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Monday, 13 October 2014

Boulderfields Video from the just Go Climb Crew

As I've mentioned a few times before, we were lucky enough to have a great crew in Brandon, Ben and Gabi (the Just Go Climb crew) visit the Fields for nearly a month this year. They put up a bunch of new lines, repeated a bunch of others and when it was all said and done, created a great video edit. As promised, here it is!

The Fields, Freedom, and First Ascents from Just Go Climb on Vimeo.

Thanks a ton for coming up guys, you'll be missed for sure!

Check out the Just Go climb site here...


Friday, 3 October 2014

A Guy Named Jay

This is Jay...
If you've bouldered for any amount of time in the Okanagan over the last bunch of years, you've probably met Jay. He's a super motivated, strong, focused fella who is always keen to do what's best to develop the bouldering scene around here. In fact, there are probably only 3 dudes that can claim they've put up into the hundreds of lines around here, and Jay is definitely one of them.
I feel pretty lucky to know and boulder with Jay. For about 6 years now, we've been partners in crime. I guess it all started at some point a bunch of years back when we managed to emerge from opposite corners of the Fields and meet somewhere in the middle. It wasn't long after that that we were running around the Fields documenting hundreds of lines for the Boulderfields guidebook, then coming up with a crazy idea of starting a bouldering festival, then making a movie with Calyton, then another one, and now consistently guiding visiting crushers around while working on a huge, full-valley guidebook.
If it weren't for Jay, I'm sure I wouldn't be the climber I am today. For quite a while, we've had a bit of a somewhat unspoken (or at times, slightly spoken) competition going on. Through our hundreds of hours of jabbering each year, we're constantly updating each other on new lines and areas, progress, sends, etc. I think I can say for sure that this motivates the hell out of both of us! In my busy work months, Jay gets out and crushes and keeps me revved up. In my summers off (prime bouldering time for me), I'm pretty sure I keep him on his toes as well.
Jay while filming with Clayton on The Distillery (V11)- one of his many, awesome new lines (Thanks for the pic Clayton, I stole it from you)
This is in addition to the fact that we really work well together when it comes to putting up tough new lines. Maybe we're a bit different around here, and it's probably because we have the luxury of so much untouched rock, but when we go out exploring and find lines, we share everything with each other! This extends to the point where if I find a line that is steep, burly and has huge moves, I'll call Jay right away and tell him where to find his next project. This is even more true when he finds a mega thin, techy/ crimpy line. I usually get a call within minutes of the find and I know where my next project will be. I can safely say that since having Cedar, and subsequently having less time to explore, I wouldn't have been able to put up as many tough lines in the last couple years if it wasn't for Jay.

So, I guess what I'm saying is that I feel really lucky to have shared so much of my climbing time with this guy. I have a lot to thank him for and I think the whole Okanagan bouldering communtiy should give Jay a collective high-five for what he's done in the last bunch of years. He's a developing machine and without his hard work, many of the great things that have been happening around the Okanagan bouldering scene wouldn't be possible.
I got a call the other night from Jay telling me where to find my next project in the Fields. It's looking like another sunny weekend of crimpy pulling. Thanks buddy, and keep up the amazing work!

Thursday, 2 October 2014

Some Busy Visitors!!!

As I've mentioned before in a number of posts, this year has been the busiest season ever in the Boulderfields. This is especially true with the number of travelling climbers coming to check out what the Okanagan bouldering scene has to offer.

Most recently, we've had a super motivated couple from Germany make a stop in the valley. Jakub and Solveig made their way up to the Fields after a stop in Squamish and they were quickly hooked. I think they originally planned on leaving a while ago, but they saw all the untouched rock and couldn't leave (wait a minute, I think I'm just repeating myself from a few other posts this year).

In the end, Jakub and Solveig got to work quickly and started scrubbing in another explored, yet unclimbed zone in the eastern Fields. It wasn't long before they put together a great collection of problems (and projects- with one possibly being V13+) to create the beginnings of a whole new area. This is a solid addition to what I think are already 5 or 6 new areas in the eastern Fields (all new as of this year!). This new zone is called the Burning Man area, and it's just north of the trail before reaching Serenity. There's a ton of rock out that way, so I know many more lines will be added soon enough.

Jakub (and almost everyone who's travelled and developed here this year- thanks y'all) was terrific at passing along FA details, pics and problem descriptions and here's a bit of the awesomeness!

Jakub on the Apfelstrudel Project (amazing roof)

Jakub on Mountain King Low (V8)
Also recently, we had to say a sad goodbye to Brandon, Ben and Gabi (the Just Go climb Crew), but only after they stayed in the Fields for nearly a month and repeated and put up a ton of terrific lines! I can't wait to get all their FA details and definitely can't wait to see their edit from the time they spent here. Check back soon if you're interested because I'll share their video as soon as I see it.
These guys were great to have around and we got to spend a fun last day in the valley with them in Cougar Canyon. Here are a few pics...
Ben on a fun V4 line Jay refers to as "The Static Dyno"

A couple shots of Brandon on "Crouching Dragon, Hidden Tiger"- V11
I think it's great to see so many people travel to the Okanagan to sample the rock. So far, the reviews have been great, and I hope next season we continue to see even more people make the trip. Who knows, maybe soon some of these big-time crushers will take the area seriously and come put a few of these long-standing projects to rest?

