The past couple of weeks have been pretty much on a steady routine of getting up around 10:30, chilling by the computer in our hotel, leaving for climbing around 12, hiking up and climbing till dark. Then to out to eat or back to the hotel for CABLE TV and chilling. We then, repeat the cycle. Of course the rest days are awesome too, which I use for editing movies, sponsor-work, and bopping around town (Canmore, Banff, or Calgary). Life is good man and I have been really into this schedule and pace. We are honestly doing nothing but the simple activity of climbing and we are totally invested. These times of zero travel, events, and other work obligations are to be taken advantage of! This is what I LIVE for!!!! Again… life is good right now.
Bunda Ju Fora. That’s what pretty much on my mind. It’s amazing to feel the strength and progress on such a difficult route and notice the considerable differences from my early stages to now. In the beginning, this experience was like being in a cloud of possiblilities and zero confidence. The clips were heinous, I could do the moves maybe on their own, and I really could not see through it and possibly visualize sending it at all. Now… I am attacking the line try after try with the intent of breaking through another wall. Each day has been something uplifting like finally getting my crux hold, making a highpoint, figuring micro-beta on a thumb position. It’s just the little things, no MINUTE things that make such a difference to the whole equation. Bunda Ju Fora is hard… very hard. It’s utter power-resistance for roughly 18 moves of squeezing the sh*t outta sh*t, followed by an 8a+ route to the top. It requires complete perfection in executing the moves and there is no room for error or anything to go wrong. The hands must hit each hold perfectly, the temps can’t be too cold or too warm, the humidity cannot suck, my skin cannot be taped up too much, my head has to have the will to drop the hammer, and each moves has to get full attention one after another. It is nuts! The amount of attention this line takes is more than the amount of strength it requires. I haven’t worked on a route so compact as this in a while so the whole experience has been a wild evolution. Am I close? Yes. I am two moves away, but I am also totally maxed in those two moves. Will I send it… I HOPE TO FU*KING HELL I DO!!! You will probably hear my scream in Mexico if and when I clip those chains. Either way this is an awesome state to be in mentally and motivation-wise. I have a project and it is HARD.
It’s important to be confident. I believe confidence in climbing is one of the biggest keys to success. But when you have such a specific and demanding objective you are constantly in foreign territory and can’t exactly dictate or have any predetermination as to what will happen. You can do your best and that’s what climbing hard routes requires. Some days are good, some days suck. Sometimes it’s mind boggling but you still try and try your ass off because that’s what it requires. Your determination and diligence is what will create any progress what-so-ever. It’s a a process. It’s a mode. I totally relish in this stuff so sorry to get my climber-jive-turkey on you all. But hey… this is what my life is consumed with and this is what I love more than anything.
If I don’t climb it then I return. It’s really that simple. I see it as a positive thing too. Returning to something you were close on is a HUGE stepping stone for completing a route. Every hard route I have ever been close on and didn’t send was SO much easier to complete when I returned to it after climbing elsewhere and clipping chains on other routes. Sending is awesome, but not always the nearest result.
Anyway, the cliff has been our daily perch and the conditions up here have been unreal. Where it’s still warm in the USA (in most spots) the temps up here have ranged from 40º to 65ºF… yeah… NUTS. The leaves are changing, there’s snow dust on the mountains, and it smells like fall. Lets just say that we will be returning here next year as well. This is NOW my summer (August -Sept) climbing hub.
Where in September does it snow, have cold conditions, and get this beautiful in August and September???!!!
Other than the mountains and climbing Colette and I have been chopping away at a few videos (as usual). I just exported the final version of an AWESOME video for Climbtech, which features the Removable Bolt. Hopefully after a few people see this one I will stop being asked “how do you climb with them?”, HA!! They are NOT for climbing (not intended use anyway) they are for aid and bolting. This video features my latest route Staring Without Caring 8b+ in Mazama, Washington. It shows the process of bolting a route using the RB with testimonials from Randy Leavitt, Chris Sharma, and Kevin Wilkinson. I am very proud of this piece and cannot wait till it’s live. Good music, good footage, and some really nice speakers. I think this is a win-win product.