I know this news is a bit old in our now seemingly daily news cycle but I did want to highlight a recent ascent here in Colorado. A few weeks ago Carlo Traversi made the first ascent of a long-standing project in the Flatirons which he is calling The Altruist V13. The problem is located at the PB Boulders in the southern Flatirons. It is a gorgeous, tall, red, flat wall with a flat landing. It had been tried by a number of strong climbers, but its distance from the car kept people away from giving it serious attempts. Will Lemaire had almost climbed the line years ago, but fell off the top when he broke a key hold from the lip. It’s an admirable effort on Carlo’s part to hike up there and put it up. Here is a quick map I made for those interested in looking for a repeat. The best season for the climb is late fall, and early spring, although it seems Carlo snuck this one in during a week of dry weather, which is always possible here in Boulder. The approach begins at the South Mesa trailhead, just outside of Eldorado Canyon State Park.
Also of note,Carlo recently sat down with Peter Beal to give his thoughts on the state of hard climbing in Colorado. It was an interesting interview and there were a couple of points that I didn’t understand or simply didn’t agree with and I wanted to address some of them here.
From the interveiw:
PB: Where do you think Colorado bouldering is headed? There has been a lot of development in the past ten years or so. Has the wave crested? Is there still more out there?
CT: I still think there is plenty to go. I know of several five-star projects in the Front Range and the Park that are amazing and could very well be in the V15 range. There aren’t as many strong people here just developing them as there have been. When you have as many strong people as there used to be here with Daniel, Paul, Ty and everyone living here, they were all pushing each other to do it and it was really helpful for everyone. That doesn’t exist right now so it’s slowed down the development of the really high-end stuff but you still have people out at Lincoln Lake opening V7s and V8s, developing tons of easier stuff. People saw Lincoln Lake as, “Yeah the rock’s not that good but we can create what we want here,” in many ways (laughing), some of which I don’t agree with, but an area was created and people enjoy it and that’s what important. There are plenty of those areas to be developed in Colorado.
First of all, I found this unfortunate to read and it is a misrepresentation of what went on at Lincoln Lake in the summer of 2010. No one was “creating” new boulder problems at Lincoln Lake. Myself, Dave, Daniel Woods, Chad Greedy, Ryan Silven, Luke Parady, Jon Glassberg, Justin Jaeger, Jimmy Webb, John Gass and others all worked very hard to establish many new problems there. The rock is granite and it needs to be cleaned (sometimes with wire brushes), but I would never suggest in the least bit that any of these people “created what they want” on a newly established climb. I was present for the FA of many of the classics, and with Dave when he found many of them. Perhaps I am wrong in assuming that Carlo is insinuating that these problems were chipped or unethically cleaned?
Additionally, in the past few years Dave has added Memory is Parallax V14, which is an outstanding problem at the rediscovered Nicky’s Boulders (rediscovered by Dave), The Ice Knife V15 (and a number of other hard projects at Guanella Pass which Dave, Diego Montull, Jimmy Webb, Daniel Woods and I found after a few days of hiking in the area), Warrior Up V15 at Lincoln Lake, Hypnotized Minds, The Game and Glow in the Dark Estrellas V14, which to my knowledge has not been repeated in the way in which Dave started, which was not toe-hooking the lip. He was instrumental in the finding and establishing Mirror Reality V14 in RMNP, which he shared with Daniel Woods and Flux for Life v13, at Endovalley (which Dave singlehandedly revitalized), spent several days on a rope cleaning (including a huge and dangerous flake which he broke off). If anything, development at the high end has only picked up since 2008, and a big part of it, as always, is from Dave, whose name is oddly not mentioned. Perhaps it was unintentional, but perhaps not.
Finally, I appreciate Carlo’s interest in climbing new hard lines. He is certainly capable, and I am glad to hear he wants to put his talent to use on new projects. It’s great to see him make the effort to climb The Altruist and I am excited and motivated that he went up there and climbed it. It’s an amazing problem. Hopefully, his motivation will continue for more hard lines. One of the new projects Carlo talks about climbing is a huge roof that I stumbled upon after 6 days (finding nothing) of hiking around the Veritas area. And I gladly posted beta here on B3 so that others, like Carlo, could share. I’m not out there hiking around for any reason but the fact that I care and am interested, and that I like hiking and looking for and finding things. And it’s great to see other climbers climb them. Perhaps someday someone will climb the Sprague Lake Roof and I will be psyched to try and repeat it and write about the FA. For now it is too hard. Perhaps “The Altruist” himself will be so kind as to share his next project with me.