My most recent tick off of the original list was Songline, a 12b/c mixed line in Gallatin Canyon. When I first looked into Songline it seemed like just another good route that Bill Dockins put up, that unfortunately had two bolts in it but still seemed worth doing. Well after spending two days working this line my only response is WOW! This line is so amazingly beautiful to climb. The bottom 20' work over a bulge of faulted rock that has some tenuously small holds and bad finger jams on really pretty moderate gear. The second piece I put in on this section was a DMM offset brass nut that I threw in sideways and super shallow. It's supposed to hold still right? Well I fell on that piece on my first attempt of the route and it held perfectly well, so now you know, the worst piece of gear on the route still holds a fall. After a few hard moves it eases up into some cruiser slab climbing onto a small ledge and a bomber piece. This is where the fun beings. I made sure to take as much advantage of that rest as possible because really the bottom bulge is just access to the amazing route above, and by amazing I mean sustained and technical. From the rest there is an awesome traverse sequence to get about 6' farther right on the ledge, and then it is one move off of the ledge to clip the first bolt, and enter the crux. A beautiful layback/finger jam sequence into a big move back left makes up what I consider to be the crux of the route. From this big hold you get to at the end of they second crux you can clip the second bolt, and then make a few more hard and technical moves into some easier holds and great gear. One last heart breaker move at the top finishes her off. I have never had more fun projecting a route, Songline is an absolute must do for anybody and really needs bolted anchors so more people are willing to get on it!
After finishing off another hard trad route, this gear guy did something crazy. I went bouldering! Quite a bit actually, and was remarkably successful at it, at least in my opinion. Due to my general lack of outdoor bouldering my hardest and proudest bouldering send outside was a remarkable V4...maybe remarkable wasn't the word. After a short day trip to Pipestone so Evan could get me on all of his newly established problems, a day on the Overhangatang in Hyalite, and the many more days following that I spent on the Overhangatang due to its remarkable convenience I had done easily 20 problem all the way from V0 to V7. I considered the simple fact I was bouldering a successful stretching of my limits, and the fact I was able to get 3 V7s to be truly remarkable. Then there was the one day on the Overhangatang that I noticed a boulder higher up the hill with a super steep slanted crack that seemed to just be calling my name. I went up to check it out and was able to come to the conclusion that it was really hard, but really wasn't any more successful than that. However, it inspired me and if I have learned one thing about climbing, it is do what inspires you. So I grabbed a few pads and spent a day out there working out the beta, but again no send. Finally I invited my roommate Mike to come out and spot me on this thing so I could give it a really good attempt, and it went. This problem was super fun, but figuring out the beta on it was probably the best part. It took me a solid two hours to figure out how to do the top sequence, as a toe cam hook above my head in order to readjust my hands so that i could switch that foot to a heel then do a hand jam heel hook match is not a set of beta I have ever done before. At all. Ever. My beta for this problem was weird enough I may as well have been climbing on mars, but it was super fun and it worked! I found out later this was a V8 boulder problem that doesn't see much traffic, and for those who can pretty easily climb V8 the crazy beta can be skipped. I still think my way is more fun though!
|The bottom section of the V8|
So the new project tick list for the summer is this:
Der Fruh Lowe, 13a Mixed
Annihilator, 12d Trad,
Forbidden Fruit, 13b Sport
The Pro Slacker Tour, 13a/b Sport
Cardiac Arete, 12d Sport
A2 Line, 13a Trad
Weapons of Mass Destruction, 12c Sport
Can-Dunne, 12d Sport
Silver Surfer Suit, 13a Sport