Surviving the slush

Another oddly warm, snow-covered day in Arkansas. It’s become a countdown until this area will be too hot to climb. In four more days, the high will be 75F. So the heat is on to send. Drexel had his eye on Flash Gordan (v10) in an almost obsessive manner. And then, first try today, he SENT!!! And on his hike back, he pet a beautiful white horse!! It just came up to him and nuzzled his face!!

The epically long, steep hike through the snow/slush towards Flash Gordan.

The crux of Flash Gordan (V10) that somehow came easy today.

I have my eye on a couple problems, especially Orbital Mechanics (v8) and Leatherface (v7), but both of those shut me down today with their obnoxiously long moves. Hopefully I can find some better beta to bridge the gap, but if not, it won’t be the end of the world. I tried all the moves, multiple times, but each climb had a spot I couldn’t quite link. Despite not sending more than Render (the fun v4 alongside Kneeling Before Power), it’s become quite easy to label a day as “valuable training” instead of “failed performance.”

We’ve started staying at the Steele Creek Campground, which has a mile long paved road that is superior to the packed dirt Ozark Campground approach — unless it’s covered in snow. Then it’s just terrifying. We got stuck at the campground until late afternoon today, along with a friendly Christian college club who spent their morning doing team-building exercises in a nearby field. The upside is that this is the first free campground with an unlocked bathroom! It’s less than 5 miles to HCR, and free, so I don’t know why more people don’t stay here…

A magical forest of bamboo separates our campsite from the Buffalo River.
Drexel can skip stones across the entire river, while my best go was three skips and a plop.
Shells and peas! A childhood recipe borrowed from our neighbors.
I don’t think we’re supposed to pet these dogs, but HE put HIS HEAD in Drexel’s hand, so I don’t think we could get in trouble for that…

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