Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Back At The Gunks

Kyla cruising along the 'Sidewalk' (v0), Peter's Kill.

Christian sticking the final sloper on the 'Black Boulder Problem' (v5).

This weekend my friend Kyla and I were able to get together in the Gunks for a couple days of bouldering. After heavy rain on Saturday, the weather was phenomenal Sunday and Monday. It's always good to get back to the areas where I first started climbing, to measure my climbing progress and to enjoy the sunshine in familiar places.

Finishing the 'Boxcar Traverse' (v4)

'The Clune Crank' (v1)

'Loner Boner' (v3), Peter's Kill

'Blasted Rock' (v0)

'VD' (v3), Peter's Kill

Gunks scenery

'Boulder of the Gods' (v0)

Witch Hazel in bloom

The End

Friday, October 23, 2009

Quick Trip To Pawtuckaway

Fall Colors

Boulder Natural

I was able to make a quick trip up to Pawtuckaway during my brief time here in the Northeast. I was alone so I have no pictures of me climbing but I was able to get some pictures of the beautiful scenery. It's hard to beat Fall in New England.

Round Pond

A view across Round Pond

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Goodbye Australia

A Melbourne sunset as viewed from St. Kilda Pier

New Zealand- Castle Hill Bouldering

It looks simple. It isn't. 'Think Tank' (v4), Quantum Field

Castle Hill is one of the main reasons that I came to New Zealand. I had seen so many amazing pictures of the bouldering from this area that I had to see for myself whether it was real or imagined. It didn't disappoint. This is truly one of the most picturesque climbing areas I have ever been to, and the bouldering is fantastic. It's also very different. The best description I've heard is- "Friction climbing without the friction." The rock here is a glassy limestone that becomes more polished the more it's climbed. The problems are very technical and tenuous, involving a large amount of intricate body tension to pull off moves. I fell in love with the style of climbing and the landscape. I hope to return again one day to this magical place.

Pulling through the opening moves of the incredibly technical
'Super-Toucher' (v5), Spittle Hill

The sun sets over Castle Hill

Praying the feet don't blow- 'Supernatural' (v5), Spittle Hill

Enjoying the evening's glow

Having gained the slab, getting ready to launch sideways for the large pocket
on the 'Lung Dyno' (v4), Quantum Field

The big throw for the top- 'Lung Dyno' (v4), Quantum Field

An unnamed v1 at Quantum Field

An overview of Castle Hill- Spittle Hill (left) & Quantum Field (right)

New Zealand- Aoraki National Park

Mt. Cook

On the way back to Castle Hill from Fiordland, Malin and I spent some time exploring Aoraki National Park. This is home to Mt. Cook (Aoraki), the highest mountain in New Zealand. Snow capped mountains and turquoise blue lakes dominated the scenery. Yet another amazingly beautiful place.

Lake Pukaki

The Church of the Good Shepherd overlooks Lake Tekapo

The Tasman Glacier and it's accompanying lake

New Zealand- Fiordland National Park

Mitre Peak looming over Milford Sound

Fiordland National Park is easily one of the most beautiful places I have ever been. Hopefully my pictures give you some sense of it's majesty.

Mirror Lakes

Eglinton Valley

Bowen Falls

Harrison Cove

The view back up Milford Sound

A rainbow caught in the mist of Fairy Falls

Fiordland Crested Penguins

Fresh snow

Sunset over Lake Te Anau

New Zealand- Wanaka & Queenstown

Queenstown Harbor

After crossing Haast Pass, we descended upon the idyllic town of Wanaka. Surrounded by lakes, world class skiing and countless other outdoor adventures, Wanaka is definitely a place I'd like to spend more time. Perhaps next year! After a brief tour around Wanaka, it was on to Queenstown, which is kind of like a slightly bigger version of Wanaka with more ski areas, more lakes and even more outdoor adventures going on. Known as the adrenaline capital of New Zealand (and perhaps the world), there's no shortage of heart rate increasing things to do here. Another place to come back to!

The Queenstown Mall

Lake Wanaka

A view of Lake Hawea, on the way to Wanaka

The Crown Range Road from Wanaka to Queenstown

New Zealand- Haast Beach


After driving along the West Coast, Malin and I spent a night in the small town of Haast. We were lucky enough to catch a dark and brooding sunset at Haast Beach on our way.

Simply beautiful

The moon rises over Haast Beach

One lane bridges are common in New Zealand

Fantail Falls

New Zealand- The West Coast

Ship Creek

After spending the night in Hokitika, we drove along the west coast of the South Island. It's an incredible landscape of temperate rainforest, towering glacial peaks and deserted coastline unlike any place I've ever seen.

Ship Creek Beach

A Rimu forest bordering the Tasman Sea

Franz Josef Glacier

Our Lady of the River Church