A few lingering pieces of News & Notes left over from my recent vacation…
- Jonathan Siegrist had a pretty productive month of July. On a trip to Ten Sleep, WY he managed to send 2 5.14a’s on his first try, gave the featured presentation at the International Climber’s Festival in Lander, WY, did the first repeat of Ben Gilkinson’s Wide World Of Fitness (suggests 5.14b) at Little Si, WA and made quick work of A.D.A.T.O. (5.14b) at Vancouver Island near Squamish.
- Sonnie Trotter checks in with Black Diamond to report on some new route efforts he and Tommy Caldwell did in the Canandian Rockies.
- Nick Duttle has made a rare repeat of Tommy Caldwell’s Grand Ol’ Opry (5.14b) at the Monastery. Commenting on his 8a scorecard he confirms the difficulty of this route that was originally given a grade of 5.14a:
This is a true technical test piece. By far the hardest line I have sent on granite. 8c+ is a grade that falls on easier lines than this one… Respect to the 4 prior ascents!
- Not done, Duttle then made the trek to RMNP’s Upper Chaos to repeat Wildcat (V12) for an impressive double dip. Climbing a 5.14 sport climb and a double-digit boulder problem in the same day is something that I can’t imagine has been done by too many.
- One of England’s first 5.14d’s, Big Bang, sees its first repeat at the hands of James McHaffie
- Bernd Zangerl adds two new problems in Rocklands, South Africa
- Alex Puccio signs a multi-year endorsement deal with Fila Korea
- The New York Times tries their best to take a look at the increasing popularity of the sport of bouldering:
For decades, rock climbing was a sport about reaching places thousands of feet off the ground. These climbs can take days and require sleeping up on the rock. Spectators watch with binoculars below. Pinning ropes to the rock along the way is a necessary safeguard, and learning how to climb with a rope is a lengthy undertaking that long kept the sport on the fringe.
But in recent years, another, younger type of climbing — called bouldering — has opened the sport to a far wider group of participants and spectators. Bouldering requires no ropes because it centers on short climbs, usually up to 18 feet and lasting no more than five minutes. It is easier in many places to find a low rock to climb than it is to find a giant cliff.
And it is easier to watch friends, or professionals, when they are right in front of you.
- The AAI’s blog details the continuing threat of development faced by Red Rock Canyon outside Las Vegas
- Would you be willing to drive 3 hours, take a 5 mile boat ride and then gain 2500 ft. in elevation over 9 miles of hiking to go bouldering? These guys were…and the boulders do look pretty amazing.
- Look for several of Five Ten’s athletes, including Sonnie Trotter, Carlo Traversi and Kevin Jorgeson, to appear in an upcoming web series from the Discover Channel featuring Bear Grylls.
- The Outdoor Retailer Trade Show starts tomorrow (no, I’m not going), and Splitter Choss gives a little preview of some of the gear they’ve been using this summer.
- Unfortunately, the annual climbing competition that usually accompanies the summer Trade Show was cancelled. More on that tomorrow. Hopefully.
- These new Gipsy “frictional anchor systems” are crazy looking
- Sasha DiGiulian, Sean McColl, Alex Puccio and Gareth Parry join the IFSC’s Athletes Commission
- Abbey Smith looks at the history of bouldering at RMNP and Mt. Evans:
In the fall of 1998, world-class climber Tommy Caldwell hit upon another prime bouldering spot in the park. Chaos Canyon’s gigantic field of blocky and swirly gneiss surrounding Lake Haiyaha, which sits at 10,219 feet.
“Chaos was the freaking mother lode,” says Caldwell, an Estes Park local. “For me it was like winning the lottery.”