Saturday, May 19, 2012

A New SLO Classic

Sometimes I forget how truly blessed I am.  I live in an amazing community with a beautiful group of friends.  For the better half of my college career at Cal Poly, I have been hanging out with a unique group of people.  We climb, we eat, we write poetry, we hang out at cafes, and on occasion, we make it out to the boulders in San Luis Obispo (SLO).  The climbing in SLO might be limited, but what we have is fun.  The rock can be a bit brittle, but after some cleaning and brushing, the climbs are usually good to go.  

Alex Biale climbing Boulder in the Woods. Photo by Chris Bersbach
Alex Biale making the First Ascent of Second Year (V9) Photo by Chris Bersbach
The climbing in SLO is not vast, but we make do with what we have and enjoy the process of searching out new lines.  The rock usually does not lend itself to difficult climbing, but every once in a while, you stumble across something a bit harder the the previously established stuff.  I've added a few problems to a few areas, but nothing that stands out.  However, a good friend of mine, Justin Lawson, established a new climb in the Bishop Peak area.  In my opinion, it’s the best problem in SLO.  The boulder problem climbs up the steepest and tallest face on the Potato Boulder on the north side of the mountain.  Good holds and fun movement lead you up a 25 or 30 foot face above a sloping landing which we have dubbed the “crux” of the climb.  Spotting this climb is almost just as hard as climbing it.  Weird.  Here is a video I put together of my second ascent of the boulder.  To be honest, this was one of the most fun days in SLO I’ve ever had.  It was the perfect culmination of good friends, being outside, loving climbing, and having a good time falling.

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