Only 3 more days left here in Crimea. Matt and I are still trying our route on the Kasteropol wall. I’m feeling pretty worn from all the bolting and bandalooping around on the wall, as well as that “end of trip” lull that tends to creep up on me during the last week. It is a pattern that I’ve always struggled to break and the return of the heat hasn’t helped my confidence and psyche for the send. Maybe it’s a good thing though because I will now go into my last two climbing days here with low expectations. Sometimes this attitude helps me relax and can occasionally result in a miraculous “last day last try” send. Even if we aren’t successful on our route, I already feel happy with how the trip went. I’ve acquired so many new skills here with regard to bolting, developing new routes, and multi-pitch climbing that I’ll leave Crimea with a feeling of accomplishment in terms of my own growth as a climber. Huge thanks to for Matt Segal for teaching me these skills, being my oh-so-patient climbing partner, and helping me deal with my fear of heights (yeah, I am truly scared of heights) by playing non-stop 90s throwback playlists on the wall 🙂
Matt making sure the group is adequately hydrated.
The views from our portaledge could not be more gorgeous.
We went to Yalta on our rest day the other day. It is a resort town about a 30 min drive from where we’re staying, most commonly known in history for hosting Joseph Stalin, Winston Churchill, and Franklin D. Roosevelt at the “Yalta Conference” in 1945. The three powers met there to discuss the fate of Europe after WWII. I vaguely remember studying this during a Cold War history class I took in high school. We wandered the streets and ate sushi at a restaurant on a pier. I met a Russian man at Everest basecamp, Sergey, who told me Yalta was “good for hotel and party” and that I should go there. It seemed like a pretty fun town, definitely “good for party” as Sergey put it; although we all agreed that it was good we chose to stay in the smaller, quieter town of Foros during our time in Crimea. Yalta may have been a little bit too much fun for our crew.
After this weeked, I’ll be flying back to Colorado to visit friends and family before heading to Kentucky next Friday for the Red River Gorge Rocktoberfest, where I’ll be giving a slideshow on Friday night and teaching a clinic on Sunday. Crimea has been super fun, but I’ll admit that I’m really looking forward to heading back home to the US, and to my most favorite climbing area ever!