The Sexiest Sport: Climbing

 

If you’ve spent much time in the rock climbing gym, you’ve probably noticed how good looking most of the people are there. Fit, healthy, and energetic, climbers tend to live a healthy lifestyle and it’s reflected in how they look.

Not only that but it’s a well known fact that if you want to climb good you got to look good. That’s why so many sport climbing studs rip off their shirts before they start climbing. Primping and preening your hair is just as import as crimping and cleaning a hold. There is even evidence to support how attractive climbing is.

 

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A Little Video Humour

It's almost Friday. The holidays are almost over but in between all the family obligations, the huge meals, and are some hopefully good laughs. These two videos have a solid mixture of the Berkeley lifestyle, the Yoga way, and plenty of laughs.

Do you ever feel like you're lost at the grocery store after going to the gym? This video about the Whole Foods Parking Lot is a great example of that.

 

The Yoga classes at Touchstone can be a little intimidating but all the stretches can really help. This video of Hank from King of the Hill is a classic example of a stranger entering a strange world.

Read more: A Little Video Humour

A Few From Yosemite

California has been experiencing an unbelievably warm and dry winter. Right now, there is no snow at the Buttermilks, or in Yosemite. That means it's time to get your bouldering on. Mill Valley resident, Kyle O'Meara headed out to the ditch this weekend and dispatched two V10 classics with his dog Kuna. Check out the cool video and get pysched for some Yosemite bouldering!

 

More Yosemite Bouldering from Kyle O'Meara on Vimeo.

More Yosemite Bouldering from Kyle O'Meara on Vimeo.

Jailhouse Awarded Conservation Grant

 

Last week, Jailhouse received a grant from the Conservation Alliance. Check out the details of the grant from the Access Fund.

April 6, 2011. Boulder, CO – The Access Fund, the national advocacy organization that keeps climbing areas open and conserves the climbing environment, is excited to announce that it has been awarded a grant from the Conservation Alliance to secure permanent public access to and long-term conservation of Jailhouse Rock climbing area near Sonora, California.

The Access Fund and local climbers began working with the landowners in August of last year when they learned that future access to this popular climbing area was at risk by a quickly approaching subdivision. It became clear that the Access Fund needed to launch a fundraising campaign to secure permanent access and conservation of the cliff line – the Unlock Jailhouse campaign was launched in November of last year. The Conservation Alliance grant brings a successful end to this fundraising effort.

Read more: Jailhouse Awarded Conservation Grant

Denise Miller: The Tenacious Teacher

 

Denise Miller, a 36 year old school teacher in Forest Hill outside of Auburn, has been climbing for the past 9 years. A long time Sacramento Pipeworks climber, Miller’s tenacity is well known in the climbing community. With a strong work ethic, Miller has successfully climbed many difficult rock climbs in California.

“Friends of mine thought I’d be interested in climbing,” said Miller about her first time climbing at Sacramento Pipeworks. “I was hooked the first day I went. I thought of myself as pretty good at athletics. I got my butt kicked and got a membership.”

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Denise on Electric Chair (5.12d) at Jailhouse Photo by Ben Ditto

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Touchstone Climber Crushes Mortar

Last week, Brian "Cuz" Hedrick, a 24 year old route setter at Touchstone Climbing, made the second ascent of the Impossible Wall Traverse at Berkeley's Mortar Rock. First established by Chris Sharma seven years ago, the V13 problem has bouted many of the strongest local climbers.

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The hardest boulder problem within a 100 miles of the bay starts on an obvious jug in the middle of the face and traverses right into the Impossible Wall (v8). "It's big moves on bad holds," says Hedrick, who sent the line after working it seven days over two years.

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A Gymnast in The Climbing Gym: Cisco Gonzalez

 

If you've been to Ironworks, chanches are you've seen climbers busting out pull-ups. A lot of the tougher rock jocks will attempt one armed pull-ups with marginal degrees of success. Catch Cisco at the gym though and you'll see some impressive feats.

