We would like to send congratulations to our friend Jon Cardwell who has sent The Game in Boulder Canyon. This is one of the hardest boulder problems in the world! Jon made the 3rd ascent. Nice job Jon!
So after working through, and on, Christmas, the boys took New Year’s off to kick back and relax a little. Don’t panic! Setting will resume as usual tomorrow and Wednesday (River Wall first!), and will continue on the regular schedule until the next comp on February 2nd (sign up here - Gladiator Finals | The Spot Bouldering Gym & Climbing School | Boulder, CO). Thanks for understanding that the setters all have other jobs as well and sometimes need a mini-vacation around the holidays.
A Side Job
One of my second jobs is writing freelance for various online and print outlets. The newest of those is a gig reviewing gear for the Mountain Gear Mountain Blog. My first review, of the Arc’Teryx Atom Lt Jacket, is up now. Check it out - What’s to love about the Arc’Teryx Atom Lt Jacket? A lot. | The Mountain Blog
Well, I’m still in Hueco. Namesake of our Hueco boulder. The weather has been pretty good, sometimes sunny, sometimes windy, sometimes overcast, and lately quite cold!
Back in Boulder, Danny, Jonny, Jay Jay, Connor, and sometimes Ian and Jon are still keeping things fresh for everyone at The Spot while I’m gone. In fact, I heard Santa even stopped over on Christmas and set some extra routes!
For those who are interested, here are some pictures of my trip so far:
I’ve spent some rest days taking showers, Internet-ting, and generally hanging out with my friends Rocco and Mary at the Hueco Hacienda.
The Hacienda is a sweet old adobe that used to be a religious retreat, meaning it has some amazing wooden front doors and lots of heavy woodwork. Inside it’s fairly well restored and Rocco and Mary are constantly working to make it even awesomer. One of the updates is new headboards for the beds that Rocco built. For the headboards our artist friend Nikias has been woodburning each mountain into an oval, then Rocco stains the outside of the board. Here are a few pictures of the process:
If you are thinking of coming down to Hueco, there are a few steps you’ll need to take. First of all, you should have a place to stay. You can camp at the Hueco Rock Ranch or at Hueco Tanks State Park and Historic Site. You can also stay inside at the Rock Ranch and at The Hacienda. For climbing you’ll need to have North Mountain Reservations or tours scheduled. Learn more at these links:
Hueco Rock Ranch – American Alpine Club (camping, house stays, tours, pads)
Wagon Wheel Coopt – Welcome (request commercial tours)
PARK ACCESS – The Hueco Hacienda (tours, rental pads, chalk, tape, brushes, links, phone numbers, and other info)
Happy New Years Everyone!
Okay, so I am in Hueco, and have been since last week. Danny is steering the boat while I am here. I’ll try to keep setting updates coming though.
I’m also working on a review of the new G-String climbing trainers. These things are a new take on the Rock Ring and so far I think they’re really cool. I brought a set down to Hueco with me and we’re trying them out at The American Alpine Club’s Hueco Rock Ranch. I will report back but so far I think they look good, feel good on the hands and in the grip positions, and would make an excellent holiday gift for the climbers in your life. Check the site here – G Strings Climbing Trainers
Also on the docket, but probably not to be realized until I’m back in Boulder, are the reviews for Prinz and Orogen. We’ve set with both companies’ sets a couple of times now and so far we like most of the shapes. More on that next month.
It’s about Hueco season so hopefully everyone’s already got their reservations. If not, you can schedule tours and camping through the Wagon Wheel Coopt and also at the Hueco Rock Ranch which was just purchased by the American Alpine Club. You can also camp at the park, but call ahead to reserve your space!
Here’s a never-before-released video of my friend Vanessa and I during the 2010 season that Chris just dredged up from the depths of his hard drive. Enjoy!
