Since it is starting to seem like I am always a little behind on blog posts, I am going to try something a little different with the next two posts. Instead of giving a full run through of every comp I have gone to since my last post (I think there have been about 7 of them), I’m going to quickly summarize the events that I went to in this post, and then reflect on them in a couple of weeks in my next post when I have had a little more time to think on them. What that means, basically, is I am going to write to posts on a similar subject matter, but from two very different points of view. Please don’t hesitate to give me feedback on this style of blogging; if you find it extremely boring and painful to read, I do not want to put people through that.
Finishing Out the Bouldering Season - Zoe Steinberg
So, the last thing I did was recap the year 2014. After my trip to Chattanooga over Christmas break, I had about a week of doing nothing, and then got slammed with comps. I had two in January and 4 in February, and I had a blast at all of them. The first comp up was divisionals at the Gravity Vault 10 minutes away from me. This comp carried some weight, as I needed to place in the top 7 kids in my age group in order to compete at nationals. I wound up placing first in qualifiers, then second by a fall in finals to my good friend Zoe Leibovitch (Team Zoe for dayz right there). The next weekend, I drove down to Pennsylvania to compete at the Winter Burn, the second event of the Philadelphia Rock Gym’s new Burn Series. There too I placed first in qualifiers, and then second by a fall in finals, only this time to a strong Claire Bresnan from Maryland.
After a week without a competition, I managed to make my way up to Boston to compete at the 2014 Dark Horse Championships. The event was pretty stacked with some big names showing up, so I was very happy to make finals there. The Dark Horses and Burn Series are some of my favorite comps, and I’m psyched to be living on the east coast where I can attend them regularly. After another week without a comp, I went back to Philadelphia to attend the Heart Burn, their championship event. I felt like I had a truly great performance there, and I was able to finish all of the finals problems, which secured me a first place win in both the event and the series.
The day after I got home from the Heart Burn, I packed my bags and headed to Colorado Springs for 2 weeks for open and youth nationals. I would like to give a huge thanks to Tyler Youngwerth for letting me stay with her, as well as to Jesse Youngwerth and Kegan Minock for helping to make my time out there so awesome. Open nationals was up first, and I met my goal of making semifinals. Although I had a better qualifying round than semifinal round, I was relatively happy with my performance, and ended up 23rd at my first open nationals. Youth I was a little less satisfied with, as I had been battling a cold all weekend, and it really hit me hard during finals. I walked away with a 9th place finish, which is still very solid, but a little frustrating as I think I could have done better. There is no sense being upset about it though- it will just act as a learning experience for next time.
Nationals being over means that bouldering season is just about finished. I am going to take it easy for a little while, and then attend the last bouldering comp of the season, JIBS at PRG over my spring break, and then go to the red for a week before starting up rope competitions. I will post another blog this month discussing in more detail feelings and reflections on the individual events in this post, so until then!
Lastly, I would like to thank everybody who has helped me out- from giving me rides or places to stay to encouragement and support, it’s all important and very much appreciated. A special thanks also goes to Five Ten for their incredible continued support!
Photo Credit: Divisionals- Jennie Jariel; Dark Horse- Garrick Kwan (GKwan); Heart Burn- Vikki Sloviter; Open ABS Nationals- Tyler Youngwerth; Youth ABS Nationals- Tegan Wilson