Top 5 First Ascents from 2015

At the very end of 2014, I made 5 posts on Instagram at the end of the year commemorating my five favorite first ascents from that year.

I decided to continue with this now ritual and put up a post every few days until the end of the year with a little more in depth insight into each one of my favorite first ascents from 2015. I hope you enjoy!

#5: House in the Sky, V12 (8A+) Red Rock, Nevada (Jan. 2015)

Year after year, I find myself back in Red Rocks.  Each time I leave, I wonder how much more the area can possibly keep producing in terms of first ascents.  Each year I return, I am pleasantly surprised at how the boulders seem to be never ending.

On this specific trip, I spent most of my time following around Tom Moulin who at the time was writing the new guidebook and psyched to show me some undone lines he had previously found.  One of these lines was this tall slightly overhanging face high on this hillside above all of the other established areas in Windy Canyon.  When I first saw the boulder, I did not know if it was possible.  the top just looked like it may not have enough holds to get to the top.  I rapped in on the line and quickly deciphered a way that seemed possible but felt really hard.  I worked the boulder for days with this very weird heel hook cross beta that I was certain was the only way to get to the top.

After many failed attempts, I knew I was going to have to figure out a new way to get to the top.  I eventually found this very precarious heel hook that made the crux feasible.  From there it was a sketchy top with bad feet that stood between me and the first ascent.

I remember coming back after a rest day knowing that I had all the beta figured out, I just needed to execute.  I warmed up slowly, re chalked and brushed the slopes hands and feet at the top and made my way to the start of the climb.  The first time I made it through the bottom crux, I shut my brain off and fired the top section high above a scary landing.  It felt amazing to stand on top of this boulder with mountains and the setting Nevada sun in the background.  Another gem added to the multitude around Red Rocks!

Video at the end of this prAna video 🙂

 

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