Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry X-mas

Hope everyone has a great holiday season.

Right now Linda's family, all 11 of them are in town and staying with us. The house is pretty crowded. In addition some of their friends are here as well adding another 4 people to the group during the days.

The kids have all been learning to ski up at Sandia and having a blast. Linda has gotten in a couple of days of skiing and I a couple of days of snowboarding. It's been quite a while since either of has has done snow sports and my experience was pretty limited anyway.

We all just finished opening presents this morning. Dylan's favorite seemed to be a shinny bag that one of his gifts came in, pretty typical really. He would put it on his head and play hide and seek.

Dylan is having a blast playing with all his cousins and being doted on by all the adults.

The whole gang made it to the ABQ Bio Park for teh River of Lights Festival which was pretty cool. They build a bunch of light sculptures, some of which move and light the Children's Fantasy Garden, it is pretty fun to walk around in the dark and see the lights, literally millions.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Music Time

Today Dylan's school had a class brunch for the holidays. So even though it was not his day to go to school he got to see his teachers anyway. The food was pretty good, it was a pot luck, I brought milk . . . not much of a cook. The kids all had fun running around and playing with instruments. Dylan really likes most all instruments and was the one who opened the boxes that had the bells and symbol rattles. Then he got to sit and play the Ukulele.

He must have been halfway decent since he had an audience, yet he was unhappy with what he was hearing so he tried to re tune the Uke.

After the party was over we headed to the Clay's house so he could hang out with Jaxon West. Happy Birthday Jaxon, he turned 2 today. They had a blast playing in Jaxon's room and had a lunch of Mac Cheese and roast beef.

Full day for the little one.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Second try with the Wave Bubble

Here is his reaction the second time we subjected him to the bubble.

Watch the video in the previous post first.

Old shots and video from Thanksgiving

Here are a couple of shots of Dylan from early last month.
Nice black eye. . .
Sweet new house slippers. . .

Yes the black eye was just when Dylan got out of hand with a marker, but it's still funny, since he did not actually get hurt.
Over Thanksgiving we headed to the SF Bay Area to vivit my family. We made it to the Monterray Bay Aquarium and the California Academy of Sciences, both very cool places to check out regaurdles of it you have kids or not.
This is some video of Dylan's reaction at the Aquarium to a glass bubble that the wave surges push water over. This is the first time we subjected him to it.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Here is a video of something that Dylan only did for about a week. I have no idea where he learned it, not school since he had not been but once for the previous 5 week so it must have been some adult.

Here are some shots from our stay in Austin, mostly stuff from Halloween since this was really Dylans first Halloween. He was too young and not walking yet last year. Here we are with a couple of the cousins, Brian and Cady on our way to a Halloween party at Cady's school.

As you can see Dylan was dressed as a Chinesse boy. Here he is diligently making a mask, marker in one hand and stickers in the other.

We did not really think about how cruel this costume could be. If you 've ever felt the fabric of this type of clothing you know that is is super slick. Here Dylan is longing to climb up the bouncy slide but keeps slipping back down. Eventually I helped him up a few times and he had a blast.

After the slide Dylan got snakes painted on his face, Cady had some face painting done earlier and Dylan was curious about it.

Here is the whole crew of cousins and a few friends that went trick or treating. Dylan who had never had candy was determined to get as much as possible and was the third to last person back out of the group.

And what Halloween post would be complete with out some gore. Lindas fingers with some sort of bite. This is actually about a week after she first noticed them and after the swelling became more localized in just her fingers, yes her whole hand swelled up. She has no idea where she got them but first noticed them the day she arrived in Austin so it was in the hotel in Louisville, the airplane, airport or in Austin at some point.Here is another scary sight for those climbers that are non parents, the crag nursery. On most days that Dylan was at the cliff in the Red River Gorge and Spain for that matter he was not the only child. We saw infants as young as 3 months out at the crag.

More about our trip to come soon.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Some Photos

Here are Doug and his girl friend Halina, you will notice the tan, not black pants that Doug is sporting.
Brian and Lahla (sp?) manhandling Dylan
Dylan saying hello to his B-Day dessertand the reaction to trying it.

Fall colors at the New River Gorge.

