Ruffling The Red Feather

Ruffling The Red Feather

Jamie Emerson has had a productive couple of weeks at the Northern Colorado area Red Feather Lakes.  He has done the FA of 3 V12s recently in The Big Bang, The Mastodon and The Vampire.  The coolest looking line of the three is probably the line followed by The Mastodon, which climbs a long rail before dropping off near the top.  Here is the video to give you a better idea of what it looks like:

Mastodon V12 from Jamie Emerson on Vimeo.

As it turns out, The Mastodon adds a few moves to a problem Chuck Fryberger did on this rail called The Product.  In the comments of the post on B3Bouldering regarding Jamie’s FA, some people took exception to Jamie’s assertion that his version warranted a new name and a fairly interesting discussion ensued.  Some felt as though adding a few moves from a slightly lower start was not that significant while others pointed out that neither version topped out which negates both problems.  This is an interesting discussion to be sure, but I think some of the detractors are forgetting the sage words of one Steven Jeffrey when he said, “bouldering is pretty contrived anyway”.   

Just when the discussion seemed to be dying down came this friendly jab from Chuck Fryberger who posted this satirical fake e-mail from Jamie Emerson on his blog:


It’s your pal Jamie. I just wanted to congratulate myself on some recent sending I’ve been doing in Red Feather. Last year you mentioned that your problem ‘The Product’ is incomplete and that someone strong needs to link the moves at the end to complete the problem. Well I went there and I couldn’t figure out which end you were talking about so I focused my energy on the bottom end. After two days of effort I have managed to add a contrived variation to The Product that I feel is much harder. It uses the same holds as your problem, but instead of taking them with your feet I take them with my hands. This is surely the best variation in Red Feather. It adds over eight moves to the start of The Product, counting of course the well-known fact that the placement of each finger pad is one move. Check out the video: you can clearly see me taking the footholds with my hands and then proceeding up to the drop-off. I rule.

Sincerely, Jamie.


Not to be left out, there is a rather famous sport route in France that has a bit of controversy surrounding its name as well, Realization.  Perhaps you’ve heard of it?  Sonnie Trotter had a great post about this the other week that led to a pretty informative discussion about how cultural differences play into how routes are named.  Check it out to learn more about about Chris Sharma renaming Biographie after he completed the extension…errr…after he completed the original line that was there before a 2nd set of anchors were put in lower on the route.  Big Up’s Josh Lowell even chimes in to offer some first hand wisdom on how everything went down back in 2001.

Posted In: Bouldering, From The Narc, News, Videos
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11 Responses to Ruffling The Red Feather

  1. Jamie March 18, 2009 at 12:27 pm #

    This is the first I have seen of this. Woah. I like what you wrote “Check it out to learn more about about Chris Sharma renaming Biographie after he completed the extension…errr…after he completed the original line that was there before a 2nd set of anchors were put in lower on the route”

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  2. sock hands March 18, 2009 at 12:48 pm #

    boulder problems start and finish as i say is appropriate. all names need to be cleared with me…. even for problems established before my birth. live in conformity of this law, or may god have mercy on your damned soul.

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  3. Jamie March 18, 2009 at 3:19 pm #

    Well then sockhands, what is your verdict? I bow low to your greatness.

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  4. sock hands March 18, 2009 at 3:58 pm #

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  5. sock hands March 18, 2009 at 3:58 pm #

    >> i say that since neither version is v7, this whole business is like bad chinese: something that generates a lot of hot air and uncomfortable feelings and should be passed and forgotten as soon as possible.

    as far as re-naming things…. sometimes it happens, sometimes it doesn’t. sometimes the name is a pun or nod to the original, sometimes it is not.

    now, as a friend of both chuck and jemerface, yet like van morrison about to woo you all into a love coma, i’m going to get down to what is really wrong… [and only publicly because this is already a public display]:

    i think what should be cleared up is whether the naming was intended as a dig on chuckles. i can see why it was taken that way by him and why various underoos were bunched… however, i can certainly see that jemerface probably didn’t intend for this to be a slap in the chuckleface… just presenting a send on your blog…. really, this all goes to the issue of presentment and not whether the problem was given an independent name or not. more often than not, matter-of-fact presentation on the internet is percieved as angry or provoking, when it is often not intended that way.

