|Iconoclast, my first Joshua Tree 5.13.|
Time flies way too fast these days, I swear it moves faster and faster every year. It makes me want to seize each day and cherish the moments more often. It is just such a wonderful feeling that I never want to let go of. That must be why it feels like yesterday that I was leaving Thornbury, with the truck and trailer packed to the rim, full of dreams and stoke. Injuries suck, but I always see these weird twists of fate as just a little push to drive down a different road for a while. And this road led to some of the best times of my life, enjoying the lifestyle, learning new ways to move on rock, climbing for just pure fun with amazing people in sacred places.
I would tweak that A1 Pulley again, if it meant that I would get to repeat the Magical Mystery Tour 2015.
We finished our over-extended stay in Joshua Tree, California with a couple wins. I started to gain some confidence on my finger and managed to come away with my first 5.13 in the park, The Iconoclast. This was a big deal for me as I find J-Tree to be hard as nails!!! I also stumbled across an opportunity to get some tattoo work done when I was a Hidden Valley local. I was connected with an incredible guy, Tobias Crabtree, and I am so thankful for these beautiful pieces of art that he gave me and the time I got to spend with him :)
|Tobias Crabtree, amazing guy, tattoo artist, climber, road warrior.|
We then packed up the trailer and cut straight through the Mojave desert to hit up a few crags with these cutie patooties....
|Me, Kyle, Collette Lalonde and Ryan Brown|
Photo credit: Sadie Brown :)
|Sadie Brown, quite a character, just like her parents :)|
KOLOB CANYON in Zion National Park. This spot was so rad!!!
This wall showcased some of the coolest sandstone features that I have climbed on in the US.
|Ryan Brow flashes the ultra-classic "Namaste".|
|KT feeling the burn|
|Kolob is deceptively steep, and incredibly tall... 40m pitches bitches.|
|Kolob at sunset|
LIME KILN CANYON, ARIZONA
After a fine day in the Kolob Canyon, we split to Mesquite, Nevada. I really wanted to go back to the Lime Kiln Canyon to sample Jonathan Seigrist's Air France 5.14a. I was curious if my finger was ready to crank like that again. To my surprise, it was, and I was almost one hanging the route after falling on the 2nd last move of the crux on my 3rd go! I was stoked, and pretty certain I could send soon. I then re-hurt my finger on a 5.11 and swore off hard routes for the rest of the trip. This was a hard decision to make but a good one I think. It was the time to just have fun, see some new stuff and focus on my weaknesses while healing my finger.
|Kyle Thomas goes for a repeat of one of the many classic 5.12's at Lime Kiln Canyon.|
RED ROCKS, NEVADA
I planted the seed and easily convinced Ryan Brown to partner up with me for the Rainbow Wall-Original Route in Red Rocks. I have dreamed of climbing this 15 pitch 5.12 mixed route for years. Though I may not of been in top form after re-tweaking my finger days prior, we both climbed so well and Ryan Brown managed to walk away with an impressive onsight!! So proud of him and his battle was incredibly inspiring. Yah buddy.
|Ryan Brown and myself gear up for an attempt at the famous |
Rainbow Wall- Original Route in Red Rocks, Nevada
|Desert tortoise, whuddup!!|
|15 sustained pitches of mixed sport and trad 5.12a. Rainbow Wall, the tall blank face in the background, was all it was cracked up to be.|
The LaBruns flew back home to the homeland and Kyle and I were left with an open road to choose from. Do we go to Bishop and meet up with friends? Or explore new spots in Utah? Trilly and Kyle were pushing for Moab and I had always wanted to climb a desert tower. So we spent a few beautiful days climbing amongst the sandstone towers and boulders surrounding Moab, a tourist town sandwiched between two national parks. Despite being busy, the rock was incredibly inspiring and I hope to return one day with healthy fingers and a desert rack!
|Trilly enjoys the new views|
|The famous Casleton Tower on the right, and The Preist and The Nuns on the left.|
|KT putting down some classy Big Bend boulders|
|Kyle Thomas and Fox Thomas nail the First Fox Ascent of Jah Man, a classic 4 pitch tower in Moab.|
|Campsite hoop session by the river|
JOES VALLEY, UTAH
This pit stop was inevitable. Bouldering was a perfect no-commitment style for healing and gaining confidence in my finger again. That and both Kyle and I have dreamed of climbing at this world class bouldering destination for years. It lived up to all the hype and we had such a good time! We had a great crew to climb with and we found some nice flow in our climbing while sampling and sending many of the classics in the V3-V8 range. I forgot how fun bouldering is; I truly love the simplicity, the energy and the try-hard!
What a gem of a spot!!!!
We love Joe's! We love Joe's!
|One of those boulder problems you could do over and over again. The Angler V2 is not to be missed on a visit to Joe's Valley.|
|Steve Andrew reels in The Angler|
|Speaking of classics... doesn't get much better than Wills of Fire V6. WOW|
|Kyle Thomas locked in on Wills of Fire|
|Dick in a Box V0, obviously classic.|
|Spencer McCroskey takes off on Pocket Rocket V6|
|Heeling hard for the send of a team favourite: Kill By Numbers V5|
|Home for a couple weeks, the right fork in Joes Valley, Utah.|
|Gill Dagg unlocking Tweaker V2|
|Steve Andrew makes Chips V7 look tasty|
|Steve and myself indulge in a perfect highball crack finale to a great last day in Joe's|
Here is a short video I made from a really fun day that we had up at Dairy Canyon. Managed to tick off two V7's and two V8's in a day! A great finish to a great trip. And then followed by a perfect last day of checking out New Joe's area, where I managed to come away with a fast send of the classic V7 Planet of the Apes. We love Joe's! We love Joe's!!
MAPLE CANYON, UTAH
This quick stop was a trip highlight for sure. It was my first experience on climbing cobble stone and what a blast!! This place was so fun, we spent 3 days of climbing in a row, sampling a whole bunch of classic 5.10-5.12's. I MUST go back here!!!!!!
And though it was sad to leave this lovely lifestyle of eat, sleep, climb.... it is refreshing to be home again. Despite a rough year of injuries, I am still so fortunate to be able to live this lifestyle. Blessed.
|rock art @ joe's valley|
I am ridiculously excited for another guiding season On the Rocks and hopefully a splitter climbing season on the Bruce Peninsula! I will find my stride again this summer and ride the shit out of that wave when it rolls in :)
Peace and lovin', Les