Thursday, September 18, 2008

Back Online

Well after a short battle with Qwest to get a DSL hookup, we are back online. I have been swamped in work between reading and writing for my class and teaching. A little time to try Window Shopper at Flagstaff, an excellent V11 on the east side of Nook's Rock. All the moves go and I am hoping that cooler weather will allow actual linkage attempts. This problem has very sharp crimps low and slopers higher meaning that warm temps equal shredded skin. Good to see Peter Jones out there on Saturday.

As an example of doing the job right with guidebooks, Fred Knapp invited me and other climbers to his house the other evening to review the new edition of Colorado Bouldering. Bob Horan's book was there as well as a telling counterexample of how not to do the job right.

In the climbing world, the news of Alex Honnold's free solo of Half Dome, while anticipated to a certain extent by Dean Potter's mostly free solo a number of years back, is certainly stunning. Speculation abounds about the next step, a solo of El Cap, but I sense a certain unease in the climbing media about encouraging this endeavor. For instance, virtually no print coverage was seen of his solo of Moonlight Buttress in Zion.

Chris Sharma's new route on Mount Clark is in the same larger-than-life category and will possibly never be repeated. A 250 foot 5.15b that is a major expedition just to get to the base is in its own league and impossible to compare with anything else.

Closer to home is the rash of V12 ascents by women, including Angie Payne, Alex Puccio, and Alex Johnson. Having tried all the problems in question I can attest to their difficulty, though I have reservations about Clear Blue Sky at V12 and felt that way well before Alex J did it. That said until I have done it, I will go with the consensus.

Lastly, a flurry of debate about 8a.nu has emerged which in my mind is interesting, especially regarding inflated grades. I think the best thing is to keep posting your problems at the grades you think are accurate and not worry about your ranking either way. Boycotting the site is an option but doesn't really change things much. As I have mentioned before, I believe that focusing on grades in terms of downgrading is ultimately detrimental to your ability to progress. I believe that whatever helps you get motivated to climb better is great, as long as, at the end of the day, you are focusing on climbing and not on other stuff.

3 comments:

RM said...

Clear Blue Sky as V11? Interesting. I'm surprised more people haven't suggested this, as it is certainly easier than No More Greener Grass, though maybe that's because it is so simple? It's all speculation, of course, as we all know it is actually Lime Wall V13.

Peter Beal said...

I am surprised as well. When I first tried CBS the consensus was V13 and I wasn't at all convinced. Compared to a lot of V12s, it seems too straightforward and the grips are kind of big. Maybe if the right heelhook wasn't there. Anyway, since I haven't done it, I'm just speculating. Brilliant problem nevertheless.

Lime Wall? Oh right--FA B Horan way back in the day?

RM said...

Yeah, from two moves lower, no less.