11/30/10

2010 Christmas List

The forecast over the next few days is pretty wet, which means it is an excellent time to make a Christmas List....

Gifts Under $200

Mammut Broad Peak Down Jacket
- Legendary Mammut quality meets snuggly goose down warmth in a jacket that begs to head on adventures. $198.99

Black Diamond 50 Caliber
- If you have ever struggled with loading your climbing rack or rope into a floppy backpack, the 50 Caliber is for you. With its rugged haul bag style bottom, it is easy to load and unload, and carries everything you need for trad climbing comfortably. $159.99

Gifts Under $150

LaSportiva Miura VS - We have talked about these shoes until we are blue in the face. They remain the most outstanding shoes we have slipped on for steep sport climbing and techy pockets. $149.99

Montbell 30 Degree Spiral Burrow Bag - Plush & Stretchy = cozy sleeping in the woods. $143.99

Gifts Under $100

The North Face Nimble Jacket
- A basic softshell jacket that offers everything you need at an unbeatable price. $78.99

Prana Tenaya Pant - It is surprisingly difficult to find a pair of women's climbing pants that are built smartly for climbing, yet still compliments a feminine shape. These pants are just the ticket for year round climbing. $63.99

Gifts Under $50

Mountain Hardwear Torsion Glove - This lightweight softshell glove is perfect for mid temperature ice climbing. $49.99

Metolius Rope Ranger
- Protect your hard working rope! $45.99

Spyderco Byrd Cara Cara - A good pocket knife is a life long work horse, with a million uses! $31.99

Too many great things to list!!

Climb Globally, Shop Locally
Looking Glass Outfitters
69 Hendersonville Hwy
Pisgah Forest, NC 28768
828.884.5854
www.lookingglassoutfitters.com

11/26/10

The Breakfast of Champions Rack


You may look up at this Cereal Buttress route and think you have finally found what you are looking for: a 5.10 sport route in North Carolina. But, take a good look, because a little gear on this fun face climb could mean the difference in a laughable whip and a painful hike out.

The route begins at Frosted Flake, a Rumbling Bald classic, but ventures up and right instead of following the hand crack. You will be rewarded by fun, crimpy face holds, and that NC rarity- shiny bolts. But, buyer beware, as clipping the second bolt is often considered the crux. If you blow this move and have only clipped the first bolt, you will swing nastily into a leg-gnawing, jagged crack/ flake.

To make this fun route safer, practice your double rope skills and bring a few pieces of gear. By plugging the left rope into some gear up and left on Frosted Flake, you will ensure that a whip before clipping the second bolt will provide you with a clean fall.
Breakfast of Champions Rack
(don't read this if you are a NC hard (wo)man who insists on a proper onsight....)

2 Skinny Ropes like the Sterling Fusion Ion 9.5 plus a twin rope
#3 BD Camelot
#1 BD Camelot
#.75 BD Camelot

2 long slings
7 Quickdraws
Belay Device
2 Locking Biners
Good Edging Climbing Shoes



Climb Globally, Shop Locally
Looking Glass Outfitters
69 Hendersonville Hwy
Pisgah Forest, NC 28768
828.884.5854
www.lookingglassoutfitters.com


Looking Glass Outfitters is a full service gear shop specializing in hiking, climbing and camping equipment located at the entrance to Pisgah National Forest and around the corner from Hendersonville, Brevard & Asheville.
www.lookingglassoutfitters.com

11/23/10

Early Winter Trailrunning


The temps have been all over the place in the last few weeks, but there is no question that Brevard foliage is now on the ground. Still, as I have headed out trailrunning, I have been reminded how much the views change on many of my favorite trails once the leaves drop. Ridgeline trails like Mine Mountain, North Slope and Coontree Gap now offer great views of multiple ridgelines that were previously obscured by summer's lushness.

As the cooler weather sets in, we have some great trail running and hiking pieces like softshell gloves, fleece pants, wool socks and lightweight jackets that will keep you comfortable in Pisgah National Forest and Dupont State Forest over the next few months. Come on in and say hello before you hit the trail and check out the colorful hats as well!



