The Key to So Ill
With endless sandstone, hard projects and beautiful classics they're bound to have a good time. Enjoy Part 1 and stay tuned for more videos.
New River Gorge, WV
An easy four hour drive from the Red River Gorge, The New has been a center of American rock climbing for decades. However, it gets relatively little attention in the climbing media. Not sure why this is, other than its laid back climber population aren't the type to demand attention to every ascent. Or maybe its the location; far from the media-rich areas like Colorado and Utah, just far enough away to keep people in their local areas.
Who knows. All I know is, this place is incredible. Some of the best rock I've seen, with massive 160 foot+ walls all over the place, interesting, technical climbing and some of the friendliest locals you'll ever meet.
On the cover of Steve Cater's New River Guidebook, Quinsana Plus is a New River icon. As you descend the Honeymooners Ladders, you see this beauty standing proud and inviting. If you're a climber, you just have to try it. If not this season, someday.
Daila was enamored from the first time she saw it on the book, and set about jumping on it immediately. Her power and grace were in full effect, and even after the creepy mantle at the end... well, as she said, "mi encanta".
Red River Gorge-Lucifer
Chris Sharma had tried a route called Lucifer and in his typical style, didn't do a whole lot of working of the route. He'd do a section, get stumped, fall, work it out and keep going. Not a lot of micro beta work; just getting the moves done and moving on.
It is a route that Mike Doyle did earlier this year (or maybe last year?), with a hard bouldery bottom section followed by a good rest, to a 5.13 upper headwall, sequential and pumpy.
So his second time on the route, he was psyched to put it to rest. He started up with me filming, climbing in fits and starts, looking up and trying to remember the deal, unsure of little things like "footholds" and trying to grab the holds the right way. It was classic Chris, just winging it, determined to do it by the skin of his teeth, seemingly for his own amusement. Sure, he could have worked the hell out of it, but it's only 14c, right? Seems like something you should be able to do in a few tries, the less beta the better.
Sends in the 9th grade
Patxi Usobiaga has redpointed the infamous Action Direct 9a in the Frankenjura Germany.
Gorka Karapeto has repeated the Sistematik Ihes in Spain.
Adam Ondra, the Never Surprising Stong Kid...has taken the third ascent of Punt X.
The Iron Monkey
MVM Producer Brian Solano was in Eldorado Canyon last week shooting Ethan Pringle trying the Iron Monkey. This is the hardest trad route in Eldo, originally put up by Matt Segal several years ago. Graded at 5.14a, it’s a hard bouldery route that has yet to be repeated! It was Ethan’s third day on the route and he had looked really strong in the previous two days. We headed up with our crew to film his efforts.
On Ethan’s first try of the day, he fell at the crux dyno and a piece popped. After taking a scary fall and basically decking, Ethan recharged for several more attempts. He decided to use a lightly bigger nut right before the crux. He continued to fall at the crux, but got closer each time. As the light faded and the day neared its end, Ethan suited up for one last go.
Success! He stuck the hold and smoothly continued to the top. This is only the second ascent the Iron Monkey has seen and Ethan agrees, “It’s hard!”. The Iron Monkey caps off Ethans streak of repeating Colorado’s hard trad lines. In the last month, he’s repeated the Orangutan Overhang (5.14-), The Iron Monkey (5.14-), The Five Year Plan (5.13+), Deadline (5.13+), and China Doll (5.14-). Look for some of these ascents to be featured in BS Productions' new film The Players, coming Spring 2009!
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