North Face climber and pro athlete, Heidi Wirtz is coming to the bay area to give a slide show and provide some invaluable clinic time at Berkeley Ironworks.Heidi Wirtz began climbing over twenty years ago and has traveled to Nepal, Morocco, Jordan, Siberia, Tasmania, the Czech Republic and more. From pioneering new big wall routes to making enormous ascents of snowy peaks, Heidi Almighty not only has pushed the boundaries of female exploration but she's also the co-founder of Girls Education International, an organization that brings education to women and girls in undeserved areas throughout the world.
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The Rainbow Wall in Red Rocks Las Vegas towers high above the rest of the climbing in the desert. A long traditional climb that was freed at 5.12, the Rainbow Wall is a modern testpiece and the Half Dome of the desert. Big wall free climbing godesss, Madaleine Sorkin and her partner Jason Nelson headed up the wall earlier this year and made an ascent of the classic route. If you're tired of the endless barrage of bouldering and sport climbing videos out there, check out this cool video that Fitz Cahall made of the Rainbow Wall.
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Castle Rock State Park, one of the best climbing destinations in the south bay area, was saved from closure by the Sempervirens Fund, a nonprofit conservation group in Los Altos. The deal, which is set to be announced today, Wednesday, means the park will receive $250,000. The donation will help keep the park open for another year.
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Want to learn how to become a solid rock climber? One of the best ways to learn about climbing technique is through personal instruction and training.
Justin Alarcon, a 31 year old climber from Berkeley, has climbed the extremely difficult double digit Yosemite boulder problems Pine Box, Yabo Roof, and Narcissus, the latter of which he climbed at 1:20 am on a July morning without spotters. Besides having climbed 8a on three different continents, a number of long Yosemite routes, 5.13 sport routes, and having coached climbing since the early 2000s, Alarcon is finishing up his NASM personal training certification. Most notably, Justin’s climbing has continuously improved over his 12+ years on rock. Part of Justin’s success stems from his training.
“The first time I did any kind of structured training program was prior to a two month trip to South Africa's Rocklands. This turned out to be a watershed experience for me because my performance on rock far exceeded anything that I had done before that and it was so obvious what the only difference had been,” said Alarcon.
Beginning April 1st, Alarcon will be holding a 6 week intensive climbing workshop designed to teach climbers the fundamentals of rock climbing.“This workshop will lean more heavily on climbing technique and strategy but will also incorporate typical fitness strategies,” said Alarcon.
Sign up for Alarcon’s climbing training workshop
For questions and more information please email:
Cost: $150 for members, $200 for non-members.
When: Sundays from 1:00 - 3:00 pm, beginning April 1st
As climbing moves toward the Olympics, USA Climbing paired up with the US Olympic committee this year to host the Open and Youth Bouldering National Championships in Colorado Springs, CO. The Open competition was held on February 24th and 25th. This was easily the strongest depth of field of any Climbing National Championship to date, with the outcome going down to the last attempts on the day. Touchstone member Ethan Pringle looked to win the comp but dropped to 2nd place as Daniel Woods pulled out the win in the dying moments. Touchstone Zero Gravity Climbing Team members did well in this strong field with four of the six participating qualifying for Semi-Finals. Joshua Levin 16th, Cicada Jenerik 17th, Jacquelyn Wu 21st, Sera Busse 23rd, Will Roderick 47th, Rick Gentery 50th.
Bro trips are one of the best parts of climbing. Hanging out with a few other like minded climbers, wrestling awesome rock, and than sitting together drinking beers at night creates some great camaraderie and awesome trips. From February 28th until March 8th, Jacob Nelson and Ryan Rougeux of Sacramento Pipeworks met up with Ryan Moon and Justin Alarcon of Berkeley Ironworks. The climbers met up with a crew of kids from Salt Lake, a few climbers from Washington, and world traveler, Ethan Pringe for a total bro down ho-down. The climbers rented a cabin in Alabama and than made short commutes to Little Rock City, Horse Pens 40, and sandstone bouldering in Georgia. At night, they rested their sore forearms by drinking beer in a hot tub and watching romantic comedies. Moon described it as being one of his best trips. Not ony did he get to climb with his hero Ethan Pringle, tell a ton of bad fart jokes, but he ate amazing food. The group went to Aretha Drankenstein's "It’s got the best waffles I’ve had in my life and I’m all about waffles," said Moon. Moon put together a video of the trip. Ignore the hail at the beginning and notice the rad climbing.
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Past blog entries can be found at http://touchstoneclimbing.blogspot.com/