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Thursday, July 21, 2011

Moving the blog to Tumblr

Lately I’ve found myself having less time to write long trip reports and blog posts. That’s why my blog has gone without an update for a while now. Moving my blog to Tumblr seemed like a better option for posting shorter updates, photos and such but on a more regular basis. Also, unlike my previous blog which was strictly climbing related and only about my personal travels and projects, my Tumblr will be a place for me to share other things that I find interesting as well. I’m new to Tumblr, but I hope this new blog starts off smoothly and you guys like it. So here it is:


Thursday, May 12, 2011

Photo update

Alright, it's been forever since I last updated this blog. A lot has happened since and I've been to a lot of different places. I don't even know where to start writing, so I'll just post a bunch of photos from the past months and try to find more time to write updates more often.

Topping out Evilution (V12), California. ©Chuck Fryberger
The Swarm (V13), Bishop, CA.  ©Reinhart Fichtinger
The Swarm (V13), Bishop, CA.  ©Reinhart Fichtinger
Xavier's Roof (V11), Bishop, CA. ©Reinhart Fichtinger
Taking some air on Evilution (V12), Bishop. ©Reinhart Fichtinger
Highball (V11), Bishop. ©Reinhart Fichtinger
Angel's Share, Black Rocks, UK
Trying a new project, Black Rocks, UK ©Nick Brown

Tigre et Dragon (8A), Fontainebleau
Rainbow Rocket (8A), Fontainebleau ©Jani Lehtola
New FA: Peter Pan Syndrome, Ticino, CH

Monday, February 28, 2011

Bishop action

Bishop was one of the last big bouldering areas I had not previously visited, so It was cool to be able to climb lots of problems each day. That's something I rarely get to do these days. Repeating the area classics was great, but did not leave much time for projects.

FA of The Swarm Direct (V13)
I did however get the first ascent of the direct finish to The Swarm after rappelling down and cleaning it. The first two moves are the same as the original line, but after the crux instead of doing the double gaston move you cross over to a good gaston with the left hand, get your right foot up on the rail. and lock off to a good crimp. After that you have a few crimpy but not so hard moves leading to a mantle on to the slab. This way you stay on the wall the whole time instead of traversing out right to the arete. For the grade I suggested 8B as for the original version. It's hard to grade this one because every time I did the crux move it felt easier and easier. A few days ago we went to film The Swarm with Chuck Fryberger and I did the whole problem again first try without warming up, so who knows.

This Side of Paradise
Trying Evilution ground up with no chalk or tick marks on the holds was a quite mission. First I tried the direct finish, but after climbing three times to the very top and taking big falls when I couldn't find the holds, I decided to do the original version. It's slightly harder, but you can actually locate most of the holds from the ground. It's definitely one of the coolest highballs I've climbed. Another amazing highball that I did was This side of paradise!!! This one I checked out with a rope first. Still, I was scared topping it out after a hold crumbled under my foot in the no-fall zone.

Maze of Death (V12)
 Xavier's roof (V11), Golden Shower (V10), Haroun and the Sea of Stories (V11), Southwest Arete, Maze of Death (V12) all deserve a mention too as they were amazing along with many more problems.

3 weeks in Bishop
It was a very good trip for me, but I'm a little disappointed I didn't really get to try Lucid Dreaming. I tried it one time for about 15 minutes and split three finger tips and didn't really get another change with all the other problems I wanted to climb. Right now I'm in Las Vegas. I'm flying back to Finland for three days and then I'm off to Sheffield for a competition and a couple days on the grit. Font and/or Switzerland is in the plans after that.

Sunday, February 13, 2011


After spending a few days in Las Vegas and climbing at Red Rocks we've made our way to Bishop. The weather has been perfect the whole time. On our first day we climbed a bunch of easier problems in the Buttermilks main area. The Southwest Arete on the Grandma peabody was a perfect introduction to Bishop highballs. I also climbed the classic Stained class V10 later that day.

Buttermilks main area
The second day we climbed Haroun and the Sea of Stories, an amazing V11 in the Buttermilks. Later that day we hiked to the Secrets of the Beehive area to check out The Swarm. I felt already quite trashed from climbing easier problems all day, but I thought I would try it anyway and I actually sent the problem pretty quickly. It's for sure one of the coolest crimp lines I've climbed and the double gaston move in the middle is amazing.  As for the grade, I think V13 would be more appropriate than V14.
South West Arete on the Grandma Peabody

Next day we warmed up again in the main area of Buttermilks. Then, for some reason we decided to try Mandala when it was in the sun. After a while of shredding skin on the warm crimps, I got to last moves but could not even hang on the good incut crimps that had been baking in the sun. So we waited for the sun to go behind the mountains and the conditions improved immediately. I quickly sent the stand start (from the original start) and so did Kilian. I gave the sitstart a few goes and quickly afterwards sent it too. Both the stand and the sit are world class problems, no doubt.

Suspended in Silence V5
We've done a lot of hiking and checked out most of the areas already. There are lots of problems that I want to do like This Side of Paradise, Evilution, Spectre and many others. If the weather stays like this there should be more to report soon.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

It's On Like Donkey Kong!

It's been forever since my last blog post. As much as I love being constantly on the road, sometimes I just need a little break from it all; hotel rooms, airports, rental cars, airline food, speaking a foreign language, people that come and go… Traveling can get tough sometimes, so I've been chilling in Finland for a while and getting psyched to hit the road again.

© Nalle Hukkataival
The climbing season here in Finland has been over for long after we got a record amount of snow already at the end of November, so it's just been climbing on plastic for me. I completely missed the small window to try the Sisu project. Before the snow I had my last attempts on my Opposition project, but it still remains unclimbed. It's interesting that this is a project that is near my home and I've probably tried it more than any other project ever, but still I think it's only an 8B+. I got very close to sending it just before my trip to Colorado last fall, but then got a minor injury on it and had to stop trying it. In November, after returning from Colorado, I competed in the IMS Bouldering Cup in Brixen, Italy, which I was psyched to win ahead of Kilian Fischuber and Paul Robinson. Last week I also won the Finnish bouldering nationals.
IMS Cup 2010 photo: Angelica Hintner

Now it's time to get out there again and climb on some real rock! Right now I'm at Helsinki airport waiting for my flight to board. I'm going back to the States, to Las Vegas where I'm meeting up with Kilian Fischuber, Anna Stöhr and the rest of the Austrian crew. First stop is Red Rocks for a couple of days and then Bishop for about three weeks. Chuck Fryberger should be joining us in Bishop to do some filming. This will be my first time in Bishop and I can't wait for all the highballs and classics I've seen so many photos of!

Stay tuned for updates!