Round #3 / Tucson

I almost forgot today is Thursday!


As mentioned last week, if you’re following this weekly (kudos), I was down in Tucson last weekend, for the last time in awhile I do believe (so many lasts). My Lady Friend has been living down in the heat since last August, and moves up next to Flag next weekend. That being said, I figured I should give some insight into the stellar bouldering down in Tucson, and the cool dudes trekking and establishing some surprisingly amazing boulder climbs.


But First things first, the third installment of Black & White Thursdays! Dun dun dun daaaa!!

Since we only got outside one day over the weekend, and the drive up Mt. Lemmon is rather long, I didn’t have a thorough opportunity to shoot as many pictures as I would of liked. That, combined with psyche and new boulder problems, resulted in a puny handful of shots, and even less pictures worth a second glance. However, this one of Matt came out, almost by accident, and if anything it’s an indicator of the gnarly cross move on Civil War, a rad overhanging arete, that trends left with a bit of finicky compression.

Matt Fowles repeating one of his early FA's: Civil War (V 6/7)

Matt Fowls repeating one of his early FA’s: Civil War (V 6/7)


So right off the bat I have to say Tucson is rad. The city has a crazy culture, some wacky residents, and phenomenal food. Seriously the food is more than enough of a reason to visit, the bouldering is almost just a cherry on top. But the bouldering deserves its own praise, and the guys gettin’ out there deserve some credit. While anyone from the Denver area is used to driving no less than an hour, and hiking no less than an hour, Arizona climbers can be less likely to make an expedition, and even less likely to hike much more than a few minutes. (There are those, all across the state though, that do drive, and hike, and discover. I didn’t forget you. You’re cool too. Shouldn’t need me to tell you that) Tucson is similar. Even after my first day up on Mt. Lemmon, and a small sampling of the potential, I was surprised by the number of people in the gym that had never heard of, or been to, some fantastic climbs, a few minutes down the trail, at the top of Mt. Lemon. Whatever, I’m lazy too some days. But for realz I’d say that Tucson has some, if not one, of the best boulder problems I’ve done in Arizona. They might not be ‘world class’ but hot dayum, they’re fun and exciting, and often pure burl fests.


One of the first problems I tried in Tucson, (back in May?) was Wilford Brimley. A gnarly little horizontal compression line, with a big of thuggy finesse to finish. It was hard. Too hard.


Matt Fowls, is one of the leaders of developing, throwing down hard bouldering problems year round, and this one is definitely stout.

Working on Wilford Brimley, another Matt Fowles FA. Photo by Jesse Johnston

Working on Wilford Brimley, another Matt Fowls FA. Photo by Jesse Johnston


Here though is the real jem. Odin’s Revenge V9/10. While slash grades typically annoy the bejesus out of me, for this climb it might stand to be the most accurate, there are some massive spans, and seemingly little beta to sidestep them. This line is pure overhanging compression, with big holds, big slaps, and big ole’ heel hooks. While I did this thing in a little less than an hour, all the way back in May, I still rave about it. If you like compression, and all that jazz, this climb is a must do. Seriously fun.

Second big slap on Odin's Revenge. Photo by Jesse Johnston

Second big slap on Odin’s Revenge. Photo by Jesse Johnston

The last couple moves of Odin's Revenge. Photo by Jesse Johnston

The last couple moves of Odin’s Revenge. Photo by Jesse Johnston

Stole this from Jesse's Instagram. Better angle of the span of the crux move. It's a big one.

Stole this from Jesse’s Instagram. Better angle of the span of the crux move. It’s a big one.


While I’m a bit bummed to only of had a small taste of what Tucson has to offer, I’m psyched that anytime I end up down there that I’ll have more than enough new boulders to fill my plate. And, with the lady moving on up, more climbing and trips are in the future. It’s gonna be good, and we’ll just see what the next few cooler months bring.


Till next Thursday.


Unless I forget…


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