|The pulchritudinous New River Gorge.|
|Pete Chasse puttin' the hurt on Mosaic 12c.|
So, after ticking off at least .000198 percent of the New River Gorge sweet routes, we made the 4 hour pilgrimage West to the Red. It had been almost 2 years since climbing there with Bret 'albino rhino' Johnston, and I was looking forward to doing new routes and finishing some unfinished business.
Primarily, I love the Red most for one reason: options. The vast majority of its routes have limitless features. When moves get big there is always some high foot that enables the possible. The other reason I adore this place is that there are no hard moves. Endurance climbing defines the Red; though there are a few 'bloc' routes to be had.
After an initially soggy start, we experienced some of the Red's finest at crags like Roadside, Muir Valley, the Gallery to name a few. One of our favorites was a 5.8 at the Gallery known as "27 years after". It was stellar! Earlier in our trip I had told Tiffers so much about the climbing here, and it was great to see her self confidence propel her up many fine lines.
|Tiffers totally dominating.|
It was there that I ran into many familiar faces. Peter and Lidija Chasse were a couple I hadn't seen for five years. They were in residence with their adorable pug "Buster". I can attest that this gregarious guy steals the show at the crags; and, he will certainly steal a spot on your rope bag if you're not watching. We love you Buster!
During the early afternoon of Nov 22nd, after a lovely half day of climbing sunny sandstone, we headed to Lex, picking up a cold Ale 8 ginger ale en route. Little did we see the imminent debacle. As we pulled near the airport (read: only 20 minutes away) we found ourselves caught in a concrete gridlock. Had we had opportunity I would have pulled off the freeway beforehand. But, as fate
In a nutshell, I restocked provisions and headed back to the Red to get my game face on. I was super psyched to finish up Omaha Beach: a route in the famous Madness cave. This quintessential pumpfest had spit me off on my previous trip, when injury, and wicked jug rash had taken their toll.
Fast forward, a few days getting my groove on, ole man winter made his blitzkrieg. Ahhh, I did have an opportunity to get back on this beast and re-familiarize myself with the moves. It felt great! But, once it got real cold all aspirations were quickly vaporized.
|The Red is so much fun. It even made me do a male Bandaloop dance.|
|This is Miguel's several days after Thanksgiving. Brrrr.|