As a young kid in california, Cisco was no stranger to the monkey bars and rooftops, scrambling around buildings and dangling from the monkey bars. Since he was in pre-school, Cisco Gonzalez, a 32 year old gymnastic instructor from Berkeley, has been involved in gymnastics. In 6th grade he enrolled at Windmill Gymnastics in Richmond and later began coaching there. Cisco currently works at MEGA, Marin Elite Gymnastics Academy since early 2002 and has coached gymnastics for the past 17 years.

Read more: A Gymnast in The Climbing Gym: Cisco Gonzalez

Bishop Bouldering Video: Wolter Byron's Videos

Wolter Byron, a 27 year old Marin resident, put together this awesome video of some bay area crushers climbing out in Bishop.

Check out Spencer Tang-Smith sending Iron Fly, Wolter Byron sticking it on High Plains Drifter, and Touchstone route setter Brian "Cuz" Hedrick killing it on the Vhard problems out there.

The Fall from ByronWolter on Vimeo.

Here's another one of Byron's quick hits with Cuz sending the Iron Monkey traverse and trying the Impossible Traverse up at Mortar.

Iron Monkey and the Impossible Traverse from ByronWolter on Vimeo.

Pringle Gets Muy Tranquillo: Touchstone Climber Goes to Spain

 

For the past two weeks, hardcore rock jock and Touchstone climber Ethan Pringle has been climbing on the amazing limestone of Spain.

“The mode here has been muy tranquillo,” said Pringle.

Pringle flew over to Spain, where he met with hardcore sport climber and ex-pat Chris Sharma. The pair settled into Sharma’s crag side home of Oliana, the second largest town in the comarca of the Alt Urgell in Catalonia Spain. Chris and Ethan, along with Chris’ lady friend Dalia, have been climbing in town. “We’ve only gone to Oliana but even on the ‘hot’ days (which are nothing like most days at Jail House past 2 pm) it gets nice and cold and breezy as soon as the sun goes behind the cliff which happens around 3 pm this time of year,” wrote Pringle on his blog. “Because of the late hour in which the cliff goes into the shade we’ve been getting really late starts- waking up around 10, leaving for the cliff around 11 and starting the warm-up around noon- 1pm.”

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The Spanish town where Ethan is staying.

Read more: Pringle Gets Muy Tranquillo: Touchstone Climber Goes to Spain

Get Tradical: New Trad Climbing Gear at Touchstone

 

Touchstone just picked up a bunch of new gear for those climbers who want to get tradical this summer. In stores now are the TC Pros, high top edging shoes that will shrink El Cap into Swan Slab, 4 step aiders for cruising up Washington Column, ultra light curve nuts, and the standard BD cams including C4s, C3s, and HB brass offsets.

The best place to start building your trad climbing gear is on your feet. High top shoes are nice because they protect your ankles in many of the grueling offwidths in the Valley.

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Chris McNamara reviewed the TC Pro for Supertopo. It's an awesome shoe!

Read more: Get Tradical: New Trad Climbing Gear at Touchstone

Beat The Rainy Days

 

Rain. Rain. Rain. The winters in the San Francisco Bay can be really wet. While winter is nearly over, the last few weeks of the wet season can be hard to maintain. Yosemite is socked in. Mortar Rock can be hit or miss. The slopers at Castle might be drenched. The best way to beat the winter doldrums can be to head out to the crags anyway. Driving over to the east side of the Sierra, to the boulders of Bishop, can almost guarantee dry weather.

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Often times, a hike through the redwoods of Castle can be a great way to get out and exercise. Even in a light rain, the Santa Cruz Mountains are beautiful.

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Another awesome option is to head out to the nearest Touchstone gyms, where it never rains!

Past blog entries can be found at  http://touchstoneclimbing.blogspot.com/

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