The New River Gorge bridge, the longest span single arch bridge in the Western Hemisphere, so they claim, 1700+ foot arch length. One day a year they close the bridge to traffic and let people walk out on it and base jump off and other such activities, thankfully this was the day before we arrived.Your choice of tasty local beverages when you are in Kentucky, Ale-8-one is basically ginger ale and not too bad, the beer, well I don't know about that.

Desperatly trying to up load images and the WiFi connection is terrible

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Funny Video

Well, since we have been terrible about taking pictures on this trip, here is a funny clip of Dylan and one of his favoite foods.

What happens when he dose not get it fast enough and how happy he is when he has it. Guess what it is...

If you guessed BACON, you win, not that Linda is exactly proud of the fact that Dylan is all about BACON.

Dylan got over his fever after a few days and by the end of the week he was back to hanging out at the crag while we climbed with Chris.

Towards the end of our stay at the Red, Doug and Halina made it out from Chicago. Even though the weather was terrible and everyone that was going to come down with them bailed, they still made the trip to meet Dylan and see us. We had not seen Doug in at least 5 years so it was good to see him. For those of you that know Doug there is big news, both Linda and I made the same first comment upon seeing him, he wasa wearing pants...that were not black!!! Still had the black shirt and jacket though.

After the week at the New River Gorge in West Virginia with Chris we headed to Pikeville, KY. A friend of mine from college, Brian Sohn lives and teaches HS there. We got to see his house that he's been in for a few years and meet his fiance. We also go to enjoy some of his great cooking.

Right now we are in a hotel room in Louisville getting repacked so that Linda and Dylan are ready for their flight to Austin, TX tomorrow morning. They are both looking forward to seeing Linda's mom and all the cousins.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Dylan is SICK

So I'm sitting in the hotel room with Dylan while Linda is out climbing with Chris, which of course is what Linda was doing yesterday while I was out climbing.

Our last day at the Red Dylan was not himself, he just wanted to be held and that was pretty much it, so we called it a day quite early and headed back to the cabin so he could rest, this was Saturday. The next day we packed up and said good bye to Doug and Halina from Chicago and headed out to the New River Gorge in West Virginia. All Dylan did during the whole drive was to sleep. He had a tempurature of 103 as some point, I don't recall exactly when. We checked into our cabin out here and while it was in a bueatiful canyon with a creek nearby it was also old and quite drafty with only a fireplace for heat, so we checked out possibly loosing a $250 deposit and headed to town for a warmer place to stay. While I was checking with the first hotel we came to, Linda came charging in and reported that Dylan's temp had gone up to 105, (now Linda had him in the car asleep wrapped in a down jacket which I think played a roll in his temp being so high) so we headed to the emergency room in Oak Hill which is the closest hospital. We spent the next 3-4 hours in the hospital while they ran tests, took blood and put Dylan on an IV with some antibiotics.

So he does not have the flu, nor strep throut or an ear infection. It is likely just a bug that he needs to work through to get better. OH and the hospital was getting his temp at 103, not quite as scarry as 105.

Now it is Tuesday and he seems to be down around 100-101 which is good but still ery sluggish he has been napping for more than 3 hours already and is making no effort towards getting up. So we shall see.

Monday, October 12, 2009

It’s been awhile, OH well.

And I thought coming home for a few days would be relaxing and all. Instead we were constantly running around trying to get ready for our next trip while also trying to sleep off the jet lag from our previous trip.

We made it out to climb at the Upper East Fork one day while we were home. Fun to get on some more new routes without having to travel very far though I will quickly run out, there is a pretty hard bouldery project though that will take awhile to do. Anyway, we had a good time climbing with Curran, Anna, Sondra, Matt L, Doug, Lance and Sarah.

I then left on Monday morning to drive out to the Red River Gorge. Along the way I stopped at Horseshoe Canyon Ranch. It rained most of the night while I camped and most of the morning as well so I headed into town to eat breakfast then back up. It was obvious that I was not going to get to climb but I still wanted to check the area out. The climbing looked really fun, lots of routes and bouldering to be done. I also got to see a fair bit of wildlife while hiking around looking at the boulders. A really kind of spooky, big black snake, several stick insects that looked like copper pipe and walked like robots, they are so weird when they walk it looks very unnatural, a big fat millipede though not as big as the one previously pictured and a few other less interesting critters.

