Friday, July 31, 2009

A View

This is one of the views from the top of the German Face (looking south). It is really quite beautiful up there. The weather might co-operate tomorrow with rain starting later in the morning. We will probably stick to the German Face to avoid getting caught above in more difficult terrain.
Tim's at 5:15, Bob's 5:30 trail head at 6am.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Darwin Productions

I received an email from Trevor and he is wondering about some filming on the weekend. In a previous post, I explained Trevor's background and his interest in filming. He is making a full length film on climbing in Newfoundland. He has asked me if he could film some of the development we have been doing out in Manuels. He is fresh back from climbing in BC and asked me if this weekend is OK.
If the weather is good, I would say we will be out Saturday morning. I guess I should shine my head and put on some concealer. If the camera really does put on 10 pounds and 10 years, I should look like Danny DiVeto.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Newfie Big Wall

I was reading Paul's blog "Rock Climbing in Newfoundland". It sounds like Paul and company did a very significant climb. To quote Paul's Blog; "Trevor, Leo, Kaleb, and I linked the three climbs Calculus Crack, Memorial Crack, and The Squamish Buttress into a thirteen pitch effort to top out the Chief. It was a long day that turned our bodies into Alpo and our minds into what you throw up after eating Alpo. This was Trevor's first multi-pitch and given the size and scope of this endeavour he handled it all extremely well. It was definitely a good experience and I will have a few things to say about it all when I have more time."

That is a huge climb! 13 pitches at an average of 100 feet per pitch...1300 feet. That is as high as Half Dome in Yosemite. Leo and I did a 3 pitch 5.7 at the Gunks. We started at 10 am and finished at about 2pm. There was only 2 of us. 13 pitches must have been like a marathon. Holly shit and Cudo's to the team.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Kim's Progress

Kim climbed Tach Auch on lead again. This time she had to hang her own draws and set an anchor. This is a fairly big deal. Anyone knows that when climbing close to your limit, having the draws pre-placed makes life a lot easier. I think she will have to find a nice 5.10 next to really challenge her.
I was going up the fixed line to begin bolting Hat' Shit when I realized I may get a good shot of Kim climbing. Usually you just get ass shots or the top of their heads.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Hat' Shit 5.9 (+)

Beautiful morning out at Manuels today. Bob, Kim, Tim and myself got out. Bob and Tim climbed German Engineered while Kim and I went up Sick Like Dog. We did not go to the upper faces today for a number of reason, one being that I didn't have my hammer with me to sink any bolts.
I had been looking at a line that went straight down off the anchors of Sick Like Dog. Kim and I played on it a little bit when I decided to bolt it. "No Hammer!" I thought. Bob had mentioned that there was a hatchet in out 'cleaning box' at the base of the climbs. I decided to use the back of it as a hammer.
You ever wonder why you are not suppose to run with scissors? Well it just plain stupid. I think repelling and hammering bolts with the business end of an axe coming at your face may fit in the same category. Regardless, today I put up Hat' Shit. I think it is a 5.9 possibly a 5.10a. It is a bit harder than Tauch Auche but still have a hard time calling it a 10a. Kim thought it should be a 10a and I kinda agree with her but primarily because some moves are reachy.
It starts just left of Sick Like Dog up the middle of a short thin face. You gain a ledge for the second and third bolt. The middle face is thin with small feet and thin cracks for hands. Once over that face there is another ledge before a pretty cool lay back move to gain the upper portion which meets up with Sick Like Dog for the last bolt before the anchors.
I sent it and then Tim sent it as well. That was the nail in the coffin for a 5.9. Tim hasn't been climbing all year and well if he could sent it...... It couldn't be a 5.10a!
I almost called it Drunk Like Pig but I will save that for the next one. I TR'd a line between Tauch Auche and Hat' Shit. It will be pretty stiff and I think I will put a ceiling move at the top of it. It will probably go at a hard 10. That is for next time!

Friday, July 24, 2009


We had some new and unusual folk out on Tuesday morning. Tak is always find new people who are interested in climbing...and talks them into getting up at 5am.
Sue on the only hand is the unusual one! Sue is a lovely gal who I have known thru the gym for years. I have never had the pleasure of climbing with her outside. Look who got out of bed. Sue is TRing Candy (5.7).

