The days are getting longer here in Portland, and I was actually blessed with some twilight on my ride home from work tonight. The mountain even came out! Super pretty view coming up Barbur in between the traffic zipping by me at a zillion miles an hour, honking at me for going so damn slow. I’ve suffered through an entire lousy winter here only to leave just as the weather is getting good! I will miss it here.
Anyway, here’s a whole bunch of assorted shit.
Black Diamond has released a new interactive catalog, hearkening back to the days of Chouinard Equipment when catalogs featured more than just glossy ad copy. For Chouinard Equipment, that meant fascinating essays on climbing ethics and more; for the modern age we’ve lost the philosophy but gained some youtube videos and whole bunch of beautiful, ultra-high rez images. Seems fair.
It’s actually a really cool catalog, all things considered. Bit ironic that Black Diamond, a company well-known and somewhat despised in the climbing community for moving its manufacturing facilities to China, is trying to recall the days of climbing past when gear was made by guys at a forge using metal salvaged from junkyards.
Since people really love watching videos of hard climbing (or at least that dork Matt does), here’s an oldie but a goody: the New River Gorge’s Proper Soul (5.14a) done on gear. Reminds me a lot of the Black Bean video from Ceuse that was floating around a while ago, although sadly it lacks the giant whipper easter egg at the end. Very cool, and very impressive.
On the off chance you haven’t seen it by now, Park Life is a mini movie about bouldering in the Valley. That seems a little bit like going to a strip club for the food, but I have to give them credit: this is one of very few bouldering movies I’ve seen that actually manages to hold my attention, and it’s free. The producers, Louder than 11, even describe their business model in some detail if you’re into that sort of thing.
Finally, since I know most of us aren’t getting out of the city lately, here’s a beautiful video showcasing all the stars we’re missing here in our glorious paradise of lighted streets, delicious food, and hot showers.
Finally, I came across a history of the Spring-Loaded Camming Device the other day that is pretty interesting, as much for its diction as its content. A choice gem, referring to a weird combination cam/big bro apparently made from a socket wrench set:
“This disquieting object has fallen into oblivion.“
Amen to that. I’ll stick with my Chinese-made C4s, thanks.