Rock Climbing 101: Get a foothold on your first climb with our beginner’s guide to rock.

first_imgRock climbing is like forming a band in high school; everyone does it, but very few of us do it right. Typically, this is the way most of us begin climbing: You see some videos on Youtube or maybe watch Stallone’s Cliffhanger, get psyched about dyno moves, then convince some work buddy who claims to be “big into rock climbing” to take you out one Saturday afternoon. But said work buddy’s climbing experience is limited to hitting on chicks at the local climbing gym. He has to retie your knot three times before he says, “I think that’s right,” and you spend about 20 minutes stuck to the side of a sandstone route that’s way over your head wondering why anyone would risk their life just to make it to the top of a rock that you could probably summit on a hiking trail anyway. Once safely on the ground you swear you’ll never strap on a climbing harness again.There’s a better way to begin your rock climbing career. Follow this guide and learn about common mistakes, proper gear, training tips, and where to find beginner-friendly rock.ARE YOU TRAD OR SPORT?There is more than one way to send that rock. Here are the three most common forms of rock climbing.Top Rope: The rope is attached to a fixed anchor or temporary anchor at the top of the climb, allowing for a single point of contact above the climber. Top roping is usually the first form of climbing athletes explore. It’s single pitch only, so you remain relatively close to the ground, it requires a limited amount of gear, and because of the higher anchor position, a top roped climber never actually “falls” as long as the belayer is doing his/her job. There’s always tension on the rope so instead of falling several feet to a point of protection below the climber, you swing away from the rock staying at the same position.Sport Climbing: Permanent bolts are fixed to a given route allowing climbers to “clip in” as they progress up the wall. While sport climbing is very popular in Western states, bolted routes are few and far between in the Southeast. The Red River Gorge in Kentucky and Foster Falls in Tennessee are hotbeds of southern sport climbing.Traditional Climbing (“trad”): The most common form of climbing in the Southeast, trad climbers place their own temporary protection in the rock as they send a route. Climbers are equipped with a “rack” of gear which is placed in cracks and crevices throughout the climb to protect against falls. In multi-pitch trad climbs, one climber leads placing protection and the second climber follows removing the protection.TRAIN SMARTERClimbing is the best way to train for climbing, but how do you train for rock climbing when you can’t climb rock? Think muscle endurance. Pull-ups are good, but you need to train your entire body to withstand the demand of sending 80-foot long routes without rest. Forget the big plates in the weight room. Instead, do full body exercises like “cleans” and “burpees” that hinge on low weight at high reps. Work your core and don’t neglect your cardio and you’ll perform better on the rock than just knocking out a bunch of pull-ups.POSTURE PLEASEProper climbing posture can often feel awkward for beginners who want to hug the wall with every inch of their body. Instead of sticking to the rock like glue, adopt this basic climbing stance: “Keep your arms straight, your back arched and your hips pushed toward the rock, as if you’re leaning away from the rock with your upper body,” says Swis Stockton of Granite Arches. “This keeps the stress on your legs, which is the key to climbing endurance.” When you’re comfortable with the stance, work the wall with your legs, thinking about foot placement first and hand placement last. Maintain contact with your feet. If your feet are slipping off a hold, you’re putting too much pressure on your upper body (hugging the wall) and not enough on your lower body.last_img read more

Stay or Go? Confused with Wanderlust

first_imgDear Mountain Mama,I received an offer to work full time as a sales rep for a local outdoor company. It’s a dream come true for me — traveling, meeting  outdoorsy people, and selling a great product.The only hitch is that my parents say they will cut me off if I accept. I’m in my mid-twenties and have two years left of college. My parents pay for school and rent, and they say it’s now or never. They’re threatening to cut me off entirely if I take this job.Thanks, Confused with WanderlustDear Confused with Wanderlust,A few times in the course of our lives the universe dishes up a life-defining opportunity. The chance presents living out our grandest dreams. When this happens, we must have the courage to go.Wanderlust, ask yourself if this is one of those opportunities. You’re an adult now and will figure out how to pay rent. Being responsible for you own bills might seem like a drag at first. But that also means you don’t have to ask for approval for your career choices. You don’t have to follow a path that makes others feel comfortable about what they perceive to be the track to success. You don’t have to measure your life by diplomas or bank account statements.If this is truly what you want to do, go for it! Oh Wanderlust, think of the places you will go! The rivers you’ll paddle and mountains you’ll climb! And you’ll meet people along the way, some will become lifelong friends and others will be one-time adventure partners. People will open up their homes to you and lend you outdoor gear. Along the way, you’ll develop the skills and confidence to stand on your own two feet and trust your decisions.It’s scary. There will be long days of talking to people who don’t buy what you have to sell. You’ll be tired and far away from home. But the risk of opting for security over adventure is scarier. Wanderlust, don’t end up saddled with a mortgage payment, stuck behind a computer screen, and sitting in a cubicle located in a city you hate living in just because if feels safe. You don’t want to end up with regrets about the things you could have done but were too afraid to do.Wanderlust, nourish that adventurous spirit! Enjoy sunrises, thunderstorms, blizzards, blissfully bluebird skies, and sunsets on a constantly changing horizon.Yours,Mountain MamaGot a question for Mountain Mama? Send it herelast_img read more