Technical Problems

I received a couple of comments from people stating that they have checked the blog in the last 3 days. I changed my blog format 3 days ago. On closer inspection, it wiped out any custom changes I made such as the links to Paul's blog and script used for the Google Analytics program I was using to monitor the blog. SO I have the analytics stuff back (I think).

Weather looks good for tomorrow.


I have an analytics program to monitor my blog. In June I was getting all time high of hits, 25-30 per day. For the third day in a row, no hits! I guess I should change my format or something!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Flat Rock

A shot of Main Face with the morning sun. It is hard to beat a sunrise on the east coast.
I hope we will be climbing at Manuels this Saturday morning.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The LSTB Program Spanking (5.11a)

The LSTB Program was a route I helped Leo bolt a couple of years ago. I never did climb it cleanly, I escaped right to the corner.
Today, against better judgement, I decided to jump on LSTB. I got to the crux and got shut down. The crux is beside the second bolt which is at about the level of Taks foot but in line with the rope. There is a crappy left handed pinch, a little nubbin for a right hand and very poor feet. The move required is to get a finger ledge about 2 feet above the pinch. Once to the ledge, there is a huge crack (Tak is looking into it) to gain the upper half of the climb...home free. I had a couple of wide expansion cams for the crack. After, ohh, 30 tries I lowered off defeated.
Jan stepped up to the plate and took off. Jan managed to get the finger ledge and then I found out that the ledge is really a mysterious sloper-fest and the crack wouldn't take anything bigger than a .75 Camolot. Jan managed to make the top making it look easy (bastard).
But in hind sight, what the hell was I thinking jumping on a 5.11a, I deserved a good ass kicking.

Sun Up at Flat Rock

It was a beautiful morning down at Flat Rock. The sun was beaming on the rocks and about 20 degrees.
We had a few new climbers with us this am which brought up an interesting problem. The approach to Main Face is easy but not many 'easy' routes. Spanky's has better routes for new climbers but you have to rap into and climb out.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Climbing Tuesday July 21

Just talking with Bob. We are going to go to Main Face tomorrow morning. We are going to meet at Tim's on Majors Path at 0515. We will be at Main Face from about 6 to 8am.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Another Wash Out

The forecast sucks for the weekend.  It is calling for showers on both Saturday and Sunday.  This will make it 2 weeks with out climbing outdoors.  
Last weekend Matt dropped by and got some glue-in bolts off me.  He said he had a couple of lines down at Flat Rock he wanted to bolt.  I think he was going to do this with a hand drill.  Best of luck Matt!
The last time I had talked to Justin, I had mentioned the line that I had TR'd on the face he had been working.  He had that bolted before I had even talked to him.  Man that guy is a demon with placing bolts.
Other than that, I have been relatively out of touch.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Slender Face

This is a picture Bob sent me of the face we are developing now.  The 'roof' I have been fixated on is to the extreme right and this long short face is just around the corner.  It is about 150 feet long and about 40 to 50 high.  Like most of the rock in the area, it is well featured but not a lot for pro.
Note:  this picture is from a number of years ago when Bob was first scouting this area.  He must have been in climbing withdrawal and had to get out to look at cliffs in early spring.

Mystery Bolts

Bob, Kim and Tak managed to get out on Saturday past.  The week before we scouted out what looked to be a long slab (within the square).  It looked really promising.  Lots of interesting features including vertical rails and an undulating face.  As one works to the right, it becomes more positive and shorter.  This will likely end up with several 2 pitch 5.8 and less.
Bob went to check out the top of it and low and behold there were already 2 bolts at the top.  If you remember, I had found two bolts at the top of the German Face.  Someone had the same thoughts we did but years earlier.  I have no idea who it was.  Regardless, the next time out I may get a better look at it.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Frame of Mind

Once again, the 'summer' phenomena has kicked in. I have complained about this for years and it still happens so I may as well just accept it. I AM OUT OF SHAPE!
Each winter I train to get strong, try to prove to myself (and others) that I am a Rock Climber! To prove that I can climb hard and well enough (in my own mind) so I may be accepted into cult of Avalon Rock Climbers. After endless Sunday night training sessions and many more early morning solo bouldering sessions. After hanging for what seems like hours on the smallest crimps I can handle in the name of getting stronger. After all the effort I put in, in the name of climbing hard, what do I do?
The lovely wonderful summer comes. I begin getting outdoors to climb and develop. We begin putting up some great fun routes. The comradery is great, the energy is infectious. All is good. It is good that is until I try to climb hard.
What goes "grunt, grunt, pitch-smack...grunt, grunt, pitch-smack"? That would be me getting spanked by a route I used to lap!
Acceptance! I just have to accept that summer leads to weakness. I end up climbing only 2 or 3 times per week. The climbing I do is usually only a couple of routes, and easy at that. I drink too much beer. I BBQ too much food and generally become lazy. And then comes vacation! Taken entirely out of my training environment for 2 weeks.
At the end of summer I feel like the Pillsbury Doe Boy attempting to impale himself upon plastic jugs in the gym. The cult just shake their head at what could have been (the pathetic overweight bald guy is trying to slime up another route).
So this is what happens to me when I don't get to climb for a week! Hopefully Saturday will be nice.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Been Busy

