Today was a beautiful day, so I went up to Flagstaff Mountain to get a day of outdoor climbing in and hang out with my friends. After hiking around I discovered an amazing boulder with two obvious projects on it. After  messing around on the left one I discovered a sequence that works, and a few tries later it was in the bag. I ended up calling in Botslayer and think the grade is around V10. Here is a picture of the crux move:


Joes Valley

This past week I spent my spring break in Joe's Valley, Utah, with my friend Zack Smith. We drove down on Saturday and it took about 7 hours to get there. The area is truly amazing with some of the best rock I have ever seen, not too sharp but very solid and aesthetic lines. My main goal for the trip was to try the Masterpiece, V13, so on our first day I hiked up to take a look at it. The hike was more epic then I was expecting so I didn't actually get on it that day, but I came back the next day to see how the moves were. I was able to work out the moves pretty quick and pieced it together after a few tries. After that I took a little break and ended up sending the boulder on my second try from the beginning! The first three moves are definitely the crux and involve an awkward hand-foot match in a hole, and a really extended move from two crimps to a positive slot. Once you link these three moves, the rest of the climbing is just powerful campusy moves on positive holds to a surprisingly pumpy topout. Overall it is like a V11 into a V10, so according to Max Zolotukhin's equation (11+10)/2 + 2 = 12.5, or V12/13. That is about what it felt like to me, but it will be up to the other ascentionists to decide whether to downgrade or keep the V13 grade!

I also climbed a lot of classics in the V9-V11 range that I was really impressed with. My favorites were The Worm Turns V11, Playmate of the Year V9, Worst Case Scenario V9, and Freak V10.

Playmate of the Year, V9

Worst Case Scenario, V9

On my last few days I put a lot of effort into Black Lung, V13, but after a few devastatingly close attempts I wasn't able to get the send. This boulder is absolutely amazing and has some of the best rock and best moves I've ever seen. It is the epitome of hard bouldering and involves three low-percentage, hard balancy moves on poor holds and tricky feet. Of all boulders in Joe's Valley this definitely seemed like the hardest and proudest one, so I will definitely be going back soon to try and finish it up. I will post a video of my closest attempts in the next few days.

So for now, I will be back in Boulder for a week or two and training hard for my return to Joe's ! Climbing black Lung will definitely be a huge accomplishment for me so I will try my hardest to make it happen!