Back to Cave Creek

Made it out to Cave Creek on Friday for a nice day of Arkansas climbing. It was good to get on steep sandstone again and back on some old favorites. Climbs like Stick in Your Eye, Processed Meat, Lips and Assholes, Dancing Queen and Gravity Slab. And I got on a route that I’ve been a little apprehensive about – one that kind of scared me for a while – Party Pants. Turns out that the section I thought looked the hardest/least fun/scariest was actually the best part of the route! The top half of the route from the ground looks like it has very few holds so it’s hard to figure out the moves. Although the moves are tricky you get a good rest just before the top third of the route and there are a couple of relief holds that make it more doable than it looks from the ground. It’s a climb I’m looking forward to getting on again.

I mentioned Gravity Slab – the first route on the right when you head down the approach corridor – yes, the really steep line. It wasn’t smart of us to get on it at the end of the day but man, what a great route! How many lines have a knee-bar right off the bat into and iron cross move? How many lines do you have to slot a horizontal hand-jam on a 35 degree overhanging wall and make a dynamic reach to an edge? How is it possible to get SO pumped in 35-40 feet of climbing? It’s not that the holds are that bad, it’s just everything combined – the steep factor, the heel hooks, the long reaches, the hidden holds…they all add up.

Once again we had the whole place to ourselves. I’m sure the fact that it was a Friday had something to do with it but I’ve been there on Saturdays and Sundays and it’s been dead too. I just think it’s funny that Cave Creek has flown under the radar for so long. If people only knew how much rock that cliff line held. But forget it….

I would encourage everyone to keep going to Horseshoe Canyon so that I continue to have Cave Creek all to myself.

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