Thursday, February 9, 2017

MBC 2017 Photos & Results

Photos courtesy of Dave Shumway:
http://www.shumwayphotography.com/Adventure/Climbing/MontanaBouldering2017/


Qualifier Results:




Finals Results:


Sunday, January 8, 2017

MBC2017 Pre-Registration

Pre-registration for the 2017 Montana Bouldering Championships is now live!
Follow this link to the registration site:
http://mbcprereg.eventbee.com

Waivers for Steepworld can be taken care of here:
http://steepworld.com/waiver/
Please fill out a waiver prior to the day of the comp in order to save time at the door.

See you there!

Monday, December 12, 2016

MBC2017 Event Details

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 4th 

STEEPWORLD CLIMBING GYM
208 North 13th Street 
Billings, Montana
406-25-CLIMB

The Montana Bouldering Championship is a fundraiser for the Steepteam 501c3 non-profit program. Steepteam provides climbing mentorship and training to Billings area youth through practice and competition. The Championships provide a competition venue that promotes and rewards the upper talent of Montana Bouldering while providing a fun and entertaining event for recreational climbers.

REGISTRATION
Pre-registration information will be available within the next few weeks.  Registration can also be taken care of the day of the competition.

EVENT SCHEDULE
1:00p - Check In / Late Registration Opens
2:00p - Climbing Begins
6:00p - Climbing Ends
6:30p - Results, Drinks, Food and Early Raffle
7:00p - Open Finals Begin
8:30p - Open Awards and Late Raffle

OPEN COMPETITION FORMAT 
$50 Pre-registration or $55 Day Of. All open registration fees go towards the cash purse. 
The 2016 purse was over $1500
Guaranteed $150 minimum to winners (men & women) and custom Montana Bouldering Champion Belt Buckle.

QUALIFIERS
Open redpoint format consisting of more than 70 routes of evenly distributed difficulty. 
4 hours of climbing time.
Each route is given points based on its difficulty.
A climbers total score equals the top 5 scoring routes plus flash bonuses.
The top third of the open field plus 1 in each gender will move on to finals.

FINALS
Competitor scores will zero out for finals. Ties will be split by qualifier scores.
Finals will be a timed onsight format, competitors remain in isolation until their turn to climb.
There will be 2 finals routes. Each route will have 6-14 moves of various techniques.
Each climber will get 3:00 minutes of climbing time per route. The 3:00 minutes is a soft time stop, meaning climbers will be allowed to continue climbing the route if they are still on the wall after 3:00.
Each finals route is worth 1000 points.
Every move on a finals route is scored equally to the other moves on the route.
If route has 10 moves / holds then each move is worth 100 pts. (1000pts / 10 moves = 100pts)
A competitors finals score equals the combined total from the two finals routes.
The finals score determines final placement. Ties will be split by attempts and then qualifier scores.
Cash payout to the top third of the field in each gender.

AMATEUR & MASTERS & YOUTH COMPETITION FORMAT
$40 Pre-Registration or $45 Day Of.  Entry fee includes climbing, pizza, & beverages. 
100% of the amateur, youth, & masters entry fees go to the Steepteam non-profit.
$5 Adult Spectator Beverage fee. This gets the spectator pizza & beer.
Redpoint format consisting of 70 routes of evenly distributed difficulty. 4 hours of climbing time.
Competitor score equals the top 5 scoring routes plus flash bonuses.
Youth competitors compete within their respected USA Climbing age category.
Category winners awarded with medals.
Pizza and beverages included in entry fee.
High value prizes will be raffled off among all youth, amateur, and masters competitors.


Keep an eye out for more information here or on our Facebook page!

Friday, February 5, 2016

MBC2016 Photos


















Dave Shumway has again donated his talented photographic skills and documented the 2016 MBC finals. Take a look and relive the evening here.

Monday, February 1, 2016

MBC2016 Results

Here are the results from this past Saturday's Montana Bouldering Championships!

Masters, Amateur & Youth:


Open:



Finals:


Thanks to all of the competitors who came out to compete and support Steepteam.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

A note about registration

We are not doing any comp pre-registration.  We will have a table setup to accept any major credit cards, checks, or cash at the gym when you arrive.  The competition's 4 hour climbing session begins at 2pm.  Showing up early, on time, or late is up to you.  Steepworld's liability release forms are available here.

The Elusive Belt Buckle

Waiting for a 2016 Champion

Monday, January 4, 2016

MBC2016 Event Details

SATURDAY JANUARY 30th 

STEEPWORLD CLIMBING GYM
208 North 13th Street 
Billings, Montana
406-25-CLIMB

The Montana Bouldering Championship is a fund raiser for the Steepteam 501c3 non-profit program. Steepteam provides climbing mentorship and training to Billings area youth through practice and competition. The Championships provide a competition venue that promotes and rewards the upper talent of Montana Bouldering while providing a fun and entertaining event for recreational climbers.