A Fresh Look for Nelson County’s Original Craft Brewery

first_imgSet in the shadow of the scenic Blue Ridge Mountains in central Virginia, Blue Mountain Brewery is celebrating 10 years as Nelson County’s original craft brewery. Located in an area now holding an abundance of craft breweries, cideries, and distilleries, Blue Mountain opened in 2007 as the region’s first rural brewery, making high-quality beers that remain popular staples throughout Virginia and beyond.This spring many of those beers were given a fresh look, as Blue Mountain recently unveiled new packaging for its core offerings, including the lauded Full Nelson pale ale, Classic Lager, and A Hopwork Orange, an orange-infused IPA.  The new playful, vintage-inspired design will also be found on bottles and six-packs of seasonal favorite Rockfish Wheat and the brewery’s new double IPA, Hop Duster.Blue Mountain’s original brewery in Afton, Va., is a popular regional destination. With a relaxed atmosphere, plenty of outdoor seating, and stunning views of nearby mountain ridgelines, the brewery serves small-batch beers in addition to core styles and delicious food made with local ingredients. Barrel-aged beers and other limited creations can be found down the road in Arrington at the brewery’s second outpost, Blue Mountain Barrel House. At both locations, you’ll find fields of growing Cascade hops, used in Full Nelson and seasonal harvest beers. Blue Mountain regularly hosts live music and other special events. This fall the brewery will celebrate a decade in business with a 10-day Anniversary Party. The event, which will take place in late October and early November (specific dates to be announced soon), will feature 10 bands and 10 specially released beers to mark 10 years of an established Blue Ridge brewery that’s still moving forward. For more information visit www.bluemountainbrewery.com.last_img read more

NZ govt spent $19m to kill 14,745 babies in abortions

first_imgLifeNews 6 May 2014Ken Orr is the spokesman for Right to Life of New Zealand.Why are we funding the Killing of our own Children? Why are we paying for the funding of the killing of our precious unborn and the war against women?Many of us, against our will, have been made complicit in this injustice.When Parliament passed the abortion legislation in 1977, it decreed that the killing of children in the womb was “a health service” and that it would be “a core health service.” It has in fact being decreed as “an essential health service”, with every one of the twenty District Health Boards obligated to provide this “service”, or to make arrangements with a neighbouring Health Board to provide the “service.”There was to be no waiting list and funding was to be unlimited. It was also decreed that the taxpayer was required to fund the killing of children in the womb. In 2012 the taxpayer provided over $19 million to fund the killing of 14,745 children and $4 million in fees to certifying consultants; Blood Money. This money could be spent on real health services, it would pay for 722 hip replacements at $18,000 each, or 325 cardiac bypasses at $40,000 each.Parliament has inflicted on the people of New Zealand a great injustice that is supported and promoted with an orchestrated campaign of lies. Abortion is not a health service, it is neither a service to the child who is murdered before it is born, nor a service to the mother who is wounded and who is the second victim of abortion. It is not a service to our public health service which is defiled by the killing of the innocent. It is not a service to the doctors and nurses who work in our hospitals dispensing compassion and loving care, whose consciences are corrupted by the  murder of the innocents.http://www.lifenews.com/2014/05/06/new-zealand-spent-19-million-in-tax-funds-to-kill-14745-babies-in-abortions/last_img read more

