Sunday, January 25, 2009

Snowy in Boulder

This photo was taken this morning - looks like outdoor climbing will be out for at least a few days. Fortunately I sent my arete project in the Flatirons yesterday (see photo on previous post). The crux move, and only move I hadn't previously done, gave me some serious hardships at first. I just couldn't get my body into a position that would allow me to move slowly enough to the next hold. I was a bit worried that it wasn't going to go down. I switched into a slightly tighter pair of shoes to dig into the small edge a bit more and tried the move a few more times. I finally stuck it when I tried to squeeze really hard. I also leaned my body out to get a slightly better look at the hold just before going - is it possible that this subtly different body position made all the difference? Psyched that I had a chance at doing the problem, I took my shoes off and rested to de-numb my feet and rest my skin. I sent the whole problem next go, though not without difficulty. I didn't really get any of the upper holds perfectly, but persisted. At the end there is a big dynamic to the lip which is quite scary because of the height and landing. When I got there I questioned trying the move for a sec because things weren't feeling perfect. Then I decided I had a good chance and realized that I didn't want to have to link through the crux again. I overshot the lip but then came down on it and stuck it. The mantle was casual and a new classic flatirons problem was born.

I'm thinking about calling it "The Oldest Child" but not fully decided yet - I'm open to suggestions. It lies just below a big climbing feature called the Matron and seems to be the biggest in the set of boulders, like the oldest sibling of the matron. I'm thinking that it's probably V11 though it could be V12 - other people will have to try it and give their opinion (would definitely be V12 in hot weather). I think the problem is 3 stars (perhaps 3-). It's a beautiful feature in a beautiful setting with cool moves. The main detractions are a rocky landing (though no dab potential) and sharp holds. I'm lucky that I did it yesterday because the gully in which it resides will be closed from Feb 1 to sometime in July or August.

We got the send on video too and it should be part of the movie coming out soon, "Rocky Mountain Highball." Hopefully I'll have some video stills to post here soon.

Psyched on a cool FA!!! Perhaps my first good bouldering FA in Boulder.


  1. How about "Rubik's Cube"
    or "bigger, stronger, faster"
    or "sharing"
    or "Emma's big day"
    why "the oldest child?" because it's something worthy of looking up to, and it will kick your ass if you are not careful?
    ...I like that!

  2. What about some of these names, in keeping with the "Matron" theme: "Matron's Firstborn" or "Matron's Progeny" or "Chip off the Ol' Matron"

  3. I'm diggin' all these names. Simply "Firstborn" has a nice sound to it as well. Nice send Matt, the footage looks killer.

  4. I like "Firstborn!" want to see this problem in your film, andy! good job, matt (as usual.)