For me 2010 was the last six months of being a teenager and the first 6 months of me being a true adult, and it was marked by a lot of new experiences. School could have treated me better this year. I really liked my spring semester, everything clicked and I had some really good grades; I feel like I learned a lot. This last semester was almost completely opposite. I learned a lot of chemistry this fall, I feel like I have a much better understanding of how reactions work now; as opposed to when I was in bio 213 when we had explanations such as “things happen and then we get this…”. I also had to drop my first class Physics II (with calc ugh!). The calculus required was only calc I and either be taking calc II or have already taken it. Of course I was taking calc I at the same time which didn’t help even though I had taken calculus before. One of my friends who passed the class said that the clac III class he was taking helped make the equations seam more understandable. I had a lot of trouble just keeping up this semester for some reason, I just wasn’t feeling being in school, I still don’t know why I felt like this. All I can say is that I never want a semester like this again, it was hell.
For climbing I would say that in 2010 I explored every discipline of climbing I could. I finally gathered what I consider to be a full rack for basic gear climbing (sans big wall or The Creek). I did a lot of gear protected pitches this year, figured out how to comfortably hand jam without tearing up my hands, and I can say I trust about 85% of the placements that I make to hold a fall. I bouldered way more than I ever thought I would, mostly thanks to several 30 plus problem days. And who would have guessed I’d try ice climbing.
I spent a lot of time out in the “Gally”, as the hardcore Gallatin Canyon climbers call it, this summer. I got to meet and climb with a lot of the people who I hadn’t really talked to before this year. It showed me how specialized each niche in the Bozeman climbing community is. Pretty much every climber in Bozeman makes their way down to Gallatin Canyon at some point, but depending on what type of climber you are you only go to certain places. There are just so many places to climb that are secluded and seperated enough from all the other areas; each one has its own personality and its own following. Since I was climbing in the east side the canyon so much I wasn’t able to climb outside with a few of the partners I had spent most of my time with last year. I also wasn’t able to make it out to Natural Bridge as many times as I would have liked. I really feel like it is one of my favorite places to climb around Bozeman because of the scenery and quality of the routes.
Overall I replaced the difficulty that ruled my climbing last year with millage and visiting new areas. There were a lot of washouts and cold days but there were also a lot of blue bird days shared with my best friends; lots of memories that I wont soon forget. And since we almost always have partners while climbing I have to thank all the people that I climbed with over the last year. Without all of them I wouldn’t be able to get out of the gym at all.
By The Numbers:
# of New Gear Routes: 43, Between 5.6 and 5.12b including 5.9 III
# of New Sport Pitches: 74, Between 5.8 and 5.13b
# of New Boulder Problems: 127 named problems and many more unnamed problems, from V0 to V9
Mode Difficulty: 5.9, V4
Average Difficulty: 5.10c, V4.67
Competitions: 10 total, 3 out of state, 2 were on a national level, and 1 in blacklight.
This year I did a lot of moderates over several disciplines, I didn’t really focus on pure difficulty as much as I thought I would. But I am now very confident at gear climbing and multipitching in general. The thing I’m most proud about is becoming more consistent at the levels of difficulty I was peaking at last year, especially because I didn’t do any extra training besides just climbing a ton.
Next year I really want to focus on the difficulty I can sport climbing. For gear climbing I really just enjoy the movement and scenery so I don’t think I’ll push myself in difficulty as much as just getting the millage I want. I will be focusing on competitions next year and thats my main motivation for pushing the difficulty of my climbing and onsighing. As much as I enjoy bouldering, I’m only planning on really bouldering for the pre-season and post-season competitions going out to Whiskey Gulch for the next few months until the temperatures rise to above freezing and then up in Cascade Creek late this summer.
Have a great safe New Years!