04 April, 2016

Climbing with the Club

Dang it Evan, you threw off my groove! This post is coming a little late because Evan and I fell a week behind. Fortunately there is plenty for me to talk about. Two weekends ago I went to Lake Summersville in West Virginia with the UNCG Climbing Club, also known as The Cliffhangers. I had wanted to visit the area eventually, but mainly because Lake Summersville dumps into the Gauley River, which I hear is awesome!

Lake Summersville

On the way up we hit up the New River Gorge and I got my first experience at sport climbing (a 5.6 called Wunderkind), which was incredible. I’m not sure if I have ever had that much adrenaline pumping through my body while climbing. It felt really good to get my first sport climb out of the way. The fact that I was able to do it on natural rock just made things better. The next climb we hit up was this amazingly fun chimney climb that everyone climbed slightly differently with a really hard slab climb to top out. Unfortunately, I had to call my day short when pain in my left elbow began flaring up.

Derek's first time sport climbing.

The second day we headed to Lake Summersville to do some climbing. Due to the water being low for winter levels, a lot of climbs were open to us. I ended up starting the day heading over to a couple of top out boulders I noticed while using the restroom. It seemed like the boulders had not seen much climbing, if any. It was really interesting exploring around to find lines to climb up the rock. We had to be careful pieces that were prone to flaking off if any weight was put on them. Nothing we did was too challenging, but it was all fun nonetheless. 

Working on a few boulder problems.

My climbing ended for the day after topping out (not cleanly) a 5.10a with an extremely fun, bouldery start and a 5.8 that was rife with mantel moves. Like the day before, and the day after the pain in my elbow seemed to be a constant theme that didn’t seem to want to disappear. The last day we headed back to the gorge to do some rappelling as well as a few more climbs before heading back to Greensboro.

Later that week in the UNCG climbing wall I was finally able to send the V3 boulder problem I had been working on for a few weeks. It was the best possible way to cap off a week full of climbing.

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