EVENT SCHEDULE
02:00 - comp begins - We are not doing any comp pre-registration.  We will have a table setup to accept any major credit cards, checks, or cash at the gym when you arrive.  The competition's 4 hour climbing session begins at 2pm.  Showing up early, on time, or late is up to you. 
06:00 - comp ends, pizza & drinks
06:30 - results and early raffle
07:00 - open finals begin
08:30 - open awards and late raffle 

OPEN COMPETITION FORMAT 
$50 entry. All open registration fees go towards the cash purse. 
The 2015 purse was over $1500
Guaranteed $150 minimum to winners (mens & womens) and 
custom Montana Bouldering Champion Belt Buckle.

QUALIFIERS
Open redpoint format consisting of more than 50 routes of evenly distributed difficulty. 
4 hours of climbing time.
Each route is given points based on its difficulty.
A climbers total score equals the top 5 scoring routes plus flash bonuses.
The top third of the open field plus 1 in each gender will move on to finals.

FINALS
Competitor scores will zero out for finals. Ties will be split by qualifier scores.
FInals will be a timed redpoint format, competitors remain in isolation until their turn to climb.
There will be 2 finals routes. Each route will have 6-14 moves of various techniques.
Each climber will get 3:00 minutes of climbing time per route. The 3:00 minutes is a soft time stop.
Climbers will be allowed to complete the route if they are still on the wall after 3:00.
Each finals route is worth 1000 points.
Every move on a finals route is scored equally to the other moves on the route.
if route has 10 moves / holds then each move is worth 100 pts. (1000pts / 10 moves = 100pts)
A competitors finals score equals the combined total from the two finals routes.
The finals score determines final placement. Ties will be split by qualifier scores.
Cash payout to the top third of the field in each gender.

AMATEUR & MASTERS & YOUTH COMPETITION FORMAT
$40 entry fee includes climbing, pizza, & beverages. 
100% of the amateur, youth, & masters entry fees go to the Steepteam non-profit.
$5 Adult Spectator Beverage fee. This gets the spectator pizza & beer.
Redpoint format. Minimum 50 routes of evenly distributed difficulty. 4 Hours of climbing time.
Competitor score equals the top 5 scoring routes plus flash bonuses.
Youth competitors compete within their respected USA Climbing age category.
Category winners awarded with medals.
Pizza and beverages included in entry fee.
High value prizes will be raffled off among all youth, amateur, and masters competitors.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

MBC216 - Saturday January 30th

The 2016 Montana Bouldering Championships will be hosted by Steepworld on Saturday January 30th.  More details to follow in the coming weeks.

Monday, February 2, 2015

MBC2015 - Event Photos




This year we'd again like to thank our talented Dave Shumway, for his incredible journalistic photos  from this past Saturday night.  The above 3 are just a couple nuggets of the action and emotion he captured.  Dave's also graciously offering the photos at wholesale cost off his website if anyone is interested in prints.

Take a look at Dave's perspective of the action HERE!

Full results are now also listed in the post below.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

MBC2015 Finals Results and Thank You.


It takes a community to put on an event like the Montana Bouldering Championships. This past Saturday we watched the MONTANA climbing community come together and celebrate climbing. We'd like to thank everyone that attended, volunteered, or sponsored us to who help us raise nearly $4000 for the Steepteam non-profit fund. Your involvement allows us to keep costs at a minimum for participating families while also enabling us to continue programs like need-based scholarships, travel stipends for those who qualify for out of town competitions, and additional training for coaches and guides. We thank you from the sincere bottom of our heart.

Steepteam Board: Joel Anderson, Joel Svec, Jim Barron

Steepworld Staff: Jim Rott, Peder, Kim Lemke, Colton Wayman

Routesetters: Dillon Key, AJ Eliston, Mike Fallon, Joel Svec, Kyle Blisse, Colton Wayman

Photographer: Dave Shumway. See 2014 MBC photos here. 2015 photos are HERE.



Corporate Sponsors:

Ortho Montana: The Sports Medicine Center at Ortho Montana specializes in taking care of the injured athlete, from professional to the avid amateur.

CTA Architects: At CTA, we pride ourselves on High Performance design solutions. It is the product of uniting talent, passion and expertise with the company’s mission; developing integrated teams of top notch architects, designers, engineers, interior designers, landscape architects, project managers and visionaries working together in creating a pinnacle of both form and function.

