Monday, October 27, 2008

Where to start?

Where to start?

Again and again there is always this urge to go out and climb and explore whatever feels natural to go to.  Again and again there is something written about these things that echo in our minds.  The next best trip, the next best article, the next best photo. The story that will be told unfolds and the pages of climbing history again written in light of its writer’s perspective. 
Everyone has his or her own take on the happenings.  The rocktrip, the burly competition, the breakthroughs. . .  every single event has a character we wish to re-live.  It has been  more than a decade now and a lot has transpired in Philippine climbing.  No longer can we say that our experience is still in infancy. But then again, in comparison to European or American climbing, ours is truly a baby.  We write our own pages but sometimes we take things for granted.  It is true that the best stories will be the ones you say or hear first hand.  But also in the passing of years these stories will be told by someone who wasn’t even there.  These stories become legendary.  They become hyped, super stylized and even overwhelmingly inspirational.  There is nothing wrong with this of course but I feel to get people more involved in climbing, there is a need to get these events written down somehow.  We always stumble upon this most famous saying “with great power comes great responsibility”.  I heard it from a Marvel comic book and somehow it transcends onto everything.  Our society thrives on its past.  Without the Microsoft Windows 2000, there couldn’t be a Windows Vista.  Those who weave the present day pave the way for the future.  Those who blazed in the past, shape our present. 

So, where to start? The many stories in and out of climbing draw inspiring paintings in our minds.  Sometimes we need these things and though the many photos that fly on the internet create a hype themselves, there is nothing like a good story told in a vivid literary piece. 
There are a few stories that could be written soon.  That climbing trip to Cantabaco and Dingle, Miel and Ina’s trip to Yangshou, China, and that bolting project in Caramoan, Camarines Sur.   There could also be this trip to Pagudpod for bouldering on the Kapurpurawan Rocks and Xtian’s exploits on his 2 month stay in Hong Kong.  We don’t have a magazine to do this nor do we have a steady flow of climbing videos to present Philippine climbing to the future.  What we have though is a good network of people on the internet. There is no consumption of paper, just the bashing of brain cells to create art or even just plain old news casting. 

If you feel that need to create, whether it be single photo, or a worded painting of your most recent trip, use the net.  Start somewhere, share and for sure it’s going to “Multiply”.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Warp Speed !

Projects, new areas, new motivation, new year ahead . . . good vibes and lots of fuel to burn . . .  It keeps getting better and better!

I'm still uncertain though if this feeling is something I and few climbers share.  Imagining all the possible ways for which to go to inspires me to move forward and not think of any of the circumstances which might arise from abrupt decisions that are sure to be made.  Whatever they are though, I'm sure there will be  recourses for some rectification.

Coming from more than a month long exposure to climbing in Europe has fueled my desire to climb more.  Coming back home, I'm now more driven to look for places, new areas, and  new rocks to climb on.  A month now has passed since I came back and right now things are really looking great.

There are  now plans of going over to the Bicol Region for some bolting on the virgin rocks of Caramoan, Camarines Sur.  The limestone there looks really solid and maybe there will be a super route to sink our fingers on.  The plans are solidifying even as I write. A project route, a 120 ft. long single pitch badass that will not go in just one visit, is something that has been on my mind lately.  To bolt something like that and climb it is going to push so many limits.

There's also a new bouldering area that promises new sights and a different setting in Pagudpod.  The white cliff band on the beach looks really impressive.  Bouldering is really nice and powerfull, but bouldering by the beach imaginably  presents more energy.  The crashing of the waves over some of the rocks creates a background that is surreal.  The energy will be overwhelming and yet I could also visualize the sun setting and the waves giving off a calming effect.

Chris Lindner's visit, I believe, has also made a huge impact in everyone who climbs and who wants to climb.  It's a solid showing that no where is ever too far or too obscure if your desire is bigger than you.  Last Sunday's event overpoured with energy and it undeniably started a lot of people on their own personal journeys and with this it has also started something anew for Philippine climbing.

Climbing in the Philipines is definitely beautiful.  The rocks are pure, no chipped holds, everything is natural and the hikes into the jungles for a single area provides a lot of  adventure and adds to the total make up of the stories.  The climbing areas in our small archipelago are still hidden from most of the world but it is also this that makes it unique. The climbing areas are scattered all over the country, each one giving a different experience.  Those who come to explore climbing here is rewarded with quality climbing and a lot of friendly faces eager to meet new people who share the same passion.