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Monday, February 18, 2008

Some outdoor rock climbing and nationals

The past two weeks have been pretty nice around here. The freezing cold days are finally starting to move out and the more temperate, perfect climbing days, are moving in. Last week i actually got to climb outside for one of the first times since Hueco! I went to Boulder Canyon and promptly finished up Chris Schulte's "Free Range" 8B. It felt really good to be out on rock again as well as send a new hard boulder problem! A few days later I headed out to Suspension on one of the most beautiful February days with fellow friends Andy Mann and Carlo Traversi. We warmed up and all was well until we stumbled upon Suspension deep back in the woods of Eldo. The top had about a foot of snow on it and underneath the snow was a layer of solid ice. Carlo and I went to work cleaning off the top but that just made the boulder seep sooo freaking much! thus we continued to work (for over 4 hours!) knowing there would be no way of climbing on it that day.

photo A. Mann

We were hoping that it would not snow in the next few days and that the day after nationals we could go out and climb on it. yet, to both of our dismay it decided to snow and now i have no idea if the boulder is climbable again. But we will see, hopefully sometime this week i can get out there!

Other than that I competed in the ABS Nationals at the spot over the weekend. It was quite exciting to say the least. The gym was so packed that people had to stand outside to watch the comp, people who had even paid for tickets! The first day of the comp i did not climb so hot. I don't think that i warmed up properly and by problem 3 i was feeling a big flash pump and was dreading what was to come on problem 4. I ended the day in 4th place going into finals. I really enjoy climbing at around this spot in the running order. Going to early can be a bit of a pain because holds can be greasy and the crowd isn't always psyched yet. But going all the way at the end kinda sucks too because the holds can be too chalky and the crowd is expecting something huge out of you and that can make anyone very nervous. But 4th to last out seemed to work well for me. Problem 1 was a nice traverse on the CO granite wall with a nice dyno finish. The problem was well set and it was a nice problem 1 to start off the final round. problem 2 was on the hueco wall coming straight out of the low scoop. The bottom was easy followed by a huge double light bulb so-ill hold. i was scared they were gonna use use this hold! Its my nemesis. Anyway first try i fell going out to it but second try fired the problem and was ready for the intimidating 3rd problem. As i set out on the third i knew this one looked like my style, technical, big moves and smaller type holds. First try i fell low because i placed my heel wrong but second try i sent! what an amazing problem set in a gym! perfect moves and an amazing finish high off the ground. At this point i knew i was in good shape! 3 sends and one climb left to go. Final 4 was again on the hueco wall, but it climbed the large double scoop and looked really hard! My first try was my best, i climbed up to a very difficult bump move and had the wrong body position and took quite a crazy fall. My last attempt was crap and i knew i was tired, but oh well. The rest of the climbers proceeded through the order and i watched nervously. When Sean was done climbing i then knew that i had won! It was a great accomplishment for me as i have never won the ABS Nationals before and am very excited to say i have now!

None the less, i am now hanging out taking some tests for school this week, along with trying to get climbing outside and work on my newest painting. I just finished a painting last week and have a picture of it below (its all grainy cuz my camera its ultra sucky). Andy Mann I'm stealing your camera! :P

I hope everyone is having a nice February! More updates to come now that the weather is finally shaping up!


sock hands said...

sincere congrats, paul!

Dropknee said...

i'll trade my camera for your rock skillz. let me know.

tim said...

Hey Paul congrats on the abs nationals!And cool painting as well.The problems sound like they were set really well. peace

ClimbingNarc said...

Nice work Paul. We were psyched to see you pull it off.

What is that blue box that you were carrying around at the comp. Is it the key to all your powers??

Ken Depew said...

Hey Paul.... congratulations. I just had lunch with your dad and he told us about your national win. He is very proud of you. Hope to see you this summer.

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tbwilsonky said...

i like the painting. cool graffiti-esque style with just-vague-enough to be interesting political overtones. rad.

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