Welcome to my blog. Feel free to search around the archives for some great pictures and what led up to now.

Sunday, October 21, 2012


We waited and it turns out that I made it to finals.  At first I thought they had made a mistake.  But sure enough, I was climbing again the next night.  Iso was brief but luckily we got a preview before we had to go out.  I was the first on the wall and was a little anxious.  The problems were hard and had a lot of dynamic movement.  I had tons of fun on the problems and I give lots of credit to all the people at Stone Age Climbing Gym for the great routes and amazing comp.  I ended up in 6th place and made it out with a giant check!  Already psyched for next year.


So I left work at lunch on Friday and got ready to head up to Albuquerque for the Yank-N-Yard 2012. I expected the drive to take about 3.5 hours so we left at around 1:00 PM for the 5:00 PM isolation.  The drive, however took about 4.5 hours and I had conceded to not participate in the evenings qualifiers, but rather the citizens comp the next day.  I took my time getting to the hotel and got to the gym at about 5:50 PM.  At that point I was in no mental state to climb anytime soon.

Of course, as things go, the manager, Brian, let me know that if I went to iso right then, I could still climb.  I went around to the back, turned in my phone and started warming up.  After almost 2.5 hours of waiting, I went out to my first onsight comp.  The routes were hard, only seeing a few tops each.

After I was done, there were only two more competitors and we waited for the list of people that made it to finals.


Thursday, October 18, 2012

Fun at Hueco

This past weekend I went to Hueco Tanks with Alex.  My intent was to send Dean's Journey, but after I got up on the problem and turned face down to see the rock below, my arms stopped working.  I am really bad at heights.  Then I did Free Willy and Bloody Flapper for redemption.  Then, since it was a little cooler I went over to try Black Mamba, a slopey 3 move problem.  It was not quite warm enough for that.  Since that didn't go either, I did the one move V3 next to it for fun and actually got it on video.  Here is the video and some of the pictures Alex got.

After a while I got on Power of silence and I actually felt really good.  Everything except my fingers.  After crimping Free Willy and Bloody Flapper, then sanding what was left of my skin off on Black Mamba, I just couldn't hold on.

Regardless of the pain, I continued to try it.  After a while though, my feet called and said they'd had enough too.  I guess it will go next time. 

Sunday, October 7, 2012

ABS Local Phoenix Rock Gym

On Friday night, 4-1 Field Artillery Battalion had their post-deployment ball.  Military events like this are an excuse for the women to get dressed up fancy, and the men to get drunk in public.  I, however, was not drinking because I had a competition.  At 4:00 AM Saturday morning I woke up and got dressed for our trip.  At 4:45, we hit the road.  It's been 3 years since I have competed and I was a little nervous.  These local comps are pretty low-key though and I was more nervous about disappointing myself.

We started the drive and luckily for me, I had great travel companions to drive while I slept a little more.

I got to the comp and it was like I had never left.  I actually felt a little more relaxed than I used to be.

The setting there was pretty burly and so I stuck to a lot of the more delicate crimpy stuff.

After getting enough problems to establish a decent score, I decided to work on some of their harder stuff.

There were some really hard problems that I really liked there.

I guess that is the problem with comps though.  If you don't get it during the competition, you may not get a chance to work on it again.

That is when I have to consciously go to my gym and set something like it.  That way I work on my weaknesses.

Luckily for me, there happened to be enough problems my style to get first place.  Next competition is in Albuquerque.  Lots more training to do until then.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Campus Board!

For a while now I have been trying to figure out how to put a campus board up in my apartment without being completely in the way.  Finally I have figured it out.  In college, I built one that just happened to be out of the way enough to not bother anyone.  In this apartment, I don't have that luxury.  Therefore I had to build one that could be put away and to Alex's specifications, wasn't ugly.  Cue the following series of pictures.

The initial step was to build a frame out of 2x4s that was 2' by 4'.  It would be the base for the plywood to mount to.  We didn't get any pictures because we were so excited about the build but it was pretty basic carpentry.  I attached the plywood with wood screws and used carriage bolts to attach legs.  To the back I attached a 2x4 with hinges onto three more 2x4s (pictured later).

Once we had the base built and the legs attached, we mounted it on the wall and got to painting.  I started with masking tape and made rock walls.

Then we got to the computer and printed out some silhouettes of climbers.

Alex very meticulously cut out the climbers with a knife.

Once the climbers were cut out, I sprayed the backs of them with adhesive and applied them as a stencil.

I made sure to keep their feet and hands touching the rock to give the appearance of them climbing the faces I had previously made.

Once I had them where I wanted I did any of the necessary masking to keep my stencil clean.

I had a few cross sections to cut away and it was ready to paint.

Once I started peeling the tape away, the design started to take shape.

A few pieces to remove and we almost had a work of art.

I used tape to keep the climber safe and create rope back to his belayer.

Viola!  A work of art...now let's make it useable.

I started by taking the cut dowels and drilling pilot holes.

Keeping them level, I attached them with wood screws.  

After a good bit of time and lots of drilling later, I had a functional campus board.The legs, attached with a carriage bolt, take most of the weight.

The top is held by a chain, making it adjustable with a small carabiner keeping the chain attached to the screw eye.

As mentioned before, the 2x4 with the hinges is screwed straight into the studs behind the wall.

And there you have it.  It is a functional, collapsable campus board that is not an eyesore.

Let me know what you think!