I have never been more excited for what my future has in store. I am healthier and stronger than ever, I am more focused and determined than ever. My training, my diet, my passions, my general outlook on life, on education, on my career, and on my future endeavors have left me so excited, that I feel like nothing can break my stride. I have eliminated negativity from my life and focus only on the positive. Although I have lost some people who were once dear to me in the process, it has led me to happiness that I have not felt in a long time.
This project, to climb my first v10, did not start four months ago, it began nearly six years ago. It has helped me to focus on my goal and on my passion. In just the past four months I have progressed nearly two grades and feel comfortable leading 5.12s which I was not before. Training, surrounding myself with positive influences, eating properly, eliminating negativity, and maintaining my psych has allowed me to make that progress.
For my final project, I had initially set out to climb Way of Life a 5.11 sport route in Joshua Tree. I managed to red point it on my second attempt which was just thirty minutes after my first attempt. Considering I had accomplished my goal prior to beginning the project I felt this would not be appropriate. I then modified my project to lead my first 5.12b. I found a fantastic line known as Bikini Whale which I tried that same day. I managed to top rope it with one hang my first try. I made this my project but considering it was the middle of spring, I knew there would not be enough time left in the season to attempt a red point. Finally I decided to make my goal to climb my first v10 boulder problem. I consider myself a v8-9 boulderer and a 5.11-5.12 sport climber. So I felt that making a v10 boulder problem my goal was appropriate for this project.
This past Saturday May 2, 2015 my friend Tim and I went to Black Mountain Idyllwild to enjoy the cool mountain climate and go rock climbing. My goal was to test my training and attempt The Silverfox a v10 boulder problem. Unfortunately we discovered that the climb was in an area we were not going to visit this day. Luckily I remembered a fantastic v10 that I had somehow forgotten about and that I had actually wanted to climb for years, Morphic Resonance. Its a crimpy tall line up a beautiful boulder. I knew right away that this would be my project. We climbed throughout the day sending climbs like The Visor, then a variation on the right which was perhaps v7, and then I attempted Ex-Patriot which might be a v8 and checked out a few other climbs. Finally we headed to another part of the mountain where the beautiful Morphic Resonance resides. I tried, and I tried, and I made progress. Although I was not able to send, I left feeling great and looked forward to working it more in the coming weeks and months. The video below represent my first attempts, and my progress toward achieving my goal. I have since done some research and discovered that my beta was not right. I feel confident that with some more training, the right beta, and perhaps more pads and friends to push me forward, that I will be able to complete Morphic Resonance by the end of this season.
In conclusion, I will now answer the questions I established at the official start of this project.
What do I need to change about my climbing habits to climb my first v10?
For the past six years I have just climbed; climb, climb, climb. I never introduced any traditional workout to my climbing. Although I still progressed, I now wonder how far along I would be if I had began additional training years ago. In just the past four months I have moved up about two climbing grades which, without my new regiment, would have probably taken another year. I also learned that my diet and my mental health are a major factor that I need to keep happy if I plan to climb v10 and beyond.
What v10 climb am I going to attempt?
After some debate, and various modifications I finally decided on a beautiful line known as Morphic Resonance in the OK Corral area of Black Mountain, Idyllwild.
What type of holds can i expect to encounter on the route?
Morphic Resonance is a difficult climb, the primary features on this route are very small and sharp crimps. This climb fits well to my style of climbing, instead of big slopers or pinches, I have to focus on various crimps. I will also have to keep my mind strong because the climb itself is quite tall.
What time of year will be best for me to attempt this climb?
Fortunately, this climb will be doable at almost any time of year; as long as it is not too hot of a summer day. Climbing is always better when its cold since the rock remains crisp and sticky. In the winter though, the gates are closed which means we have to hike for several hours to reach these climbing areas. I plan to climb this route this summer, but the optimal time may be late summer or fall.
Am I strong enough to complete this climb?
Yes! I am strong enough to complete this climb. Once I dial in the correct beta, I believe I will be able to send this route, my first v10.
Who will be my climbing partner?
This question can pose some difficulties; many long time climbing friends have moved on from the sport. Tim who is featured in the short clip below is someone who I have begun to climb with recently. There are several people from my local gym who I hope to get outside with. Really, I am working on rebuilding my network of climbing friends so that I can tackle a climb like Morphic Resonance which could use several pads and spotters.
Is this a realistic goal?
Heck Yea! I got this, and I will climb beyond v10!
How will I document the route?
I have brought along a camera to film my attempts and my eventual send. In the future I also hope to have others there with more filming equipment.
Can I set up a gopro camera along the route to capture the excitement and, am I psyched?
I will most likely have friends along who will film from various angles, and yes I am very, very psyched!