Tuesday, March 6, 2012


So I've been injured and super busy with school, and that's not a combination that yields good abundant psyched or motivation to write blog posts.  Good news is, while school isn't letting up, I do feel like I'm starting to recover from my tendonitis. Fingers crossed.

To tide things over, and to try and get at least a little material up here, I thought I'd dig deep into the Woodson vault and post some videos of climbs I've done over the years for which I don't think other video exists.


"I Would Die For You (5.12b)"

"Full Circle"

"Columbo Crack Sit"

"Rain Dance"

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Kids Crushing in Tuscon

Just a quick update, I spent the weekend out in Tuscon last week to watch the first ever Division 2 Championship, hosted by the brand new Bloc climbing gym.  I wasn't competing myself, being too old for that sort of thing, but I wanted to support all the awesome kids coming out of the Socal region.  Everyone seemed to have a great time and the kids climbed really well.  Just a shout out to everyone's hard work.
For results, click here, and for pictures and a more full write up, take a look at my girlfriend's blog here and here.

Rest Days in the 'Milks

As I mentioned in my last post, I got the chance to head out to Bishop for a week just before school started.  Though I told myself I wouldn't try anything too hard, it was a great time scampering around on the many quality moderates the Buttermilks have to offer, and an even better time showing around some of my friends who'd never been.  The place can be pretty life changing.  A few of the group favorite were:

The Green Hornet

Southwest Arete 5.9
Sunshine Slab V0
The Hunk V2
Shepherd Bread V3
Green Hornet V4 (my vote for best V4 in bishop)
Jedi Mind Tricks V4
Suspended in Silence V5 (Also phenomenal.  If you can, do it.)
Fall Guy V9

I even managed to talk Greg Horvath and Matt Martinez into climbing the Advanced Rockcraft Arete with me.

This climb, the oft overlooked brother to the popular Southwest arete, is I think, even better.  Better movement, higher, more secure/solid holds, and equally accessible to people with an interest in highballs.  Weighing in at only 5.8 and littered with positive holds throughout, the challenge of this climb is purely mental, though mental it definitely is.  Not only do you top out at the very apex of the boulder, ~15 feet higher than the Southwest Arete, but the way up is also the way down.  No easy walk off here.  For us, it was the perfect end to the trip. The penultimate easy highball to a great view of the valley.

Not that everything was so serious.  We spent most of an evening just screwing around on the Robbins Rubber Tester, climbed in every conceivable fashion.  Once all the conventional lines were done, we had to get creative.  Greg, Mark and Buddy all managed to run straight up the middle of the face, and I, dared by Matt, climbed the slab in my Daescents while wearing padded ski gloves.  Pretty surprised to be honest, though maybe I shouldn't be, equipped with the greatest approach shoes known to man and all.

Okay, anything else... It's really been a bit too long since I last wrote on here.  Too much to talk about. I managed to climb the newish line on the Jedi boulder, Vic Copeland's Return Jedi, as well as finally making it out to the hueco wall.  I flashed Gastonia and did Hueco wall in 3 goes, took me a second to figure out the first move.  I really do have to repeat how much I love the daescents.  They're amazing. I climb everything in them.  I'll probably write a post just on them over at Five Ten's website, but for now, they're amazing, check em out.

One of these days I'll write a post that doesn't ramble everywhere. It's not a myth, promise.

Matt Martinez on Zen Flute

Green Hornet

Jedi Mind Tricks

Sunset by the Grandpa

That's all folks

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Injuries and Psyche

One of the high points in my climbing career came over the summer of 2010 when I climbed Jade in RMNP, but when I came home I found my motivation to climb waning, and after one halfhearted Bishop trip in the fall I basically stopped.  From November of 2010 to July of 2011 I climbed very little, only a couple short gym sessions a month.  This came about for a variety of reasons.  Injury, school, lack of training partners and no convenient outdoor projects.  I could go to the gym and run laps on the same old climbs, or climb alone on my woody in the middle of the night.  More and more I just didn't climb.  The one good thing to come from this time, was the inspiration it lent me to wander my local areas and try to find some new projects for myself, as I still loved to get outside, I just didn't have my normal drive to train or go to the gym.  The best lines to come of this were Asylum and Misspent Youth at Mt Woodson and Mean Streak at the Santee Boulders.  After climbing these lines though, I had nothing else to do and started to get truly weak.  When I finally started climbing again a couple months later I was falling off V4s and I was shocked.  For all my dismay though,  I wanted to climb again.  My drive was back and I was PSYCHED. All I wanted to do was train and get strong.  I wanted to compete, I wanted to send projects, and most of all, I wanted to see how far I could push myself.

