observations on gear, adventure, and the world

Pack Lists

RSS mess

I’ve not been able to keep up with the really amazing stuff that’s been coming through my RSS feeds lately. So I’m gonna dump it here and now.

First, David Lama is going to blow up alpine climbing. Big time. Here’s a taste of things to come. freeing the compressor route was just the beginning.

So they used ice tools on their ascent and Will Gadd knows a thing or two about holding and swinging them tools. Here’s a post with a very clear title: How to hold an ice tool.

Kelly Cordes, rumored to climb ice, approves of David Lama (he said so on Facebook so it must be true) and Maurice Sendak.

The best thing I’ve ever read on climbing injuries, because it quotes all the other best things I’ve read on climbing injuries. Get well soon Dave MacLeod!

Boots don’t fit? Lace’em gooder!

Five things. A Cold Thistle guest post.

Soloing is cool if you’re good at it.

20130115-070335.jpg


Throwing the Goat

Data Mike and I went after an objective that we’ve been prepping for pretty hard.

Sunday morning we rolled out at 6:30 AM and headed for albion basin, hiked through the basin to Devil’s Castle and hit the Horns of Satan.

Gear:
Harness: BD
Shoes: 5.10 Copperheads
Approach Shoes: Merrill Trail Glove
Socks: Lin Manufacturing
A loose pair of Wrangler Kakis
Nano puff
New Bamel Back bladder in the original pack
Marmot Wicking shirt
Gearloop topo
14 BD Hotwire draws
1 set of nuts
half rack of draws
Gear Loop topo.
Giro ski helmet (removed the liner and wore a baseball cap under it, turned out to be perfect).
A few gels and some GU chomps

I’d take a little more sole on my shoe for next time, I’m waiting for my lone peak altras to come in the mail!

The climb is amazing, but it’s loose. REALLY Loose. There are pitches where you feel like you’re climbing a Jenga game and if you weight the wrong hold you’ll knock down the whole of Devil’s castle. But the good pitches and the whole experience are so good it’s easy to forget that.


Quick Post-Zion Post

Just wrapping up the unpacking from this weekend’s Zion National Park run.

Thanks to RR’s impecable planning, and a great group of friends, I’m going to struggle to cover everything that we did. Here’s what we did and some quick lessons:

Day 1, Orderville:

Its all about the shoes – all river hiking/canyoneering is this deservers it’s own post. Bring a short rope and harnesses for the whole party. There is one obstacle that is a heinous down climb or so you can a cake walk rappel. Just tie a stone, and have people rap right on top of each other (with some care of course) and you can get a big group through the obstacle really quickly. Plan on several hours… like nine and expect to be doing a bit of bouldery down-climbing into water. One of the best adventures you can have on a day hike! I liked having one collapsable trekking pole for the long rough beginning and end.

DAy 2-3, The Narrows:
Light is right. This isn’t a really long walk it’s just a rough walk. So leave as much behind as you can. Consistently one of my favorite things is getting to camp in the narrows and just drinking in the canyon.

Day 4, Pine Creek: Don’t panic, and shoes. Again shoes are important… very important. The last mile of hiking is VERY bouldery, and I’d recommend an approach shoe that climbs well because there isn’t much walking on this “trail.”Also, that last rappel, yes you should be careful, but don’t panic. It’s not that exposed and it’s only free for ten feet, and you’ve just done two 65′ raps to get there so carry a 10.5 mm rope, have a fireman’s belay at the bottom use an ATC guide (because it’s awesome) and enjoy the view. And look down because it’s less tall than the pictures make it look. This isn’t the place to figure out how to do canyon stuff so make sure that you’re with someone who knows what they are doing.


The Sweat Test

I move a lot of water when I’m really working.

Training for 100 mile mountain bike racing all year has left me with a damn fine base of fitness and a pretty stellar power threshold. I can climb 2000′ of vertical an hour at about 80% of my max hear rate for a few hours with a pack on in difficult terrain, but I generate A LOT of heat and water, so as soon as I cool down I begin to notice that I’m 6000′ above where I started, it’s cold and windy and I’m soaked.

So I’m looking for good solutions. I need something that can block the wind, insulate, and breathe. I’m sure there is a brilliant soft shell solution but I’m also working through what I have to see what combinations work well.

Last night I went out for a hard run in temps just above freezingwearing the following:

Head: Pearl Izumi Balakava in beanie mode.

Patagonia Torrentshell pullover

Patagonia Capaline 3

Wicking drawrs from Champion

Adidas Soccer Shorts

Smart wool mid weight backpacker socks

Merril Trail Glove shoes (just found that they have a version of this shoe with gore-tex, I’m interested).

The loop I ran was a perfect test with a moderate uphill and steep downhill followed by slight downhill then a parking lot cool-down walk and some pull-ups on the stairs (flogging molly came up on pandora so I couldn’t repress the training urges). I got hot on the way out I heald my HR at 90% for several minutes, and felt the heat and wet really turning on. Then on the steep descent my HR fell 15% as I simply tried to control speed.

I felt comfortable and dry the whole run. There is a tag in the shirt that has to go. Otherwise I was never hot or cold, even on the cooldown. When I got inside and pulled off the torrent shell it was damp on the inside, though the capaline was still dry to the touch.

Brilliant performance for what will be my go to setup for charging up-hill when I need something between me and the weather.

I think my lone peak would have gone better from a moisture management perspective with capaline replacing the merino wool.