Misadventures at the Zelda Boulders

OK, let’s be honest: Today was fruitful. Anytime you find yourself at McDonald’s in Sultan, WA, by yourself, at 7pm, eating a pair of “double doubles” and a caramel iced coffee, your day has been pretty fruitful. Such was the situation for me today. I went into Seattle with the intention of 1) pressure washing my boat, and 2) bouldering. Unfortunately, I only accomplished one of the tasks. Today was officially the first time I’ve ever been “skunked” bouldering. And by “skunked” I mean going to a place where you know boulders exist and then, for whatever reason (see: rain, geographical mishaps), not climbing. I went to four bouldering spots today. I climbed at zero of them. But then, of course, the trip to McDonald’s at the end made it all worth it.

Allow me to regress. Allow me to progress. To digress. To — I think that’s all the -ress words I know. The first stop were the Reiter Foothills. Pulling up to them I thought, “Sick, I’m definitely about to climb. I’m probably gonna send V2. I might even send V3.” And then: This area closed due to COVID-19. Fuck. So I continue. I go to Index and then backtrack to the “Mine” boulders. Except they’re not accessible anymore because someone just bought that land and now the access is private. Goodbye, 40 or so super fun climbs with more potential for development. Why do we have private land. Bouldering areas should be public, always. Someone should consult Chief Seattle on this.

Area number three: The Galena Major boulders. Supposedly you drive 5.2 miles from….oh shit I just realized the reason I didn’t find these boulders is because I calculated 5.2 miles from US-2 and Index! Damnit! I think you’re supposed to calculate starting at the Index bridge. Is that what I did? I can’t even remember now. Jesus. Either way I did NOT find the Galena Major boulders. I drove past some people who looked like they might’ve been heroine addicts/fishermen who looked at me like they would enjoy cutting up my body, and then before the road closed I turned around.

The last spot I went to were the Zelda boulders, located just outside of Index “downtown.” Though of course downtown is a little generous for a place like Index. There is a park. There is a school. There are dudes driving around in trucks who look like they like to hurt animals. And this time I actually found the boulders! What an achievement. Except they were…not dry. Also know as: not dry. Also known as: not dry. Either way it was great to see some of these famous boulder problems. I sat at the base of The Engineer (V9) for a few minutes, thinking how terrifying it would be and remarking how much bigger it was in real life. Then I went up to Midnite (also V9 but about 6,000 times less scary than The Engineer [perfect landing, not as high, not slab]) and, even though it was wet and I might never be able to do that boulder, just hung from the first hold for a bit.

And then I went home. Well, sort of home. Home right now is my parents’ house since I’m working remotely from there. But tonight I’m staying on the boat as a sort of “vacation” and also because I desperately need to clean it. I just went up to the v-berth and noticed some spicy black mold growing right up toward the bow. Which of course I quickly ignored. Out of sight, out of nostril. And now I’m sat at the fold-down table, typing a blog. Drinking black tea with kava and a bit of orange spice. And tomorrow back to the grind! Jesus, the grind.

Or maybe time to sail south?