Computers Unlimited: Computers Unlimited (CU) provides integrated software solutions, cloud computing and support services to three primary markets – Industrial Gas & Welding Supply Distributors, HME/DME & Closed Pharmacy Providers and Audiologists & Dispensers.

Steepworld Climbing Gym: Our excellent host facility. Come climb with us.


Private Sponsors:

You know who you are, and we appreciate you thinking about us, thank you.


Gear Sponsors:

Adidas Outdoor: Outdoor shoes and apparel.

Mad Rock: Climbing Shoes, crash pads, and carabiners.

Petzl: Technical climbing gear for all disciplines.

CAMP: Technical adventure equipment.

La Sportiva: Fine Italian climbing shoes and apparel.

Darn Tough: Socks that are darn tough.

Millet: Mountain gear inspired by the French Alps and Chamonix guides.

Big Agnes:  The mother of comfort in sleeping bags.


RESULTS

OPEN FINALS RESULTS HERE

AMATEUR

OPEN QUALIFIERS





Wednesday, January 28, 2015

MBC2015: A Brief Chat with Charlie Barron

Charlie on Men's Final #3 at MBC2014

Charlie. Chuck. Charles.  You've probably seen Charlie Barron send your project with only four fingers and no feet.  He was trying to be polite about it but every climber needs a warm up.  He's stood on national podiums for bouldering and speed climbing.  He's been a national finalist in sport climbing.  Last winter he won the Bozeman Full Gravity Day Bouldering Competition, the Gnar Pirate Booty Bash in Missoula, and the Montana Bouldering Championships.  He went to Nationals last year, and the year before that, and he's going again this year.  Lots of climbing for one humanoid. Yet, when you sit down and talk with him, he's polite, kind, and rooting for everyone.

Joel:  How long have you been climbing for and why did you start?

Charlie: I've been climbing for about eight or so years now.  I really just got into it because I thought it was fun and for some reason climbing called out to me.

Joel:  Nice, let's get the stock dialogue out of the way.  Favorite boulder problem and climbing route in Billings?

Charlie: That would be a lesser known v10 at Phipps park called Seasonal Changes.  It's a beautiful compression problem on bulletproof orange sandstone. My favorite sport climb in the area is probably Brown Sugar at Gregory Hills.

Joel:  Sweet, now we need a sequel to Super Sand Land.  How about your favorites in Montana?

Charlie: My favorite boulder problem in Montana is probably Vanilla Gorilla V11 at Yankee Jim and my favorite sport climb is Deadly Nightshade 5.13B at Natural Bridge.

Joel:  Righty Oh! Boulder River Valley and Paradise Valley, good locations to meet up with our Bozeman friends.  OK, favorite boulder problem and climbing route in the world?

Charlie: Probably a V10 at the rock shop in Wyoming called The Giving Tree. It climbs out this huge overhang on perfectly sculpted edges, pinches, and slopers. My favorite sport climb is Gold Member 5.13D in Ten Sleep. This climb took me a long time to climb and just has a special place in my heart.

Joel: Considering where you've climbed around the world, I'm impressed and/or surprised you're listing Cody and Ten Sleep in this category.  Last spring you received a nomination for the USA Climbing North Face Young Gun Award. You've been pretty quiet about it, but it actually was a significant event, only 15 youth climbers a year are nominated.  Competitors and coaches from all over the pacific northwest nominated you, largely due to your approach to climbing. What exactly is your approach?

Charlie: I think my approach to climbing is different from many of the kids I see at Nationals. I really love the outdoor aspect of climbing and how it connects me with nature. Competitions are great and can show progress, but climbing outside is what really pushes me to try harder.

Joel:  Interesting, a lot of your competitors come from big urban mega gyms and climbing areas where every route is YouTubed for beta.  You come from the wild and rare Billings Montana.  How do "other factors" affect your climbing? Things like temperature, mood, music, day of the week, school, those sorts of things.

Charlie: I like climbing in the cold but not when it's too cold. I think 40-50 degrees Fahrenheit is the best but sometimes I will climb in colder weather as long as the sun is out. My mood doesn't really affect me because I somehow tune everything out and just focus on how much fun I'm having while climbing that day. I like listening to music, especially in the gym, but when I'm outside I like just listening to nature. 

Charlie chuckin' above Billin's

Joel: What's more important to you and why; the route you're climbing, or the people you're with?

Charlie: Climbing with good friends is more important to me, for sure. Climbing with other people is more than half the fun, because you can all learn and connect with nature together. If I go out and can't climb my project but I was with my good friends, it would still be considered a great day in my book. 

Joel: What's more stressful to you and why? Finals at a climbing competition or a final exam?

