Parking space event at the spot

29 06 2010

On Friday Adam, Mike and I got a great opportunity to set up the A-frames at the Spot for an event that had businesses in Boulder  eliminating parking spaces and adding an event in their place. The Spot’s event would be slacklining. So the crew at slacklinevisions set up shop right outside in front of the Spot. This setup was very, well quite unique to say the least. We had the A-frames but nothing solid to anchor from, so with an idea that had been bouncing around for awhile, we decided to give it a go. The idea was simple, wrap the car with an industrial strength sling about 25ft long, making sure that the sling is wrapped around the car where the doors meet. With the A-frames having an anchor, the rest of the setup went smooth. The weather was great ’til about 2:00pm when the rain started to pour. Throughout the day we had some climbing classes from the Spot come out, along with a few other people passing through. It was an awesome opportunity and slacklinevisions would like to thank the Spot for having slacklinevisions come in and represent for the slacklining community.   


Slackline TEVA

25 06 2010

The weekend of the Teva games was definitely one to remember. Filled with flood warnings, climbing and of course slacklining. This year’s slacklining at the Teva games was an amazing experience to say the least. To start things off we attempted to set a slackline up over the creek, which was now a river due to the massive run off of snow coming from the nearby mountains. As Mike, Anthony and I were trying to figure out how to get the line across the creek, now turned river, we kept throwing the line across with no success. In the years past it was an easy throw across, but the river was raging and was rapidly decreasing the shore line. Our next idea was to use a stick to extend our reach to be able to catch the line when thrown. Jeremy with Gibbons, a slackline company marketing a two-inch line, came down to help, and between the four of us, we got the line across. After the line was rigged up, Andy Lewis with Gibbons arrived. After being in the water for a minute, my feet were completely numb. I could not believe how cold the water was. I happily passed first dibs to Andy Lewis who was already eager to step out onto the line, and as usual Andy Lewis walked the line a couple of times making it look like fun. Jeremy was next up to walk and opted to use the tying up with a leash method, which is a personal choice. Jeremy walked to the other side and back and called it good. Now it was time to do some slacklining. Andy, who already had a Gibbons line set up, invited us over to slackline. With the four of us, one slackline was not going to cut it so I pulled out the one inch tubular slackline and set up a 50 foot slackline. It was cool to slack along side with one inch so people can see the dynamic differences, and of course we switched back and forth because the two kinds of slacklining are different. This doesn’t mean ones better, but instead a personal choice of style and preference. The four of us slacked for the passing crowds, landing some pretty cool tricks and spreading the positive slackline energy. As the next hour passed it was time to go say hello to the Yoga Slackliners. Approaching the Yoga slackers, Sam, one of the leading yoga slackers, was on the line displaying the yoga slacklining tricks that are in most cases static which adds a difficulty unlike some of the tricks that the dynamic slackliner or the Gibbons two-inch line would feel. It was pretty cool to see him in his element representing a different way to work the line altogether. Remembering us from the last year, we greeted Sam and the rest of the Yoga slackers and began to slack with them for a while. Having a good time sharing stories and tips on tricks, it was time to watch the finals for rock climbing and call it a day. Anthony, Mike and I agreed that it was time to drive home and reflect upon the experience we had gained and the time spent with friends. Thanks for joining us for another slacklinevision.

Balance on the Road

24 06 2010

Slacklinevisions recently went on a road trip.  We flew to Indiana and drove back to Denver.  Along the way we stopped in South Dakota for some sick first ascent water lining.  When our feet were sore from slacklining we took a break and did some climbing. Make sure and check out the video tab in this blog for a short film on this Slacklinevisions adventure.

Plan B

11 06 2010

Clear Creek Line May 23 – Saturday

With reports of 80 degree weather approaching I quickly made plans to set a line over water, and my first thought was by tunnel one in Clear Creek Canyon. So on Saturday morning Adam, Regina, Anthony and JC met at the house, gathered all of the gear and left. With just a short drive away, we parked, grabbed the gear and went down to the area to set up the line. Adam insisted that he swim across the water which had not completely warmed up yet, and with no argument from the rest of the group, Adam was in the water. Once on the other side, Adam proceeded to rig up his side of things with the bag of supplies that had been thrown across.
After 15minutes had gone by, Adam and I became more suspicious of the ever increasing winds that kept barreling down on us. While  Adam and I pulling the line hand tight, holding on was near impossible. The wind came in intervals, every two minutes of calm would only bring on 5 minutes of what felt like gale force winds. As we both were observing the wind patterns, we realized that it would be a bad decision to set up and walk, because the opportunity for injury was written all over it.

