Sunday, November 13, 2005

Staring at the wall

I've taken the shots out of this one now. Sorry if it's confusing.

Don't know why these shots take so long to load, but they do. I've been really getting into the walls over the last few weeks. It's a great form of exercise, and it's graceful. If you ever watch professionals climb, you can see the cool way they move their body weight and preserve their energy whilst on the wall/rock. The best climbers at the Rat Walls, where I climb, are a couple of guys who haven't necessarily been climbing long, but they have lots of experience in boxing and gymnastics. You need to have muscles coming out of the most precarious crevices in your body if you want to be good. I'm a long way off.

The above shot shows one climb I've nearly cracked. It's called クマ, or 'The Bear'. It's not so hard to do if you don't carry much body weight, but if you do, and if you don't have the right muscular constitution you'll be stuck. The yellow guide on the right is where you put your right hand, and the one on the left is your left hand route. The last yellow dot is the goal. You can stick your feet anywhere you like, but it helps if you know a good lower body technique. The yellow dot over on the left, in the crack between the two walls, is where I shimmy my right foot for support just before the final leap for the goal. Tomorrow I'm going to do it proper. Last week I did it, but without grace.

Now this shot shows タカ, which I've cracked already. Took me about six weeks, but when I did it you wouldn't believe the sense of achievement I got. The pink on the left is my left hand route, and the yellow my right. This is really just beginner stuff, and when I watch the other guys climb I know I'm a long way off. I have the rest of my good health to try get better.

The one thing most climbers spend the majority of their time doing is sitting staring at the wall, searching for better ways to get what they want. Just sitting, staring at the wall.