The next day I drove to Louisville to meet Linda and Dylan at the airport with 20 out of 22 hours of driving out of the way. We figured that a few hours on the plane versus 20 hours in the car was worth it. Did some grocery shopping in Lexington on our way out to the Red and made it out to the cabin that our friends from Austin had rented by about 7 that evening.

Our first day out we met up with a couple that had a kid that was almost 4 and did a few routes with them at Global Village which we had never been to. Kind of a nice cliff but where it really shines is in the 5.7 to 5.9 range with traditional routes, there are several harder routes including a rarely repeated 5.13 with absolutely no chalk on it. In fact the 2, 5.12’s had no chalk on them either. We did a 5.11 that was pretty fun though.

On our way out at the car we ran into another couple with a 20 month old or so. Marty was the mothers name and I noticed that they had Idaho plates. Turns out that they are from Rexburg which is where Kyle and Emily, who babysat Dylan one night in August so that Linda and I could go on a date, are from. Naturally they know them so we traded juicy gossip about them in the parking lot.

At the end of our trip to Spain Dylan took a spill while running around in the driveway in front of the Alburgue. Here is the result,
We spent the last couple of nights in a hotel in the town of Sant Bois outside of Barcelona but pretty close to the airport. The hotel was called El Castell, and as it sounds was built in or more likely on top of and old castle dating from the 9th century. The website, since I did not take any pictures is, , you should check it out.

We spent one day in Barcelona, again going to La Rambla for a couple of hours and checking out a free museum that is run by one of the local banks. On La Rambla we saw these guys….
Which lead to this reaction from Dylan,
Here are some shots of where we stayed, the building
Dylan with Beatrice that lived in the house next door and loved to come over and play with him in the evenings.
And a shot of the entire town,
Here is a view of Barcelona from the National Art Museum, which is pretty beautiful.
This struck me as interesting, something seems to have been lost in translation,

Monday, September 28, 2009

Now we have FASTER WIFI

We moved on from Rodellar and are now in a small town outside of Barcelona for a couple of nights before we fly out. The hotel we are is is an old castle that has been redone in a very modern way. The building was first built in 801 AD so there is quite the contrast with the modern art and furniture that is about.
I have no idea what is going on with the underlining.

The hotel has faster wifi that the Albergue did so I've loaded a bunch of photo that I'd meant to previously.

Here is a shot of someone on El Delfin in Las Vetanas.

Ah, the choices you have to make when in Europe, wine, climb, or chocolate yummyness.
Claude, Dylan and I in front of the castle at Alquezar.
Steve McClure, Mr 5.15a and 5.14 on-sight warming up on Toma Costanazo.
Dylan hanging out below the Aquest Any Si cliff, this cliff had the best spot for him to hang out so we spent an inordinate amount of time here. Linda even sent the cliffs namesake route, Aquest Any Si which is 5.12c after 5 tries. Way to go Linda, her hardest send to date.
Cobbled surface on the bridge at El Puente.
More to come tomorrow hopefully. We will be heading to Barcelona for the day. See so of you soon.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Resting and Stuff

Fig trees everywhere,
Toads on the road,
sweet wines
Sore skin and toes
Rest day time

The first of our 2 climbing days was good, I'd hung the draws on a 5.13d on our previous climbing day and managed to send the route, Claude tried a 5.13 that looked pretty good but decided he did not like it so much. Linda lead another 5.11+.

The second climbing day was pretty much junk for Claude and I. We are both feeling the effects of not having enough time to rest and at this point with so few days left it is unlikely that we will take the extra rest days needed since that would mean that we just stop climbing for the rest of the trip. Linda however got on a 5.12c on lead and did all the moves just fine with only a couple of hangs to work sections out. I think she can do it and so does she so we left draws up on that route, so that will be our focus on our next day out.

Dylan is learning to say please when he wants something, a little word that the school Claude works at pushes. He also said "Sorry Daddy" when he head butted my glasses by accident, so he is learning some nice things on the trip. His second 2 year molar is coming in and his third looks like itis about to break skin. We got some steroid cream for his rash, similar to hydrocortizon cream and that is pretty much gone and he seems sooo strong not, maybe I used a little too much... not really.

