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Perfect conditions at Governors

February 27, 2013

It may have been cold, but thanks to things like hand warmers, body warmers, soup, tea, and down jackets and booties, a large group of us were able to take advantage of some pretty perfect conditions at Governor Stable twice this past week.

Climbers: Eric, Max M, Jackie, Paul, Shane, Esten, Max W, Hunter, Nate, Nick, Olya, Harmony, Ryman, Dylan, I’m probably forgetting someone since we had so many people…

Olya climbing in the Circuit Area.  Photo: Harmony Haft.

Olya on Dominate (V0). Photo: Harmony Haft.

Presidents Day was a lot of folks’ first time at Governors, so us vets gave them the tour.  Nate basically crushed everything we tried.  We started at the end, where Paul, Nick and Nate sent The 45 Stand (V7), Max sent Slopey Dom (V5), and Eric almost Hulk smashed the boulder that Slopey Dom was on.  I gave everyone a beer challenge since the only people I knew personally who had sent The Gathering (V6) were me and Maria.  Eric and Mario Max took up the challenge, and as you all know, beer is a fantastic motivator.  I lost.  Twice.

Next we went to the Juggernaut Area, where Nate and Max M sent Juggernaut (V5) and Max also sent Jugarete (V6).  Some others might have sent Juggernaut but I don’t really remember.  Many of us ended the day trying Moby’s Dick (V5) at the end of the day, which is not the best idea for such a tiring climb.  Unless you are Nate and crushed everything that day.  Once upon a time I had worked out the beta, but I hadn’t tried it in a long time and forgot it.  Pretty typical.  There was probably a lot of other things climbed, but the group was pretty large so I kind of lost track.  We ended the day with some food and beer at Bullys.

Paul on Moby's Dick (V5)

Paul on Moby’s Dick (V5). Photo: Harmony Haft.

The next Sunday we headed back with an even larger group.  For some reason most other Mid-Atlantic climbers didn’t get the memo that the rock conditions were perfect, so it was kind of alright that we brought the whole gym.  This time we went to Moby’s early and Max W, Paul and I sent it.  Eric and Shane sent Mushroom Cap, one of the hardest V3s ever, after much effort over multiple sessions.  I swear a lot of the 3s at GS are harder than some of the 5s.  A bunch of the guys worked on Soul Face (V9), but no luck on the pretty bare top.  Mario Max did get his proudest GS send though, with Knead It (V3, but as I said, V3 is a hard grade here!), which Wario Max and Hunter sent too.  I hear there was much fist pumping involved.

Part of the group then went back to the 45 Boulder, where Paul (on his first try of the day) and Nick both sent their first V8s with The 45 Sit!

The week before I had tried The 45 Stand (V7) but kept getting about 1 inch from sticking the dyno.  After pondering how I could possibly jump higher for a whole week, it somehow happened and I finally sent the problem.

Next, we went over to Apex (V4) and Low Ride (V5).  There were a bunch of sends on Apex, but nada on Low Ride.  It’s a tough one.  Meanwhile, the other part of the group was working on Herr Right (V7), which Nate sent.  We then went over to the Gin and Juice Area, a part of Governors we hadn’t really explored before.  Some of the group did Swamp Foot (V2) and some of us decided to basically kill ourselves trying No Bedlam (V8) and Gin and Juice (V9).  Those top outs are rough!  Well, at least we have some new projects for next time.

As the sun went down, Nick sent Cobra (V5) while drinking a beer.  There may have been some other beer, scotch and wine consumed, as per usual.  And then we went to Bube’s Brewery, where the projects didn’t end.  We decided to order some Chernobyl wings, made with ghost pepper sauce.  If one eats 12 of these, that person gets a free t-shirt.  Our waiter challenged us to a free beer for the first one of our group to finish two – a much better reward.  Esten won.  Eric challenged me to eat two, period, and I would get my beer back from his climbing challenge.  I won.  Or might have actually lost.  I should’ve learned from my previous ghost pepper incident.  It took them quite a while to figure out how to split our check.  Maybe they just wanted us to stay for the gender-bending karoake.  But luckily, we got out of there before any of us was forced up to the mic.

On the way home, Max asked if 45 Stand was my proudest send, because I had tried it a bunch last year and completely failed – so sending it was a sure sign that I had actually improved as a climber.  It got me to thinking, because “proudest” send isn’t necessarily your hardest grade.  After some thought, I think I decided that mine was Tranced Out and Dreaming in Ibex about 2 1/2 years ago.  It was exciting because it was my first V6 (and I had tried it and not sent the first time I went to Ibex), but it was more so my proudest send because it proved to myself that I was not only back from my ACL tear the year before but overcame the injury enough to be an even better climber than prior to my knee surgery.  What would you consider to be your proudest send?

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