Red Rock Renaissance
Las Vegas sucks...
Take all the worst stereotypes of modern America, the homogenous suburbia, waste of non-existent resources, and glorification of consumption, and you paint an accurate picture of the city's foundation. Luckily for the climbers and adventurers out there, 20 minutes from the strip you can trade in poker chips and neon lights for varnished sandstone and deep canyon sunsets.
I spent the last week in Red Rock National Conservation area, including getting to climb for a day and a half in between teaching classes and doing some photography rigging. It was my third trip to Red Rock, and I was more inspired than ever to head up some of the seldom-trod climbs on hidden walls. Both personal days featured perfect rock, and good friends (Kurt and Alasdair, AAI guides from Washington state). And during Red Rock's peak season, the height of Spring Break and the Red Rock Rendezvous, we didn't encounter a single other climber. I don't mean on our routes either. I mean not a single other climber at the entire walls on which we climbed.
Bellingham-ster Garrett Grove and I are returning to Red Rock in late April to climb, photograph, and research some of the area's best obscure routes. Look for an eventual article in Rock & Ice.