Sorry about the lack of pictures last time, they had been loading for an hour and were not done yet so I was over it, our wi-fi is incredibly slow though I think it is as much the computer since the others that have stayed here have had no issue with it. OK battery is dying so enough for now.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Three days on

Three days on. Pretty painful on the body and the skin. Our last rest day when we were doing laundry we checked out the bridge at El Puente, here is a shot of the bridge and the surface, talk about cobblestones.

There are so many strong climbers here. Steve McClure from the UK was out for a week. Trying to on-sight 8c or 5.14b. Only maybe 5-10 climbers in the world have on-sighted that grade. Here is a shot of him warming up on Toma Castanazo which is a great route that Claude and I have done during our stay. There is a couple from Italy/Chex where the girl climbs 5.13 and the guy is on-sighting every 5.13b and several 5.13c's. I have not seen him fall yet.

Also here is a shot of La Surgencia which is an incredible cliff. The "small" grey wall on the left is actually 100' tall. The routes in the central cave are 40m meter pitches or about 140 feet, huge.

Today, Linda and I climbed, Claude took the day off for the most part, after one route he decided that he was too tired to keep climbing and so he will get two days in a row off. I'm starting to think that he had the right idea. Though I did have a good day of climbing, doing a 5.12c, a 5.12d and on-sighting 2 5.13a's.

Linda may have found a project that is solid 5.12. Yesterday she did a second 5.12a very quickly, this time on lead the first time.

Claude has been climbing pretty well. Flashing 5.12+ on most days.

We have a rest day tomorrow then 4 days of climbing out of the following 5. Then we will head into Barcelona for a couple of days before heading home.

Dylan has been having some sort of skin/allergy issues and today I went to the farmacia to get some cortizon cream for him. So hopefully things get better in the next day or so. In the past when we have used this sort of cream improvements have come pretty quick.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Ahh Weather

Today we took a semi forced rest day. It rained a lot last night and quite a bit this morning. We were planning on climbing but motivation was low so Linda and Claude stayed at the Albergue with Dylan and I went for a hike around the canyon to look at some of the walls we have not gotten to yet. There were a handful of people out climbing but nowhere near as many as on the previous days.

On our last day of climbing Linda sent her 5.12a that she had done on TR. Claude did a 5.12 and the extention to that route which was 5.12+ and I on-sighted a 5.13a and a 5.13b. Here is a shot of the 5.13a, called El Delfin. It climbs a cool feature and because of this is considered classic, but it is really sharp and overated as far a quality goes IMO. There is a climber on it in this image that I took today while out walking.

Here is a shot of Dylan hanging out by the river while Claude and I were up at El Delfin and the other routes in the area. The routes that Claude and I did were in an area called Las Ventanas, "the windows" where there are 2 arches and a big steep wall to their left. The routes in the arches are on pretty fractured rock and in some cases it is a wonder that the holds don't pull off the wall. The steep wall to the left however is really cool, the further left you go the better it gets. Claude did La Cena de Isodoro which follows an angling crack through the overhang that is dripping with tuffas and the extention adds another 20 feet on top that climbs 2 tuffas that join up near the anchors. The 5.13b that I did was further left up a blunt arete and called A Cravita, which is supposed to be the classic 8a at Rodellar. It was really good to say the least. Fun tuffa climbing to start then a little boulder problem over a roof to some more tuffas, a jump move to a good hold then flat to sloping holds the rest of the way to the anchor and past, I did not clip them till they were at my waist.

The whole day has been spent basically indoors, though it means that Dylan got a nap today, something that only happens on rest and travel days. Because of this he has been pretty good all day...until he fell down the stairs in the Albergue...which was pretty spectacular, took a couple of complete rolls, Linda was sitting at the bottom talking to the caretaker and turned as he got to her and grabbed him...He is fine, but with a couple of nice bumps on his head to show for his efforts. Maybe I'll get a picture of his OWWIES for everyone to share in his pain.

And here is a video of Dylan eating cereal when we were staying at the refugio at outside of Montgrony. I hope you enjoy it because it took something something like 3 hours to load over the free wi-fi at the Albergue, so I will probably not be posting any more videos.

