Inform and Inspire

Welcome to Upstate Bouldering, designed around bouldering in the Upstate region of South Carolina. This website is intended to inform the reader of local spots in SC, Western NC and Northeast GA, as well as a blog of my experiences climbing at these great spots. I hope everyone learns of a new place to climb or is inspired to climb somewhere close to them. If you have any comments, please send me an e-mail.

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Thursday, December 1, 2011

Quick Trip To The Bald

With the end of the semester comes a few opportunities for me to get away a little early from work and head up to the Bald for a chill afternoon session...and yesterday was a great day for it! I've had a hit list of routes I've been wanting to tick off for a long time and one of my main goals at the Bald has been to climb all of the V0-V2 routes there (which is around 300+ routes) and to send all of the 3 star classics that are V3 and below. My last 3 star classic V3 was Red Clouds Above in the Southeast area on the East Side, which can be seen riding up the oblique seam/crack in the pictures. I've worked this problem a few times before and honestly couldn't make ANY headway on it, even from a stand just seemed to perplex my body as to which way to move and pivot to stay on the rock. So, with that goal in mind, I took off to the Bald ready to test out the healing tweaked finger and hopefully mark Red Clouds off of my hit list!

I first headed over to the Eight Ball and Winter Of '99 boulders to warm up, and I sent all of the routes (Winter Of '99 V0, Winter Of '06 V1, Eight Ball V1, Corner Pocket V2 and a V1 traverse that went out left below Corner Pocket) on both of these boulders first try. I felt strong warming up and had high hopes heading over to Red Clouds Above. Once at the Red Clouds boulder, I flashed Lizard's Lounge V2 first and then felt like I could flash Red Clouds...until I sat for the start and fell soon after making the first move or so. Its at that point that I realized I was getting seriously pumped! So I started working the stand start and sent the top half of the problem a few times before I tried the sit start again. Being confident that I could send if I could just get my feet under me instead of under the roof, I flailed and flailed on the SDS for about 30 minutes before it just came together and I linked into the stand start and topped out...I was so stoked to finally send this fun and classic problem! I put a couple of bad pictures in this post, I only had my phone for a camera and the sun was setting fast, so the lighting was bad...or at least that's my excuse for putting up such fuzzy pictures;) After the send I noticed my hands were practically numb from pulling so hard and not giving up on the final send, and then I noticed that I had a nice big pinky flapper (on the middle phalanx, below the top knuckle). After taping it up and feeling near spent, I decided to just hit a few cool down routes at the Breakfast area and take off. While sending the Unknown V2 on the Warm Up boulders, right at the entrance to the Breakfast boulders, I realized that I had put my crashpad in some dog poo:(

I was furious that some moronic boulderer or hiker would allow their dog to take a shit right in the middle of a landing zone and not have the decency to clean it up...knowing that if they didn't clean it up that other boulderers would end up putting themselves or their gear in it!!! I'm not one to let too much shenanigans go on in a boulderfield and not say something to the idiots causing the problems, its called taking personal responsibility...and I expect that out of everyone that boulders at the Bald. If you just HAVE to take your dog to the Bald (pretty much a bad idea from the get go due to all the reoccurring problems dogs have created over the last 5 or so years at the Bald), then please keep them under control, on a leash and for god's sake, please clean up their poo and pack it out with you...leave no trace applies to boulderers and their dogs! If you see some moron letting their dog cause problems, then don't be afraid to stand up to whomever it is and let them know that is not acceptable...even if it was John Sherman, John Gill or Chris Sharma is all of our responsibility to tell folks that are jeopardizing all of our access to straighten up or get the hell out!!! I have 2 dogs myself, and love them to death and enjoy taking them with me on hikes and the occasional boulder session, but I always have my dogs under control and never allow them to cause these sorts of serious general though, I just leave them at home to avoid any problems all together. If you are not willing to take personal responsibility for your dog, and realize that you will have to sacrifice part of your bouldering experience in order to do so, then just don't bring your dog with you...its that simple! If you aren't prepared to keep them on a leash and pick up after them, then leave them at home or just don't show up at the local bouldering areas!!!

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