Charlie: Finals at a climbing competition is way more stressful to me than a final exam haha. I feel like at a climbing competition I always have something to prove and it feels really good to be able to prove you are the best. This really gets in my head and sometimes causes me to do well but sometimes it makes me too nervous and I don't perform my best. A final exam in school is just a way to test knowledge, and to me I never felt like I can know everything, so why be stressed?

Joel:  Maybe these questions are your most stressful thing right now?  What's next for Charles Barron? obviously more high school, but are you starting to make plans for post high school?

Charlie:  I don't have any plans set in stone yet but I am definitely going to keep climbing after high school. I would like to go to college but I'm not sure if right after high school is the right time for me. I would like to play my life more day by day and it's hard for me to say what I'm going to do years from now.

Joel:  I like that you said, "play my life."  If you had full control of the Steepworld music playlist, what would you have us all listen to????

Charlie:  We would be listening to a lot of Kendrick Lamar, Chance the Rapper, G-Eazy, Asher Roth, with some good Reggae thrown in every now and then, ha ha.

Joel: RAP MUSIC??!?!?!!?!?!? Get off my lawn!!!

Sunday, January 25, 2015

MBC2015: A Brief Chat with Inge Perkins

Inge on a v10 traverse in Schirradorf Germany. (photo: Enrico Haase)
For those who've climbed around Montana the past decade you've seen Inge Perkins grow into one of the state strongest climbers.  She's been off adventuring around the world and we got a chance to catch up on what she's been up to.

Joel: Inge, we’ve seen you crush competitions representing the Bozeman Climbing Team over the past years. How did you start climbing and then transition onto the Bozeman Climbing Team?

Inge: I became interested in climbing after watching a movie in Norway of a girl saving wolves by climbing. I had always participated in outdoor sports from cross-country ski racing, to hiking, to mountain biking with my family and the challenge and excitement of starting a new athletic endeavor that no one in my family did was very appealing. I instantly fell in love with dancing around on rocks/walls and was lucky enough to live in a town with such a welcoming, fun, and fast growing climbing team. 

Joel: You traveled on a few of the Touch the Sky BCT trips, what’s your favorite climbing travel story from those experiences?

Inge: That is a hard question, I have so many fond memories from my years of traveling with the Bozeman Climbing Team. One of my favorite memories, however, is my time in Rodellar with the team. Swimming, exploring, and goofing around in the beautiful river every morning and then climbing tufas etc. (it was my first time) amongst the roar of Spaniards trying hard was blissful and a big moment for me in falling in love with climbing. 

Joel: Favorite route in Montana? 

Inge: Why do you have to keep asking such hard questions? I need to include a few for this and the next question. Bowling for Buicks (12a) at the Gallatin Tower is definitely up there as is Canyon Fairy (not sure of the grade) at Hellgate and I might have to say Well-Heeled (11c) at the Wildecliff in Gallatin Canyon.
Joel: Lots of Bozeman love for Buick Bowling these days! Alright, favorite route in the World?

Inge:  I always feel like they keep getting better and better as I travel more and learn to climb smarter and more gracefully. Some of my recent favorites are definitely Fall of Man (13b) at the Virgin River George, Reamed Out (13c) at Wolf Point, Vesper (14a) at the Fins (I haven’t sent it yet but can’t wait to go back this spring and work on my fear of run-outs on this!), and La Guitara de Lolo (13c) in El Salto (I didn’t send this either…another reason I need to go back to Mexico soon). 

Inge on Doomsday 5.14a (photo Allen Chaney)
Joel: You’ve since graduated high school, where are you now? and what are you up to?

Inge: After I graduated high school, I went to Durango for my first year of college. It was really fun and I got to do some amazing skiing, learned how to crack climb properly, and discover the magic of the desert. I then moved to Bamberg, Germany to work as an Au Pair for the wonderful Schöffl family all of last year. We climbed a lot in the Frankenjura and took a few trips to Fontainbleau and Mallorca. The Frankenjura was a very challenging area for me, but the short, finger-intensive, and bouldery routes along with training guidance from the Germans helped me make significant jumps in my climbing. This past summer I worked as a waitress and climbed a bunch in Lander, a town I always feel psyched and happy to be in. I got to be a part of an excellent season at Wolf Point, which was such a privilege! The community I got to know from living in the City Park was almost worth it in itself. Now I am going to MSU in Bozeman for a major in mathematics with a teaching specialty and a minor in German. It is great being back in Montana and being a part of a growing and motivated climbing community (there is some exciting development going on!) but I also take every opportunity I get to travel to other areas to climb and chase warm weather. I just got back from a trip to El Salto, Mexico, which was absolutely amazing and am now hanging out in the Las Vegas area before I go back to Montana for another semester. 

