Thursday, May 26, 2011


Here's my obligatory "Im at a meeting and don't know what else to say" post. Not much to say here actually, I'm kinda exhausted. I ran this morning, which was actually rather cool. Didn't even feel like total hell.

The product looks good. Really good. Ueli helped design a whole new category for Hardwear and they basically gave him full access and only changed a couple minor things to make it a bit more palatable to consumers.

On a bright side for me I've got a new climbing pant/short. I'd talked to the designer last summer and made a case for a lightweight, simple pant with a ton of stretch and it made it into the line this year so I'm psyched about that. Really nice couple of pieces. Super simple and actually under featured which is ideal. Curious to see how they do. Either way it's nice to be associated with a company that takes direct feedback so well.

What have ya'll been up to? Nic, someone saw your toe on my bookface and thought it was mine. Had fun telling that story.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Updates All Around

Most importantly, Martin T did Alpine Club last weekend and Brian Runnells did Tunder Tighs yesterday. While I don't know much about Martin's ascent it's obviously proud and he did it rather fast.

Runnells was proud in his own way doing Tunder solo with minimal pads and wet holds. Christ man. Good effort.

On top of both of those proud works Sarah did Moostache!! Really psyched for her to have finished that up as she'd put a number of days on the line and punted off the top enough times for it to start turning into a bit of an epic. For as much traffic as that problem has gotten this is only its second lady send and this one stands out in a season full of really impressive sends. Good work Sarah, you earned that one.

As for my shoulder, looks like I have Bursitis. Not bad. Some rest will do me good and hopefully it'll go away soon. There are bigger issues out there and my shoulder is of limited importance. I like how the world has a way of putting things in perspective just at the right time. It happened to me today and I'm thankful for it.

Alright, enough with that. On a totally different side of things there are two interesting conversations taking place right now related to climbing access/open information.

Go here and read the comments thread.

Go here and read both the post and the insane amounts of comments.

I have my own thoughts on all this and have made a strong attempt to stay out of most any forum out there. I just couldn't help myself on the first link.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Boulders Shoulder

I've been REALLY lucky as far as serious injuries go, only having one knee injury years ago. The rest have been minor tweaks and things that can heal up in a week or at most a month.

I don't want that to change.

Last night I went to Boulder's, rode my bicycle home and sat around until Katie came home. I even edited this video:

Devil's Lake Bouldering - Fixie, Tunder Tighs from Steve Schultz on Vimeo.

Wonderful, right?

Out of nowhere I sat up in bed and couldn't lift my left arm. My shoulder just wouldn't allow it. This morning it feels pretty much the same, if not a touch worse. I'm really hoping it starts to feel better as the day goes on. Nothing felt off last night at the gym and nothing was up on my ride home so I have no clue. For now I'll blame it on Moose.

On another note, Katie is up at the lake with Sam right now. I hope Sam does Massive. After much speculation, waiting, anticipation and a good portion of the season already gone, here are the Lady Goals. Forgive me for being late Sarah...

1 - Jenga will be done 3 times.

2 - Moj will get its FFA.

3 - MooStache will be done 4 times.

4 - Magnum PI will be done 4 times.

5 - Massive Vertigo will be done 3 times.

6 - Anchorpoint will be done 2 times.

7 - Alpine Club will be done 1 time.

8 - Venus Rising will be done 1 time.

9 - A lady will finally put up a problem harder than V4

10 - A lady will find a brand new area.

And boom goes teh dynamite.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Alpine Club

So the initial post was deleted by Blogger cause of some reason I don't know. In it we lost the wonderful comments we had going. I've still got em in my e-mail and thats all that really matters. So here it is, same as before.

It's been some 8 years since I first saw Alpine Club. I've spent 34 days and countless hours beneath the problem. I've gone through all the phases and currently reside in the "act like you don't care but deep down care so much it hurts" phase. Not really. But something like that.

