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Monday, June 08, 2009

Surviving Indian Creek



I've been reading and thinking a lot recently about my own thought processes. An interesting insight happened recently - I found a piece that showed that I automatically think of the pessimistic view when it comes to something but that I'll then come up with the positives for it and let them override the negatives as I realize there's more positives. As it happens, I wrote this post in exactly the same fashion. Interesting to see my quirks showing up and learning about myself. What way do you work?

So, Indian Creek....For me, honestly, I struggled at Indian Creek. I found the climbing frustrating and sore. Jamming my feet and hands in cracks only seemed to cause blinding pain and lead to me "feeling the bones in my joints moving around" (as one person described it to me and perfectly described what I was feeling). I left with a sore wrist and a very sore ankle from stuffing them in cracks. And it was frustrating that if the crack was a perfect size for me, it didn't even feel like I was getting a work-out, but if it was too thin/fat, it felt near-impossible.

But there were loads of positives from it. I did get to experience one of the most beautiful places in the world and I did get to learn how to improve my crack-climbing technique for other locations (and have already been used at other crags where I'd least expected to). I also learnt that I'm a very 'wide' climber, i.e. I spread my body out wide and like to make the most of all features around me to climb. Climbing in a very straight line felt horribly claustrophobic for me but I also learned some new movements from it that have already benefited my climbing in other locations. And I also started to trust in Cams/Friends, something I haven't done since watching a friend badly break his ankle from one not holding a fall. So, all in all, it was a worthwhile experience and while I won't be rushing back (Of course, from my last post, it does mean that I should be going back there cause I need to put the time in - 3 days isn't going to cut it to become a proficient crack climber :)., I did find the experience truly amazing.

And who knows, maybe I'll be walking up routes in Fair Head at some point in the future!

Indian Creek guidebook





Image Credit:
1: Indian Creek taped gloves. An interesting skill that you pick up at the Creek is the manufacture of these. They definitely make a difference!
2: Indian Creek guidebook sitting below the crag as Pepper shows us how to really climb cracks. Humbling.
3: And I thought I was fanatical about climbing. Finn the dog, chases a tennis ball 24 hours a day, every day. Psyche!!!!!
4: avoiding crack climbing in style. myself getting shut down on a 5.9!