SMF Day 3 – Sun, Sun, Sun and Sonnie

Woke up to another beautiful clear blue sky today.  The weather is just perfect. Anybody remember last year? It rained nearly the whole five days. Maybe I had a bit too much sun yesterday but I was feeling a little sluggish so headed into the forest of the Grand Wall boulders and did some bouldering. In the afternoon my energy picked up so I went over to the Malemute and top-roped High Mountain Woody.  It was just me and the seagulls out there enjoying the ocean breeze. I don’t know where everyone was but that is a great place to climb. And HMW is very nice route, perfect finger locks and hand jams.

Tonight’s festival lineup began with a slide and film presentation by American climber Jonathan Siegrist and director Keith Ladzinski. They teamed up with climber / director Andy Mann and climber Nini Caprez (who was at SMF last year) to climb some of the classic lines of Verdon Gorge.  There was some good material there and the photography was very good, but there was not a whole lot there to engage and sustain a documentary feature.

The highlight of the evening was Sonnie’s slide show on the trip he took with Alex Honnold and photographer Andrew Burr to the Copper Canyon in Mexico to climb El Gigante. Sonny calls this the Yosemite of the south, there is so much climbing potential there in a canyon that rivals the Grand Canyon. El Gigante is a 844m (3,000′) wall with a 27 pitch 5.13 route on it.

The trio were dodging shady marijuana grow operators at the bottom of the canyon. On the way in they were  told a couple of people had been shot in the area. A memorable line in Sonnie’s story is that Alex told him not to yell off belay after the first pitch, Alex said he wanted to be well off the ground before they could have a chance to shoot him. Sonnie and Alex did the climb in under 24 hours. It looked very steep, technical and long. If any of you read his blog or any of his articles you know Sonnie is a strong writer with a talent for story telling.  He can do the same in a slide presentation.

A bigger crowd was out tonight. I met a couple from Tucson, Arizona Lauren and Andy, I hope I remembered their names right. This is there third time to Squamish. So I guess they like it here. They say the climbing variety is amazing.

I’ll post some photos of some people you may recognize but before I do a couple of programming notes; Saturday and Sunday are big Festival Days

  • At 3pm there’s a Tug of War and at 4pm a mean Dodge Ball happens.
  • The very popular guiding clinics start at 9am at the Adventure Centre. All the clinics are sold out except the Adventure Photography and Multi-pitch clinics.
  • There is also a Trade Fair and Gear Demo happening all day at the Adventure Centre and a Flashed Dyno Comp.
  • And hopefully there will be a good turnout to the Climbers Access Society of BC (CASBC) Volunteer Trail Maintenance Day.  I have gone for the last three or four years and can tell you it’s a good rewarding time. You can feel good giving back to the community and you are guaranteed not to go home empty handed from give-aways by generous sponsors. This starts at 8am at the Adventure Centre.

Some photos from Day 3 is a proud sponsor of SMF

Adam Connor volunteers out at the CASBC table - join up climbers it's the right thing to do.

Good turnout tonight

Two Big-Time Squamish Route Developers - Robin Barley and Jeremy Frimmer. Robin told me he doesn't use a computer so he may never see this.

There's guidebook author Marc Bourdon and his wife Pam - Nice work Marc on the an excellent Squamish Select 3rd Edition. Marc has also stepped in and is a new director on the Squamish Access Society board. - Thanks for that too, Marc.


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