Saturday, 27 September 2014

The Fields Keep Givin' as the Season Nears an End

Here's a bit of an update filled with some Boulderfields visuals. A ton more lines are still going up even as the temps start to dip! At this point, I can't even estimate how many new lines have gone up this year and can only assume that The Fields easily hold well over 800 problems at this point with hundreds more to go! Next season will surely see us pass the magical 1000 problem mark!

This is a short edit of a couple recent lines I put up (one east of the Serenity boulders and one in the High Speed Dirt area)

Another nice FA in the High Speed Dirt area

Loic on the FA of Darkness Closing (a great, new line east of the Serenity boulders)

Jay's been like a spirit bear lately. Almost impossible to get a pic of him! Here he is on a terrific cave line he named Just Go Climb- V9 (named after the Just Go Climb crew- Brandon, Ben, Gabi- who stayed in the Fields for nearly a month and discovered this beauty)

Jess repping the ladies on the classic V Power (V6/7)

Staci crushing on Surf's Up Low (V7)

 Ben Dory stylin' the sun hat on a sweet V4 dyno Jay recently added to the High Speed Dirt boulders
 Staci working around the dyno

Kay on her new addition to the boulders east of Serenity (Velcro Spider- V1)
Staci on an unnamed V2-ish line in the Golden Hour Boulders
Meshkat on Golden Hour (V5)
Pretty beautiful in The Fields this time of year
 As always, if you'd like more info on Okanagan bouldering, please let me (Andy) know at okbouldering@gmail.com

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Okanagan Bouldering Flick

As many people around here already know, but others may not, we're currently in the process of filming a bouldering flick that will highlight areas we're lucky enough to frequent throughout the Okanagan Valley. The film is being shot and put together by none other than the amazingly talented local climber and creator of last year's "The Fields- A Bouldering Film," Clayton Arnall.
Since the spring and leading into next spring, Clayton's been cruising around with a small, but dedicated crew of local developers, shooting prime lines throughout the valley. I'm super excited for this project to come together next year. No date for when it'll drop has been formalized, but hopefully late spring will see this film blow the lid off what we have here!
Here's a sequenced shot from yesterday when we filmed the incredible Heart of Chaos (V11) in The Fields. This is a screenshot and it gives a good idea of the quality of image Clayton puts together!
Stay tuned for much more info on this project...

The RV Project does Rock the Blocs

Okee dokee. So, this year at Rock the Blocs, we were lucky enough to have Spenser and Vikki from The RV Project attend. These 2 are AWESOME and it was great having them here for a few days.

After crushing in the comp on day 1, they took some time to hook up with us and did a bit of filming to showcase the bouldering in the Boulderfields. It was super fun and this is what they came up with...

Kelowna Boulderfields: Ripe for the Picking from The RV Project on Vimeo.

A huge thanks again to Spenser and Vikki for making the trip up for the fest. I've shared their blog about their trip and their website in previous posts if you're interested, so have a look back if you'd like.

Otherwise, enjoy!

Monday, 1 September 2014

Overwhelming New Areas in the Fields

I'm always saying this, but as we've been wandering a bit more each year, we continue to find what seems like endless amounts of rock in the Fields. This year, the focus has primarily been on the areas in the eastern Fields. Last year, we started to travel out past Cave Dweller and were rewarded with some incredible lines/ areas (Serenity, Flowmotion, Danger Aretes, Dirt Burglar to name a few). We quickly realized this year that we had barely scratched the surface with last year's explorations.
For a good chunk of this season, we've been adding tons of lines in all directions in the eastern Fields and it's impossible right now for us to keep up with all the rock. We actually haven't even had a chance to find the end of the Fields to the south! I think what we've got going on in this part of the Fields will likely keep us busy for at least a couple more years, and this is only one of several untapped areas yet to be developed! As a guidebook author this is a bittersweet diagnosis. More problems and quality areas is great for the book, however, it's a TON more work and means the book is again going to take longer to get out as I wait for things to slow down even a little bit in the Fields. In then end, it's a pretty nice problem to have!
Here are some pics and videos of recent excursions...
Loic on the "A Room With a View" Project (Likely V10)

Me on the exit moves of "A Room With a View"

Jay on a great, new, overhanging fin project
Ryan on a fun face boulder we scrubbed up
A few of the lines on the face boulder Ryan and I scrubbed...

I can't remember for sure, but this one was about V4?

A silky smooth V0

Another fun face line
Me on End of the Line- V9 (a recent FA at the eastern edge of the Fields)

Me displaying horrible footwork and camerawork on the FA of a cool, compressiony V6-ish beside End of the Line
And we can't forget that we're still plucking beauties out of long-established areas. I can't remember if Brandon Fox (up from the US) has a name for this one yet, but here are Loic, Jay and Brandon crushing another great Dominator face line!

And the gals are getting after it on an awesome, new V6-ish face line below Dominator called "Masterbeta." Jess has been putting in terrific effort on this one and Staci has also become smitten with it.
Staci on Masterbeta
As always, if you'd like any info on Okanagan bouldering, feel free to email me (Andy) at okbouldering@gmail.com