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More Photos From The Edge. November 6, 2011

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature, climbing.
Tags: , ,

Here are a couple more photos from Saturday’s “bouldering session” out at Farley Ledge, of which I was an observer rather than a participant.

I went there hoping to capture some essential quality of that activity rather than an overview of it, and at some point booted my ISO way up to 6,400, meaning that the photos would be “grainy,” but still possible in the waning light of a late afternoon in November.

Now, action photographs (and this ought to qualify as “action”) are normally shot at really fast shutter speeds to freeze the action, but in this case I wanted to call attention to a specific part of the photo, and didn’t care if the rest of it disappeared into the visual morass.

The results are indeed tightly focused on a small region of the photograph.  I’m not sure how they’ll translate to this low-fi Blogosphere world, but in the scaled-to-print world, they were more than satisfactory.

Anyway, here’s Breyton putting the moves on Babies With Rabies,  a notable V10 (difficulty rating) boulder problem at Farley.

The start, with both hands crimping a shallow hold on the belly of the beast:

…followed by a foot-hand exchange, with individual fingers making room for the incoming heel-hook as Breyton moved up the lithic swell:

It wasn’t really possible, in the low light of a November eve, to freeze this frenetic action, so I chose instead to go for the hand-foot switch, letting the rest of the photo soften a bit.

The overall effort of this attempt on Babies  warrants a photographic go in better light.  Maybe I’ll get an invitation to the party at some future date, as the “bouldering” season in these parts extends well into early winter.

Jon, Hayden, Breyton, thanks for your patience as I horned in on your community of people covering each others’ backs.  I wasn’t much help, unless one considers illumination as “help.”


1. susan - November 7, 2011

Your bouldering pictures really do show what effort and expertise is involved in the sport. The kids are all so amazingly lithe and I bet they’re still springy too. I’d be watching through spaces between my fingers.

2. littlebangtheory - November 8, 2011

Susan, yes, it’s pretty nearly the ultimate physical activity – top level climbers possess engrams (physical memory) for thousands of subtle movements and body positions, stupendously more, in fact, than Olympic gymnasts! I remember moves which I found impossible without a particular cock of the head, and I was never near the cutting edge of the sport.

As for watching through your fingers, I can relate. But if you’re there, you’re part of the team. Boulderers give their all to the problem at hand when they can count on their Buds for their safety, keeping their hands up, their eyes open and focused on the climber’s core, and their reflexes at the ready. I once fell ten feet from the underside of a boulder without shifting from “climbing mode” to “landing mode,” trusting my (thankfully attentive) spotters to catch me. They did, about a foot off a very hard landing. (Phew!)

3. Julian - November 30, 2011

Hey there! Just discovered your blog thanks to some images searches for a couple problems at Farley. Love the photos!

Would you mind if I linked one of your images from this post on my blog (http://since-you-asked.blogspot.com/)? Happy to credit you and provide a link if you’re willing.


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