So the decision was made, no water line. Now for plan B. Right as we were taking the line down, two of our friends had shown up and suggested we go back to their place and swim in the pool. After feeling defeated by Mother Nature, the pool didn’t sound half bad.

Upon arriving at the pool, we were all quick to dive in the hot tub. As we soaked Anthony had come up with the best idea,”how about we slackline over the pool”.

So with permission, we started to rig up the line. Due to a pole on one side not being strong enough to support the slackline, we in turn wrapped its concrete base, which was plenty strong. By doing so set the height of the line right at pool level.
When we were finished pulling it tight, the line was about 4 inches off of the water. We knew by walking it would cause the line to dip considerably in the water. When it was time to walk, I had gone first thinking that this would be pure enjoyment and no technique required and then, Splash!, I was wrong. Then when Anthony’s turn was up, he took several steps and did the same thing. Many attempts were made with each time coming closer to the other side. The delayed response of the line being in the water only a couple of feet definitely posed some challenges. After 10 minutes of practice and some minor adjustments I finally made it across and was doing some tricks back and forth, but at that time the line had stretched a bit more and made it too difficult to perform any leaping lemurs. Anthony was consistently making it about 2/3rds down the line before falling in, and after the girls attempted the line a couple of times themselves it was time to take it down and get some grub! Looking back on the day, we all had a great time despite having to abandon the original plans. I learned that plan B could be a better option. by Slacklinevisions, written by JBeaudoin.

Golden Spire

9 06 2010

We decided to meet up in the parking lot around 8:00 am in order for enough time to set up the highline well before noon. Seeing how the weather was trying to make up its mind on whether or not to rain or have sunshine, none the less we were still going to make an effort to set up and walk. After establishing the Golden highline myself a couple years prior, it seems to be one of the more popular ones around. The line itself  measures at 30 ft long and depending how you look at it 60 or so ft off of the deck. But as one would walk they would say otherwise, because when you are walking, especially for your first time you can’t help but notice the tremendous void overlooking Golden!

Packing gear
Upon arriving at the parking lot I met up with Reed and Molly, and Adam would join us an hour later. So with a quick gear check, water and plenty of snacks, we decided to head up the trail. With the Golden Spire being a fairly easy hike, we made it to our destination in about 20 minutes. The weather looking the same, dark colored clouds, and sunshine trying to peak through here and there.The wind blowing slight enough to bring the temperature into the 30s which, surprisingly felt colder than usual.
Setting up the highline took about 2 hours, which wasn’t to bad on time. During the process of setting up we kept seeing snow flakes discretely falling around us. Hoping that it wouldn’t stick, we continued to set up the highline.

As Reed and I were just about to set the main line tight, I noticed that Adam was coming around the ridge with his camera to shoot some footage. By the time Adam was in place to film, the line was tight and Reed had just finished up taping the line. The safety ring and harness were prepared for a safe walk.

Lights, camera, action! I was the first one up. As I scooted out on the line, crazy thoughts swirled through my mind. Wondering why we do this in the first place – these thoughts going through my head with no outlet or place to go. Is the line tight enough, is it safe, with your senses on overload, the 5 mph gusts of wind feel like a hurricane. The only way to push through these psychological obstacles is by standing up and pushing through these mental blocks. Then all of a sudden you reach this surreal state of mind, a slight state of bliss, like an out of body experience. Upon reaching the other side, one steps back into reality, and reflects, “oh yeah thats why we do it” to push past ones limitations physically and mentally, as well as to come together as a group of people to set challenges that are safe but still extreme.

After walking it back and forth several times, I was ready to give the harness and leash to someone else. The rest of the crew declined. Which is a decision I respect a lot, I think some of the barriers that we push past mentally are not always about pushing extreme limits but in fact knowing our own limits. Just because you don’t walk every highline you come across, it is not a bad thing because the whole point is to enjoy the complete environment highlining offers. So being able to sit out on walking a highline every once and awhile is something to respect and to be proud of. In my own accounts of highlining I have sat on the cliff edge on several different occasions while watching others walk and not walking myself for my own reasons. In the end you walk the line for your own peace of mind, not for others.