Joel: Did you have to choose between climbing and school? How did you make your decision?

Inge: I wouldn’t say I had to choose between climbing and school, doing both definitely works. However, it may not be ideal as I have to make sacrifices in both (mostly climbing, though). A big moment for me, though, was after climbing a lot this summer and sending a lot of routes I was super psyched about, I started to feel a bit unmotivated and unsatisfied in august. Knowing I was going back to school to work towards other goals of mine was exciting and now that I am back in school, every day I go climbing is so much more special and my motivation to train, push myself climbing, and work hard in school all feed off each other. 

Joel: Reports drifted up out of Ten Sleep this summer that you sent a couple 5.14s. Which ones did you climb? and what was the projecting process for those routes like for you? 

Inge: I spent the last few weeks of my summer in Ten Sleep and was able to do Galactic Emperor and Doomsday (both 14a). I had been interested in trying these routes for a long time, but was always intimidated by the grade. However, after pushing myself in Lander all summer, my mindset to approaching routes changed from only trying things I was very confident I could do to trying routes that were inspiring, beautiful, and maybe not doable for me at first (I have become a big fan of stick clips). However, it turned out both routes in Ten Sleep fit my style very well and I was able to figure out beta quickly and send them both in 4 tries. So there was not much of a projecting process for those two routes. Two routes I did this summer that felt like bigger accomplishments for me were Reamed Out (13c) at Wolf Point and T.I.H.C. (13d) in Ten Sleep. Reamed Out goes to the top of the cave at Wolf Point (about 40 meters) and I fell at the last bolt more than a couple times, which was definitely an exercise in my patience. T.I.H.C. had a very bouldery crux that felt impossible to me for a few tries, so I almost gave up. But I kept trying and everything finally clicked, it was cool to move through holds I thought I could never even hold onto at first. I learned a lot about projecting, strategies, and gained a lot of confidence from those two routes. 

Joel: What is your current training schedule like?

Inge: This past fall I started working with Kris Hampton and the Power Company to develop a more systematic training program to keep me focused, productive, and fit while in school. I usually do two to three high intensity days per week and one or two easy recovery days or go outside. We planned my program in multiple phases, starting with strength, then power, then fitness. I also really enjoy trail running and skiing, so I have continuously pursued those activities while training for climbing, which is something a lot of climbers claim is not beneficial for climbing. However, I can’t give up activities that are so important to my happiness and well being. 

Inge warming up in El Salto, Mexico (photo: Jai Critchley)
Joel:  How much time per week do you spend on climbing or training and how do you balance that time with the rest of your life?

Inge: I train 3-5 times a week for 2 to 3 hours and try to get out when the weather is good at least once a week during school. Having an amazing climbing facility (Spire) that is so convenient makes training after school or work very doable and always enjoyable. I have been trying to incorporate Yoga into my training schedule this year more as well, and have been going to some classes early in the morning before school. I think Yoga is very beneficial for climbing and it is easy to fit in my schedule. I have always maintained a pretty busy schedule with work, school, and athletics and I think doing so much helps me keep my momentum going and be efficient in everything I do (most of the time). Music is always something that keeps me psyched and full of energy wherever I go! 

Joel:  Any sponsors you’d like to thank?

Inge: LOWA boots has been very supportive this past year and I am excited to keep working with them and their developing line of climbing shoes. Verve gave me some sweet attire that actually sometimes catches in the wind and helps me float up routes. I am also grateful for the guidance of Kris Hampton and the Power Company. Omnibar is also helping me stay nourished and energized in all of my activities.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

MBC2015: A Brief Chat with Christine Sjoquist

Christine grazing the finish of Womens Final #3 at MBC2014

To lead off with this year's "Brief Chat's" I want to introduce everyone to Christine Sjoquist.  She's been climbing for the past 15 years, traveled the world, picks up her mail in Bozeman, and took 2nd place in last years MBC2014.  She and her husband were recently featured on Mammut's Athlete Blog.

Joel: Favorite boulder problem and climbing route in Montana?

Christine: Hard to pinpoint a particular favorite, Bowling for Buicks? (5.12a, Gallatin Canyon)

Joel:  Ok, why not broaden our scope a little more? given your travels.  What's your favorite boulder problem and climbing route in the world?

Christine: Any number of boulder problems in the Buttermilks, Joes, or Vegas! Or the super devious "warmups" in Font.  Thinking of routes there's so much fun stuff with French names in Ceuse, also Shune's Buttress in Zion

Joel: Both you and your husband are based out of Bozeman, what brought you to this place and time?