Also Happy Birthday's go out to Melissa "MEL" Anrig and Scotty B.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Pictures This Time

Linda climbing Vitage a Venus @ MontgronyDylan helping to belay Linda, notice there is no way that he is letting go of that brake end, he needs to work on giving slack though.
Dylan double fisting a sausage sandwich at the train station in Girona.
A shot of the Grand Boveda @ Rodellar, this cliff has about 40 routes from 20m at the left end to 30m in the middle and 40m in the right hand cave. Very impressive wall and everything looks great, although kind of intimidating.

We are taking our first rest day in Rodellar, so we headed to the nearest bigger town, Barbastro to do some grocery shopping then to one of the "camping" areas to do laundry, 4 euros a load, pretty expensive. The climbing here is prett incredible, the rock is very featured making steep climbs relatively easy.

Linda has done a 5.12a on her second try, though on TR so she will try to lead it, maybe tomorrow.

Claude has on-sighted a few 5.12's and done a couple of 5.12+ on his second try, but is close to doing some harder stuff as well.

I have on-sighted a 5.13a and flashed two 5.13b's so far in the two days that we have been here. My thumb was a bit sore though after the second day, so I will be spending some quality time with a bag of frozen spinach tonight.

Given how beautiful the area is, it is really a shame as to how poorly it is treated. If you go anywhere off of the trail, and most of the time this means just feet since there is a ton of undergrowth that is spiny and viscious, you will find that people have used the bathroom, and not just to wizz. I don't remember it being so bad back in 2001 when Linda and I came to Europe. It seems as though some facilities in the canyon would be nice or at least near the trail head.

Our intro to Rodellar was pretty rough. We headed to the popular warm up wall and Linda got on a route. She was only at the first bolt when I heard a scream and a really loud thud, I was further away watching Dylan at the time. Apparently a belayer was looking down while holding the GriGri open when the climber fell. They hit the ground from maybe 40 feet and definately broke an ankle or more. The Guardia Civil flew a chopper in and dropped a medical team and a trail guy without touching down. Then came back and with military precision loaded and were ontheir way in about 15 seconds. The drop off took significantly longer. Needless to say, Linda has been a little spooked and Claude and I will not let anyone outside of our group belay us. If you look around it seems as though every other person you see belaying is doing it flat out wrong.

It is going to be difficult to get climbing shots here since we only have one rope and the routes are pretty big. We climbed at a cliff called Pince Sans Rire yesterday and we did 3 routes that were 30 meter or longer. It rained several times during the afternoon and it was no issue as the wall overhung 20-50 feet so it was easy to stay dry.

More to come.

Monday, September 14, 2009

On to Rodellar

Just a quick post.

We spent a few days climbing at an area called Montgrony which was pretty amazing, tuffa climbing, unlike anything back in the states. t was good to spend some time getting used to the style of climbing that is what we expect out here. We stayed at a refigio at the top of Col de Morlla (sp?) and every morning we would sit outside after breakfast watching Dylan play with the other kids that were staying there with their families and see several bikes go by, just thinking that my parents would have had a good time out there, even saw a tandem go by. The cliffs at Montgrony are on either side of a Sanctuario (monastary) and the approaches are great, zero minutes.

Battery is dying on the computer so...

Happy birthday to Grandma Brinckerhoff, Trinty Eckstien both September 11th and Linda's father which is on the 15th or so he claims it varies because of the Chinese calendar. More to come latter with pictures.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Headed to Barcelona for the Day

Dylan´s first ride on the metro, gotta hold on.
Signatures in the mens room at the climbing gym.
Grafitti on the walls in Barcelona, this one is for my mom.

This morning both Claude and I slept in and Linda and Dylan went for a walk in the morning around town. Once everyone was properly motivated we headed out at about 12:30 and grabbed some lunch on our way to the train station here in Girona, about a 15 minute walk. We caught the train to Barcelona and headed for the biggest climbing gym in the city to get some guide books for our next couple of stops. The gym was pretty tiny but the facilities are pretty nice. Apparently they hold a big competition every year and so many of the top climbers from around the country and onesthat are in the country stop by and climb or compete. Some of the lockers had these climbers signatures and dates.

