CRAGCATION

ONSIGHT NORTH AMERICA

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After 8,593 miles, 3 months, 2 countries, 9 states,
14 CRAGs, and 222 pitches, we’re DONE!

On Staying 'Psyched'

10.01.2015

After reading last post, you wonder how we keep things ‘fun’. Or maybe you question whether we even like sport climbing? OR, OR, perhaps you’re offended that we don’t have 100% positive, inspiring things to say about the natural world and activities that allow us to enjoy it? If you fall into these camps, close this tab and navigate to any other outdoor-oriented blog or Instagram on the web. They’ll have what you crave in spades. I promise. For those still with me, I offer the following tips on staying ‘psyched’:

  • Go CRAG anyway. “Show up and see what happens.” Sometimes the day turns around. Lots of times it doesn’t. So, you end up doing a painful and exhaustive re-evaluation of your existence and life choices while you hike out via headlamp.
  • Drink. Surprise, surprise… As the most aggro partner of CRAGCATION, I drink the most.
  • Visit friends. Like Ethan Jayne. In Seattle. Have him show you top breakfast spots like Patty’s Egg Nest. Then eat as much Palaak Paneer as possible. Follow that immediately with rounds of tequila shots at Octopus Bar. Watch Meru. Fall asleep on Ethan’s hardwood floor while watching the Simpsons.
  • Have friends visit you. Like Sean Callahan. In Smith Rock. Reintroduce Sean to sport climbing… Sean hadn’t tied in since last October’s trip to the Red River Gorge. Climb 5.10s and make fun of everything.
  • Go to Portland. Visit Powell’s Books. Purchase a case of Voodoo Doughnuts. Enjoy the not-so-thinly-veiled innuendo on the boxes. Eat a doughnut before dinner, then a doughnut after dinner. Then drive to Haystack Rock. Jump in the Pacific during late-Sept. The ocean will be cold. You won’t care.
  • Go to Canada. Fantasize answering the borderpatrolman’s jejune, “What brings you to Canada?” inquiry with something like, “I’m a fugitive in America and my Thule box is packed to the gills with coke”. Make sure to turn your phone off, or else you’ll rack up $50 in international charges like John did.
  • Try trail running. Unless you’re John Shredski, a full lap around Smith Rock State Park will leave you so exhausted, you’ll lack the capacity to give a shit about anything else afterward. (I think this is actually the reason people run regularly).
  • See movies. Maybe they’ll be O.K… Like Mission Impossible 5 or the Martian. Or maybe you’ll see something stupid like The Intern, just so you can veg out looking at Anne Hathaway for 121 minutes.
  • Read books. Will decided to pick up Proust. In Search of Lost Time is 4,215 pages. That’s a lot of time not thinking about sport climbing.

SABBATICAL = Second Adolescence?

09.29.2015

Here I find myself. Age 25. After a nine year hiatus, listening to blink-182 again. AND thinking it RULES. What is happening to me? Whatever it may be, I think I’m into it. Anyone know when and where the next Warped Tour is? Will’s thinking about going.

One more for the road. Twin Peaks Dudes.

the Fins - Idaho's Ceuse

08.31.2015

The Fins, 3.5 hours north of Salt Lake City, 6 hours northwest of Lander, WY. 45 sport climbs, .11a to hard .14, with most routes occupying the .12-.13 spectrum. Rural Idaho. Closest town is Howe (no gas station) and closest major city is Pocatello. You view a 100 mile radius of farmland, plains, mountains, and faraway thunderstorms from belays at the Head Wall. The gravel road to the CRAGs and desirable camping is brutally steep, rutted, loose gravel. Ingrid’s 4 cylinder stalled a couple hundred feet into the final 1.5 miles of our ascent up-canyon… Forcing a reverse-gear-retreat down-canyon at 1 A.M. and type-2-fun hike to the CRAGs the following afternoon. After which, the benevolent Jonathan Siegrist politely greeted us, explained there was an alternate (read: shorter, less shitty) approach trail, and offerred beta for any of the area’s pitches.

Below, Will approaches Discovery Wall and its rope-stretching 42 meters of limestone glory.