July 21, 2008

** UPDATED Riggins Recap

What a great time we've had the last two weeks. Climbing in Riggins is never disappointing! The routes are long (except for Lard!!) powerful, thought provoking, and just plain ol' fun. Chad came away with a Chicken Dinner 5.13a red-point and came close to sending Tractor Girl 5.13a/b. Heather had some very proud links on Chicken Dinner and really put in an effort for the redpoint the last few days. It is very easy to see the progress she's made both in movement and mind control. She's awesome! Matt TeNgaio, Tyler, and Joe showed up on Wednesday. Matt had some really good goes on Chicken Dinner and Tractor Girl, topping out on both routes. He's stronger than he realizes on steep cave terrain and pretty much crushed everything he got on. Chad Jr. left with a last attempt send of Lard and some hard work put in on Chicken Dinner. I think Tyler and Joe take home the grand prize though. Both of these guys are very new to hard climbing (as in Riggins was the first experience). Both fought to the death on Chicken Dinner, and learned that all of my silly gym climbing exercises and routes really do mean something in the world of outside madness. They were pretty intimidated walking into the Riggins cave. I told them it's easy and that your first day you can say "take" all you want while figuring out the moves, but after that, taking is no longer needed unless you feel like you're gonna get hurt. Oh man, it was unbelievable, both Joe and Tyler got after it and after the first day, i never heard them say take. It often lead to big commitment, big air, big grins, and some personal successes. Very inspiring to say the least. Those of you who couldn't make it during the last two weeks, really missed out on a meaningful and productive trip. Next year, there will be no excuses!

During our rest day (Wednesday) Chad and I decided to donate blood. I think this could be some of the reason for my lack of climbing strength the last few days of our trip. It may have kept me from sending John Deere but i feel pretty good about things. I gave it an honest effort, learned a lot, and realized i am capable of more than what i think i am. Not only that, according to the lady who drew my blood, i saved three lives in six minutes and forty-seven seconds. Now that's a proud send... I'll be back for John Deere but for now, it's time to party in Seattle for the week...
Some of my favorite things about Riggins...
Afternoon beach life!
Not having to deal with the negative energy of rock snobs and elitist's.
Good movement and steep stone.
Good milkshakes at the Back Eddy Grill.

I had the great pleasure to sit around the camp fire on our last night in Riggins with the legendary, Tedd Thompson. We talked about our mutual friends like Bingham and Stoger. The past. The future. History of the City of Rocks, Leslie Gulch, and Riggins. I've heard so many crazy stories of Tedd's wild ways over the years. I never really formed any sort of opinion of him as it's not in my nature to judge someone I've never even met. And I'm glad i didn't as it might have been a completely different direction. In a matter of hours I came to know a kind, passionate, and motivated new friend.
Tedd Thompson, Dean Lords, Scott ??, and Jeff Landers.
Chad Jr. teaching some of the local kids at the city park.