02 May 2012

Hookey with Dr. Thunder

Also known as jigging, sluffing, ditching, skipping, or simply playing hookey. It's what happened yesterday afternoon under the careful guidance of Dr. Thunder, Oscar Dog, and Amiee Dog. Plans for a quick and easy session in the source gym, carefully planned between work and school (with a pile of heavy studies for good measure), went to the shit. We quickly loaded pads, then drove into the mayhem of good conditions in Neverland. I found comfort in knowing I had been working since 6am and had worked almost an entire day anyway. There was more comfort in the boulders and chalk dust carried by cold wind. Conditions were great, promising, and hopefully an omen of cool weather for the month of May.
We went to a top notch area up and behind what is known as the Triple X. Having never bouldered in the newish area (walking it last year), we started on the largest, steepest, and cleanest boulder close to Bryan's jeep. Sort of a warm up went into linking moves on a long and powerful, and steep overhanging prow. All the moves went, but the line is yet another project. This one will go for sure on the next visit.
Bryan warming up on a new project that should check in around V10 or so. 
In addition to the project warm-up we walked the area and found a good amount of good rock. Yet another addition to Neverland with too much rock to climb already. One line that really stood out is a 70 degree roof that is completely smooth except for a few rails/crimps here and there. It is a rare near perfect line of pure power and hand strength. Like fools we did not try it. The Triple X whispered on the breeze "try me, try me. Are you strong enough this year? Will the beta work, the beta you thought of all winter long?" and we followed.
Moving pads to Triple X was easy, but I grew nervous near the beauty. I cleaned the holds of old chalk. Added fresh chalk and Super Chalk at that. Cleaned my shoes and tips. Then set forth into the guts of the roof, blew a difficult foot, hopped back on and blew of a side pull, then flopped on my back from a crux move. She was ready for me and showed me once again that climbing is serious business and should be approached with a good repertoire of power and grace, technique, and a pile of cuss words preferably in unique and exotic combinations. I dug into the bag of tricks and none worked. I cussed and laughed, then made progress again and was able to apply my new beta adjustment. The one that I had thought of for 6 months over the winter. It adjusts a fraction of a single move, but saves time and a stupid drop knee that used to sap the hell out me. Now I take it like a stud and climb the move square. I never could in the past, so maybe the source gym did help and give some more to me this year. I repeated all the moves during the re-acquaintance and am ready to give it serious red-point goes on the next visit. It will be done this year!

Bryan finally cleaned the short power problem in the left side of the roof that will share an exit with the Triple X. It climbs exceptionally good rock up a 60 degree belly. In what was a true display of catch a bullet quickness, he snapped a hold and caught it, all in the time to fall from a sit start! Faster than the human brain works they say. Obviously he too is ready for one hell of a good season.
Dr. Thunder with lighting fast hands
We drove home tired and now I'm sore from doing "the move" square. We talked about some things of great importance and things of little importance. It's hard to tell the difference. One is our new motorcycle gang and the boulders we'll rally to this coming summer. Think Dumb and Dumber, but with pads on the back and dogs and wives in tow. Another conversation discussed the actual extent of Neverland. How much rock is out there? That conversation imperceptibly graded into why the Wieners and Things store is never open after dark. Sometimes a hot dog is a damn good thing, especially in the dark of night, and they could expect good sales from the Neverland crew. At least 10 dogs a week and that would probably double the business (yes, this is a Wyoming business). Without it we have a 40 mile drive to Laramie with nothing to snack on. I mentioned how excited I am about this coming Friday when all school is done! Expect a full report of a long day.

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