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Carbs and Caffeine November 21, 2015

November 22, 2015

Cabs and Caffeine

It’s always nice to have goals, a climb you keep in your mind as you head to the bar after the climbing gym. When will I get on this climb? When I’m ready to onsight it, you know, when all the moons align. When I’ve been pulling hard in the gym, regularly sending routes in your range with ease, repeating your older projects, getting a lot of rock miles in to build the proper head space, following harder climbs, perfect temps, a good night sleep, and a solid dump in the morning. Or you decide to stop procrastinating and give it your best go.

Brian Ingram and I have climbed a bit together, but never roped up at the Gunks as partners. He was set on finishing Carbs and Caffeine this year, having been on it once before. He’s an encouraging, psych filled kind of partner. We decided to head up this weekend nearly a month ago, just to get work and finish Carbs and Caffeine.

Brian totaled his car the night before but was uninjured, so I agreed to pick him up from west Philly. It was a true shit show getting through the city, but it did happen and we got up to the gunks around 10PM. I rolled my bag out in the car and did my best to stay warm. Saturday morning I got coffee at the Deli then we made our way to the stairmaster. I hit the uber pooper and carried on to our warm up project. Bonnies roof was occupied so I lead Ant’s Line. Brian cleaned it, then we moved on to the goal for the day. It wasn’t even 11 by the time Brian was done leading the first pitch. I brought a second rope up along with some comfort items for Brian. The route was in the sun and for temps calling for a high of 49, it’s a good thing too. I racked up and took off on pitch 2. I clipped a fixed purple c4, plugged another cam before getting to the first bolt. The first bolt is easy enough to clip. There is a large chalked side pull looking thing, but I found going big past that to a crimp above the next chalky feature was where it’s at. There’s another crimp out left and the second bolt can be clipped mid sequence. There’s a nice stance at the end of the crux section, I fished in a Blue alien above my head in a hidden horizontal. There is some delicate climbing on positive edges out right then up to a #2 placement. Climbing is mellow until the last roof system. I was able to get the yellow link cam in around here. Once into the “crab walk” I put in a poorly placed #1, I tried keeping my shit together as I got closer to the anchor but the moves were not obvious and I was too pumped to muscle through. I tried swinging my legs out right, back left. one more try to find a foot somewhere, I shifted my weight back left and yelled take. I was pumped to hell and terrified my tipped out #1 would pop at any second. After a long rest I moved back up and put in another cam (the thinner crack here takes red C3, or equivalent) but had real trouble clipping it (I think I was getting shorted a few times while dicking around). I endured then took another hang. I pawed and fought my way around the corner to the anchor. Blood on my fingers and palms, I lowered to the ground on the 70.

Brian wrapped to the ground on the second rope, we recouped and he headed back up to the chains. I put him on belay on the lead line and he went up. He muffed the crux and had some work to do to get back on the wall. While doing some pendulums he knocked a broad loaf sized flake off the wall. The feature wasn’t on the route and now is no longer on the wall. The rock crashed to the ground missing 2 climbers coming off Yellow Wall by about 5 paces. The gunks could be dangerous just walking on the trail. By the time Brian got off C&C he lost his enthusiasm for the route.

Now in early afternoon we decided to play on the Sting instead. Brian went up Lisa, with some difficulty. I didn’t quite realize how reachy the climb can be. I followed Lisa, and set a directional in for the Sting. I gave it a good go. Getting the bottom dyno after about 6 tries and for the first time ever, I was able to get the top move (after another 6 or so tries). Brian battled his way up the Sting. I was cold and we were ready to make our way home by 3:30 or so. We stopped in Rock and Snow, checked out the new cams on the market and returned to Philly.

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From → Gunks

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