Christine: Neither of us are MSU grads; I went to Dartmouth College with degree in German. However, I did a post-baccalaureate pre-medicine year at MSU recently (because I was a silly, silly goose and got a college degree in German) and my husband went to school briefly in Denmark to train parkour. David (aka Dervin) is a crew leader for Harbour Hardwood Floors, and I'm drowning in med school applications, while also taking a few more classes at MSU and TA'ing some lab sections of biology.

Joel: Is it correct that you spent time with the Bozeman Climbing Team? How did the program help your climbing?

Christine (blue with fleece hoody) along, with the other female finalists, previewing the finals routes.

Christine: I did spend a bit of time with the BCT in 1999 when I very first started climbing; however, this was when the team was early in it's inception process, and being "on the team" actually meant just being able to climb with my friends during "practice" hours.  It helped my climbing a lot in the sense that these hooligans got me hooked on the sport!

Joel:  Sounds like you and your husband are on a big road trip right now, where are you visiting? and what's the goal of the trip?

Christine: We are on a two-week bouldering trip to Vegas. Our sole purpose for this trip is to train for the Montana Bouldering Championships 2015. No other reason, and no fun allowed.

Joel:  A serious trip to Vegas with the sole purpose of training for an indoor competition, sounds die hard.  What's been your most valuable piece of gear on this road trip?

Christine: That would be the latest addition to our family, Rodney the van. He's a 2010 GMC Savanna whose very few windows are tinted. David did an awesome job of converting him to a camper-type rig.

Joel:  Do you still train on the road? What's your routine been like?

Christine: On the road, David is really good about doing lots of warming up with Theraband-type exercises. When we used to climb on the road all the time, we would sometimes try to get gym memberships, half to train antagonist muscle groups, do some weight training and stretch, and half to be able to take a shower once in a while.

Joel:  Showers and pushing the antagonist muscles keep the body in balance!  Any sponsor shoutouts that are helping make this trip possible?

Christine: A big ol' thanks to Mammut North America for all the support, which truly made our travels possible whilst road tripping and living on a measly writers income!



Wednesday, January 21, 2015

MBC2015: A Brief Chat with Fred Rhoderick

Fred (right) and Abbey
If you've ever been to a Montana Bouldering Championship, you've probably gotten to talk with Missoulian Fred Rhoderick. For this "brief chat" we wanted to share the sport's perspective from the viewpoint of a parent. Fred's been climbing for 18 years, but just recently his daughter fell in love with climbing and her success has taken them across the pacific northwest.

Joel: For the past couple years, the Rhodericks' have been a fixture at climbing competitions across the pacific northwest. Tell us briefly how you guys got to this point?

Fred: In 2009 Freestone opened and although Abbey had climbed a few times with me at the Rock Garden and a number of times outdoors, it really did not stick for her until the afternoon we walked into Freestone. Since then climbing has been a constant in our day to day lives. Abbey felt at home at the gym and really began to bond with the staff and other climbers. Walt and the staff at Freestone do a really good job with making anyone feel at ease when they walk through the door. It is incredibly disarming and I think it is one of the things that makes it special. When she joined the team she was only one of two girls and the youngest Gnar Pirate. She and Molly really clicked and it has been a lot of miles and fun since then.

Joel: I've heard some of your travel stories, which competitions did you guys attend in 2014?

Fred: Oh boy...... we went to the 2014 MBC. Abbey climbed locally at the Rock the Rec Open on UM’s campus in February. She climbed in a sport climbing open in Spokane in March. Two SCS comps in the spring in Pocatello and Bozeman and the SCS Regional in Bend, OR. With the start of the 2014 ABS we went to the PBR at the newly opened Circuit in Tigard. That place is massive. The Booty Bash in Missoula, Full Gravity Day in Bozeman, and the Steepworld Rock Jam in Billings. In December we traveled to the NW Regional ABS in Boise and we attended the ABS Divisional Comp in Reno, NV in January.

Joel: Whoa, that's a lot of road time? any secret road tips for us climbers?

Fred: Know the bathroom and coffee stops, have good tires, an endless supply of quality music and a network of friends and other climbers to stay with to keep cost at a minimum. For a lot of those trips Sue could not get off work so it was Sam, Abbey and I.  Luckily they both travel really well but it can get stressful with weather and locations.

The MBC2014 crowd waiting for finals
Joel: As a parent, why do you like your kids climbing rocks?

Fred: That is a tough but fun one. There are so many benefits climbing provides for young kids. In addition to taking you to beautiful places outdoors, the biggest thing we have noticed is the level of confidence that comes from trusting and pushing yourself. The climbing community in Missoula, and across the state, is relatively small.  Having a gaggle of adults that support youth climbing is fantastic. There is something amazing about watching another adult bring out the best in your child with something as simple as taking the time to pass along beta, spot, or just pal around with playing add on. You know it is there, buried within your child, but as a parent you can not seem to tap into that for some reason. Being witness to that is pretty amazing and humbling. All sports bring that to a certain degree but it seems especially unique to climbing.


