Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Joe's Update #1

Today is my first rest day since I've been here. I drove out on Saturday and got in after dark so didn't get to climb at all. Sunday and Monday were perfect conditions though --- sunny but still with a bit of a chill in the air. On Sunday I climbed at New Joe's and after a long warm up Noah Kaufman and I made our way over to the Ghost King Boulder. I pulled on to the Ghosts of War V12 for a few tries to get my fingers psyched for some smaller holds. Then I down climbed from the top to check out the top out of Ghosts of War and the Ghost King V11. After watching Noah give a few burns on Ghost King, I got psyched to see how it felt. My first go was solid, but I fell releasing a toe hook because I missed the good foothold. I sent the problem on my second go. Super classic line, lots of fun. My fingers were a bit shocked from pulling hard so I took a short break before getting back on Ghosts of War. I had Noah give me some weight through the first moves of the problem so I could feel a pocket halfway up. It felt pretty bad and I dropped off. Without many expectations, I jumped on from the start to try the first moves again and just feel out the problem. I stuck the opening sequence and got my right hand into the small two finger pocket. Unsure of which feet to use and not really finding anything good, I just made a long campus to the good incut above. I stuck this and sketched my way through the sandy topout moves. It was really enjoyable to climb this problem because I had to improvise and climb in the moment. I think it went down 5th try which was really cool.

Yesterday was lots of fun too and again perfect weather. After a warm up, I went up to the Obelisk V9 with Noah and Justin Alarcon. It took a bit to figure out and get motivated for the scary finishing moves. Once figured out though, Justin and I sent the problem. Next on the list was the Black Dahlia a problem rumored to perhaps be the best V10 in Joe's. We saw it and it was pretty spectacular. The line comes out a beautiful slightly overhanging black wall with macro features but not tons of small edges and pockets. The business comes down to a long move to a sloper and then some heel hooking and toe camming to get to a decent lip hold. To surmount the lip you have to pull a long move to a good edge and then press up and over. On my flash go I stuck the long move but didn't feel the heel hook right. After a few more goes I had the problem figured out and sent on my 4th try. We got some cool footage of the problem which should make it into the long awaited "Try Harder" due out in a year or so. Psyched for more cranking tomorrow!

Here's video of me doing Obelisk.

Obelisk V9, Joe's Valley from Matt Wilder on Vimeo.

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