    >> matter-of-fact presentment of hard new boulder variation = “chuck you are retarded in the head, and my version is so totally way better. choke yourself… not with your hand, with my hand”.

    >> what was really meant = “i am psyched on this thing i climbed, let me tell you about it”

    totally different messages irrespective of intent.

    another example: this fall i asked about the name of some random v7 at the wild basin area which appears in no guide. i was able to get my answer by threatening the person and climb and earth with violence. when the name came out as “the big flip”, i assumed it was the f u finger to me for being so obnoxious about my questioning, when in fact it was totally unrelated and instead was reference to a bad fall one of the first ascentionists took while working it.

    if no offense is intended to the first ascentionist -and is communicated to the first ascentionist- then both individuals should just shrug and not worry about it… it is not a lifetime achievement for either and neither name is in memorial of anyone or anything.

    final note: remember this very simple fact applicable to ALL names of ALL climbs:

    33.3333% of folks will never care about two names, one name, or any names… they will not get your pun and will not get your reference. if you point it out to them, they will continue to not care right in your face, all night long, and with a wiffle ball bat.

    33.3333% of folks will hate your name

    33.3333% of folks will call it by its grade and not its given name anyway [sad but true]

    0.00003333333% of folks will think the name is supadope
    0.00003333333% of folks [me] will rename both versions
    0.00003333333% of folks [bennett] will try, but will forget ALL names for inclusion in the NCC red feather guidebook due out 2025

    the one grand exception to the above rule of naming boulder problems: if you call a variation the “sit start” and it does not actually start sitting [marble sit], you will be denied any divine afterlife and will be sent directly to the pits of hell… and not the cold ones ala dante, but the hot ones where there will be no friction for eternity.

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  6. sock hands March 18, 2009 at 6:48 pm #

    for the record, it should be noted to my detriment that i climbed ‘cloudwalker’ from one-half of a move in and referred to it as ‘shortwalker’ because i think that the “official start” is indeed retarded and should choke itself – not the ascentionist, the start. there. totally in the clear now. feels good to get that out there.

    > my AIG-nod requisite “deep bow”.

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  7. sock hands March 27, 2009 at 11:22 am #

    perhaps a bigger dis that the interpreted dis of the mastadon v. the product controversy is the total lack of acknowledgement of “cloverland” really being chuck’s “skin and energy”, as the narc pointed out… kinda like how folks keep calling “where the monkey sleeps” “freak bros. II”, and on and on.

    lonestar = stinkbug?

    what all this really points to is the *absolute necessity* to video and post every single FA onto some mainstream outlet for climbing media.


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    • Narc March 27, 2009 at 11:35 am #

      I’ve found that kind of interesting too. I think that Dave Graham still has it listed as an FA on his spraysheet. Not that he spends as much time trolling the interweb for this kind of info as you or I do. The only solution is for chuck to submit and get an 8a card to set the record straight.

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  8. sock hands March 27, 2009 at 11:24 am #

    PS: on secret FAs or early repeats, i must now take a copy of the front page of that day’s paper and display it in the video like on ransom tapes. HERE’S THE PROOF OF WHEN WE DID THIS CLIMB, YOU DIM BITCHES! WE DID THIS FIRST!

    oh the floodgates… how they gape open…. like when that dood couldn’t get the gate closed in jaws 3 to seaworld… in comes the FOUR SHARKMEN OF THE APOCALYPSE!

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  9. mike September 12, 2009 at 1:58 pm #

    major dab at the end of that mastodon video. invalid send. boulder problem name remains The Product.

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  10. mike September 12, 2009 at 2:12 pm #

    Oops. Major body tension at end of problem. problem remains renamed Mastodon.

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