Climb Globally, Shop Locally
Looking Glass Outfitters
69 Hendersonville Hwy
Pisgah Forest, NC 28768
828.884.5854
www.lookingglassoutfitters.com

11/22/10

Last Bits of Fall

While Brevard and Pisgah Forest are looking very wintry in the last couple of weeks, Chimney Rock Gorge is still showing the last bits of fall's splendor. We have headed out to Rumbling Bald the last two Saturdays and enjoyed fantastic weather. Last Saturday, a crew of Brevard locals headed to RB after a leisurely morning and an obligatory stop at the gear shop. By the time we arrived at the relatively new parking lot, the ranger let us know we were the lucky recipients of the last parking spot!

This past Saturday, CCC president Anthony Love set his alarm early and headed to RB to offer climbers a shuttle to and from the Lake Lure visitor center. This was immensely appreciated by new and old Rumbling Bald climbers, as no doubt, far fewer cars were turned away due to lack of parking. Many thanks to Anthony and crew for offering this service! Hopefully we will all become diligent at carpooling when we head to this incredible winter climbing destination!

Last week, I climbed with the Eilands on a quest for quantity in the Screamweaver area. We were pretty shocked to see next to no climbers as we headed up Zydygo, Finishing School Blues and its irritating cousin on the left, Black Planet, Static Klingon, Boldfingers and Screamweaver. There is no lack of quality in these routes!

This past Saturday, Phil and I made it out a bit earlier and started at the popular Cereal Buttress. We headed up both pitches of Fruit Loops so Phil could snap some shots of Tom Caldwell on Shreaded Wheat (see below.) It's possible my fingers are the perfect size for this crack, so it is always a blast for me to climb. After hopping on Breakfast of Champions, we headed back to the Screamweaver area, where the roped climbs are less crowded, although the war cries of boulderers continually waft through.

I had to settle something with Static Klingon and give more of a try at Boldfingers. It could be a while before I want to lead that one, but it sure is classic! We headed out as the sun set and the parking lot quickly emptied. Head to Chimney Rock Gorge soon if you want to catch a little more of leaf season. It will be gone quickly!


Climb Globally, Shop Locally
Looking Glass Outfitters
69 Hendersonville Hwy
Pisgah Forest, NC 28768
828.884.5854
www.lookingglassoutfitters.com

11/3/10

Halloween Sandstone



We headed to the RRG this past weekend again for a bit of a Halloween extravaganza. Jess was in the area for work with Mountain Khakis, which left Phil and the dogs convincing the Joneses to join us. This meant 3 people and 4 dogs packed up and did the 5+ hour slog to Slade in less than ideal conditions. Let's just say that by the end of the weekend, we unanimously decided it was time to change Vinca's diet and purchase a rocket box before our next joint trip.

Still, two days of sandstone climbing in perfect weather made it worthwhile. A dash of Lycra and some stellar wigs made certain climbs quite memorable. Jess briefly dressed up as a Kittler, before reducing her costume to just "Kitty," since Phil had a hard time looking at the mustache/ cat ears combo.

Phil did a great job of onsighting Rebar (in his Huber costume) and redpointing The Return of Chris Snyder. Jon casually sent Smoothie Nut, while Carly continued moving up the ranks by leading Sunny the Boxer next to Lucky Duck Soup. Jess also sent the R.o.C.S. and onsighted Riptide Ride. Fun times, although most of the locals probably hated us this weekend thanks to our high ratio of climbers to dogs. We did try hard to be respectful of the area, having heard assorted stories of recent climbers not doing so.

It is clear that The Red has become a truly international destination, since every area we have climbed at recently has had multiple parties from other countries. Now that it is getting chilly, we are likely to hunker down and stay close to home. It is the perfect season for NC climbing now- so come on down!

If you really want to see all the pics- which means a lot of Lycra, click the video below.


Climb Globally, Shop Locally

Looking Glass Outfitters
69 Hendersonville Hwy
Pisgah Forest, NC 28768
828.884.5854
www.lookingglassoutfitters.com video