Guiding, Teaching, Climbing, Learning

First climbing day, first rain day…

Our first day of the 2012 TRU Rock Expedition we all headed down to the Lower Gorge of Smith Rocks. The area is a basalt gorge and the wall was called the Handjob Wall. The students started to get their heads back around crack climbing, back around trad leading and placing their own gear. Each student mock lead, lead and top ropes many pitches from 5.7 – 5.10c. Was good to see that all the students, without exception, chose to practice leading on top rope, then cautiously set out on their first real trad leads of the 2012 climbing season. No loose cannons throwing themselves on leads to impress us or the girls. I followed so so many easy pitches, checking gear and coaching crack technique. I also put up a few 5.10’s for the students to top rope to push themselves a bit on steeper ground. If you’ve never been to or climbed at the Lower Gorge at Smith, it is THE place to train jamming for more sustained areas such as Yosemite or Indian Creek in Utah. Stunningly sustained pitches of vertical jamming with foot edges and features to easy the learning, like training wheels. However, it rained over night and through the early morning. We’re in Redmond this A.M. doing Internet and picking up various items that we’re missing. In the afternoon, hopefully, we’ll be hitting up the welded tuff cliffs of the sport climbing area to fit a bit of climbing in today. Let’s hope…

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