When I first saw the problem it was a pinnacle. It was a testpiece. Something to aspire to.

In my eyes there was something beautiful, kind of perfect about it. You've got this obvious jug to start on, a few holds that lead directly off of said jug and an obvious topout. It has a perfect landing, engaging moves, a beautiful approach and has a certain simplicity to it all. On top of that it's a great little spot with a wonderful view of the lake and a nice little place to hang out.

In my head it was as close to perfection as I thought possible.

As a result I've been particularly protective of it over the years. I remember one such moment while I was trying it in early 2009 where I didn't want to try just jumping to the lip for fear of it 'ruining' the boulder problem. Little did I know that Mike Simon did it that way years ago, but nonetheless, I was actually afraid of finding a new sequence for fear of destroying a beautiful boulder problem.

I didn't merely want to 'get up' the boulder problem, I wanted to do it under my own terms. Possibly to my detriment, but alas, that's how I wanted to do it.

RV recently said something that struck home.

"Somehow there has been so much shit with AC that I feel that the problem has been kinda bastardized."

Over the past couple years new beta has been unlocked, variations have been put up, chalk has become ever present and the landing has eroded. Much of this has been my own doing and it's something I battle with more than I'd like to acknowledge. As much as I try to encourage people to check out other areas, Alpine Club is an obvious choice for many people for all the reasons I listed above.

For the first time in a very long time I stood in front of Alpine Club this past weekend and felt uninspired. I felt unmotivated to pull on the holds for the first time in 34 days of being up there and I wasn't sure why until RV wrote those words.

I can say two things definitively:

1 - I don't like the bump beta.

2 - I don't like the potential super sit.

And before I make everyone mad, read this. I'm not writing all this to piss people off. If anything this site has served a space for me to work out issues in my head and this just happens to be one of those times.

The bump beta makes me sad the same way I would have been sad that lone night in 2009 if I'd figured out that going to the lip was a substantially easier way of doing the problem(bump way is in fact still quite hard, btw). It's inane, stupid and petty of me. It serves no logical reason in my mind other than I idolized that move. I put it up on a pedestal. So much so that I still remember Peter talking about it years ago, pantomiming the beta along with him and Kelsen. Imagining myself one day doing the move.

I loved the problem the way he talked about it so much that I didn't want to see it "desecrated". So if/when the three of you who did it the bump way read this, it's not meant as a personal attack. It just made me sad to see that there was a different method and that it, in fact, wasn't perfect. I don't care if it's harder/easier/whatever but it just kind of took something away from the problem for me.

As for the super sit, once more nothing personal against you Ian, but it just kinda takes something away from the boulder for me. Again, it's 100% personal but when I heard about it the remaining crust of a memory of what was once Alpine Club crumbled away.

At the heart of it I think it makes Alpine Club less special. Maybe that's what it was for me. In an area full of eliminates, drop offs, sharp crimps and vague starts there was this one gem. I don't care if you give it 1 star(Paul) or 4 stars(2009 Steve) if any of us were to walk up to an identical boulder with no chalk on it there's no doubt to what we'd try. We'd grab the jug and go straight up. And that's what I loved about it. It was the obvious line in the middle of an area with no obvious lines.

I've been trying to figure out why I'm writing all of this. I think a good part of it is me just coming to terms with what Alpine Club really is. Letting go of my former thoughts of the problem and instead just thinking of it as a cool couple of moves.

Alpine Club will always be more than just another problem to me. That's just how it is. There is no doubt though that much of the luster it used to have is gone. That isn't always a bad thing.

Tunder And Litening.

For once we actually had kind of a quiet weekend at the lake. Might be a first for this season. Chris and Sarah were out on Saturday and from the sounds of it had a fine day. Even if Sarah decided to punt off the topout of MooStache. Good to know she's not leaving Sweaty unchallenged for Punt of the Month. Chris attempted to move a big boulder to no avail.

