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    Notes and advice from Sean McColl.

Last Days in Hueco

My last couple of days were spend on the 19th and 20th in Hueco. The weather was incredible but maybe just a little bit hot. The temperature was upwards of 25 degrees Celcius in the sun. On the 19th, I really wanted to get on Esperanza. I had tried the crux moves a couple of days before and it felt definately doable. We warmed up just outside of the Martinin Roof and Simon Parton and Jason McColl played around on Black Mamba. I had done that problem 3-4 years ago and I heard someone chipped it? I sent it pretty easily in 2 goes and if anything felt easier, it was the left hand gaston for the second hold. We looked at it pretty closely and it definately looked like some sort of tool marks to make it bigger… After i finished warming up, i went into the Martini Roof and started working Esperanza. Because of our rest day the day before, I felt like i was really close to sticking the move. After numorous burns, I was still having trouble with the crux move and I had stuck it once and then had my foot blow off a second later. Since I was really close to sticking the crux move, I figured I should learn the other moves again. I climbed the moves easily to the crux move and almost stuck it on redpoint! After a bit of rest, I pulled on from the bone hold only to fall on the last move so I figured I had to learn the last move. After 10+ minutes of trying to figure out the last move, I found out I just can’t span it. I had Jamie Chong hold my body in as I tried to span from the jug down to the ear and I couldn’t reach it. I also tried just completely throwing for the jug but came still a couple of inches away. I tried a few more times but was unsuccessful. After the disappointment of Esperanza, I was feeling kind of unmotivated so i decided to get on another nemisis, Dean’s Journey. Afer just 2 goes, I sent the problem. A bit more relieved, I sat down and had a long Scrabble match against Jamie. When that was over, I felt a lot better and decided to climb again. I had always wanted to try Terre De Sienne, so when Jamie was working Luthor, I started warming up my fingers. Jamie came ridiculously close to sending Luthor and stuck the crux move of Chblanke before his foot slipped. I suggested he take a break so I could go try the epic crimp problem. In my head I wanted to flash it… I mean, it’s only 2 moves… right? I’ve been feeling the holds on that problem for a couple of years now and I figured it was time to try it. I pulled on, and fell on the first move… I stood up and just started laughing. I wanted to flash it, but I also knew that the probability of me actually pulling off was miniscule. On my second go, I felt like i was going to stick the move and my right hand dry fired off the first crimp and I went crashing down. Content that I had now tried the problem, I walked a few feet right and sent Diaphanous Sea second go. We walked back up to Luthor and on his first try after his break, Jamie fell going to the first hold of Sign of the Cross!! Jamie felt that he was getting too tired to try the problem so we walked over near the Asylum to look at a problem that Sonnie Trotter had found the previous day. Sonnie had found the problem and showed it to me in hopes that I could send it in a couple of days. When he first found he problem, he thought that the sit start would be V13 or 14. Jamie and I played around on the problem for about an hour but it was getting really dark so we packed it in. On the 20th, we were back on North, I had unfinished business on my new project and Jamie had Luthor. We warmed up and decided Jamie would try his project first, then we would go over mine. On another note, for the past 3 days I’ve been filming every attempt made by Jamie. My hopes it that I’ll get the send on camera and I can stitch together my first short climbing movie containing one problem… Jamie warmed up but felt a little bit tired from the last 3 days of trying it. His first go was not outstanding but not bad either, he easily gets to start of Chblanke but struggles on the moves to the pinch, then the crux move. I don’t know how many times I’ve seen him fall trying to stick the left hand pinch. His second try was even worse… falling going to the right hand pinch of Chblanke. Dissapointed, Jamie said he was too tired and decided to let it go… We went over to my project and it took my around 6 tries to do the sit. The reason I’m being so vague about the problem is because I got all the work and send on camera and I’m going to try and put together a little video. They say a picture says a thousand words, what about a 2 minute video? It’ll also make it easy to see where the problem is, and instead of decribing the beta, you can watch it. I’ll probably have the video up and together in the first couple of weeks of January. After a night in the El Paso airport with my brother Jason McColl, I flew home for the Christmas Holidays.

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