• The Upstate Bouldering Guidebook: A New Guidebook to Bouldering in the Jocassee Gorges of SC and Western NC

    Upstate Bouldering Guidebook Ordering Information: To order a copy of the Upstate Bouldering Guidebook, a guide to… *Around 350 bouldering routes in Upstate of South Carolina and western North Carolina Areas covered in The Upstate Bouldering Guide… Jocassee Gorges Area of SC: -Little Eastatoee -Beasley Gap -Sasquatch -Big Eastatoee Western NC: -Whitewater Falls -Granite City -Pisgah National Forest/Looking Glass *11 Jocassee Gorges mountain bike rides *2 Jocassee Gorges road bike rides *Suggestions for… +Future boulder route development +A dozen whitewater runs nearby, from class II-V+ +8 different flatwater paddling destinations +Hundreds of miles of hiking and backpacking in nearby areas +A variety of swimming holes on local rivers and lakes +Gear Shops nearest each bouldering area +Camping within a few Read More

  • A hueco visit and the meaning of el paso

    Eric Perlman’s Masters of Stone III movie gave me my first impression of Hueco. Perlman’s movies were VHS precursors to the glut of web-based climbing movies we watch now. His Masters of Stone I, II and III offered frenetic sport-clipping, drop-knee tours through French limestone country, along with healthy servings of Sierras granite, and mullet-powered sport climbing radness from other parts of the American West. The series’ third offered a tour of Hueco, starting with a dusty, disappointing El Paso scene. The late Todd Skinner provides an entertaining intro: “It’s called El Paso, ’cause if you’re not a climber, you just pass on through.” Sure, it doesn’t make literal sense but that line still cracks me up. Eye-popping footage follows of Read More

  • Dixon School Road Boulders Guidebook Review and Author Interview

    I’ve been posting often recently about the new Dixon School Road Boulders Guidebook…and for good reason! This was a great project to help out ALL Western North Carolina boulderers…it provides solid info and history about Dixon and takes some of the impact off of Rumbling Bald by providing an alternative for the pebble wrestlers. I wanted to do a quick review of the guidebook, but I wanted to mainly spotlight the author, and his efforts to help not only local climbers, but the CCC also. Thanks Matt for all of your hard work! The Review After the dedication to Shane Cobourn, the table of contents, and a nice intro to the Carolina Climbers Coalition (CCC), a colorful first hand history Read More

  • Wyoming

    I enjoy getting to know a bit about the places I visit on climbing trips. On the grand scale, reflecting on geological/natural history makes my interactions with the rock seem simultaneously inconsequential and precious. On the human scale, the more I know about an area the richer my experiences are. The Tetons and Wild Iris are two areas with many layers of history. Todd Skinner and Paul Piana helped bring euro style sport climbing in the US with the development of Wild Iris.  The climbing here is raw pocket pulling fun, and for the original developers it was a training ground for their big-wall ambitions. It was fun to feel the powerful nature of the routes, to get used to Read More

  • Gear that is no longer

    I have this red Metolius Powercam that I can’t climb without. It’s the older generation with the annoyingly small thumb loop and the nylon sling with black stripes. It was made before Metolius started putting those stupid colored dots on the cam lobes and it’s slightly wider than the newer models.  My green C4 is lighter and my orange Alien is much narrower, but I still choose the good old red Powercam every time. I can’t even remember all of the times I’ve fallen on it and I never worry.  I think it’s the only piece I have that I actually enjoy falling on. Spend enough time climbing in a pair of shoes, or just have a really good weekend Read More

  • Climbing: The Past, Present and Future

    I was born into rock climbing, climbing has always been around me for as long as I can remember. From being born in Steamboat Springs, CO, my parents had a top rope wall inside their house. I found pictures of me as a young toddler helping dad set routes and hanging from holds. At two years old, we moved from Steamboat to Fort Collins. My parents had the dream of starting a climbing gym and they went for it! Inner Strength Rock Gym was born in February of 1993. I have a fear of heights, this is primarily why I boulder now.  It took me a couple years and some bribing to get to the top of the walls for Read More

  • A spot of UK Trad

    Cut-to-the-chase beta: skip my windy drivel immediately below and watch this awesome video. Or read on and hit the link at the bottom of the post. If you occasionally follow the idiosyncratic, yet seemingly always vital UK trad climbing scene, you might remember the climber James Pearson doing a seaside route a few years ago, The Walk of Life, and proposing the banging grade of E12. The mysterious UK grading system somehow alchemizes psychological and physical difficulty into one heady number, so there’s no way I would presume to know how to use it, much less guess what “E12″ could possibly mean. For those though who can guess at what E12 means–those UK natives fluent in the E-grades–Pearson’s proposal of a Read More

  • An Interview with Chris Dorrity, Author of the ‘Rumbling Bald Bouldering Guide’

    I was fortunate to meet Chris D. not long after I started bouldering at Rumbling Bald in 2007. I had recently moved back to Asheville after a stint in SC and was just starting to climb again after Labrum (shoulder injury) surgery forced a 3-year hiatus. I bumped into Chris at the Bald one day while I was bouldering solo and he quickly became a good friend who showed me tons of problems in the field and introduced me to a great bunch of Asheville climbers who I’m still friends with today. Chris pulled off an amazing feat by authoring and designing a full-color bouldering guide book to Rumbling Bald bouldering by himself, which was published in Fall 2007. In Read More

  • Retro-Review: 3 The Hard Way

      I think we all get stoked on good climbing eye candy!  There’s nothing like seeing a young Sharma absolutely crushing in a great movie like Rampage to get you jacked up for your own project and give you that mental zest to go full force for the send.  But it seems to me that over the years, the focus of many climbing flicks has changed…and many times for the worse.  With the inundation of climbing videos being posted on the web, came a desire by folks that make feature length climbing films to separate themselves from the pack and show the “finer” qualities of the climbing vid world.  Now, many movies and videos are all about the special effects or bells Read More