2/20/13 - On February 16, Angie Payne and Paul Robinson won the 20th annual Hueco Rock Rodeo competition in Hueco Tanks, Texas. Despite temperatures hovering in the low 60s, hard boulder problems went down everywhere.
Robinson, Sam Davis, Jimmy Webb, and Jon Cardwell vied for first in the men's open category (V8-V14); last year's winner, Daniel Woods, was absent. Robinson arrived a few days early to work some problems on East Mountain, while Webb and Cardwell made impressive efforts onsighting almost all their problems on the day of competition. Robinson finished three problems he had never attempted before: Cut to the Quick, The Tax Gatherer, and Ayanamei Right (all V12), as well as re-climbing Bastard in a Basket (V13), Phantom Limb (V12), and Blood of a Young Wolf—an impressive Dave Graham V14 demanding burly moves on slopey holds. "Because it was a warmer day the second time around, I had a hard time with the tension required to climb it because my skin kept slipping off the holds," Robinson says. "Fortunately, once I made it through the bottom crux I was able to send the whole line." Robinson's was the fourth ascent, while Davis made the second ascent, followed by Nalle Hukkataival.
Payne and Nina Williams went head to head on some difficult problems; Payne came out ahead after completing three of the six on her list: The Butterpumper (V11), Crimping Christ on the Cross (V10), and Hobbit with a Boner (V8). "I just barely pulled out a last-minute send of that boulder that put me ahead," says Payne. Williams finished second with ascents of Sunshine (V11) and The Butterpumper (V11). Jill Church-Waters came in third, completing two problems. Payne described the day as "an incredibly hard eight-plus hours of climbing, but I had the pleasure of spending the entire day with a great group of strong women."
Robinson entertained the crowd with his latest film about bouldering in South Africa, Chasing Winter, while Payne finished the day by presenting a slideshow about her recent adventures in Greenland.
Date of competition: February 16, 2013