It took two months of grueling midnight sessions, literally training from 12-4am most nights to start to feeling like my old self.  I went to the Nor'Easter, and despite some stupid mistakes,  it was still the least I'd ever punted at a major comp.  Since then I've kept training and had a couple great trips to Bishop, finally dispatching climbs I'd been looking at for years, but I seem now to have run into a whole new set of problems.  It turns out, that as you train, your body builds up certain tolerances, but if you take a long enough break, you need to be extremely careful to avoid injury.  I wasn't.  I flung myself into it full bore.  System walls, finger boarding, rings, one arms, everything I could think of to make me stronger.  Things I used to put myself through on a daily basis, but that have now left me with bicep tendonitis in both arms, minor rotator cuff injuries in both arms, acute medial epicondylitis in my left arm, two tweaked middle fingers and a bruised heel from a minor highball mishap.  I've been trying to rehab most of these for months, and I know that I should probably just rest, but after 7 months of virtually no climbing, I can't bear to bail on the winter season.  The alternative however isn't looking so good either.  Two weeks ago I had the best trip of my life, climbing two V14s, one of which was an FA, as well as numerous other lines on my lifetime ticklist, but I haven't been able to push myself since I got back, and now I feel terrible again.  I tried climbing on my system wall a couple nights ago and it went baaaad.  Largely getting shut down on the warm ups, things I'd done in the past with as much as 30lbs added.

So, I've come up with this compromise for myself.  I'm headed up to Bishop again tomorrow with my friend Greg Horvath, an up and coming San Diego climber who has never before been to the mecca that is the Buttermilks.  I hope to show him all the awesome lines I can, and to resist trying anything too hard myself, a bit of active rest if you will.  At least I get to do it in a beautiful place.  After I get home, I'll take 1-2 weeks completely off of climbing, doing only light body work, no pull ups no hand strength, in the hopes that it will take the edge off of my injuries, and I'll dedicate the extra time to stretching, massage and icing, to prepare myself to go a muerte after that.  I want to make the most of the winter season.  I want to earn a spot at the world cup in vail.  I want to feel fit enough to bother making my first trip to hueco.  If I can make it to March, I'll happily, okay, maybe grudgingly, take a month off to heal, but for now I need this.  Climbing is my life, and I can't drop out quite yet.  Cross your fingers for me.

Since climbing won't be my main focus for once, I hope to play photog for a bit this week, and I plan on getting some shots up here before too long.  Maybe there'll even be some good ones.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

I'm Starting a Blog! Again...

So, I've been informed, poked, prodded, and even on occasion harassed to write a blog. It would seem however that things have finally reached a critical mass and someone actually made a blog for me. Dammit. Guess it's time to start.

I've recently spent some time in the bouldering mecca that is Bishop California, and by Bishop, I actually mean the Buttermilks. This is one of my absolute favorite areas to climb, and over innumerable trips and the last several years I've managed to get shut down on just about everything. It was with much joy and relief then, to find myself on something of a sending spree this season. Misdirection and Direct North taught me that sometimes you need to just put on your game face and try hard, Evilution Direct concurred and illustrated the occasional need for total commitment, and the Transporter Room explained to me that occasionally over committing can be really really scary.

I'd say more, but most of this is already old news, and it's 2 a.m. The real purpose of this post is three fold: First, to overcome the potential barrier that is the first post, once I have something up and written on this accursed thing I'm hoping that it will get easier. Secondly, to let everyone, or at least the two or three people that might be reading this, know that I plan on updating the blog once a week, probably on Fridays. Hopefully I'll regale you with news of epic sends and life altering humor, but failing that, I'll try to post some entertaining media, or at least say something about training or school or something. Finally, I wanted to say that we've begun shooting on the new problems that went up in San Diego last spring, and hope to have an HD short up to show case them in the near future. Get excited. Urban cragging at it's finest.

Okay, that's all for now. Talk to y'all again in a week. Until then, enjoy this little clip from the vault. Clear Blue Skies (V11/12) circa 2009. According to my little spreadsheet, it was my second of the grade after Black Mamba. Rain Dance doesn't count.

Sunday, December 18, 2011