This spring break I went out to the southeast (big shock I know). My whole family went up and we invited some friends. Brian Towner and his soon to be wife Kristy Dorris came up from Houston, Dalan Faulkner and Sam Rockstein drove up from Dallas and Joe Gifford from Austin. So we had ten people living in our tiny little house, but since it was a climbing trip we weren't in the house very much.
Joe and I drove separately and we managed to make the drive in record time, a couple hours longer than usual! We hit all the bad traffic there was to hit. In Baton Rouge traffic was moving so slow I rode unicycle on the interstate. Anyway, we eventually arrived in Chattanooga late that night.
Our first day of climbing was spent at Little Rock City. Joe had never bouldered in the southeast, other than Horse Pens 40, so he was psyched to try some of the famous lines (mostly The Shield). We got there and I gave him a quick tour and post warm up he jump on The Shield. He got shut down which was fun to watch because I remember doing the same thing on my first attempts on this problem. Brian was psyched on Biggie Shorty like no other. He tired Biggie before and loved it. On this first day he made progress, but didn't end up sending. We all went to Instinct and worked that. Tom and Brian really wanted to do this problem. Brian make quick work of Instinct and the sit start. Tom figured out some of the moves and sendage looked promising. Kristy walked up Rib Cage making it look easy.
Dalan and Sam arrived later that night just in time for the rain. For our rain day we went and helped set at Tennessee Bouldering Authority with Michael Durenleau. It was fun and I think we set some good stuff.
Day three was a good day. The weather was great and the rock was sticky. Michael, Kyle, Sam Dalan, Joe and I went out to Dayton Pocket. Michael and I were working Lord of the Dance, so we were super psyched on that. Only Michael, Kyle and I had been to Dayton before, so we went to the roof first. Joe did an impressive flash of a Duneblaster. Sam came very close to sending Duneblaster, but kept falling of the end. I got on Crazy Craver with Kyle. Kyle got it in two sections and I sent it.
We went down to the River Dance boulder next. I make quick work of Lord of the Dance that day. Thanks muscle memory! Dalan sent River Dance really fast, then tried Capoeira. Normally Capoeira has a little landing in the river, but the river was so high that Dalan was starting padless over the river. It was pretty awesome. Dalan fell a lot at the end, but eventually sent which was awesome. Kyle and I started to work another climb on the same boulder, Stankins. I ended making all the moves and getting it in two pieces, but I couldn't link it. Next season it's goin' down!
We hiked out to Western Gold and tried it for a couple burns. This thing is awesome and hard. We all did a solid amount of flailing, but we looked very good while flailing.
The next day we thought it would be fun to go to the concave and sport climb. I had my project to try from the past summer, Southern Comfort. The weather felt good, but we forgot that it's about 20 degrees colder at the concave that it is anywhere else. We all froze and only Dalan and Kyle sent, but Kyle only sent his warm up. Dalan sent Silverback.
Since we really didn't do that much climbing at the concave we went night bouldeirng at the base of Signal Mountain. I have never been to this place before, but it was pretty cool. We tried a couple things then got back home way later than thought.
We used the next day as a rest day and took Michael out to Dayton since his car died. Sam ended up going back to try Duneblaster some more. Dalan, Joe and I did some parkour action running around through the river. Dalan ended up falling in and I got some cool nature shots. Everything would have been perfect if Michael sent Lord of the Dance! He got close, but not quite there.
I think it was this night we had a pie making sesh! Joe and I unleashed our baking skills and make some apple pies (and yes, pie is better than cake). Joe was on crust duty and made the filling. We got some great baking footage I need to mash together. The pie ended up some of the best we've ever made.
With the power of pie we went to Rocktown the next day. I wanted to try Sharpen Your Teeth some more and get on Fire in the Mountain. Joe made quick work of the Orb and he came and tried Sharpen Your Teeth with me. We ended up just flailing on the first move a lot. Dalan got very close to sending The Orb, but slid of the top and got a nice chest scrape. We then went out to Helicopter Traverse and Tractor Trailer which where fun. Then we went and did Comet which is an awesome Dyno to a perfect ledge finish move. Definitely a three star problem. After that we went to Chactaw Sundial and Scoop area. Everyone did the Scoop and Joe did a nice running variation. Kyle and I worked Chactaw Sundial which may be one of the most painful problems ever. Iron flakes hurt no matter how good the hold is. I ended up sending it after a bunch of tries and then got on Fire in the Mountain which is a variation on Chactaw Sundial. I couldn't do a single move on it. For our last spot of the day we went to Sherman Photo Roof and Sam tried everything there. He ended up sending Nose Candy.
The next day we had to leave, so we planned to stop at Horse Pens 40 and jump on God Module. It was just Joe and I because everyone spit up. We warmed up and got on Law Dog which was awesome! After that we got on God Module and flailed to the max. Neither Joe or I could do a single move. We moved on and did some cool slab climbs at the front then headed home
All in all I say it was a good trip! Any trip is a good trip with climbing involved! It was awesome to have so many friends on one trip! Lots of climbing energy! One more sentence with some exclamation points ought to finish this thing off!!!