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The blowfish face is contagious

October 20, 2011

Perfect temps for some diabase climbing in central PA.  Now if we could just find boulders in a timely fashion.

The climbers: Art, Jackie, Marie, and Ryland
Hydration: Highland Park 12, Stone Ruination IPA, Baxter Pamola Xtra Pale Ale

We have a tendency to get lost when trying to find boulders in central PA (well, other than Governor Stable) and our trip to Mt. Gretna was no exception.  Determined to find something other than the Coleflesh Area, Art and Jackie wandered around for awhile, completely oblivious to the paths heading off the main trail to boulders.  Luckily for Marie and Ryland, by the time they arrived Jackie had found some other boulderers who gave us directions.

Smiley Face

Marie on Smiley Face (V4)

We went first to the Smiley Area, and Ryland quickly demolished Smiley Face (V4).  While Ryland worked on Light Your Mind (V6), the rest of the group, with much shorter arms, took a long time to figure out the beginning beta for Smiley Face (for beta, see photo of Marie at left).  After coming to a breakthough, we thought there would be more sends but it turned out that there was yet another long move…sigh.  Even Marie’s channeling of Ryland’s blowfish face, which has given him super sending power in the past, was of no help.

After Ryland gave a few goes on Tony’s Roof (V8), the crew headed to the 45 Area.  There, both Ryland and Art sent Fabulous (V4) and we attempted Exhibit A (V8).

Help Meat V4

Arthur sending Help Meat (V4)

The girls yearned for some problems without long moves, and were super excited to come upon Help Meat (V4) in the Shamoo Area, with its crimpy face.  But, it was a trap!  Sure, the crimps on the face were pretty sweet.  But then, the climber had to top out using slopers, with a bad landing below.  And sure enough, both Jackie and Marie slightly tweaked their ankles falling off the slopers.  (Can we just mention that one of the printouts Art found on Gretna said this problem had a perfect landing – were they being sarcastic?)  Ryland and Art, though, crushed.  Ryland then gave a few good goes on Shamoo (V6) after we couldn’t figure out what was going on with The Box (V8) and Josh in the Box (V4), but it soon grew dark.  Once again, we were saved by Art’s preparedness in bringing a headlamp.

For dinner, we found a gem: JoBoy’s Brewpub in Manheim, PA.  Good beer, – the Mainheim Red was a favorite – barbeque, and fried okra were the perfect end to the day.

These four members of the crew are set to go to Hong Kong in December – don’t be surprised if Art and Jackie start to become blowfish boulderers as well after spending so much time with Ryland!  Well, with his sending ability, it can only be a good thing, right?

Here are Art’s photos from the day:

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