Red Rocks and Utah // Michael O’Rourke

In the middle of January I was able to make my first climbing trip to the prestigious Red Rocks, Nevada. Most of the Mad Rock team was there including French athlete Guillaume and his girlfriend. The first day we had perfect weather and went into the mystery canyon guided by our friend Andy. We warmed up and climbed a couple great boulders he had established and made our way to a problem called The Reflecting Pool. A very interesting problem that involves a finger intensive intro into a 5 or 6 move finish where you have to keep a toe hook the whole time. In the end I could not put this rig down but fellow athlete Peter had enough left in the tank to get it done.

The Reflecting Pool V13. Steven Joeseph

The Reflecting Pool V13. Steven Joseph

The rest of the trip we went to the Kraft Boulders and Black Velvet where we were able to get on a lot of the classic problems such as Meadowlark Lemon, Atlas Shrugged, and Wet Dream. Even though we were only climbing there for a couple days we were able experience a variety of different areas and climbing styles. A very fun trip being able to hang out with the crew and climb. It was now onto Salt Lake City for the Trade Show and a couple of comps, but first a quick stop at Moe’s Valley on the way. It was Peter Sean Obe Kenny and I rolling up in Moe’s after a morning commute from Vegas. I was able to get a quick flash of Dead Rabbit and went over to try Boooka Booka Booka, but I could not get all of the moves linked up before it took out a good chunk out of my skin. Now on our way to good ole’ Salt Lake for the show and comps.

Final #3 Di'namik.

 #3 Final Di’namik

The first comp was the Di’namik event hosted by The Front Climbing in Salt Lake. I had a good qualifier finishing all but the hardest climb in the red point round getting 2nd going into Finals. I even broke a hold in half in the qualifiers which i was pretty happy about. However I did not  climb as well as I could have in finals only flashing 1 of 3 boulders earning me 5th place. I wasn’t super comfortable through the moves on climbs 1 and 2, maybe just tired and the climbs didn’t play to my strengths so much either way no sends. Then problem 3 was a little more straight forward pulling on crimps and I was able to get a flash and was a good way to end the comp for me. You win some, you lose some, this time its the latter. On to the next comp 2 days later at the new Momentum in Lehi. This comp had a very unique format in which the way you got money was to be one of the first 3 ascents on 5 designated boulder problems, they even had a brilliantly made “friends” problem. It was a very fun idea and it brought together the city for a big competition with all the pros. I thought it was also a good idea to get more competition experience before the Dark Horse Final and Nationals the upcoming weeks. The next day was a long drive home but overall it was a really great trip getting to climb with the Mad Rock team and compete with my friends at both comps.