Friday, July 16, 2010

Sandia Mountains Bolting Issues

Just got back from a meeting at the climbing gym to discus some issues that have come up about bolting in the Sandias. The ranger district want to put some restrictions on the placement of fixed anchors in the range. This was coming eventually on a national level but way put on the fast track locally by some climbers getting caught using a power drill which is illegal and the impression, right or not, that many of the new routes that have been put up were done so with a power drill.

What will ultimately come of this is that there will likely be an application process to put up new routes and the applications will need to be approved by the NFS. As climbers we can either participate or not. If we don't participate then we have no say in what we feel is appropriate or not and I also feel it is important to show the NFS that we as climbers feel strongly about our rights to be able to add new routes. On the other hand we could not participate, essentially saying that we don't care and let them run the whole thing or just shut down the installation of new fixed anchors all together.

It is safe to say that most all climbers would like to see new routes that they feel are worth while additions get established, but this is where issues arise. What one climber feels is worthy another may think is a waste of time. How one climber puts up a route another might think is unethical. The problem is that the NFS does not care about any of these things, all they care about is the number of fixed anchors and if they were installed with a hand drill or a power drill.

Needless to say we had a 2 hour meeting that involved lots of veiled mud slinging about ethics and what routes belong and don't belong and very little time dedicated to coming up with something to actually present to the NFS. We are lucky in that the local resource manger is a climber himself, it makes it easier to communicate and he understands a little better what climbers are after. . . I don't know guess I'm just a little frustrated that you get a room full of climbers together to try and solve some issue and all you really end up getting from at least half the room is a bunch of unnecessary posturing.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Bike Stuff

Last week Linda's new frame came in. Here it is partially built up. Mostly DA 7900, right now I have 7800 shifters on it, though there may be a compatibility issue that will mean we need to put the newer shifters on, though Linda thinks she likes the shape of the 7800 better. The frame has a seat mast that will need to be cut as well as the stearer tube which the LBS (local bike shop) will do when she goes in to get fit. The last thing I want to do is cut the seat mast to the wrong length, if that is going to happen I'd rather have the LBS be responsible.

Just ignore the terribly messy work bench, I usually manage to find all the tools I need. Walt this makes your shop look pristine.
On another note. On my lunch ride today I headed up to the La Luz trail head. This is a steep 2.25 mile road that averages 8% but with lots of stuff over 10%. It is nice to get a reasonably long climb in that is steep but it has always been unpleasant as well since the pavement is only good at the start and finish. There was a section of 1-1.5 miles where you could not find any smooth pavement, all potholes and cracks, the best place to ride was on the paint lines down the middle of the road at least while going up.

I've always thought it would be nice if it got repaved but at the same time scary since you could go so much faster on the downhill which on this road would not be safe, with the tight blind curves, drop offs and a fair bit of traffic. Well the city or county is repaving it, but as of now there is no pavement. The dirt is hard packed and they have been spraying the surface with water to keep dust down, especially where they are working. With the dirt surface the road is actually a lot smoother than when it was paved, but the decent is terrifying, particularly where it is muddy.

Which brings us to this next shot. This is after I cleaned the big chunks out and road back the climbing gym. Looks like I could use a bit more mud clearance on my Cervelo.
Anyway, hopefully the road turns out nice and people are careful and conscientious on the decent. I bet the local hill climb record gets broken with in a month or so.

Monday, July 12, 2010

4th of July and 1st Haircut

This last weekend we headed to the Dungeon with Scarlet. There were a whole bunch of folks from Albuquerque out there that we climbed with as well. Linda finally worked out a good sequence on the bottom of Moat Jump 5.12a with the help of Susana, and it seems as though she ought to be able to send it. I mostly ran laps on things since I've done most everything there, did three 5.13's after warming up. Dylan had fun as usual playing in the dirt and the stream. This time instead of using his harness we brought the real swing which he really enjoyed. Here he is being "watched" by one of the dogs for us.Dylan and I went to visit John and Carolyn last week before John left to guide in Europe for a month and a half. We hung out in Carolyn's personal training studio and climbed while Dylan got to use some of the training equipment, here he is on the rowing machine with John.
For the 4th of July weekend we headed to the Taos area to do some climbing. We met up with Betty and Eric. The Groth's where there as well, John, Liz and their girls Sarah and Michele. The girls were great playing with Dylan, her Dylan "belays" Michele (the younger of the two) while she pretends to climb.
The first day we climbed at Comales Canyon which is a fun crag with "vacation" grades (ie: they are easy).

Dylan is starting to get the hang of camping and is always excited to get into the tent, though he likes to run around and play without going to sleep until he is so tired that he drops mid-sentence. Here's Dylan getting ready for the sun to go down with Linda's headlamp.
The second day, after a very slow start and a kind of long drive we ended up at El Rito and got a few routes in before heading home. We just ran some laps on stuff on the Rad Wall.

Finally gave Dylan his first hair cut last week. Here is the "before" shot.....
and the "after"
We now have our little monk back.

Here is a video of Dylan singing a song about frogs, he misses a bit at the end but it is still pretty funny.