Time to Climb

 Doug on the Parking Lot Wall

Compared to this time last season, this year has been somewhat of a disappointment when it comes to climbing.  However, with the cooler weather moving in, the EMS Outdoor Demo Tour behind me, my half marathon in the rear view mirror, and the prospect of an upcoming fall climbing trip, I am starting to find my climbing psych.  In fact, all I have to do is get through the upcoming EMS Century ride and the rest of the fall can be devoted to sending.

Doug and I watching Mickey Spades getting extreme on 5.3   

That being said, I recently had a few days off and headed to Rumney excited to climb but with low expectations of climbing hard.  Doug and I landed in Rumney after a quick run of the Hancocks and spent our first day climbing many of the moderates at the Meadows.  I was glad to get the opportunity to spend some time on the rock, as we were meeting Mickey Spades and his lady the following day.  Having not climbed on a rope outside since the Spring, I was happy for the chance to shake out some of the cob webs (think Elvis leg, hanging on the rope, and an overwhelming display of uncertainty in myself) without too many watchful eyes.  
Doug belaying Tim 
The next day, Doug and I met with Mickey Spades and his lady in the parking lot below the Parking Lot Wall.  Being the only car in the lot we decided to pick the low hanging fruit and headed up.  Moving right to left we quickly dispatched the majority of the climbs on the wall.  It was good fun to see Mickey Spades (always a reluctant leader) take the sharp end and try to keep a calm demeanor in front of his girl.  He half succeeded, with only one minor episode and his machismo mostly in tact.  It was also enjoyable to see his girl take the initiative to lead a few pitches.

Melanie on the sharp end  
After finishing up at the Parking Lot Wall, we headed to the Meadows out of convenience and a suspicion that Mickey and Melanie might be getting close to the end of their day.  After running through a handful of routes that we had done the prior day, and a few we had skipped, I was pleasantly surprised to find much of the prior day’s apprehension gone and some confidence building.  I was not surprised to see Mickey and Melanie begin to lose steam.  The loss of energy was enhanced by how much the temperature dropped when we were at the Meadows.  In spite of the fact that I know the Meadows gets cold in the afternoon, I seem to stop there in the afternoon every time I visit. 
   Tim enjoying some belay duty
In the end it was nice to have an easy climbing weekend, get some confidence, get outside, and help expose a new climber to some Rumney climbing.  Hopefully, this is the first of many visits to climb in New Hampshire before the snow flies and my attention turns to all things snow related.  
 The perfect way to cap off a Rumney trip