After the gym, Claude headed to the modern art museum while Dylan, Linda and I headed for La Rambla so Dylan could watch the street performers. We saw a guys that was really good with a soccer ball doing a juggling act that Dylan and I were impressed by. The other highlight was the guy doing big, bigger that most of the children around, bubbles. I was surprised because a lot of the ¨performers¨were actually doing nothing, just dressed wierd to pose and take a photo with people.

We all ended up catching the same 8:15 train back to Girona and while Dylan was getting fussy he managed to stay up till we got home so he could have a bath. A fun day though the 12 euro price per train ticket to go to Barcelona means that it may have been cheaper to drive. OH and the 6 euro price for the 7up I got with dinner at a resturant on La Rambla was rediculous.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Off To Spain

As many of you know we headed to Spain recently for Linda´s sabbatical. We met up with Matt to take us to the airport in the morning then stopped by ¨Mista¨ Claude´s place to have him join us. The flight to Atlanta wet smoothly, though Dylan did complain durring the landing that his ears hurt, but at least he was able to tell us. The layover in Atlanta was pretty long, 4+ hours which was maybe a little much. Then it was onto Barcelona which was a 9 hour flight and Dylan was trooper, he did really well, he fought taking a nap but eventually we got him to go down for a couple of hours. After that though once he awoke he was a handfull, luckily we only had a couple of hours left at that point.

Once in Barcelona we got our rental car, I´m glad we opted for the small station wagon.
Dylan naturally napped the entire way to Girona where the family that Claude stayed with while teaching lives. Upon arriving we pretty much ploped down and vegged out. We had a quiet restful night, followed by a lazy morning.

About 1 in the afternoon we headed out to climb at an area called Sederrna about 45 minutes away. It is a really pretty canyon with swimming holes and limestone cliffs on either sided. We headed for a cliff with 4 routes, 2 5.11´s and 2 5.12´s, Claude and I did all 4, though Claude fell on one of the 5.11´s and I took on one of the 5.12´s while Linda climbed on 3 of the routes. Dylan had a blast hangin out by some of the pools near the base of the wall, throwing rocks in and looking at the fish.
Then we headed to another wall that Claude had wanted to climb at before but lacked the fitness for since he was focused on teaching at the time and had not climbed in almost a year. It was a nice steep wall from 40-60 feet tall and the easiest routes were 5.12c. Being jet lagged and all we got on one of them. Claude nearly on-sighted it, then I flashed it and Claude gave it another good go but ended up falling near the top again. The holds and some of the movement reminded me of The Beast at Rifle, CO. All in all it was a good day out and everyone had a good time, even if it did not really show since at the end of the day we were all exausted from the previous day still.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Dylan Starts School

No pictures this time.

Dylan started school this past Thursday, yippie.

The previous Thursday his teacher came by the house in the evening to meet him on his turff and he seemed to like her.

Then on Tuesday we went to the school for an orientation and Dylan got to check out the classroom, playground and meet some of his classmates.

Then on Thursday I dropped him off in the morning and he did not even care that I was leaving. They had a big tub on legs set up outside with water and some dinosaurs in it and when I asked for a kiss goodby Dylan picked up a dinosaur and gave it a kiss, well at least I did not have to put up with a screaming clingy child, OH well.

Dylan will be going two days a week for most if not all day. The main challenge, and I told the teacher this, is going to be getting him to nap. He did not nap his first day, but at least he did not loose it and wake the other kids up. Other than that his first day was a success.

Another Attempt at Camping

Well last weekend we headed to Datil to try camping with Dylan again. The first try resulted in several hours of crying and me sleeping in the front seat of the car with no sleeping bag. The second attempt ended with about 45 minutes of crying at 2 AM when Dylan got cold because he will not sleep with a blanket on and he was in his pack and play. This time was maybe more successful, Dylan slept in the tent with Linda and while he did not get to sleep at his usual time, he spent about an hour looking at the stars and playing with a headlamp, he did eventually fall asleep. Through out the night he kept kicking the sleepingbag off and would wake up unhappy but never out right crying and Linda would quickly bundle him and warm him back up.