Taking it down
So after the verdict was out, we all worked together to take the highline down. As we walked down the trail to the vehicles we talked about the days events and things to come. Good times! Another safe adventure with good people to add to the books.    by Slacklinevisions,
Written By JBeaudoin

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9 06 2010

Sunday night Kellen and I drove out to Buena Vista, in hopes of setting up a near perfect water line that Kellen, Zack and I had scoped out a month before. By near perfect I mean there was something solid on both sides to sling for an anchor, the line being about 5 ft off of the water and the falls were safe on both sides. The only thing that was on our minds was how cold the water might be.

Leaving from Breckenridge, we made good time. For our campsite we choose an area by Turtle Rock that is a popular climbing area in Buena Vista. Approaching midnight, we finally finished setting up the tents and slipped into our sleeping bags for a good nights rest. As predicted by the weatherman, the wind arrived sometime during the night. If I had to guess it was probably gusts up to 3o mph.

As the sun came up, the wind died down to gusts of 15 mph, which was definitely manageable to still set up the water line. With the car packed and ready to go, Kellen and I decided that before we took off, that we should climb to the top of Turtle Rock to get a better understanding of the area, and to possibly find another sweet water line to set up. Upon reaching the top and peering out onto the landscape that the river cut through, we spotted nothing of such luck, but that didn’t take away from the amazing view that we got, looking from left to right as you notice many of the 14,000 ft mountains. After realizing that we weren’t going to find another water line, we headed back to the car to continue our mission of setting up this first time waterline. From our campsite it only took us 10 minutes to drive to the parking area. Sifting through the gear, it did not take long to find out what and what not to bring.

With anticipation and excitement for walking this new line, we had the pulley system and anchor finished in no time. The only thing left to do now was to rig up the other side, which should be quite simple, but in this situation this was not the case. With the same thoughts in mind, we were wondering how one of us was going to stay dry by getting the line access the river. I quickly spoke up “ I’ll do it”. As I grabbed the necessary gear to rig up the other side, I was thinking to myself I made a mistake by speaking up, because the water looked pretty cold. I was right, it was freaking cold! I went a couple hundred feet up and down the river, and it seemed that this river was not going to give up this super sweet line without a fight. After attempting it a few times I quickly gave up, I couldn’t feel my legs. So I passed the torch to Kellen, who looked a little hesitant as well. Kellen choose a spot a couple of hundred feet up river to cross. Without wasting any time Kellen was in and across the river. As expected, the other side went up without a problem. After pulling it to our desired tension, it was time to walk. Giving first dibs to Kellen he respectfully declined and said that I should go first because he was still warming up, and by the looks of him, I would say that he was near hypothermic.

Going through the usual process of psyching myself up, I carefully climbed out onto the line. One things for sure, the water was cold and I was going to give it everything that I had in order to stay out of the frigid water. Upon standing up I got my head together and slowly walked to the other side. As I walked it a handful more times, Kellen was finally dry and warm enough to make his attempt at the water line. As I was getting into position to get a good shot with the camera, Kellen scooted out onto the line. Silence, as Mother Nature and I watched with vigilant anticipation. Kellen, standing up, gaining control of his body in conjunction with the line, and then a snapping sound followed by a splash! In the river Kellen went. After climbing out of the ice cold water he tried again and again, with it ending in getting wet each time.

After coming close on a couple of attempts’ Kellen and I agreed that his body was too cold to function walking a slackline and called it good for the day. The crazy thing about lines like this, is that everyone has their day, the last time Kellen and I were in this situation he walked the line and I did not.

Taking down the line took no time at all. As we reached the car and were putting equipment in, Kellen suggested that we set up a long line at the park in Buena Vista, and practice. What a great idea, we ended up rigging a semi long line at around 85ft. After an hour, we were both feeling the lack of energy from earlier in the morning, so we packed up, ate and headed for home. After asking Kellen what we should call the line, he quickly replied “ Shivermetimbers” With no argument I laughed a little as we headed back for home. by Slacklinevisions,
Written By JBeaudoin

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