Open Bouldering Nationals – Rock Jungle Boulders 2017

Results in qualifiers: 43rd – 1T/3B

Another year, another bouldering season has run it’s course. Although there are still a couple of Tour de Bloc competitions left, Bouldering Nationals essentially marked the end of the competition bouldering season. This year we visited the relatively new Rock Jungle Boulders in Edmonton, Alberta marking our 4th representation at Nationals! East coast all the way!

Nice, snowy day at Rock Jungle Boulders

Nationals is such an amazing experience, which is what brings us back every year. I am well aware that my level of climbing experience and knowledge is not as great as the other competitors. I don’t have a coach, I haven’t climbed since I could walk, and I hardly know what I’m doing when I get on the wall. I know that’s not the case with all strong climbers, but in my head it is. Competing with pro athletes is surreal, with most of them having backing from sponsors and climbing gyms. I’ve never met a competition climber with a terribly bad attitude (well, maybe one or two), so despite not really knowing many other competitors, I still feel like it’s a welcoming atmosphere where I belong.

Problem #1: Apparently this was the right beta, but I only ended up trying it at the end. Also, it seemed like a gimme from the ground, but was harder than I thought! I didn’t even end up with the bonus on this one. It hurt because it seemed like my style. Carlie and I ended up doing the same thing on this one funny enough!

The problems were tough, but definitely within my “sending zone”. I made quite a few mistakes reading a few problems, which cost me quite a few attempts and in some cases a top. I would be more upset by that if it wasn’t part of the challenge: reading and completing a route in 5 minutes takes a lot of practice and focus. I’m happy to have sent one problem, and I’m happy to have gotten 3 bonuses, but I know that at my level of climbing with those problems I should have been able to send 2 with at least 4 bonuses. It’s mildly frustrating knowing I could have done better, but at the time I felt like I gave it all I had. I was quite upset after not even reaching the bonus on the seemingly easy women’s #1, but was able to bring my focus back for the next problems unlike in the past. Progress! 

Problem #3: I loved this one! I ended up getting as far as the next blue hold in this picture, but by the time I figured out the right sequence my forearms were burning! It required a small hop to get to the volume I’m on now but I didn’t realize that until near the end of my time.

I was doing awesome with my training in the summer and in the fall, but kind of fell apart in the winter when we were doing competition after competition. It was hard to find a balance between resting after a competition, and then resting enough before the next one. Usually I wouldn’t climb at all if I had back to back comps because of soreness and much needed rest. It felt right at the time, but looking back I know my training severely suffered from all those breaks. Next year I plan to have a better recovery plan so I can keep training during those times.

Problem #4: Awkward start, and I definitely used my butt for the next move, but it was fun! Definitely a tricky one and I didn’t make it far off the bonus here.

Edmonton was great, and our host family (Carlie’s Aunt and Uncle) went above and beyond with drives, meals, and an overall pleasant visit. I was stress free in their care, and it was appreciated more than they know. Also, we saved a fortune on hotels, transit, and food. But really, it was nice to be able to relax with the stress of a competition looming in the air.

Problem #5: Couldn’t quite figure this one out, but I would have loved to go back and give it another burn!

Motivation to train is at an all time high! I have some plans I want to put in place for training, so we’ll see how that unfolds.

Now that’s over, it’s time for Red Rocks and Bishop! 🙂

Viva Las Vegas!

Climb on xx