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One Month 'til Indian Creek: can you help me plan my last month of training?
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By Ezekiel Thornton
From Akron, Ohio
Mar 1, 2013
Top of Castleton

You get what you put in.

Seems like you know how to handjam. Don't waste gear on hand jams be confident. Place some when it is redic run out.

Top rope everything you can out there


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By Paul Hunnicutt
From Boulder, CO
Mar 1, 2013
Half Dome

Since you have a mental block due to a ground fall and since it is a good idea anyways...sew up the start to give some confidence and take some time to plan your gear placements before you leave the ground. Take note of potential fall distances and where you should place accordingly. If you are feeling freaked (and have the cams available) take more than you need and double up cams at key points. I would rather take more cams and be more relaxed than take less and waste energy freaking out up the climb. Sure ideally you can climb with just the pro you need AND climb relaxed, but if you aren't there yet mentally don't push it. Take your time to warm up to leading there. 5.10/5.11 is so much about efficiency, relaxation, and having a calm mind. There is definitely some technique and getting used to the "flow" of a long splitter lead.

Training on small crimps won't help much in the 5.10-5.11 level at IC. I'd rather run continuous laps on jugs than boulder crimps. Here and there is a crimp or finger lock at your level at IC, but it is all about long, physical endurance. I don't believe "getting stronger will increase your endurance" Ever see a body builder win a marathon? or a X country ski race?


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By slim
Administrator
Mar 1, 2013
tomato, tomotto, kill mike amato.

i don't really recommend the whole run it out thing at the creek, particularly if you haven't climbed there before. An interesting observation; of the approximately dozen times i have seen gear rip at the creek, it has been multiple pieces. also, i think you will be able to climb more relaxed if the piece is at your knees or feet than you will if you are 10 feet above your last piece.

i would be interested to see how many people that recommend running it out actually do so on something other than easy handcracks - i'm guessing not that many.....


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By JCM
From Golden, CO
Mar 1, 2013

slim wrote:
i don't really recommend the whole run it out thing at the creek, particularly if you haven't climbed there before. An interesting observation; of the approximately dozen times i have seen gear rip at the creek, it has been multiple pieces. also, i think you will be able to climb more relaxed if the piece is at your knees or feet than you will if you are 10 feet above your last piece. i would be interested to see how many people that recommend running it out actually do so on something other than easy handcracks - i'm guessing not that many.....



I agree with slim here. Running it out may conserve energy if you are a zen master, but that is not the case for the vast majority of us. Most of us start overgripping a bit once we are a body-length out from the last piece, and we really overgrip once that piece is two body lengths away. Plus, gear does rip at the Creek, especially when dealing with smaller pieces. Placing gear at a comfortable distance helps me stay loose and relaxed, and the energy savingas gained here more than make up for the energy spent placing an etra 2-3 pieces over the course of a pitch. This is especially true at the creek, where plugging a piece at waist-to-chest level takes a few seconds, consumes very little energy, and helps you relax a lot better.

On a somewhat related note, on thinner/harder cracks I feel that leading with a nest-and-punch cadence has a lot of benefit. The idea here is that a single small cam isn't sufficiently confifence inspiring to run it out over, but 2 of them together generally do inspire confidence. Even at the Creek, there are spots where you can relax a bit (due to an edge that provides a foothold, or a slight pod that allows a better jam, etc). At these places, instead of placing just once piece, place 2 of them, spaced a few feet apart. This gives you a little nest of gear to keep you safe as you punch it through the hard section to get to the next stance/pod/pausing point. This strategy seems touse less energy than placing single pieces at greater frequency, but feels a lot safer than punching it above a single blue metolius.

I'm not sure that this strategy has much place on 5.10 hand cracks, since a single #2 is basically an anchor, making the nesting strategy unnneccesary. Also, I think that most 5.10 trad leaders try to climb too fast anyway. Oftentimes, climbers at this level have not yet learned how to relax and rest while hanging on their arms on steep terrain. When they start to get pumped, they panic slightly and try to climb faster, placing less gear, climbing with less control, and trying to race the pump to the anchor. We see this all the time. It is much better to learn to slow down a bit, catch your breath, and rest. There is absolutely no reason to get even the slightest bit pumped on an Indian Creek hand crack; the whole route is one bit resting opprotunity. If I tried to climb a 100 foot steep hand crack without stopping, I know that I'd get pumped. It is mcuh better to climb efficiently for 10 feet, then pause, beathe, find a restful body position, place a piece, relax a bit, and then start moving again. At this cadence, you won't get pumped, you won't panic, and you can place plenty of gear.


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By germsauce
Mar 1, 2013
Hippos kill people

fuck all the training, just get comfortable whipping on gear so you don't think about whipping on your gear. You'll be onsighting those 5.11 minuses you thought you'd be projecting.

Beer helps.


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By Eric Whitbeck
Mar 1, 2013

I went to Squamish after having done most of my crack climbing at the Creek and in the Valley so everything I learned is sort of backwards from the experience that you might have. I thought Squamish felt more technical and less steep than the Creek or the Valley. I also ended up climbing way more finger cracks in Squamish than I do at either of the American areas. If you flip those things you may find the Creek to be steeper than you expect. The cracks may be wider, especially at the 5.10 grade. Prepare for lots of cupped hands unless you are just a big person. There are also less feet outside the crack than Squamish. So, my suggestion would be train for 100 foot pitches that are very sustained. Forearms and the core muscles required to get your feet high on handjams are worth training. Strong fingers never hurt, but until you get into the 11s, most of the climbs are hands to big hands. I think general fitness helps for climbing at the Creek. If you hang out at the base, you often hear alot of huffing and puffing. The scenery is awesome and if you can avoid the crowds you should have a great time.


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