Returning to the Ropes // Rob D’Anastasio

Returning to the Ropes: SCS Nationals // Rob D’Anastasio

Last weekend I had a great time competing at the SCS National Championships. I was a sport climber for the first 8 years since I began competing and this comp always brings me back. On top of that the event was held in Boston where I get to run into all sorts of old friends. And although I entered the event less prepared than I had hoped, I was still able to accomplish the goal of making it into the final round. All in all it turned out to be an excellent trip.

The theme of the competition seemed to be that every route was more difficult than it looked from the ground. The routes were fun and pumpy, and hats off to the setting crew for doing a bang up job. My placing was pretty consistent from round to round and in the end I finished 11th in a solid field. My home gym, the Philadelphia Rock Gym, was represented by 3 finalists, which is quite an accomplishment if I may say so. Kai Lightner put together a gritty performance to take the gold and become the US National Champ.

A personal highlight of the weekend was that my dad made the 6 hour drive up to watch the competition. We did that sort of thing when I was a junior for years, and Saturday night after I finished with the final round, he took off for home to catch my 10 year old sister’s swimming championships the next morning. I get a ton of support from my entire family and I couldn’t be more grateful.

There’s the Dominion Riverrock competition coming up in May, followed by two world cups that I plan to attend. But Spring in Boulder is a good time to shift focus to the alpine bouldering season and that’s what I’ll do. Being in outdoor bouldering shape can be plenty to do well in these competitions. I even find that I climb more creatively indoors when I’ve been climbing outside more often. So the training will continue, but with a focus on what’s local and in season as opposed to the next competition event. I’m looking forward to it.