Good Temps, Small Crimps: Emerson sends Freaks of the Industry
Jamie Emerson grabbed a fall ascent of Rocky Mountain National Park's (RMNP) hardest boulder problem, Freaks of the Industry, on September 29, after a summer's-worth of off-and-on effort. "There was a whole plan I drew up: Work on it in June/July when it's too hot, and then build a base during August and September on other problems — basically in the V10 to V13 range. As soon as it gets cold ... attack," says Emerson. "I hadn't climbed on it in two months, then — when the temps got good — I did it in two days. It's definitely the hardest thing I've done ... harder than Nuthin' but Sunshine."
Freaks of the Industry follows a rising and traversing line of small crimps with unique toe-hooking, on the same boulder that houses Bush Pilot (V11). "It actually starts on Bush Pilot and climbs right into some heinous holds," says Emerson. "Really spectacular climbing."
James Litz made the first ascent of this line on September 28, 2003, and graded it V14. It has since been downgraded by Daniel Woods and David Graham to V13; however, Emerson's ascent was quickly followed with an ascent by Matt Wilder, who commented on the problem's grade: "Entry-level V14." It has seen at least eight ascents.
Over the course of the last year, Emerson has gained recognition on the Front Range of Colorado for his efforts. Here's a short glimpse into his climbing ...
Freaks of the Industry, RMNP, CO
Dark Waters, Clear Creek Canyon, CO
Nuthin' but Sunshine, RMNP, CO
Muddy Waters FA, Clear Creek Canyon, CO
European Human Being, RMNP, CO
Reternia (4th ascent), RMNP, CO
Diaphonous Sea, Hueco Tanks, TX
Barefoot on Sacred Ground, Hueco Tanks, TX
The Buttermilker, Bishop, CA
Formula 50, Clear Creek Canyon, CO
Silverback, Mount Evans, CO
Gorillas in the Mist, Mount Evans, CO
Source: Jamie Emerson, Matt Wilder
Date of Ascent: September 29, 2006
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Photo by Jason Pinto