On our first day, my feeling was that Bishop climbing was going to be harder and maybe not as fun as Hueco climbing. The change of rock and style is extremely noticeable and I wasn’t feeling it at first, personally. But later in the afternoon, something kicked in and I ran around and ticked 2 fun moderate problems and 1 harder one and that boosted my confidence and my psych. Since then, my two favourite problems would have to be: High Plains Drifter and Fly Boy. High Plains is a problem that I had my eye on way back in 2001 and never tried (maybe didn’t feel strong enough) and it was high on my tick list in 2009 but I couldn’t try it then either because it was covered in snow. So, I showed up this year with 11 years of anticipation built up! Thankfully, it did not let me down; it is a *rad* problem. I worked it one morning with Adam and a couple other people and as soon as I figured out the subtlety of the drifter move, it went down – despite, I must add, the miserable conditions (major gusting winds, which didn’t make the high-ball top-out very enjoyable!). Anyway, it was major fun and long-awaited tick. Fly Boy (see video) was super cool because it finishes with a big jump. I’m definitely going back for the sit-start because the upper moves are locked in now and, well, the sit-start looks like the better, more obvious line. Otherwise, I’ve done a lot of moderate things here already from previous trips, so this time I want to play on some harder stuff and see if I can get anything done.
Mig’s Bishop days have been awesome so far. He’s proven just how much stronger he is now than he was in 2009 with numerous sends of problems left behind! Two of the most impressive problems ticked: The Hulk and Seven Spanish Angels (see photo), both done in super style. (Interestingly, I can not do either of these problems – yet, I suppose – and he has yet to do High Plains or Fly Boy; clearly he and I have different strengths!) Also, Mig sent his hardest problem to date: Gleaming the Cube! So cool. Other than that, Mig still has few “old” problems to do but he, too, wants to push himself a bit more and have some goes at harder stuff.
We were lucky enough to spend our first week here with Pam and Adam from Toronto, who also have a baby girl! It was really cool not only to share the experience (and work) of cragging with babies, but also to hang out and get to know them better. They are awesome! We will remember fondly (among other things), our little girls having secret conversations, Pam and Mig’s giggle fits, and Adam sketching-out on the down-climb from 7 Spanish Angels.
At the moment we have the pleasure of hanging out with Dennis, Cassandra and their daughter (yes, a lot of baby girls born into the Toronto climbing scene recently)! This is particularly fun for Mig because he has a partner to get out at the wee hours of the morning and night for various photo shoots. He was able to share a couple sun-rise photo sessions with Adam, and now he has a partner to shoot the Bristlecone Pine Forest, Mono Lake, and other sites. Bishop is situated in one of the most picturesque parts of California, surrounded by mountains, lakes, trees, rocks, etc. It’s a photographer’s dream. See the photo gallery for some of his shots so far!
* click an image for larger size (cliqué sur une image pour la voir en grand format).