I've been training hard since March in preparation for my coming week long climbing trip to the Red in October. I'll arrive on a Thursday morning and leave on a Tuesday evening. This is the first time (since the first year I started climbing) that I have had a chance to do this, and I'm super excited. I do have a goal route in mind. While I'm secretly hoping to send my route on the first day [and thus relieving any send-pressure] I'm not counting on it. I'm trying to figure out a strategy for climbing and projecting assuming the weather or other factors don't force any rest days. What I had in mind:
Thursday: warm up then project
Friday : AM warm up then project, PM fun easy (onsight) climbing
Saturday : rest
Sunday : AM project, PM fun climbing
Monday : fun easy climbing AM, rest PM
Tuesday : Last ditch project attempts if not sent, PM go home
Post by MarkAnderson on Sept 11, 2014 15:08:52 GMT -7
I wouldn't climb that much, but that's me. If you're going to climb two days on, I would suggest making each day fairly short, and trying to rest as much as possible between climbing sessions. Like Am the first day, PM the second day. If your easy climbing is truly easy, this schedule is probably do-able (the problem is that "easy" climbing often devolves into hard climbing if you get on the wrong route(s)).
One thing I would change is to make your last-ditch effort on Monday (PM, after AM rest), and then do your fun easy climbing on Tuesday. That way you're at least fairly well-rested each time you approach your project.
Post by tedwelser on Sept 11, 2014 20:45:17 GMT -7
I concur with Mark's comment that your plan will likely have you climbing too much. This can be hard on you body internally (muscles, etc) but also in terms of skin. Doing extra mileage at the Red can be really hard on your skin, and a full day of actual rest can really help you repair that.
I would be tempted to make two changes to your schedule(assuming you are more psyched on RP than on-sighting). First, I would go 2 on, 1 off, 1 on, 1 off, final day on. Second I would divide your objectives across 3 goal routes. The first route, your current target route (T). The second, something a notch or two easier (T-), perhaps something that would be a noble 2nd go send if you managed it. The third, a step beyond your current goal (T+).
I would get on all three and work them during the first two days, giving priority to T, and T-; T+ is really just a recon to allow you to tailor your training over the next couple seasons. Then I would rest, and try to send T- on the next climbing day, and then put in refining work on T. Then rest, and on the final day, send T, and with your new psych, improve your recon of T+ or climb volume for fun.
On your recon mission if you can get a friend to film you or at least take good stills you can really cement the route, the beta, and alternatives in your mind for the coming seasons. I used to climb a bunch at the Red in the 1990's and I would draw detailed beta maps, that then, over the winter or during the mid summer I would use to help me train to be ready to raise my performance above the level needed for the route. RRG routes are data rich, and if you really suss them out you can make them feel much easier.
I was a bit worried this would be too much climbing; I'll have to see what my climbing partner is up for (rest or climb while I belay). If I'm "lucky", the weather could help my cause. Maybe I could take the kids to the reptile zoo in Slade.
The whole thing will be a bit of an experiment (especially taking my kids along).
Post by tedwelser on Sept 12, 2014 10:30:57 GMT -7
Ah-- taking the kids along is a whole other matter. I have kids too, and facilitating a fun trip with them will really change the amount of time that you have to invest into working towards your own climbing goals. In my experience, the best routes for kids at the read are often not at the same location as project routes. Probably the best area for striking that balance is Muir valley, where the stream in the center of the valley also makes a good lunch spot with fun for the kids. Ours love to play in the stream.
What is your goal route? What level of routes do your kids like to climb?
I found that I had to be a lot more flexible with my goals when climbing with my kids. I try to have lots of options, but accept that I will only climb a couple of them.
