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Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Back to New River Gorgeous

This past weekend (7th & 8th) I made it over to the New River Gorge, and met up with my friend Randy Cooper.  We were both excited to climb Agent Orange and do some "swimming" at Summersville.  On Saturday (7th) we met at the Bridge Buttress and I confronted Agent Orange for the first time.  I had heard so many good things about this route, and was eager to climb it.  The conditions were perfect, we had sweaty rock, upper 90's, and that oh so wonderful misty mountain air.  My first attempt granted me a 30 ft. whipper, and I met my belayer about 20 ft. from the ground (Randy only weighs 135 soaking wet, and I weigh 175).  On my second go I was able to top rope Agent Orange clean, and that inspired me for a red-point attempt.  The red-point attempt was going smooth, up until the point where I switched gear beta.  I switched from a BD #1 to a #2, which took away a hand jam I needed (The #2 fit great though).   Despite the conditions, Agent Orange still climbed really well, I can't wait to get back on it in the Fall.  The shots of Agent Orange and Tony the Tiger didn't turn out as well as I wanted them to.  The sun reflections messed with the white metering, and in return did not capture the beautiful orange streaks on both routes. 

Summersville Lake

"Agent Orange"

Looking up at "Tony the Tiger"