Ryan and I took off on Thursday night and headed up to the New for some good ol’ rock climbing. On Friday we went to Beauty Mountain and did it up trad style. I led Happy Hands which is a nice 5.9 warm up. After doing a few laps on it Erich and I went on to Burning Calves (10.b). I attempted to lead it but I got mega flash pumped and whipped on my 2nd piece of gear. Erich made the comment “I can tell you’re from North Carolina because you’re placing nothing but nuts!” Anyhow after a few attempts I made it to the top of Burning Calves. Erich followed it and he was rewarded a brand new PBR that was left on top of the route under a ledge! After my arms deflated a little we got on a sweet Doug Reed sport line called Disturbance (11.d). Erich made quick work and sent on his 2nd try. I got on it while he was resting and dogged my way up to the top. It was there I sat for a solid 45 minutes to get some pictures of Sarah and Erich on Disturbance. The fact of the matter is that good climbing photos take work…the usually don’t present themselves without a little effort. After that we went over to Super Crack (5.9). I led it to the crux at the top and was too weak to finish it out. To my credit it was 5pm, 85 degrees and humid as hell! That did us in for the day and we went back to Lydia’s to grill out and slam a few back.
Saturday morning we woke up and it immediately started raining. It lasted for a solid hour and my motivation started to fade (I even cracked a beer at 10:00am). After the rain stopped we went to “The Other Place” at Meadow River. To everyone’s surprise it was bone dry with the exception of a few routes. We got on a stellar 5.10 on the very right side of the crag called Hope Pathology. Although the route was only 3 bolts it had great holds and offered a nice warm up. We did that route twice before moving on to Flaming Pellets (11.b). This route was super good but I failed to do it clean. It had a really fun dynamic move at the beginning and a nice little roof section at the top. I will be back for that route for sure. We moved on to Erich’s project Depth Charge (12.b) and he gave it a really good go but no cigar. I’m confident he will send that bad boy soon. At the end of the day I saw a route right around the corner from Depth Charge that looked sweet. Erich said it was called “My First 11″ (11.b) so we gave it a chance. I got up the the third bolt and couldn’t even hang the draw. There was definitely potential to take a ground fall at the 3rd bolt but I finally hung the draw on and pulled on it to clip. After that Erich got on and got equally worked. We were both feeling pretty deflated physically and emotionally (especially after I took a nice whipper on top of him). I hopped back on and while trying the move before the 4th bolt (a rad dynamic move to a sloper) and dude came by and said “oh sweet! you guys are on the new route? how is it?” I said “new route? I thought this was the route My First 11??” He said “nope, that’s to your left. The route you’re on is a 12 something.” So, we still don’t know the name or grade but the bottom line is that route is really good. Great holds and big moves on a slight overhanging wall. After a lot of burns I finally made it to the top by pulling draws and dogging the hell out of it.
It was a great trip. I had never been to either area and was stoked to get on new routes. Enjoy the shots below.