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Psicobloc Master Series - Nicholas Milburn

 
Psicobloc Master Series - Nicholas Milburn
Psicobloc Master Series - Nicholas Milburn
Psicobloc Master Series - Nicholas Milburn
Psicobloc Master Series - Nicholas Milburn
Psicobloc Master Series - Nicholas Milburn
Psicobloc Master Series - Nicholas Milburn
Psicobloc Master Series - Nicholas Milburn
 
August 12, 2013 - 
 

I am once again behind on my blog. This has been due to an overwhelming amount of awesomeness. Last I wrote we just arrived in Colorado. Since then we climbed in Rocky Mountain National Park, Boulder Canyon, Rifle and Maple. We also went to the Outdoor Retailer. I will go back and write a post about all of that, but first I need to address the most amazing competition ever hosted on planet earth. The Psicobloc Master Series.

Psicobloc, if you have not heard already, is a deep water soloing competition first held in Bilbao, Spain. Chris Sharma wanted to bring this competition to the U.S. and in fact he did. Chris thought that this competition was the best way to share our sport with the world. After watching the crowd scream in ecstasy over climbers falling 50ft into water I agree with him.

Most of the people in this competition were invited which mean they had a by all the way to finals. They had a qualifying round from which two people would move on to finals. I was one of the 24 people who signed up for qualifiers. After seeing the people who had also signed up I did not expect to move on at all. In fact my goal was to not get last. In the practice session I played around on the wall. It was a completely new feeling from climbing. Climbing 55ft above the water was a very new experience for me. I have jumped off a cliff from that high before and that seemed crazy enough. Trying hard moves from the same height was something totally new.

Finally the qualifying round started. I knew I would have to climb fast as well as send since placement was determined on high point and time. I ended up sending rather quickly which put me in good standing. Only three other people managed to top the route, but only one person did it faster than me, Ryan Sewell. That meant that Ryan and I moved onto finals! The thing that surprised me most was to see so many strong people afraid to climb. So many people couldn’t fully commit because the falls got into their heads. My greatest advantage was that I could block out the fall enough that I could commit.

The second day was semifinals. Semifinals was more like a big jam session than anything else. Everyone had three or four attempts on the route to either send or get the moves dialed for finals. Of all the strong people there only Chris Sharma was able to send the climb and he flashed it. There was a big crazy dyno half way up the wall that only three people stuck. Chris, Carlo and Jimmy. Vasya came ridiculously close to sticking the dyno.

Now it’s time for the real show, finals. Let me give you a quick over view on how finals worked. Two routes were set on both sides of the wall. The two routes were exactly the same. Two people would climb against each other racing for the top or high point. In simpler terms it was an elimination round.

I was paired up with Vasya. Vasya is very strong and he is known for climbing fast. Neither of us stuck the dyno the day before, so we were on even ground. We both started and climb quickly to the first of the jumps. I moved quickly through them while Vasya rested. When I got to the dyno I dynoed hard. I really wanted to stick it and I did!!! This was the first time I looked over at Vasya and I was shocked to see that he was below me. I rested a bit then kept on moving. The next cool move was a huge cross where your feet cut and your body opened up to the crowd. Normally it wouldn’t be too bad of a move, but doing it 40ft above the water was a bit sketchy. Shortly after that I pump out and fell to my doom.

On the fall I went to catch my glasses, so I didn’t lose them. While doing this I dropped my head which resulted in me smashing my face into the water. I held onto my glasses, but in vain. I bent the frames out of whack and one of the lenses popped out. I also tore some skin in my mouth and bit my lip on my fall. All totally worth it.

Vasya did amazing and fell on the last move. That meant I lost and I was b.umped out of the bracket. I got my extra glasses and watched the rest of the competition move along. Every moment of it was amazing. The last duel was Daniel Woods and Jimmy Webb. Both are some crazy strong people. After some epic battling Daniel fell and Jimmy won.

On the women’s side Sasha DiGiulian and Delaney Miller duked it out. Delaney got super pumped since she sent the route three times before and fell. For her amazing effort Delaney won the A Muerte Award.

I’m pretty sure they will be holding this competition next year, so if you are a climber be sure to book your tickets to Utah for next year. Everyone who is a climber should come out to this thing because it is by far the best competition I have ever been to.

 

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