I have been keeping an eye on the forecast for HP40 for this weekend, hoping to get some good road trip weather...but I just don't know how its going to turn out. As of now, it is predicted to be about 75' all weekend and a slight chance of rain. I don't know about you guys, but I like my climbing in sub 65' weather and think when its much warmer, the friction disappears...so I think I'm going to trade the sweaty road trip to Alabama for a couple of trips to Rumbling instead. I've been wanting to hit some of the classics I've missed, so I plan on taking a couple of trips this week to try to catch up on a few. I've been bouldering around the Bald for what seems like 10 years (probably more like since 2002 or so), and mainly stuck to the West Side boulders and the classic lines that were printed in the old Boulder Dash magazine topo and guide. Then, when the guidebook came out, I wanted to hit all the lines I hadn't seen yet, and see all the boulders in the other areas. I have almost completed all of the boulder routes at Rumbling, in my grade range, and think its time to start focusing on the classics and harder problems I couldn't get the first go round. I'm hoping to climb a few of these this week, while the Bald is open.
I am also planning a few trips up to Grandmothers and Blowing Rock for the coming months, and hopefully will be getting back over to Lilly within the month also. I've been to the Boone area a few times to boulder, but its so hard to navigate the boulders unless you have someone to show you around or the old Henson topo that tends to pop up on occasion. Anybody willing to help out with either the topo or a crude map of boulders for these areas? I can use the info posted in RC.com to figure out the routes, but just need to make sure I'm at the right boulders. I keep hearing so many people claim that these are the BEST boulders in the South...but I haven't been too impressed the few times I went. They were nice, don't get me wrong, but the local Jedi and Bearfield boulders stack up almost even as far as number of routes/boulders and overall quality...no kidding. After bouldering at so many places over the last 15 or so years, I cant see what makes them any better than Rumbling Bald, which I think is one of the top 3 areas in the South...hands down! I've begun to wonder if the locals just don't get out to other areas for comparison, or if I'm just missing some of the boulders. Either way, I hope to find the same mystique and satisfaction everyone else finds in these areas.
After the trips to Blowing Rock and Grandmothers, my spring climbing season will be almost over, and then I'll have a little less than a month til I get married. We hope to get a little paddling in before we head to Portugal/Europe for a couple of months. We wont be able to get our usual summer whitewater/flatwater season in over there without our boats and gear, so we're going to try to stuff it in before we leave and after we get back. Once in Portugal though, I'll be climbing almost everyday on some of their "blocs" and sport routes, before I head to Fontainebleau for my dream bouldering trip.