Both my kids are under the age of 3 so they won't be climbing. I've picked Twinkie at the Phantasia crag. It's right next to the road and the climbing looks fairly straightforward. We'll be carrying the kids wherever we go, so the Muir is probably out. I'm bringing a climbing partner with me to have a third party to climb with (me, my wife, and another) and am bringing a friend from church to help babysit the kids if need be while we are there. It is a long drive for us (Pennsylvania to Kentucky) which, I'm expecting, will be the hardest part of the trip.
Post by tedwelser on Sept 14, 2014 20:38:26 GMT -7
Sounds like a good plan. Twinkie is a good choice too because you will either have the fitness and will send it quickly or it will seem pretty far away, in which case you can quickly switch to another goal. The Zoo has a couple of 12as that could make quick work, but that hike is too steep for kids. Although, the creek near the parking area is fun for kids, and you could also make a quick visit to the Zoo from Miguels and only spend a couple of hours, hike included. If you have 4 wheel drive you will have some good options in the PMRP too. Drive by is not that bad of a hike and has a wide safe cliff base. Bete-vul Pipeline at Bob Marley crag is similar to Twinkie but with a crux at the end, but does not have a good cliff base for your kids, due to a sizable drop-off.
What do you guys do on your rest days? Hike around and explore other crags? Scope new lines? Goof off with the kids? Have you found any resistance with your climbing partners to taking rest or do you just climb with like minded individuals? How would you schedule six straight climbing days with a project in mind?
Recently the only longer climbing trip at the Red was with a larger, more fluidly defined group. I was able to take a rest day simply by going along with the climbing day of others and taking photos and TR-ing an easy route for active rest.
I bring an ascender so that I can use a gri gri and ascender to get up and set a directional and get good photos of people climbing. I find people appreciate it when you take the time to get good photos from interesting angles of them on their routes.
With young kids the I have always been a fan of very short hikes with something interesting for them to see / do. Even now that our kids are older we often will spend hours on a rest day playing in the water and trying to catch crayfish in a stream. Exploring is good as you mention and can be a great way to recon an area by heading in with just the kids and day hike equipment (this can merge with the photo / tag along with active climbers event). You could also check to see if the folks at Muir valley could use a volunteer for part of a day-- perhaps simply greeting people or helping them in something they need done.
Dunno where you are planning to camp but Lago Linda's is super for families who climb. It is generally well set up with nice showers and camping spots that can be reserved. They also have a lake for swimming on the property which is great for kids. It is however located in the Southern Gorge so it is not as convenient for Phantasia area.
Post by MarkAnderson on Sept 16, 2014 12:09:54 GMT -7
If I'm climbing with people who aren;t resting, I will go to the crag and hangout/belay or whatever. If everyone is resting, I always like to go on a hike, preferrably to a crag where I can stare at routes, etc. The kids like to hike, but We will also take them to a park or library if possible, and everyone loves the grocery store!
Thanks for the tips guys! I guess, now that you mention it, no one would complain to have their personal belay slave while I'm on a rest day. My youngest will turn 1 in the beginning of November, so he'll be the most tricky party to plan around (hence the extra climber besides my wife and I).
Speaking of whom, he just woke up. Got to put him back down. We're staying at the Red River Gorgeous cabins which will be a nice easy ride to lots of areas, has a stream in the back, and is just down the road from Military Wall. Can't wait!!
The Red River Gorgeous cabins are amazing! I grew up in Cincinnati with the family that own the cabins. All hand-built by family and friends with materials sourced from the RRG and immediate surrounding area. Beautiful and unique cabins. And the owners are climbers, too! Seeing the cabins mentioned brought back lots of good memories. Hope you guys enjoy your stay there.
Not sure what's in the 'doable' realm for a day hike with your little guys, but check out the Gray's Arch Trail. (http://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/dbnf/recreation/recarea/?recid=39478) It's a easy hike that takes off from the same trailhead as Military Wall and Left Flank (Martin's Fork). Rough Trail 221 to Gray's Arch Trail 205. Cool arch and lots of good spots to hangout in the amphitheater around the base.