I have been a bit slack on publishing but work and life has been busy. I would like to publish other people's pictures, climbing stories/epics, etc. If you have anything you would like to publish send it to and I will try to get it out there.

Post for "Dan"

Check the comment from "Dan" below.

A lot of climbers climb at Walnuts Climbing Gym here in the city. You can get a route guide there that documents a lot of the climbs at Flat Rock. I am not climbing this weekend because I have to work. Usually Flat Rock on Saturdays is quite busy and you may be able to hook up. I know a few guys who would probably take you up on it but I would not want to publish their numbers on the Internet. Justin or Jan might be interested and are usually available. Post a comment with your email address, I won't publish it but I will pass it on.
Anyone interested in climbing Dan, leave a comment and I will publish it.

Sunday, July 05, 2009


Earlier in the morning, Jan, Bob, Matt and Myself went to check out a long slabby face.  It looks quite good with some interesting features.  I don't have a good picture of it but will when we start developing it.  
When Matt and I were bolting, Jan lead up the Upper Face to scout it out.  The rock is really solid and well featured.  When I got up there a little later, Jan was belaying Bob up and Tak and Justin were already at the top.  Jan belayed me up last. 
When I got up there, I realized I had left my drill at the base.  Matt happened to come along.  He was able to spot the roof for me (I dropped a rock over it).  Then he got Justin's drill for me and brought it up.  I placed two set of rappel anchors, one above the route Jan had lead up and one over the roof feature I am fixated on.  Justins drill is awesome.  Mine is a 24 volt Hilti and Justin's is a 36 volt Bosch.  His drill just melted the rock away, really impressive.  And to thick earlier I was showing Matt how to use a hand drill.  It would take an hour to do was that drill did in less than a minute.
It appears that the face immediately above the German Face is the one to be developed next.  I will set up a fixed line on it the next time I am out. 

Sick Like Dog 5.7

Matt and I set up a fixed line to bolt the next route while Jan and others were exploring.  Matt caught on quickly to the bolting thing and within an hour we had the line bolted.  The bottom 1/4 was a little tricky to figure out because it was a little thin and we were trying to keep it at an easy level.  The opening moves are the only reason this was graded at a 5.7.

Matt sent Sick Like Dog (SLD 5.7).  He felt it was really cool climbing.  This makes the 3rd fully bolted line on the German Face.  German Engineered (GE 5.8), Tauch Auch (TA 5.9) and Sick Like Dog (SLD 5.7).

Saturday got busy.

Saturday down at Manuels was pretty cool, except the bugs were out in full force.  There were 10 or more people out climbing.  Matt came out to do some bolting with me.  Andrew, Giz, Beth an Ben came to check out the climbing.  They had a bit of fun on the established lines.  Jan, Bob and Kelly came to do some more exploring.  Tak showed up solo and later on ever Justin managed to get out of bed.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Weekend Climbing

It looks like Saturday is the better day for climbing this week.  40% chance of showers.  We will have to play it by ear.  If all goes well...Sick Like Dog!

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Rock Climbing In Newfoundland

I was told that Paul Chaisson had set up a blog for the Jr Climbing Team and their exploits in Squamish.  They arrived June 29 and were out scoping the territory yesterday.  It sounds like they are pretty stoked.  I wish them all the luck.
I have put the link into my blog.  It is the "Rock Climbing in NFLD" under links to the right.

Noel on Acron 5.8

This is me just starting Acron.  The first bolt is high off the ground and you need to be careful about swinging if you fall here.  If the bolt were lower, there would be a risk of ground fall.  
The route actually starts under and to the right of the bolt but I started from the left arette.  The left definitely makes it harder than a 5.8.