I did get a great text from him though: "Just got a 2 ton hydraulic jack :)"


Katie and I went out on Sunday and from the sounds of it Dobbe/Aaron and crew were up on ropes. We started out up by Tunder Tighs and I warmed up on Fixie while Katie played around on The Hipster. I was pleasantly surprised at how nice Fixie was and it made a fun little warmup. Katie figured out the moves on Hipster but didn't want to put too much effort into so we moved up to Tunder Tighs.

Right as we got up there Ian showed up, after having done Perfect Medium(nice job!), and lent his pad to my cause.

I quickly did the topout and figured out a damn fine method and then promptly did Tunder Tighs first try.

The quality of this problem is amazing and the holds are just too cool. Don't ignore this one. It's a gem and probably the best of the grade at the lake, no doubt. The landing is already better and once Esser and I finish it up it should be really really good.

After that we moved on to So Dope Direct so Ian could get some shots on it. Only noteworthy thing about this was the absolute bloodshed that someone(Eggy???) put on this thing. It was like someone was bleeding from every single tip. Crazy.

Shortly after that we went over to Alpine Club where Katie worked on the crux some more and Ian tried to repeat it. I will say this, I think Katie will do that problem before me. She's close. She just needs to channel someone other than Remo and slow down a bit. Really cool and particularly inspiring to see her get so strong and comfortable this season.

The ladies in general have been holding it down. Sam is close on Massive, Sarah is breaking hearts at Dog Walk and more and more girlies are getting psyched on the lake. I'll try hard to have my lady goals up this week. Sorry bout that Sarah!!

After that we went back up to Monolith to play around. Ian did most every variation on the boulder while Katie and I perfected the tree spot on Bark Biter. It was great. I totally had her.

Most notably though was the obvious onset of summer. Early symptoms included bugs, sweatyness, tourists, leaves and greasy holds. Not at all psyched about that. Not one bit.

Old man egghead also did the Amazing Pillar which is pretty cool. Apparently even got vid of it. Amazing.

Highlight of the day though was for sure seeing little Luke Keifer coming down the trail with his family. So rad. Quote of the day: "Climbing outside is hard. You can't even see the holds!"

Good day.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Punt Of The Month

I'm gonna go ahead and call out a new award, the Non Punt Of The Month. I'm probably only gonna do this once so listen closely.

Life gets in the way of things. It's a fact. We all have work/school/family conflicts and can't go climbing as much as any of us would like to. Weather craps out, schedules don't mix and then all of a sudden you find yourself at the gym totally unpsyched to be there. It's just how it goes.

I'm personally really lucky to be married to a woman that loves climbing and it makes finding time to go a whole lot easier. Our lives are pretty simple when it comes down to it. We've got a few pets, no kids, pretty flexible jobs and are able to go climbing most times. Sometimes it lines up better than others but we can generally make it work.

It's never enough time though. In the end we all find ourselves complaining about how little we're able to go climbing. Boo Hoo, right? Poor us. Schools in the way....(insert crying). Work gets in the way......(insert more crying).

In the end, if you love something enough you make time for it. That's just how it goes. This brings me to Mister Eggsack/balls/nuts/head. For those of you who don't know him Chris is one of the few people around here that regularly manages to inspire me.

While we're all bitching about not having enough time Chris manages to juggle a wife, 2 young kids, a full time job and the impending doom of turning 40 years old later this summer. Through the timing mayhem the must consume his life he manages to get out and climb really hard.

We'll ignore the fact that Jenga is the constant thorn in his side and instead focus on the fact that Chris gives all of us hope for the future. I'm not even trying to be a dick here. Personally it's incredible motivating to see someone absolutely crushing with that much going on in his life. It gives me hope as I age through the seasons that I can at least aspire to be as badass as him when I turn 40.

Now, as for Punt Of The Month, there was some competition. Luckily we had a clear front runner. It only seems fitting that the winner dislocated his hip. In the gym. On a heel hook.

