Sunday, September 2, 2012

WTF Day 2: Set the bar

A long and tedious day at work left no time for grading, knitting, or even catching my breath.  It did, however, teach me more about patience, as I explained time after time how to do safety checks, how to know what rope to buy, and even explained my training schedule to someone looking to climb harder.  I'm excited for a day off tomorrow, even though my morning is going to consist of coffee and grading.
Luckily, I'll be getting some outside climbing time in at Ely's Peak in the afternoon, as well as helping a friend learn how to place traditional climbing gear!  A climber's first trad climb is always exciting and terrifying- I remember placing a piece every two feet or so on my first climb- a 5.4 crack with giant foot and hand-holds on either side.
Now I'm climbing harder and harder, looking to push my trad climbing into the 5.11 range.  Last year at this time, I led a 5.10b crack called Laceration Jam up at Palisade Head.

I was fresh from climbing in Yosemite, and felt incredibly solid the entire way up.  It was my hardest trad lead yet, and it made me really examine what happens to my brain and my mental state when I enter the world of more difficult trad climbing.
Tonight, while snapping photos around the gym, I thought that this picture best captured today's phrase "Set the Bar".

Route setters put up new routes on Sunday nights, and I get to climb them and tell the setters what I believe they're rated.  In a way, it's really fun for me to get on a completely unrated route, often pushing the limit of my climbing as I set my own goals higher and higher.
I want to set the bar of my climbing high- ultimately, to sport lead 5.12 and trad lead 5.11.  I have to train through days that I'm not necessarily feeling it, which makes the great days even better.
And hopefully tomorrow I'll do more climbing outside as I show a friend the awesomeness that is outdoor traditional climbing.  :)

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