Tuesday, June 9, 2009


In my research of Rocklands, I found several boulders that I wanted to climb. Right at the top of the list was a 7b+ called Ulan Bataar. By all accounts, this was one of the best problems of that grade on the planet. Not to mention the fact that if you had to design a boulder, it would probably look something like this one. About 15 feet tall. Mildly steep. One line. No cheater holds. The only way this problem could be better would be if it went straight up the steeper section at the top instead of breaking left. But the sad fact is, there are not any usable hold on that steep bit at the top.

My goal for this boulder was to flash it. Which seemed incredibly reasonable to me. I made the 40 minute hike to the boulder on day one and warmed up on area classics like "One", and "Roof On Fire". Then made my way to Ulan Bataar. It was taller than I had imagined, and one thing worried me about my flash attempt...the footholds. They are really, really bad. I padded it out, stepped up, and went for it. I made it about half way up when my foot cut. Damn. I think it took me 2 or 3 more tries before I sent. And I must say, it truly is one of the greatest problems I have ever done. A really massively incredible boulder. Although it would have been nice to flash the bugger, it's hard to get upset about anything with the surroundings and the quality of the climbs at Rocklands.

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