopers, pockets, and crimpers, it made for some interesting moves, endless traverses, unsolvable sequences and soft sandy landings. I can't stress enough the beauty of the west coast. Lost rocks as far as the eye can see. It's a playground and there's barely a soul for miles. If you want to get lost this is the place to do it.
On our second day, we discovered a little spot called Secret Cove, it's about a mile from the road I think, and as empty and pure as anyone could ever hope for. Emerging from the lush green forest, we walked breathlessly across unmarked sand until we found a small cluster of steep blocks. One by one, I picked away at each line until I had my fill for the afternoon. No grades, no chalk, no rules, no pads, no spotters, no sounds. Just me, my beautiful wife and the salt in the air. I wanted to stay long enough to have a fire, and watch the sunset, but as they do, a rain storm rolled in and chased us back to the van, our home on wheels.
I am reminded time and time again that this life is only what you make it. And it's places and moments like this that make it all so very special, at least for me. But the trick is, you actually have to go there. Just watching movies and downloading pictures won't stir the soul, we have to get out of our cars, away from the roads and smell the earth and the sky and dig our fingers and toes into the rocks and sand to feel it all.
So, the next time you are faced with a choice to work more, stay home and chill, OR, go somewhere and do something fun, I say go, go, go and lose yourself, you'll not regret it. Ever. In fact, I am due for another trip myself. Perhaps I'll see you out there, in natures playground."