Friday, April 28, 2006

16Z to Clay Creek

Over the past few weeks I have enjoyed the desert with good friends. 16Z has many amazing routes, few people and next to magical camping. On my last trip out there we “discovered” several high quality boulders (in quotations because many people have talked about having walked through them before). Since that time a few friends have gone back to clear landings and work various problems on many boulders. This area is accessed from the 16Z road and is encountered about half way to the main climbing area.

(Photos of this area and bouldering are forthcoming). See photo of Charlie Fowler on one of 16Z’s classic crack routes!

Another area visited recently is Clay Creek, location just outside of Norwood CO. This area has about 50 routes ranging from 40 to 50+ feet high—short but fun climbing. The short approach and sunny weather has made this area popular with the Ridgeway, Ouray, Telluride climbing contingent. It is possible to leave the mountains in Jan/Feb/Mar, where temperatures are near freezing, and encounter favorable temps and sunny conditions. See photo of Charlie on the first route established in this area, Dr. Evil, 5.11-.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

A Few Routes More

4-8-206: Up on the Sunshine Slabs (Y11/River Rd, 5.5 Miles north of Paradox Valley) Charlie and I established three new routes. The first route we did was just to the left of Dog-Collared-Women (see Blog below) that ascends a thin corner/seam through an overhang and finished up a thin face. We called this route Maybe Maybe Not, 5.11-, thin gear in the beginning then past three bolts (this route uses D-C-W’s anchor). Then to the climber’s left of this (and two the right of Manic Monday) we did two new crack lines: Donkey Kong Jr., 5.8, 70’ (a hand to thin hand crack in a corner that traverses left using a flake to the top—it was possible to place a 3.5 Camalot) and Donkey Kong, 5.9, 90’ (wide hands to OW—lots of big gear—Camalots #6 x 2, #5 x 1, #4.5 x 1, #4 x 2, #3.5 x 2, #3 x 4, #2 x 3). The beginning of this route takes some figuring-out. My only hint: Look for face holds.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Another Killer Day In Southeast Utah

Comb Ridge, UT: Mark and I were able to slip in two new routes while clouds were rolling in from the west yesterday (3.31.2006). The first route we did we called Beer Goggles & Binos, 5.10. Mark began the first pitch to the right of the main corner which involves a fifty-foot traverse. I headed up the corner about 85 feet to a ledge inside a chimney. The gear (in order, Camalots): #2, #3, #4, #1, #2, #1, #1, .75 X many, .5 and a #1 and/or a 4.5 for the top is helpful.

Next, Mark ascended a fun crack/seam/face/flake up 95 feet and established an anchor. The route requires some tricky gear placements, ranging from a #4 Camalot and thin wires down low, to hands and .3 Camalots in the flake up high. Reaching the anchor, from exiting the flake, is the most committing move on the route. Mark named the route Amara, 5.10 (PG 13).

At the end of the day, just before the rain began, Mark and I took a walk along the cliff base just to get an idea of future projects. There were several thin finger corners and a few hand and OW sized routes to be done.

photo: Mark starting up Amara, 5.10 (PG 13), placing a #4 Camalot.