Climbing

Shiver at the New River

It was either the prospect of climbing in the December cold, or the pressure of approaching exams, that led to the fact that the only two participants on last weekends climbing trip where the two organizers. But, in hindsight we can definitely say that the stay-at-homers missed out on a great trip with superb weather.

Saturday was dedicated to the world-class routes at Kaymoor. After both having started on the four star route Flight of the Gumby (5.9+), we pushed our limits by leading our first 5.12b (Dante, Thunderstruck at White Wall) and 5.10b (Steffen, Springer at Butcher’s Branch). From the moment we drove back to the campsite, and until late in the evening, the supermoon cast its beautiful light upon us. While at camp, a delicious black bean meal prepared by Dante, some Seneca IPA’s, and a warm campfire, awaited us.

Sunday started well with a coffee stop at Cathedral Café (where the day before, Steffen already had the luck to get a meet and greet with Santa Claus), for a taste of the renowned cinnamon bun. Warm, straight from the oven, and o so buttery, it lived up to its fame.  
       With our bellies filled, we headed for some good climbing at Summersville Lake. The water level had dropped, such that many good routes opened up at Whippoorwill. The walls were bathing in a blazing sun, such that even shirts were taken off. The efforts from Saturday were still noticeable in the arms, so the onsight percentage might have been somewhat lower on Sunday. Worth mentioning here are Dante’s push on Jason and the Arguenots (5.12a, scary start!) and his subsequent climb of Masuko (5.11a). Such a persistence! This opened up for Steffen’s first 5.11a, although on top rope and with many lowering requests that Dante politely refused. Thanks for pushing me.
       After being reminded that bathing was mandatory on this trip, Steffen took a quick dive in the lake, and we were ready to head back to Pittsburgh. The scenic views of the hills and beautiful harmonies of, amongst others, Angus and Julia Stone, made it a quick and pleasant three-hour-drive.

Finally, on a personal note, I would like to thank the Explorers Club for accommodating the many trips I have been on this semester, and the members for making them such great experiences. Hook me up when you happen to visit Norway in the future, and would like to do some climbing or backcountry skiing over there.

Takk for meg,

Steffen

 

Multipitching at Seneca!!

Over the weekend, six club members went to Seneca Rocks to do some multipitch climbing. Sherman, Steffen, and Cat tackled Ecstasy, Pleasant Overhangs to Thais Escape, Gunsight, and the Burn. Alex M, Dante, and Alex G. climbed Skyline Traverse, Le Gourmet to Front C to Critter Crack, Castor, Pollux, and a few more routes at the lower slabs. With the exception of Sherman and Alex, this was everyone's first multipitch experience and they all had a blast! 

A tricam was left behind, a carabiner dropped, and a cam nearly lost to the depths of Critter Crack. Overall, not too unexpected for a beginner trip and a great learning experience for all.

We finished up the trip with a visit to Hellbenders. They make some pretty awesome burritos. 

 Steffen, Cat, and Sherman at the summit!

Steffen, Cat, and Sherman at the summit!

 About to head up Gunsight

About to head up Gunsight

 Steffen is stoked!

Steffen is stoked!

2017-09-30 07.54.23.jpg

Seneca, majestic and chossy as always.

- Sherman 

Intro to Climbing - A Beginner's Trip to Breakneck

On Saturday, 15 CMUX members headed to Breakneck (Connellsville, PA) for a day of sport climbing and top roping. The weather was spectacular. Connie, Jack, Eric, and Emma learned how to tie in and belay. Alex G, Aria, and Charles practiced lead climbing and belaying. Justin and Dante sent one of their 5.12 projects (rock on guys!) while I shook my Elvis leg and whipped all over the place. Overall, this made for a fun and casual day for CMUX climbers of all skill levels.

IMG_1370.JPG
20170923_165119.jpg
 The crew (missing a few people who left early)

The crew (missing a few people who left early)

Members include: Sherman Lam, Dante Bowman, Alex Gotsis, Charles Wu, Alex Malkin, Aria Wang, Steffen Bakker, Justin Wang, Connie Fan, Jack Chua, Eric Yang, Emma Lloyd, Andrew Conlon, Jess Chernak, and Aaron Perley

- Sherman

Climbing at the New River Gorge 9/9-9/10

Over the weekend, 12 club members headed down to the New River Gorge for some perfect climbing weather. On day one, part of the group went to Sandstonia for some easy and moderate sport climbing. We put up some classics in the area including Geisha Girl (5.8), Mrs. Field's Follies (5.8), Kinesthetica (5.10c), Shady Lady (5.7), Zeitgeist (5.10a), and Decameron (5.10b). Another group went to Kaymoor for some hard sport at Fire and Ice Wall and Seven Eleven Wall.

 Ian leading The Good Book 

Ian leading The Good Book 

 Catherine on Mrs Field's Follies

Catherine on Mrs Field's Follies

 Sherman working the moves on Lord of the Jungle

Sherman working the moves on Lord of the Jungle

 Matt at the top of Bobby D's Bunny

Matt at the top of Bobby D's Bunny

Many returned to Pittsburgh on Saturday night but a hand full stayed through Sunday to climb at Bridge Buttress. The crew got a taste of crack climbing while tackling Jaws (5.9) and Easily Flakey (5.7). We also ran a crash course on gear placement and practiced placing gear on the routes.

21686825_10213893815405324_9129402799927815289_o.jpg

Many of us finished the trip off with a ritualistic visit to the Secret Sandwich Society. Apparently, I didn't over hype it. The sandwiches are really really good. 

Club members in attendance: Sherman Lam, Catherine Pavlov, Justin Wang, Adrian Markelov, Ian Rosenberg, Alex Gotsis, Steffen Bakker, Matt Barnes, Evan Hill, Clare Cui, William Guss, and Charles Wu

Did I mention that the Secret Sandwich Society has amazing sandwiches?

- Sherman

First Climbing Trip of the Summer...at Breakneck!

Sherman, Alex M, Alex G, Aria, Charles, Vincent, Hale, and Derek headed to Breakneck for an easy Saturday of sport climbing and toproping. They climbed some sport routes on the Main Wall and Right Wall. While most of the routes were slabby and crippy (eww), there was a short (10') section of perfect hand jams (yay!). Alex M and Sherman also led a clinic on cleaning sport anchors. Alex G and Hale felt good with their new skill and safely cleaned their first anchors on real sport routes.

- Sherman

20170610_144253.jpg