When I think back on one of the proudest moments of my climbing career, I almost immediately remember one of my worst experiences climbing. Both occurred at Indian Creek, Utah.
Above photo: Approaching the crux on Cannibals, 5.12d at Donner Summit. This isn’t going to be another train harder, work out more, get stronger fingers-type article—because, while these articles are important and valuable, they’ve already been written. Instead, this is what I do mentally when I want to climb harder. Let’s face it, we all want to get better. It’s why we love climbing. There’s always a challenge, whether you’re looking to climb your first 5.10 or 5.13. In my 14+ years of climbing, these are my time-tested tips on how to push your climbing level to the next grade.
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The best climbers I know aren't just climbers on the wall. They are climbers as a lifestyle. I'm not talking about the dirtbag climber lifestyle, and I don't mean these people train all the time. I mean that they practice the principles of effective climbing in their daily lives, and view their daily lives as practice for climbing.
The climbing approach, the trail or walk in to the base of an outdoor rock climb, can be a weird concept for newer climbers who have learned in a gym setting. I’ve heard from some that it can be intimidating climbing outside the gym because there is so much more you need to know and it can take some time before you can get there. But approaching the crag is one of my favorite parts of any excursion.
Our mission is to share our passion for climbing with you - whether you are a seasoned climber or brand new to the sport of rock climbing, there is something for nearly everyone! As a veteran employee, I’ve seen a lot over the years - here is my personal list of insider’s tips to ensure your visit is amazing.
Red Rock Conservation Area is a climbers dream. Seriously, people wake up hugging their guide books. Let me paint you a picture:
“Let’s head to Seneca!”...or Red River Gorge or Yosemite...if this text pops up on your phone and your heart starts to race, you know you’re ready to take your skills outside.
Climbing podcasts are out there, and I have listened to most of them. After hundreds of listening hours - here are my favorite podcasts that help motivate and educate me on all things climbing.
For most of us, our gear is our treasure: something we meticulously clean, inspect, display for our friends to admire and painstakingly organize (Don’t believe me? See the raddest gear sheds here). The thought of retiring it is difficult, but you know what they say: it hurts to let go, but sometimes it hurts more to hold on. I’m here to convince you to retire your cherished climbing gear before the point of no return.
PRANAYAMA FOR CLIMBERS Pranayama is the art and science of the breath. Yogis use pranayama to calm the mind, expand inner awareness and stimulate a variety of healthful effects. Many of these practices translate beautifully into climbing. I would recommend trying these two in a seated or reclining position for a few minutes first before testing them out on a climb.