Saturday, February 24, 2007

Topsail Head

Possible project for the summer!?! This is a picture of Topsail Head. I believe the area outline in red could be good. The approach from the top is sketchy because it angles off at about 25 degrees. The rock is solid and it looks very fectured. A bottom approach may be plausible depending on the stability of the talus field (green).

Bob and I have rapped down into the blue section, it is short but well featured. The lower wall is entirely unknown.

The exposure from the top is incredible and could make easy climbs pretty exciting.

I guess you can tell I am getting a little itchy to get outside.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Strength Training on Lead

Exercise "Clip to Clip"

Choose a hard redpoint lead project. After a good warm-up, climb to your high point and lower off. Pull your rope and then immediately start again. Climb to the first draw, clip and lower off. Quickly shake out, clip the second draw and lower off, so on and so forth. Be careful on overhanging routes as the higher you get the bigger the pendulum if you fall close to the ground.

This is great for working a route into submission but you get most familiar with the lower section. It is also good practice for clipping with flaming forearms. To get the best strength benefit it needs to be a hard project, not something you can top out.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Winter Training

Well, it is that time of year. I have been off real rock for about 6 months and I am starting to get REALLY itchy. I am also planning a weekend trip to the 'Gunks' in early April so it is time to get in shape and hopefully a little leaner.

A little inspiration... This is the 'Trapps" one of several huge crags at the Gunks, Upstate New York. There are over 1500 established routes. It is hard core trad climbing with restrictions on bolting placed in the 70's, only the rap anchors have fixed pro.

For the next 3 weeks is a Power Phase. Three climbing work outs per week. These consist of a warm-up, climbing and power training.

Warm-up is an thing that gets the blood flowing. In the gym it is 4 easy laps and at home it is 3 circuits of 15 squats, 15 crunches, 10 dips and 10 pull-ups.

Power climbing is basically climbing at a point where muscle exhaustion occurs in less than one minute. Obviously bouldering fits into this but my focus is sport/trad climbing. I choose a route at my extreme red point level (Hard 10 or 11a) and work it. Start from the beginning if you fall because the point isn't climbing the route but exhausting the muscles.

Another exercise Bob and I like is something I think of as progressions. Choose a red point project and climb the first 3 moves and step off. Repeat this after a short rest (<15 class="blsp-spelling-corrected" id="SPELLING_ERROR_9">maxi um, and finally 3 moves.

4 by 4 is another useful exercise which can be used for power or power endurance depending on your route choices. For power you should find a wall with a red point project and an easier climb together. Climb the project to the high point and fall. Immediately get on the easy one and top it. Lower off and go straight to the project. Repeat this 3 to 5 time or until crying.

Do 5 sets of "exercises" all together. Follow this by a a set of rock rings or hang board and then 3 sets of weighted pull-up (7 reps max).

Stay tuned for other power exercises for climbing.