Poe’s Perspective: Eagles complete impossible season

first_imgJulia Poe | Daily TrojanIt’s been a big week for the underdogs.That nickname has stuck with the Philadelphia Eagles for weeks now, ever since the first-time offensive tackle Lane Johnson donned a German Shepherd mask in the end zone of a playoff game. The image was rather macabre — a burly lineman shaped like a soda machine, with a plastic dog head askew on his broad shoulders — but it sold an idea that quickly became a mantra for the team. Over the past weeks, the Eagles’ success has been accompanied by a sea of German Shepherd, pug and poodle masks as the fans of Philadelphia fully embraced and celebrated their role as the league’s underdogs. It was fitting for a team whose odds were low for every game of the playoffs. It was even more fitting in the Super Bowl, for a team that had never won, playing the team that has become one of the greatest juggernauts of the game. When it comes to football, everyone is an underdog against Tom Brady and the Patriots.Let me just say this. No one could have predicted this ending. No one could have foreseen that Carson Wentz, well on his way to a MVP trophy, would take a hard hit in a game that meant little-to-nothing, then never return to the field. No one could have predicted that a backup quarterback, who struggled to find his rhythm in his initial starts, would string together a series of improbable playoff victories.And similarly, no one could have predicted that Super Bowl game. Tom Brady tore it up with 505 yards, three touchdowns and zero interceptions, but the Eagles somehow still beat the greatest quarterback in the league? Unheard of. Run a trick play on 4th and goal to give your backup quarterback the first reception — not to mention touchdown — of his life? You’ve got to be kidding me. Win the game on a high-flying, almost-too-good-to-be-true dive into the end zone? This sounds like a deleted scene from the Disney classic Invincible, rather than an actual, real life football game.But this is the season that Philly has been waiting for over the last five decades, over a dry spell that has lasted the entire lifetime of the Super Bowl and the entire lifetime of almost every resident of the city. Philadelphia fans are many things — loyal, passionate and, yes, more than a little crazy — but above all they have been patient in waiting for this final, inevitable coronation. And they did it without any of the legacy or royalty that the Patriots brought to the table.Take, for example, the head coach, the man who made the 4th and goal “Philly Special” play call that will probably go down as one of the greatest and gutsiest decisions in Super Bowl history. Ten years ago, Pederson was preparing for spring ball at a high school in Louisiana, game planning how to break into the state playoffs again. He was used to being held to the sidelines, a guy who played backup quarterback his whole life. Now, in only his second season at the helm of the Eagles, he’s got everything a coach could ask for — a loyal fan following, two stud quarterbacks and a Super Bowl ring to boot.“Our coach has got some guts, huh?” said tight end Trey Burton, who threw that touchdown pass to Foles. “Got some big ones.”Everyone from Pederson down to the water boys had a reason to bring a chip on their shoulder into the game. But what’s amazing about what the Eagles did is that they didn’t play as if they were the underdogs. From the start, they gave the Patriots a taste of their own medicine — efficient drives with a mix of that slashing RPO attack paired with deep bombs from Foles — and put New England in a hole early on.Despite the David and Goliath setting of the game, the Eagles never faltered or seemed overwhelmed by the challenge ahead of them. Even Brady described the game as feeling out of his control. And perhaps that’s why it felt like such an uncharacteristic showing for the Patriots — for a team used to dominating, especially in late-game, high-stakes situations, this was a complete turning of the tables.It’s a bit of an annual pastime for football fans whose teams long ago fell out of Super Bowl contention to cheer against Brady and the Patriots. They are, after all, the Evil Empire of the league, the proverbial Bad Guys who are easy enough to hate. But this year, I saw something different unfold.I watched the game at a friend’s house with a crowd of about 30. Only two people were cheering for the Patriots, per  usual, but the rest of the crowd was resoundingly cheering for the Eagles. It was similar to the 2016 World Series, when everyone in America seemed to agree that if you weren’t cheering for the Cubs, well, you didn’t have much of a heart. Everyone had their own reason to cheer for the Eagles — they’re a fan of Nelson Agholor, the former USC star and current Eagles wide receiver; or of Julie Ertz, the World Cup champion and wife of the tight end who caught that final touchdown pass; or of Malcolm Jenkins, whose political activism has earned attention and respect throughout the league this season. But the core of the support came down to those dog heads that Johnson and his team wore with such pride. Everyone loves an underdog.In yet another year when we all needed a story of the little guy winning big, the Eagles came through to deliver one for the ages, complete with a storybook finish right down to the very last seconds. And while the true fans are still probably recovering from their celebrations (RIP to most of the major streets in Philadelphia), for the rest of us, the truth about this Super Bowl is settling in — we were all lucky to witness a classic.Julia Poe is a junior majoring in print and digital journalism. Her column, “Poe’s Perspective,” runs Tuesdays.last_img read more