Tuesday, November 16, 2010

East Marion, NY

Here are some pictures from our time spent climbing in East Marion, both before and after our trip to Europe. No matter where I travel in the world, East Marion will always hold a special place in my heart. I've spent countless afternoons scaling the area's perfect granite boulders, soaking up the sunshine and listening to the waves churn glacial pebbles with each crash upon the shore. Here, the aesthetic experience has always been as meaningful as the climbing and those moments have helped me understand that, for me at least, the two are forever inextricably linked.

A three photo sequence of one of East Marion's best lines

A fun v1 problem

A v2/3 sit start

Another v2/3 problem

Sunday, November 14, 2010

New York City

Grand Central Terminal

After returning from Europe, we finished up our trip by spending some days in New York City doing all the usual tourist things. Might as well end our great adventure with the biggest and best city of them all. ;-)

Trinity Church

The beautiful ceiling of Grand Central

Paintings by Jackson Pollock from the MoMA collection

Waiting for the subway

Paintings from the Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Apple Store

St. Patrick's Cathedral

30 Rockefeller Plaza

Times Square madness

Various views of the New York City skyline,
as seen from the Empire State Building

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Fontainebleau, France

Fontainebleau, ici.

After Paris, we headed to Fontainebleau for a week in the mecca of bouldering. I had heard so much about the climbing here and I was so excited to see what all the hype was about. The bouldering seemed very much suited to my style- slabby to vertical and footwork intensive. I had listened to all of the stories about the sandbag grades, the incredibly glassy holds, the perfect slopers and, of course, the pof.

Unfortunately for Erika and I, it rained the entire time that we were in Fontainebleau. That's right- every day. A few days it stopped raining for a couple of hours and we ran around like crazy trying to climb anything that wasn't completely soaked. The wet rock negated any serious efforts at harder climbs, but we did get to climb maybe two dozen grade 5 and 6 climbs. When the rain would pick up again, we would walk around the crazy boulder gardens of Bas Cuvier and marvel at the amazing holds and shapes you could find. We visited the impressive Royal Chateau de Fontainebleau, and ate our share of crepes, quiche and croissants. And we passed a few more days in Paris, a little over an hour's drive away.

I can't say that I really got to explore the climbing in Font, but I was very impressed by what I saw and amazed at how stout the lower end grades were. Despite the bad weather, finally getting a chance to touch the fabled rock of Fontainebleau was worth it all.

The first Font 6a in the world- 'La Marie Rose', originally climbed in 1946!

'La Nescafe' (Font 5+)

Crazy rock shapes...

'La Genouillere' (Font 5+)

Le Chateau de Fontainebleau
(shown above and in all pictures below)