Some days you go out feeling all optimistic and great n stuff. You feel like everything is easy. We all love those days.
RV thought he was having one of those days, and then Mr. J. Henry (Jebus) smote him down. Hard.
After a quick walk through the field to show iRVine around a bit, we unpacked and warmed up by Incredarete. Pretty quickly we moved on to The Eliminator, a problem I'd done the previous year. I enjoyed it and thought that RV would as well. Plus Katie wanted to try it a bit and see how it felt.
Katie on the first move
Trying to work out the high heel
Pretty quickly RV and Katie were both making good progress. Katie eventually settled on the high heel hook method and RV was trying it my way with a low left foot. Both were getting very close from what I could tell up on my perch. Then, seemingly out of nowhere. The first step to RV's smoting happened:
He caught his breath a little bit and discussed whether he wanted to stop trying it and save his skin for later. Eventually he settled on the "I just need to try harder and not punt" outlook.
RV stepped back on and Katie promised to give him a nice close spot so he would feel comfy. I don't think it worked.
Katie spots so fast!!
Eventually they both went back to work and started trying this odd pseudo drop knee that eventually failed them enough to force them into their old betas. I decided to come down from my perch in an effort to keep them on task. Again, it failed.
Ze drop knee
A little bit less of a drop knee for the Katie
RV pulling the creepy card
Again with the drop knee
I forced him to try it once open
With my watchful eye now fixated on him from a few feet away, RV tried to finally put the problem to rest. After a few more tries he snagged the high left hand and moved his feet over. After a bit of putzing around he matched the big rail and started moving up.
One more balance move and he'd be on good feet and good sidepulls with only jugs separating him from the top. What did he do, you ask?
He gave it a couple more tries to no avail. He just couldn't muster the hard first move again. He vowed, Saturday, he'd send.
We quickly moved over to the Wave, just nearby. The Wave is a super classic arete problem that surmounts a "crashing wave" feature on amazing slopers and open handed holds. It ends nicely with a bit of a beached whale on slopey feet.
RV saw it and got really psyched to try it. I gave him some beta and he started getting closer and closer. He just couldn't seem to keep his left foot on when he needed it the most. Each time he'd get obscenely close and then his foot would shift a bit and he'd be off.
He was pretty optimistic though and while he took a break I hopped on to see how it felt and repeated it second go, with a bit of a flop on the topout. RV got psyched and said he was gonna give it everything he had.
He did. It just wasn't quite enough.
As he sat on the pads in defeat he noticed a bit of blood. He said something, but we didn't pay much attention. Then we looked over and saw this:
I've never really seen that much blood come from a hole like that. It was downright impressive. RV taped his tip up and gave a couple more futile efforts before calling it, in hopes that he'd be able to climb on Saturday.
We made the short walk over to Cleopatra and Cinderella. I was semi interested in trying Cleo as I'd gotten 100% shut down on it last year. Why, I'm not really sure. It felt pretty good this year.
The first couple of moves flowed pretty well and weren't too bad. Pretty soon I was just getting stymied on the last hard move to the upper sloper. I got my left foot on the weird foothold, sucked in my ab and stuck the slopey crimp.
I sat down on the pad, sort of surprised and set to putting it all together. First go I punted and dry fired off of the last hard move to the juggy horn. Pissed, I got on the problem right away and greased off of one of the lower moves. Katie forced me to take a bit of a break and after a couple minutes I got on and went to the top!
So psyched! It felt really good to do it quickly and it's a pretty fun problem. Much more fun than Cinderella, I think.
We ended the day over in the corridor by Grimace where Katie and I both did Pocket Pool a cool, short V4 and I flailed like no other on Symmetry. Kind of funny. Katie also tried Out of Africa, I think. Not totally sure of the name, but man it's sharp as shit! Katie figured out the moves really quickly but didn't really want to waste her skin on such a painful problem. I don't blame her.
RV watched in growing anger as he couldn't try anything with his finger. He went from happily resting to a large amount of hate.
As we walked out of the boulders we heard RV mutter under his breath, once more, "J. Henry smote me down.".
Yes he did.