We had a whole crew out to climb with and for Dylan to play with. Chris, Jo(anna) and Trinity got to try out their new tent, Betty and Eric came out but wisely took a different camp spot down the canyon. On Sunday Jodie and her daughter Livia came out to climb as well. We also ran into Debi Evens and Mark Ondrias from the gym. Linda climbed we and managed to send Technowitch 5.12-, which for her is more of a mental break through. She has tried the route off and on over several years and always proclaimed it too hard or too reachy. Finally on that weekend and the previous one she commited to just getting it done and in the end it only took her a handful of tries to figure out the moves and send, though on Saturday she fell from 1 move before the anchors because she could not find the hold that you clip from.

Since I'm still nursing the sprained thumb I did just a few routes on Saturday, then on Sunday morning Joanna and I rode our bikes from the entrance to Datil to Pie Town and back. Upon returning we broke down camp and I headed up to do a couple of routes, just taking it easy but hopefully doing enough to maintain some amount of fitness.

Here is a shot of Dylan passed out in the tent in the morning.
And a shot of him waking up.
Finally hanging at the crag with Livia and Trinity on Sunday.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Chris and Joe's Playground and Datil

Here is some video of Dylan enjoying the play equipment in Chris and Joanna's backyard.

Our backyard on the other hand is a weed infested mess, well except for the patio. We'll get around to finishing up the backyard eventually. Probably after we build a garage back there so that there is less to maintain and we don't need to destroy something that we put in when we do the garage.

This weekend we headed to Datil on Saturday with Kyle and Emily. Emily is an intern at the gym and was working the kids camps, she finally admitted that she was happy to see the kids walk out the door for the last ime after dealing with them for 2 1/2 months straight. Sadly they are headed back to Idaho for school later this week. Anyway, Kyle sent Technowitch 5.12a and both Emily and Linda gave it a good try as well. I climed 2 routes, one with a thumb brace on which I was constantly pushing against, BAD (see below), and one with nothing on so I held the thumb back which put some stress on the joint, also BAD. So I'll be taking another week off and try again next weekend.

This morning I tried out riding to see how my thumb would put up with it. I sprained my thumb a week and a half ago holding a swing in the Crystal Cave, so I have not been able to climb since then and went for a run while in Datil which was not very good. My right knee is still giving me troubles, felt like someone was stabing an ice pick into the side of my knee if I did not land just right on my stride. Anyway, riding went well as I can keep weight off the joint that hurts and drink with the other hand. I just need to be careful that I don't run into any rough patches without being aware. So I headed up S14 from Tijeras since the pavement is really smooth up there and not so nice on Route 66. Then at teh top since the thumb was feeling pretty good I headed around the race loop out Oak Flat to NM 217. Loads of cyclists out and pretty great weather.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

What Else

We went to a new area in the Jemez after I got back from the OR Trade Show while Linda's mom was still here. The area was really pretty, you hike from the road up over a low ridge and drop down into a little river valley on the other side. The area is called the Upper East Fork, of some river presumably and is just up from Las Conchas. The routes are nice, mostly slightly overhanging and the 2 main walls are pretty tall. The Monster Wall which has mostly 5.11 and 5.12 routes is about 60-70 feet tall and the Spegetti Westtern Wall, mostly 5.10 and 5.11 is maybe 90 feet or so, pretty tall for the Jemez. We headed out with Marc Ripper.. and had a good time climbing on new stuff, it is getting hard to find new routes to get on that are not pretty terrible or extreamly hard, so it was nice to climb some new, good 5.11's and 5.12's.

When we first got to the wall Marc and I headed to the base to figure out which routes were which and check the hang for Dylan. As we wandered along the base of the wall there was a bunch of chirping and we almost stepped on some very small birds. They did not take off and fly away but at times they tried. I'm guessing that they had been booted from or something happened to the nest. Marc and I each scooped a bird up to show Dylan, the one I was carrying finally took flight, sort of falling toward the ground in a controled glide then all of a sudden really took off. The bird Marc was carrying just stayed put and Dylan got to check it out up close.

After Dylan had some time with the bird we returned it to where we found them and an hour or so later they were gone. Later in the afternoon we got rained on pretty hard for a bit, pretty typical when your in the mountains at about 10k feet. Here is a shot of Dylan goofing with Popo under the shelter of the wall.

