Saturday, August 8, 2009

Upper Limits

I don't know why I get a case of nerves before rock climbing. When I was getting ready this morning, I questioned my sanity decision.

Could it be the waiver? It reads in part:

I acknowledge the inherent extreme risk in rock climbing activities, including those that take place indoors. I realize that those risks include falls, equipment failure, bad decision-making, inattentive belayers, and holds that become loose or damaged by other climbers. I understand that there are unforeseeable, freakish accidents, and I assume all risks associated with such accidents, even though I cannot foresee them. I agree to pay attention to the state of the ropes in the gym and that of the anchors, and to advise gym staff if I do any damage or notice any damage, I agree to abide by all gym rules, and if gym staff make a specific request of or instruction to me, I agree to comply.
So, yeah, there are other parts to the waiver but you get the idea.

I was probably extra nervous because I decided to take my belay test. I'm certified (One For The Books) for the Center of Clayton but not for Upper Limits which I'm more likely to frequent.

You'll be happy to know that, even though I had a few awkward attempts, I was able to tie my double figure eight knot and my safety knot (fisherman's knot) and that I'm now able to belay at UL. During the belay test, you have to demonstrate proper technique (like never taking your hand off the brake line) plus the ability to provide a take for the climber if he or she needs rest. In addition, there's an announced and unannounced fall during the test. Thanks to Jessica for trusting me enough to belay for her.

I almost took a nap (not during belaying) on one of those black mattresses that are present for bouldering folks because with the climbing and the test, I was a bit tuckered out.

I went home and took a pause for the cause, had lunch and decided that I wanted to give the city pool a try again; I hadn't been since opening week. I hung out for awhile, swam a little and enjoyed the sun. I felt so relaxed afterwards or maybe the sun had sapped my energy. It really hasn't been hot this summer but the sun was flexing its solar muscles today.

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