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Lauren Lee – Pro Blog 4

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Photo by Heather Hill

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Springtime in southern Utah has many rarities: desert flowers, vagabond friends, and perfect weather in some sparsely visited desert corner. Every day seems like an opportunity to enjoy the natural wonders of life in the wasteland. Poetic as the perfect ending to a good book I sent the first route installed into the cave above my house, with good friend and equipper Jorge Visser. A nest of desert bees prevented me from climbing into the extension (It actually took a lot of persuasion to get Jorge to belay me knowing that the nest was there.). Relaxing after a send is important to me, so I treated myself to a bike ride with friends.

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Isaac and Corigan came down from northern Utah to kick it. Jazzed to ride… H2, Sac, Corigan, the Turner brothers, and myself shuttled the Goulds rim, a fast eight-mile downhill. Having a natural tendency for excitement I sped my way along the trail while keeping mind of Pierre. I underestimated a birm and augured over the handle bar just a couple miles into the ride. This incident was the first time in my adult life that I wrecked without landing on my feet. I knocked the wind out of myself. Wow… A myriad of things crossed my mind like: would I be able to finish the best of the ride; would I feel up to climbing; or whether I had all my teeth. Luckily I was able to dust myself off and press on. The riding got my mind off the soreness settling in.

Photo by Heather Hill

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Photo by Heather Hill

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Photo by Heather Hill

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Photo by Heather Hill

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Photo by Heather Hill

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Photo by Heather Hill

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Not in any state to boulder at the limestone cave or the festivities hosted at Greg’s; I had a gladiator style shower and put myself to bed some time before six. All of the best healing happens with shuteye, so I slept it off as best I could. Despite being banged up I woke early and prepared for a day in Cathedral. Repeating Spring Loaded was anti-climatic but pretty amazing considering my physical condition. Good friend and spin sister Lacy was free for the evening, so we headed into the moonlit desert for a night of exploration. It was a restless night sleeping in the Element tossing from one bruised side of my body to the other. The plan was to ride out of the desert back to my house on an early a.m. mission; however, I couldn’t motivate so I talked Lacy into a ride home with a cup of black gold. I had plans to climb Clark Mountain with friends Spencer and Zach en-route to Los Angeles.

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Photo by Kieth Ladzinski – www.ladzinski.com

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Despite having to pack for so many different destinations I was out the door at around eight in the mañana. As usual I was sure to be a little behind schedule. I rolled into the meeting point in Primm, loaded up in the truck hustling to Clark. It was a mind over matter kind of day. Hiking in with all the gear to climb and camp for two days. I had to keep it in my mind that the pain would fade and I marched slowly but surely making my way into the great vastness of Clark. We hit the second tier and dropped our load and creeping along to the third tier. I let go of any expectations and just allowed myself to enjoy the setting.Warming up was a treat. Then I got around to checking out Dios Mio a 5.13c. It like all the routes had a bouldery start, with a mandatory knee bar that was on my most mangled leg. I winced and groaned my way through the sequences, enjoying yet another Randy Leavit specialty. We climbed until the darkness crept in and headed to the second tier to base camp. Having had no time I shopped at the gas station in Primm for the one night on the mountain. Spencer and Zach taking pity on my situation hooked me up with a nice dinner and then I let sleep take me.

Photo by Kieth Ladzinski – www.ladzinski.com

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The climbing was intoxicating. I didn’t want to leave… I wasn’t looking forward to L.A. Luckily as destiny would have it, my friend who I was meeting in L.A. knew the reluctance I had to hang in the city. He happily compromised and flew into Las Vegas. I picked Keith up from the airport failing to mention that we would be going into the mountain for three nights and four days. It all came together and everyone went with the flow. I blissed out… Climbing and camping a return too my savage roots. The four days passed rapidly. Spencer and I doubled down sending Dios last day last burn, but I still managed to have a meltdown about having to leave the mountain. Now here I am at home hanging with Seth, H2, Keith, Joe, Colette and Emily… Enjoying my last days of climbing in the homestead before embarking on the journey to Colorado leading up to France.

Photo by Kieth Ladzinski – www.ladzinski.com

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Photo by Kieth Ladzinski – www.ladzinski.com

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Photo by Kieth Ladzinski – www.ladzinski.com

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Photo by Kieth Ladzinski – www.ladzinski.com

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Photo by Kieth Ladzinski – www.ladzinski.com

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Photo by Kieth Ladzinski – www.ladzinski.com

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