Do not seek the answers which can not be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then, gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer. -Rainer Maria Rilke
We spent a lovely night in a Walmart parking lot, right behind a McDonalds. Using blankets, towels and some cut-up foam, we managed to cover every single window, keeping us safe and snug inside, and the world’s noise, light, and sprinklings of snow outside.
It’s a gorgeous sunny day, and for some reason we’re staying inside. Okay, maybe not some reason – Drexel is watching ABS Nationals, and my face is chock full of mucus from a head cold that crept in two days ago. Somehow yesterday I managed to complete Orb Weaver, my first v8 (YAYYYYYY), but otherwise my body is begging me to restrict my life to drinking tea or napping. Except tea hurts my tongue, which I almost bit off during a powerful fall yesterday, a strange whip lash effect as my bum hit the pad first, followed by my back and head. At first I just curled into a fetal position and spit blood while Drexel cooed over me, but finally the bleeding stopped and I realized it was merely a flesh wound. I still had a tongue, but I was shaken. My anger at the rock fueled my eventual send.
We have created a Lowdown on Climbing and Campingpage which will be continuously updated as we travel, and should be a valuable resource for anyone else who plans to camp out near climbing crags. Or rest. Or just climb in a new place.
As of Feb 20, 2014, this page covers Horseshoe Canyon Ranch and Cowell in Arkansas, Rocktown and Little Rock City (aka Stonefort) in the Southeast, and Joe’s Valley, Utah.
By the end of our road trip, this page will also have info about various places between here and there that tickle our fancy (e.g. Colorado, Squamish, maybe Leavenworth).
Yesterday’s blog that didn’t upload for some reason:
We climbed only half the day at HCR, but the wicked sun and humidity made any super hard attempts pretty feeble. I spent almost two hours on Orb Weaver (v8) and made great progress, but my skin was raw and screaming and only getting worse, so I finally called it quits. Next cold day, I feel pretty confident about sending my first v8! I didn’t use the best tactics today, and spent too much energy repeating all the beginning moves in efforts to figure out better foot beta for the crimpy crux. It’s always frustrating to unlock your sequence after you’re too tired to perform, but that’s how it goes sometimes… Continue reading Hot days at HCR→
WE MADE IT! The last three days were not at all what we were expecting. We didn’t expect a super long, muddy, icy road, and so that… wasn’t so great. Luckily the ride off the mountain (in a hurry today, to avoid the continuously melting snow that only lent more fury to the muddy mire) was shorter. The lurching and sliding as I gripped my seat reminded me of being on a tiny boat braving the stormy seas.
“The only journey is the journey within.” – Rainer Maria Rilke
More than 600 miles and an ocean of colors has taken us to Horseshoe Canyon Ranch, Arkansas. Logistically, leaving when we did avoided the potentially hazardous snowstorm that has hit the southeast. Personally, I wasn’t prepared to leave this area quite yet. There were still boulders to climb, adventures to be had, people to see.
Ahhhh the relaxation that comes from being in a cozy coffee shop when it’s all grey and misty outside. We thought to climb more this morning, but the metallic tapping of rain on the roof woke us up at 7:40am to tell us that it was time to chill out and take a day off.
DISCLAIMER: This is a very climbing oriented post that will be very different from the usual peppy Meira post.
Climbing at your limit is a very difficult thing. When people watch someone climbing at a high level, the first thing that they notice is always the extreme physical abilities of the climber. “They are so strong!” is always mouthed between onlookers. There is no denying that climbing is a physical sport; It requires the human body to do be pushed to the absolute limits of what is physically possible. Continue reading Mental Warfare→
Friday we returned to Rocktown and enjoyed 50 degree weather. It was a relief to soak up the sun, to let our muscles slowly relax from the cold hibernation of the last few weeks. Alas, what is good for the soul is not necessarily good for sending boulders. Drexel and Andrew had some valiant goes on their respective projects, Golden Harvest (v10) and Iron Claw Sit (v10), but the rock just wasn’t sticky enough to sustain so many powerful moves with ever-greasier fingertips. Continue reading Hailey’s Comet→
Following the adventures of two rock climbers and their minivan