There has definitely been a lack of updates on my part, mostly because there hasn't been a whole lot happening. I've been busy training indoors for some time now but yesterday Hayley and I drove up to Little River Canyon to do some sport climbing. We were out at the Concave a few weeks ago so I could try my hand at Southern Comfort 5.14a and things didn't go too well. I hadn't sport climbed since the early fall and my lead head definitely wasn't with me. I ended up bailing around the fourth bolt after sketching myself out about the chossy/sketchy bottom of the route. This time around things went much better.
After warming up I decided to hop on Hooligans 5.13a to test out my endurance. The tests came back negative! No endurance! Even though I was pumped out of my mind I managed to make my way to the chains, resting every opportunity that I got.
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Chaz on Showboaters 5.13b
Next up was SoCo. After depumping I decided to give it a go. I had a good idea of what to do for the first four bolts but the rest of the route was a complete mystery. Luckily Jimmy Webb had arrived and I was able to get the spraydown on the whole route, which made my little adventure a little less stressful.
As I made my way through the first four bolts I was much calmer than on my previous attempt and I easily made my way to a big jug rest at the fourth bolt. With the sketchy part of the route over with I was able to chill out enough to get my mind into sport climbing mode. I relaxed myself and went over Jimmy's beta before embarking on the rest of the route. As I left the rest I felt pretty good...just a mild pump. I quickly made it through the next bouldery section to another decent rest. The pump was beginning to set in but I tried to relax enough to get a little bit back before the next section. I sat there for a minute and knew that with my lack of endurance and my inability to recover that I was better off just leaving the rest and climbing.
I left the rest pretty pumped but tried really hard through the next couple of bolts. I was pumping out quick and I only had one more bolt and then the chains. I tried as hard as I could but my hands were opening up. I fell going through the last hard section, pulled back up to the bolt, rested for a minute, and quickly finished it up from there. Not bad for my second time on the route! It was a nice test to see how I felt on routes after not climbing anything over 12 feet since last fall.
I was really impressed with how good the route climbed after the fourth bolt. The movement is really unique and if it weren't for the choss and glue in the first part of the route I think it would be one of my favorites.
I rested for quite a while and wasn't sure if I wanted to give it another go. I figured that if I didn't do well on my second go that at least I would be learning the route better and it would pay off the next time I came out. This time the route felt better than the previous attempt and I fell two moves higher than before. This move is quite hard, even in isolation. The breakdown of the route goes something like this...
-V6/7 section to a decent rest/shake spot
The last section alone is quite difficult and the last move is a heartbreaker. Basically you take two good edges, get your right foot high, and make a huge deadpoint into a horizontal slot that is maybe 2 pads deep.
This is the move I fell on during my second go of the day and I really hope it doesn't become a habit. After this last stopper move the route is over.
Jimmy had some really good burns on the route yesterday as well, falling in the last section of the climb. We are heading out on Saturday and I'm predicting that the route will see its 3rd and 4th ascents! PSYCHED!