Early in November, I headed to Sand Rock, Alabama with the intent to put up a new trad line that is potentially a first ascent. This is quite debatable since Sand Rock has largely been "climbed out" and has a varied and considerable history, meaning that any line that can be climbed has probably been climbed at one point or another. Therefore, when Sam Latone and I first scouted 60 feet of beautiful, compact sandstone, we were excited but skeptical. To date, however, no locals or old-timers have been able to tell me of a previous ascent of that particular section of rock, located opposite "Dreamscape" and around the corner from "Wall of Horns." If you're reading this, and you have any beta on the route's history, then by all means please let me know.
|The opening moves on "Pardon Our Progress"|
|In the first crux on "Pardon Our Progress"|
|At Fort Bluff in Huntsville. Credit: Maggie Beck|
|Garrett on the second pitch ledge of "Cloudy Day"|
This past weekend featured a trip to Little River Canyon and the Tennessee Wall with Tyler Upchurch and Josh Raborn. We split town early Saturday morning, three of us and a good deal of gear crammed into Susan's Ford Fiesta, and headed to the Crazy House crag. It was Josh and Tyler's first experience navigating the untamed, occasionally sketchy, and always difficult sport climbs there, but they both had some proud sends for the day on a handful of hard 5.11 lines. I was just happy to be out getting a good forearm pump.
|Tyler Upchurch on "Rocktoberfest" (5.11c)|
Finally, Tuesday night, Chris Latham and I had a dry tooling demo at First Ave Rocks bouldering gym in Birmingham. We talked to a few people about Peregrine Climbing Guides' upcoming New Hampshire ice climbing trip, introduced a few more people to ice tools, and generally had a good time. It has definitely definitely been a strong run of climbing in the last two months, which is good, because the last thing I did before leaving First Ave Tuesday night was partially tear the A4 pulley in my left index finger, so no more climbing for at least 2 or 3 weeks. More on that later, though.