And to watch more Hueco vids check out this Vimeo channel: Hueco Tanks Bouldering! on Vimeo
The film includes many first ascents by setter Jon as well as some Danny from 2011 and some Dave. Interviews include Glassberg and Rich Crowder as well as John Sherman, Joe Kinder, Ben Scott, Ben Spannuth, Chris Schulte, Paige Claassen, Peter Beal, Access Fund Director Brady Robinson, Revolution/Pusher founder/owner Clark Shelk, Herm Feissner, and even a short bit from Chris Sharma! Climbers include Glassberg, Crowder, Claassen, Spannuth, Schulte, Wetmore, Matty Hong, Matt Wilder, Mayan Smith-Gobat, Ryan Silven, Adam Healy (uncredited), and even a distance shot of our good friends Devin Finucane and Chris Taylor questing up some unknown alpine cracks.
Nice job Jon, Jordan, and Rich on this fantastic new film!
We would like to congratulate setter Dave Wetmore on his first V14 with Big Worm at Mount Evans. This was unfinished business for Dave, who 7 years ago injured his pulley so badly on this problem that he had to return home to Boston and have surgery. After a break from climbing he slowly recovered and came back to Colorado to finish the boulder. Finish he did, sending Friday the 14th. Nice job Dave!
Setting Update for August 14th & 15th
Sorry I didn’t update last week, but here are pictures of the new Hueco Frontside if you haven’t seen it yet:
We set several problems specifically for the Youth Team Tryouts, including several harder problems set specifically for much smaller folks and 3 sets of dynos on the right front Hueco. Enjoy!
Setting Update for August 21st & 22nd
Here is a picture of this week’s wall, the River:
Dave is staying! He will keep setting Tuesdays at the Spot through the fall though intermittently he’ll be returning to Boston to set The Dark Horse Series Comps. We are glad to give you the chance to climb his problems while he is in town.
We are also glad to announce that our buddy Connor Griffith will begin setting regularly at The Spot once he returns from his family vacation. Connor has been helping us out at comps and random other times for the past several years.
Also this week Jon got eaten. He will be missed.
See you next Wednesday at the Welcome Back Bash!
One of our favorite Boulder-based boulderers, the wonderful Miss Angie Payne, has headed off on a major expedition with Keith Ladzinski, Mike Libecki, and Ethan Pringle. Payne has started a blog where she will talk about the expedition (and other climbing-related stuff) and so far it is quite good. See it here - Angie Payne Blog.
What does this have to do with The Spot? While checking out her expedition info I realized that Angie’s athlete page on trip sponsor Mountain Hardware’s site has an interesting section where she talks about a moment that changed her climbing. The moment she is talking about happened at the 2010 Battle In The Bubble.
Angie was a major competitor for many years, though in the mid 2000′s she seemed to retire from comp climbing for a while. Then she got hurt, came back, began competing again, and a few months later became the first woman in the world to climb a confirmed V13 when she did The Automator at Rocky Mountain National Park.
It is cool to read that the Battle In The Bubble competition was so much fun for Angie and that it had such a positive effect on her climbing life.
To see her whole Mountain Hardware athlete profile (which is pretty good reading) click here - Mountain Hardwear | Athlete Angela Payne – Climbing
And the picture she is talking about? Taken by none other than Ben Alexandra. Check it out:
Have fun in Iceland and Greenland Angie!!!
Carlo just finished off a longstanding project
in Eldo at the PB boulders in the Flatirons and has called it The Altruist. He says there’s a video coming soon. Here’s another shot of the line. Nice job Carlo!!!
If you’ve ever hung around the Spot while we’re forerunning you’ve probably noticed that Carlo has a pretty unique climbing style. Not the offwidth-corner-reverse-body-stem shown above, but one that involves a lot of pinching and jumping around on huge slopers. The key word in that sentence is jumping, and Carlo does a lot of it. Why? Partially because he’s often disadvantaged by height, but also because he has recognized that for his body type and specific strengths, technical momentum-based movement is an efficient way to succeed on many problems where brute strength would fail. Recently Peter Beal tracked Carlo down to find out more about what exactly he means by “momentum-based movement” and what he sees for the future of climbing. Read the interview here: