Friday, October 16, 2009

3.5 More days (2): The Patient Ass

Ian and I pulled into the Apron Lot giving thanks for the last dry Monday, and promptly ran into one Julian and his lovely partner Reschelle.

"Hey," said Julian, "are you guys the Gumbies On Crack?" to which we obviously responded with "hells yea" and some embarassed fidgeting, and Ian high-tailing it to the shitter. Julian appeared grateful that this blog has managed to distract him from his cubicular dreariness, and I was tickled pink. We all know that we aren't actually trying to climb the route-- we are trying to (a) meet women (Napoleon), (b) perfect epic hungover aid leads (Driller) and (c) learn to blog (me). But today we would find out that Ian also has a goal...

"So," said Julian, "are you guys and Napoleon ACTUALLY FRIENDS?" and we started giggling like 13 year olds looking at Jonas Brothers baby pictures, and we said "OF COURSE! We just like to shit-talk" and at this point Julian said-- and I am not making this up-- "yeah, I've seen that guy in the Bluffs, he climbs fucking hard." Right on, Napoleon!

So we got to the route and today Ian was gonna try to send P1-- the new improved crack version. He missed the onsight, falling off where Napoleon and I had, in the V-slot-- but what followed was one of the finest moments I have seen in climbing.

Ian fired the V second try, worked his way up to the small roof, and then launched into the layback. It was wet. It was muddy. One of his pieces had a lobe up against a root. You do bizarre armbars. Nothing feels secure. You place gear blind. Think "Apron Strings" but colder, wetter, dirtier. Ian skated, cussed, err-hemmed and grunted, and sent! I fell seconding the damn thing-- it was because I was wearing a crowbar instead of my Kaukulators, obviously-- and we decided that 5.11 a or b was it. We also decided that, like a murderer or adulterer in the middle ages, or a hipster girl after too many PBRs and some unprotected, sweaty, fixie-bike sex, our first pitch would need a Plan B in case of water on the pitch, or in case climbers smarter (and weaker) than Ian (and I) try it. So we will fix our original bolted line and you can all decide for yourself how you want it; hard like Ian or soft, like me.

Ian led the traverse and confirmed, 5.9 is about right.

Turns out that Napoleon, Paul Cordy and John Effa had done a great job on P2, 3 and 4. I fell-- AFTER the crux-- on P3, which will go at 11b or 11c. Here's Ian following:

And here he is busting a gut. The man's posing skills exceed even mine!

Props to you boys! And then it was time to mess with the dihedral. Well...let's just say, this thing will take every nubbin-pinching, crystal-stemming, high-stepping, sequence-remembering trick in your internal matrix of moves to send. I managed the first two bolts; Ian the 3rd, 4th and 5th, and then darkness came.

Well we rapped off our project pitch rap station, and then the rope got stuck. here's us finally having retrieved stuff, ready to go home. Thsi is what your hands and figertips will look like, if you are as lucky as we are!

So Ian's goal was obviously to climb, and he did it. I'll leave it to Napoleon, Dylan and the hit-counter I can't figure out to let you all know how the rest of us are doing, heh heh.

So...back to calculus class...a half-day of work on P1...and it will be ready to go...Lord, Thy patient Ass awaits Thy command...


  1. Looks like 5.8 to me

  2. I KNOW! This is what happens when you have my mad photographic can make 5.11b look like 5.8. The very skilled can make it look more like 5.5 but I'm not there yet. -- Butch