June 23, 2013

Construction at The Arcane

The Occult (project)

Progress has been slow but steady at the Arcane. Despite only having bolted a few relatively short routes, the amount of route preparation is extensive and may take me several weeks to get these rigs properly equipped, cleaned, and manicured before people should actually climb on them. Even though I keep enticing you with some great photos, please know we really aren't "climbing" right now and that in their current state, these routes are (and the area in general) dangerous in my opinion.
Basalt of this chossy nature and steep angle requires many "route setting" journeys to remove as much loose choss as possible, big and small, and then I'd like to reinforce the remaining loose or possibly loose key holds for both hands and feet with epoxy. This is no easy task for steep routes like this and is only the first step in producing a well manicured and safe route. 

The Occult (project)
Once the routes have been "established" I'll repeat the cleaning process again and again to avoid tunnel vision on one specific route sequence. Looking for, grabbing, breaking, hammering, epoxying any loose holds and dulling down sharp edges and spines that will cut and/or wear on ropes, or rip the flesh off of your fingers. The final construction faze is to move bolts that may not be in the best location for various reasons and brush clean the holds.

 Esoteric (project)
All of this makes for a lot of effort and time per route to complete before I feel comfortable enough with the routes condition to invite people to try it. And of course, by no means will this mean the routes will be free of loose, dangerous, or dirty holds.
 Esoteric (project)

At this moment, my hope for The Arcane is to establish about 8 routes and have them completely cleaned, and ready for people to try. Once I'm satisfied with the end product, I intend to have an "open house" of sorts and invite everyone out to the crag for a day of climbing followed by après drinks and eats around the fire that evening. Keeping in mind, I doubt the main attraction of this crag will produce anything easier than 5.11+, with the majority of the routes being significantly harder. So start doing pull ups and working the hard routes at South Park!

I know many of you are very excited about this crag, and I am really excited for you to come experience it... so please understand if I'm not inviting groups of friends out to help with the construction work right now because it would mean more to me having you come out once the work is done and experience the crag how I see it to be in my mind!