Friday, September 14, 2012

City Living Thoughts

Urban Food and Biking

I recently watched this video documenting the success of the bicycle network in Vancouver.

I moved to Seattle, frequently recognized as one of the more progressive cities in the United States, expecting this sort of forward thinking attitude and action. Seattle is no Dallas, but recently it has been cited frequently as falling behind in alternative transportation in comparison to many other North American cities. Vancouver is probably the only city in North America that is wetter and maybe colder than Seattle, yet they have achieved miles kilometers of separated bicycle lanes resulting in a safer and frequently used  network. Watch a view seconds of the video and think about how much every city would benefit from this sort of infrastructure.

-image from 

On the plus side, one of the coolest things I've heard of in a while, and it sounds like it will actually happen.

Beacon Hill Food Forest


The idea is simple and awesome. A food forest providing free to everyone produce, on 7 acres of Beacon Hill, is being planned and will hopefully arrive within the next few years. 

"People worried, ‘What if someone comes and takes all the blueberries?’ That could very well happen, but maybe someone needed those blueberries. We look at it this way—if we have none at the end of blueberry season, then it means we’re successful.' ”

Friday, September 7, 2012


Maybe if i stay here for a few years, I will start to become numb to what a paradise Squamish is, when it's dry.  Veronica and I spent two days in the Smoke Bluffs (Maybe I figure out how to get a design office in that neighborhood!), we climbed Banana Peel on the Apron, and spent some time bouldering in the forest. It was Labor day so there was a pretty big crew to hang out with from the gym. 

The view from the top of Laughing Crack.

The main goal for the weekend was to cruise any and every crack with good protection from 5.6-5.9, and that's what we did.

Looking down Laughing Crack. From my book, "so good you'll be laughing the whole way up."

We walked back to the Chief campground at the end of the day, and saw this guy hanging out up in an apple tree. 

Snagged this on the way back, mostly for Erich. The Snalke follows the big dihedral in the center, Banana peel would be on the far right, coming up to those trees visible on the top right.

Veronica right before starting her first multi-pitch, after the two guys doing the Ultimate Everything told me they would rather climb 11c slab than do Banana Peel again, and how scary it was. 

Veronica after we topped it out. I've heard other people complain about how intimidating the route was, but I can only recommend as a gentle introduction to multi-pitch at Squamish.  

 Number 35. Dierdre 

Some bokeh for your day. Veronica with the next leader catching up. Busy popular route.

These pictures don't do this problem justice. Definitely recommend it-Timeless.

Besides not having confidence in my anchor building ability, I felt pretty good leading runout slab, especially at that grade. We met up with the bro's afterwards, and decided to get in a quick bouldering session. The variety of what's available within 10 minutes of base camp at the Chief is awesome. We got on Titanic, Timeless, and Hoop Wrangler. I thought Hoop Wrangler woudl be a good finish since we only had one pad left at that time. I sent it, but topping out, realizing I couldn't hop off, and continuing up the mossy slab in the dark was scary enough to not be fun. There was just enough light to see how far I didn't want to fall, but not enough to see what was a foot and what was a block of moss. I feel good about it now, but this was the first time in a while I've felt like what I was doing was a bad idea. Woudld I do it again, probably. But if I had a headlamp it would be more fun, and Bryan said he could have taken a sick picture.

Pre-send, before it gets dark.

The topout looks like it would be possible to hop off, but once up there it's not really possible. So you have to continue up the arete out of site, with a bad looking fall to the right of where the crash pad is now.

From the anchors, out to town. Maybe I could call myself Canadian for a while? I don't think it could get any better than living underneath some granite cragging like this. 5 minute walk to town, 5 minute walk to this route. If they ever open good public transportation to Vancouver from here, I'm in.