He hates heel hooks.

Oh Dobbe. Old man Dobbe. What a punt. Luke actually heard it pop. Gross.

Anyone who follows this site knows that life punts almost always win out over climbing punts. I'm really looking forward to getting your prizes. Nic got some good ones but I think we can top those.

So congrats Dobbe, YOU are the Punt Of The Month.

Monday, May 2, 2011


I'm just gonna start a tally:

Sandstone Violence - Esser
Tunder Tighs - Remo, Aaron, Esser. Eggnutz and Ian repeated it
Remo's Sacrifice - Ian
Hipsters - V5 FA - Dobbe, Remo
So Dope - Eggballs 2nd Ascent
Beautiful Soup - Tony B.
Alpine Club - Ian
Hangman - Sarah McCoy
Split Personality - Ben Rosen
Punts - Yours truly

Another good weekend. Highlights for sure are Chris and Sarah cleaning up projects at Dodge and the Sunday crew up at the West Bluff. To start things off on Sunday Remo dispatched TT first go and Aaron satched it up 5th go I think. Really strong work there.

While that was going on I was attempting to warm up as Dobbe found the little cave that The Hipsters comes out of. After making fun of him a bit I tried it and it's actually super cool. Really powerful opening moves and a surprisingly pumpy finish. We were both kind of surprised at how cool it was. For those that are wondering, it's just down the hill from Tunder Tighs and sits on top of the big roof down there.

Good work Dobbe, and good eye.

After a little playing around on Remo's Sacrifice Chris and I gave some burns on Tunder Tighs. He nearly flashed it but had a damn fine dry fire while going for the topout jugs. He did it next try without a problem. I had a few more troubles on it even if I'd hoped to give it a good flash effort. Instead of doing the toe hook switch off of the high left hand break I figured out that I had to do that off the left hand sloper and then bump up to the good hold. Not a big deal but it was finicky the whole way.

Same thing with the big left hand move off the break. Instead of the good right foot, it went on a little smear. I, very happily, just figured out the chick beta. Except for Katie's beta which will be so jacked it won't even be funny since she can't physically span the upper move.

So with that figured out I gave some burns from the start, each time losing more and more skin. After a few tries, and one falling right at the lip, I found myself at the good right hand jug over the lip.

I'd promised myself I wouldn't fall there. I knew that TT sucked in punts like a dangerous vortex. I saw it happen to Aaron. I heard it happen to Remo. It wasn't going to happen. I wasn't falling there.

I fell there.

Ian called it one of the best punts he'd ever seen. Said it was super proud. I dunno about that but it was a goodie. For those that are interested, I fell with my fingertips on the second jug trying in vain to get as much of me on the boulder as possible. Instead I just slid down the slab into the pit.

I just didn't have it in me to try again.

So Ian took off with Eggsack to try Alpine Club and Chris and I did what we do best. We moved boulders. While we didn't get the giant block into the pit under the project we were able to move it about 3-4 feet to the north directly where the punting pit was. We should be able to move it a bit more and make the landing rather nice.

In the process we discovered that the talus around there is super unstable and really gnarly. We filled some holes, left some others and bent one of these:


When we're done the landing will be fitting of a problem as good as Tunder Tighs. While I risk inflating Nic's ego even more, I have to say that this problem is hands down one of the best at the lake. Its quality is incredible and the movement is rather amazing. The holds are all solid, comfy and unique making TT an absolute must do at the grade. Every single person who has gotten on it has said the same and credit goes to Nic for figuring it out in 90 degree heat.

It falls very easily into the top 5 at the lake. Ask anyone.

Once again it was really nice to see and hear so many people at different areas yesterday. There were people at Anchorpoint, Tunder Tighs, Massive Vertigo, Beautiful Soup and I think the North Shore. DL is full on blowing up right now. I love it.