I did not hear him say it but apparently Dylan was saying "Thunder, dangerous, go home" in Cantonees, which was way beyond me, although now I might be able to follow. Needless to say we all did another route to the sound of distant thunder after the rain let up. We hiked out in a light rain and Dylan fell asleep in the Sherpini. All in all a fun day out.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

A couple quick videos of Dylan

Here are a couple of quick videos of Dylan. This first one is when I was trying to get him to greet Linda's mom at the airport when she was coming out to watch him so I could go to the OR Trade Show.

Needless to say, it did not go over real well with her, but he eventually warmed up to her after a day or so.

The next is of one of Dylan's new "skills"

He still usually lands off to one side, but he still loves it and then likes to just lay there and wallow in the glory of success.

Friday, July 31, 2009

OR Trade Show Trip

Well I've been back from the trade show for a week now. Had a chance to rest up and get used to being back at home and not understanding half of what Dylan says. Linda's mom tok care of him while I was gone and so he learned quite a bit of Cantonees that I have not had the chance to pick up, not to mention how quick a child learns words.

I met up with the gyms climbing team in Maple Canyon on my way out to Salt Lake City. We climbed up at the Pipe Dream Cave on my first day there and their last day. I then ran into Betty and Eric who I thought were in the Sierras in CA climbing but they had started on their way back to ABQ early. So I climbed with them the next day and one of the kids from the team, Richard who I was taking to the OR Show with me. The next morning Richard and I hung out and taked with Dave Pegg of Wolverine Publishing, some of the best guide books out there come from his company, and waited for Chris Grijavla to show up. Richard and I then headed to the Pipeline and did a few routes and headed to SLC.

The show did not seem as busy as in previous years. Not as many people milling about and there were several empty booths as well. There were also no show stoppers this year, there really was no real buzz about any one thing in climbing. I don't know if suppliers are holding back on things or just hae not been putting the money towards R and D, but in the past years when I've gone to the show there is always a got to have item and there just was not this year. I ate at 3 different breweries in three night, they all had pretty good for, I have no idea about the beer though. Rode my bike once with Sam Krieg who makes chalk bags and saddle bags along with coaching cyclists and racing, probably better than he leads on. He and one of his athleats hammered me on the ride up Big Cottonwood Canyon which is according to them 14 miles and 4000 feet of climbing a good portion of which comes in the first 6.5 miles.

I then headed home after the show closed on Friday, leaving at about 3:45pm after collecting some stuff for the gym, holds and a crash pad and picking up a sweet Flashed Air pad from Trango, Thanks to Scott. I drove straight through and got home about 1:30am and colapsed.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

A Look Back at the Triple By-Pass

So as I said in the last post, the Triple By-Pass was a success for the family. Linda, my mom and dad all finished and seemed to be feeling pretty good at the end. They did all get rained on, but luckily for them it happened when they were riding up Vail pass towards the end which allowed them to stay warm. Joanna was not as lucky, she was ahead and was on her way down Vail pass when the skies opened up causing her to freeze. Joanna eventually bailed about 15 miles from the end when she could not stop shivering. Chris on the other hand was way out infront of everyone else and did not get rained on at all until he headed up with me to the top of Vail pass to meet up with everyone as they rode through.

The goal for Joanna and Chris is to do the Death Ride next year. I don't know if my mom will use the Triple as a stepping stone to completing the Death Ride or not. Linda had been saying if she finished the Triple she would never do it again, but after the ride she was open to doing it again. It really is bueatifull, mountains, rivers, amazing bike paths, closed roads and round-abouts through the finishing straight, about the only bad thing is the 6 miles on the interstate, but the shoulder is wide and the big rigs give you a turbo boost when they go by.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Crystal Cave Last Week, New Toy

Dylan and I headed up to the Crystal Cave on Wednesday of last week with Matt, Doug and Richard. Doug kept working on the short version of the Lepor 5.12a, Matt tried Dope 5.13b, Richard was just getting on whatever and I managed to send Faith 5.13c.

Here are some shots of Matt on Dope, passing the first bolt,
and entering the 3rd and final crux, which is shared with Faith.I got Dylan a new toy. Every little kid needs a TONKA truck. Dylan really likes the Dump Truck.

Not only can he load and dump it,
but it can also function as a high chair at the crag for feeding him.
As soon as we got home in the afternoon I started to pack the truck and we headed to Intel to pick Linda up and it was off to CO for the Triple By Pass with my parents and Chris and Joanna. More on that later.