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Yosemite Rockfall

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In response to Stock’s investigation and seeing the rockfall himself, Yosemite climbing ranger Jesse Mcgahey issued a temporary closure. “Although there is always a possibility of rock fall on Yosemite’s crags, domes, and walls. We feel there is an elevated level of risk for rock fall over Bishop’s Terrace over the next week or so. Therefore we have temporarily closed all routes at Church Bowl East of, but not icluding, “Church Bowl Tree”.”

Though the closure is only temporary, it is est to stay away from areas where there is potential rockfall.  Climbing in areas where such hazards exists can be very dangerous.

Further information can be found at the Supertopo website.

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Pringle Bouldering Video

This winter Touchstone athlete, Ethan Pringle crushed the boulders of the Buttermilks.  He made a fast ascent of the Swarm (v13) and a number of other amazing problems.  Pringle captured some of his sends on tape and filmed other climbers sending classics like Stained Glass (v10), and Secrets of the Beehive (v5/5.12-). Check out his […]

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Indoor Cycling Instructors

Dustin Dustin White grew up outside Philadelphia and in rural western New York State, but has been living in SF since 2002 after graduating from Bucknell University in PA with a B.S. degree in civil engineering. I work for the City of San Francisco as a transportation planner with a focus on making San Francisco’s […]

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Making Holds with Wes Tite

The process of making holds begins with a shaping foam. The blank square piece of foam is sculpted into a desired shape and is designed by our amazing setting crew. This means that our full time setting crew is literally designing routes from beginning to end!  
The most common type of hold is a jug but Tite also creates crimps, slopers, pinches, and other large volume holds.  After the foam is shaped, a logo is added as well as a bolt hole.  The foam is attached to a table and a silicone mold is poured over it.  The foam is than removed from the mold, destroying the original shape but a mold is made.

 
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Tite estimates that Stone Age has around 1200 different molds and pours about 800 on a regular basis.  After the mold is created, a chemical resin is poured into the mold creating a hold.  The hold is removed from the mold, the bolt hole is cleaned out, the hold is sanded, and its ready to put on the walls. 

Through years of experience, Tite knows how to make solid shapes for holds.  The Touchstone route setters also provide Tite with a lot of hands on information about what shapes are ideal for each gym.

A solid aid climber, Tite has made ascents of some of Yosemite’s biggest walls including the steep West Face of the Leaning Tower and Lurking Fear on El Capitan.  This season, Tite hopes to make a few more runs up El Capitan.

Next time you grab one of the many holds at the Touchstone gyms, thank Wes Tite for doing a great job.


 

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Member Interview: Lisa Feather Knee

Since beginning her Touchstone membership, Knee has traveled across the globe climbing in Bishop, Smith Rocks, Thailand, Squamish, Red Rocks, the Sierra, and Lover’s Leap.

Knee remains modest about her forays into hard climbing. “Indoor climbing is cushy, for the most part. The biggest danger is that someone will flirt too aggressively with your belayer and he/she will not hear the warbled cry of your “taaaake!” bird.”  The yellow 5.12a at the Ironworks lead cave fit her style of climbing well. “It’s got a lot of strange moves, and that happens to be my thing. Give me contortions over pure power any day! I’d much rather solve it with my brain then my biceps, only because my biceps is really not up to the task.”

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“After years of climbing a lot, regularly, in the gym and outdoors, I had pretty much accepted that I am a big lanky noodle who would never climb very hard. It seemed like a physical limitation that could not be overcome. I’ve never had much strength in my upper body.”  Knee busted through her plateau through a few different methods.  “I learned that a lot of my weakness also came from anemia. So I worked with a naturopathic doctor, Elizabeth Korza, to build up my blood and vitamin D levels (most people are low in Vitamin D, and it affects your ability to recover from strenuous workouts). Right after that I started noticing big improvements in my overall fitness. Then I started taking yoga more regularly, doing tons of abdominal work with the aerial dancer Isabel Von Rittenburg, and joined a master’s swim team.”

The most significant part of Knee’s ascent was the mental aspects. “There’s a huge component of climbing that’s purely mental. That’s been the hardest thing to change. I’ve had to face it that I need take falls, and learn to trust my body. That’s way of thinking that translates into big life changes, as you start to realize other areas of your life where fear has kept you from realizing your full potential”.

Knee plans on heading outside soon for her next project, a route called Hidden Treasure (5.11d) at the Gold Wall in Sonora. She also hopes to climb more at Red Rocks, the Red River Gorge and to see Maple Canyon in Utah and visit Lander Wyoming. 

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Nutrition for Climbers

Nothing tastes as good as sending feels.  If Kate Moss was a climber, I’m sure that would be her mantra.  Many sport climbers follow this mantra living off a diet of brocoli crowns and Diet Coke while many hard core aid climbers live off of a six pack of King Cobra and potato chips.  So […]

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How to Rodeo Clip

 Here’s the method.

* 1. Form a bight in the lead rope a few inches longer than your outstretched arm. Position yourself facing the rock, below the first draw or if you’re hanging on lead, in a solid swinging position. The lower biner must be hanging free from the rock.

* 2. There’s two ways to swing and hit the draw.  The granny overswing involves looping the rope over your head and tossing the loop at the biner.  The other method involves taking a bight between your index and pink fingers and swinging the bight airplane propeller style.  Spin the rope parallel to the rock and clockwise if the biner gate is facing left and counter clockwise if the biner is facing right. Gradually add rope to make increasingly larger circles, zeroing in on the biner’s gate.

* 3. The next step involves hitting the biner.  It’s easier said than done.  Make sure that you’re not back clipped.  If you are and the process took you more than 5 minutes to perform, pull the rope through until you can tie in on the other side of the rope.  

Head to your nearest Touchstone gym and try this amazing technique!  It gets you automatic cool points if you do it first try!

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