Joel: The youth program in Missoula recently transitioned to a new coach after Molly Rennie moved last year, who's the new coach, and how have things been going?

Fred: The two new coaches are Daniel Hatley and Brooks Munyer. It has been going really well. Molly did a really great job of setting the foundation for the team as a whole. Daniel runs the youth program at Freestone and he coached with Molly last year. He and Brooks bring a ton of climbing experience and are great with kids. In talking with Daniel there are a lot of great things on the horizon for the Gnar Pirates and youth climbing in general.

Joel: Climbing is definitely a mental game, any parental advice towards guiding young climbers to success?

Fred: First and foremost I think it is important to have fun. Every kid is different and has different goals they want to achieve with climbing. What I think is pretty universal though, is that there is a fine line between I can’t do this right now and I won’t do this right now. It is important for the climber to recognize that difference.  It is the responsibility of the adult who is with the climber to recognize and nourish that distinction in a positive manner. What we have found is that it takes a group of dedicated parents coaches and peers to really make that seed of confidence grow for each kiddo.

Joel: As a coach for 6 years, you hit the nail on the head, can't and won't are two different worlds in my opinion. Steepteam attended the 3rd Gnar Pirate Booty Bash this past fall and had a great time. I understand team Rhoderick played an integral part in the planning, what's in the works for the Defying Gravity non-profit?

Fred: So much, so much to do. Sue, the board, Brooks and Daniel deserve a ton of credit, as do Walt and the entire Freestone staff. Like most comps, the parents also stepped up and did a little of everything. The comp would not have happened unless they all came together. I just put out fires and barbecued ribs. Defying Gravity is still pretty new and learning the in’s and out’s of keeping the ship steady. They have a dedicated board that are all on the same page. The biggest thing to tackle in the coming months are grants and scholarships to increase the resources available. The Gnar Pirates are just a small part of what they want to achieve. Part of the bigger picture is developing youth climbing in western Montana. Not just on plastic but outside as well. Developing mentors and providing everything from chalk to shoes and harnesses is just the start. Teaching kids to be respectful of the environment and develop an appreciation for what Montana has to offer will pay off in the long run. Molly said it best when she mentioned that “we don’t just want to develop comp climbers, we want to develop life long climbers.” Daniel and Brooks have the same philosophy


Joel: I've had those ribs you're talking about, TASTY! Lets wrap this up with a little Missoula love. In your opinion, what's the best problems and routes near town?

Fred: I am not much of a boulderer, but Abbey really likes Lost Horse and the batholith. If I have to answer for Abbey she really likes Beautiful People at Lost Horse. She also likes Pin Garden in the Druthers for the high top out and balancie moves it requires. Personally I have a soft spot for Iron Monger in Kootenai because it was the first trad route I led 15 years ago. I do it once or twice a year just for fun.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

MBC2015: A Brief Chat with Jon Scott

Jon happily descending after flashing Mens Final #1 at MBC2014
 Jon Scott is one of Bozeman's strongest climbers. He was a finalist at last years MBC and took a solid 2nd place at the Steepworld Rock Jam. He's climbed many of the stout lines and boulders across Montana. Always a positive and polite gentlman, Jon and I sat down for a little beta share.
Joel: You're a solid strong climber, as evidence shows from your 2nd place finish at the 2014 Steepworld Rock Jam, yet I mostly know of you as a setter. Your history of setting for Spire competitions goes back how long, and why do you enjoy setting?
Jon: I have been setting since the dawn of man, if fact I created the first man made hand hold back in 1972,,,,,,, But really, I've been setting for years,,,,, who cares how long. I set because I enjoy movement and specifically climbing movement. I got into setting because it was the next logical step in my climbing. Not only to read a route, but to also set one has helped me enjoy climbing even more.
Jon route setting for Spire and creating movement
Joel: How did you start climbing? Why did you stick with it?
Jon: I started climbing when I was about 7 till I was about 13. After which I got caught up in the high class flash of the skiing world. After the age of 20 I came back down to earth and realized that climbing is the most sensible thing you can do as a human being, and voila' and was back in love with climbing.
Joel: I agree, some of the best human beings I've ever met, I've met on top of mountains. You're one of the first active climbers of your generation I've known that was actually born and raised in Bozeman. You've seen the climbing "scene" evolve in front of you, what's the view like?
Jon: Yeah, I grew up in Bozeman and have been with the climbing "Scene" for some time. To this day I don't believe their is a real scene in Montana compared to other states, but this is what I love about the climbing communities in Montana. There's just great people trying hard, making trails, talking beta, scrubbing holds, with a smile on their face the whole time. Montana is the wild west of climbing, what I mean to say is that there is a massive amount of potential in our state we just have to get off our lazy asses and go find the next greatest thing! That being said people like Tom Wells, Alec Tkach, and the man the myth the legend Kyle Vassilopoulos were huge in forming this piece of clay into a piece of rock. To say if I am old school or new school? I would say more new school but I understand my roots.
Joel: A smile on your face the whole time, so true. What does your training schedule currently look like?
Jon: I just love to climb, and I would climb and train 7 days a week, but the old body just can't handle it. So I climb and train as much as possible without hurting myself.
Joel: If you could only do one thing in climbing for the rest of your life what would it be.
Jon: ........either clipping bolts or stacking pads.
Joel: Looks like a choice you're glad you don't have to actually make. In your opinion, what is the single greatest rope route and boulder problem in Bozeman?
Jon: The best route I would say would be anything up at the Cube in Gallatin Canyon, all of the routes there are these 50' power endurance lines that have some of the most unique moves I have ever done. As far as bouldering, there are a couple of really nice boulders up Cascade creek that are worth the hike for sure.
Joel: Ok, how about the single greatest rope route and boulder problems in Montana?
Jon: The best rope climb in montana, has to be Isla De los Locos at Natural Bridge State Park. Beautifully blue streaked line, that is on you from the first bolt all the way to the end. So friggin' good. As far as boulders, I would say the mile 18 boulders are kinda the hot stuff right now. All the work Sander and Derv put into the area has really paid off. There's some really hard and committing lines up there.
Joel: Yes! I saw Sander's film this past fall (MILE 18) and thought the boulders were beautiful as well as the video's minimalist cinematography and editing. What and where do you want to be climbing in 5 years?
Jon: I would say, still climbing. I hope I still have the drive to continue pushing myself as well as laughing as much as ever.

Friday, January 2, 2015

MBC2015 Official Event Details













SATURDAY JANUARY 31st
Superbowl weekend for the broader sports enthusiast

STEEPWORLD CLIMBING GYM
208 North 13th Street
Billings, Montana
406-25-CLIMB

The Montana Bouldering Champinship is a fund raiser for the Steepteam 501c3 non-profit program. Steepteam provides climbing mentorship and training to Billings area youth through practice and competition. The Championships provide a competition venue that promotes and rewards the upper talent of Montana Bouldering while providing a fun and entertaining event for recreational climbers.

EVENT SCHEDULE
01:50 - competitor meeting
02:00 - comp begins (late arrivals accepted)
06:00 - comp ends, pizza & drinks
06:30 - results and early raffle
07:00 - open finals begin
08:30 - open awards and late raffle

OPEN COMPETITION FORMAT
$40 entry. All open registration fees go towards the cash purse.
The 2014 purse was nearly $1000
Guaranteed $150 minimum to winners (mens & womens) and
custom Montana Bouldering Champion Belt Buckle.


QUALIFIERS
Open redpoint format consisting of more than 50 routes of evenly distributed difficulty.
4 hours of climbing time.
Each route is given points based on its difficulty.
A climbers total score equals the top 5 scoring routes plus flash bonuses.
The top third of the open field plus 1 in each gender will move on to finals.

FINALS
Competitor scores will zero out for finals. Ties will be split by qualifier scores.
FInals will be a timed redpoint format, competitors remain in isolation until their turn to climb.
There will be 3 finals routes. Each route will have 6-14 moves of various techniques.
Each climber will get 3:00 minutes of climbing time per route. The 3:00 minutes is a soft time stop.
Climbers will be allowed to complete the route if they are still on the wall after 3:00.
Each finals route is worth 1000 points.
Every move on a finals route is scored equally to the other moves on the route.
if route has 10 moves / holds then each move is worth 100 pts. (1000pts / 10 moves = 100pts)
A competitors finals score equals the combined total from the three finals routes.
The finals score determines final placement. Ties will be split by qualifier scores.
Cash payout to the top third of the field in each gender.

AMATEUR & MASTERS & YOUTH COMPETITION FORMAT
$30 entry fee includes climbing, pizza, & beverages.
$5 Adult Spectator Beverage fee. This gets the spectator pizza & beer.
Redpoint format. Minimum 50 routes of evenly distributed difficulty. 4 Hours of climbing time.
Competitor score equals the top 5 scoring routes plus flash bonuses.
Youth competitors compete within their respected USA Climbing age category.
Category winners awarded with medals.
Pizza and beverages included in entry fee.
High value prizes will be raffled off amongst all youth, amateur, and masters competitors.