Long Time No Post!

Hey guys, long time no post. My site went down for a while and I had to refresh some of the settings in the back end. For all I know, I could just be talking to myself here and no one is reading this blog anymore! I’ll keep this thing up for a long time, if only to look back at my old TRs and reminisce about some of those fun trips 🙂

Things have been going really well here over the past few months. The staking business is going very well and I’m really excited for how 2016 is projecting. We really want to take this business to a new level and we just need to prepare ourselves for it overall (infrastructure, systems, software/etc). This industry is constantly changing and is very unstable each year, so we’ll have to continue to adjust and adapt as needed. I still see myself staking in the near future until I decide I want to transition.

One of the goals I do want to do for 2016 is to really start diversifying some of my income and also gain new skills. I learned a fair amount of MS excel last year but I know I need to continue to working towards other skills. More on #1- I have some disposable income that I would either like to invest and/or do something with (I’ll likely research more in the coming months).

What else is new? Nothing much. I’m still climbing several times a week and have stagnated a bit there. I don’t think I’m really improving a whole lot right now and I think that could be due to my poor diet and/or lack of exclusive training. My overall endurance is something I need to work on and I do have a few climbing goals I would like to achieve in 2016 (Get my first V7 and also lead a 5.12 cleanly/top rope 5.13). I am fairly certain I could achieve all of these right now if I exclusively projected a route, but I could just be full of it.

I’ve been skiing a fair amount lately and am looking to purchase my first pair of skis/boots. I’m pretty excited for this step and I really enjoy skiing and being outdoors. I’m excited for 2016 as I have a few fun trips planned: several ski trips, a short trip to Vegas, a longer one to Florida, and I’m sure a few smaller/shorter ones as well. As always, I am very grateful for my job and the freedom it provides. I might pay for it later on, but let’s hope I can transition well out of poker when that time comes.

Thanks for reading!

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Seattle 2015 and Updates

Hello all, long time no chat. Apologies for the lack of updates, I’ve been lazy.

Colorado has been very fun so far. I’ve lived here for 4 months or so and have zero regrets. I get outside every single weekend; be it rock climbing, hiking, or camping, and the overall quality of life is better. There are some things I miss about Omaha, but I know that I’ll make friends here and adjust. Here are some pictures from the last few months in Colorado:

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Work has been going well and we want to expand more into the live staking scene. With the restrictions on online poker play, more and more people are flocking to the casinos. We are working hard on this and trying to find the right associates for this job.

Seattle 2015:

In late August, my girlfriend and I took a trip to Seattle for 8 days. This was the city I was born in and a place that I visit every few years. This was my girlfriend’s first time there and we both enjoyed it very much. We went on many hikes, climbs, and ate a ton of food while there. We also had a chance to go to Portland. Lazy TR, but we went to: climb in North Bend, hiked up Lake Blanca (BRUTAL hike, switchbacks never ended), Mount Rainer National Park (Skyline trail was FANTASTIC), Snoqualamie falls, Punchbowl falls and Multanomah Falls in Portland, and also ate nonstop:

Paseo (Cuban sandwiches)- http://www.yelp.com/biz/paseo-seattle-3
Departure (Portland, Asian fusion)- http://www.yelp.com/biz/departure-portland-3
Tats (NY style deli)- http://www.yelp.com/biz/tats-delicatessen-seattle
Screen Door (Portland)- Chicken and waffles/southern food- http://www.yelp.com/biz/screen-door-portland
Piroshky Piroshky- Russian style bakery- http://www.yelp.com/biz/piroshky-piroshky-seattle?osq=pierogi
Pike Place Chowder- clam chowder- http://www.yelp.com/biz/pike-place-chowder-seattle

and LOADS of food trucks in Portland, which I enjoyed.

Here are some cool pictures from my trip:

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Mount Rainer:

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Falls in Portland:

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Overall, I had a very fun time in Seattle. I really enjoy going out and doing activities on trips and constantly doing new things. I plan on going back to Seattle again this Christmas. Life is going very well right now. I enjoy my climbing gym (though it’s far from my house), enjoy going outdoors, and work is going well. I think this next year will be very important in regards to what changes we make with the poker staking and infrastructure.

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In Loveland, CO!

Sorry for the long delay (I feel like every post is like this, not even sure if anyone reads my blog anymore). I am finally in Loveland, CO (right next to Fort Collins, where Colorado State University is) and am really excited. I found a new apartment in Loveland and will be moving in this Tuesday.

I haven’t done a whole lot in Colorado yet. I’ll be going to Rocky Mountain National Park tomorrow and will be climbing at my new climbing gym (at Movement in Boulder):

The gym is pretty nice and, although it’s about 10-15 minutes longer for driving from the next one, it seems worth it. There’s also a lot of climbing in Boulder (outside) as well.

Overall, I am really pumped to be in Colorado. There’s a ton to do here and I am going to try to take advantage of this opportunity. It was sad leaving my friends in Omaha, but I’ll be fine and I think this is the place I want to be at.

I’ll be buying a new bike and have been doing some research overall. This Trek 1.5 is one that I’ve been looking at: http://www.cyclingweekly.co.uk/reviews/road-bikes/trek-1-5

I won’t pull the trigger yet and I still need to think about it. Good bikes can last a while if you maintain them, so I’ll look at this more as an investment (and not buy something crappy that I’ll regret 2 years from now).

I’m also going to Seattle in about a month from now. I’m really stoked for this trip and we’ll be going through Seattle and Portland. I plan on doing a lot of climbing and camping/hiking while out there (and eating good food). I’ll update this blog when I get back from that trip. Cheers.

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Updates June

Hey guys, long time no post. My life just isn’t too interesting these days. It’s the same routine: Wake up, do work, go climb, hang out with girlfriend, and then go to sleep. This is probably the most normal routine that 75% of the USA abides by.

Since my last post in Red River Gorge, not much has changed. I’m still staking and climbing a lot. I had a chance to go to Horseshoe to go climb outside. My girlfriend and I went 2 days before our main group came so that we could climb some of the routes we wanted. Unfortunately, the rain made it so that we couldn’t do as many days as we planned, but we still got some good climbing in. I’m going to be sad that I won’t be able to climb at Horseshoe anymore (since I’ll be moving to CO), but there’s obviously pretty good rock out there. I hope there is some good, high quality sandstone out there.

Here are a few pictures of me on my favorite route: Loveslave. We were so close to getting this clean and I think my girlfriend, my friend, and I could all get it without falling within 1-4 tries. I fell twice on it but got past the crux before doing so. Doh…

Colorado wise, I’m still planning on heading there in Early July (hopefully). It’s going to be sad leaving my family and friends. There’s a lot to miss and I’m partially sad to be leaving. That being said, I’m also really excited to go out to CO and it’s a place I could see myself living at for a long, long time. I have a ton of goals and places I want to go to while there.

This summer: I am planning on moving to CO. Some other trips I have loosely planned are: possibly going to Detroit for 4th of July, going to the Pacific Northwest in the later summer, and then Mexico this coming fall.

Off topic: My friend’s crazy story- http://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/101/coaching-advice/i-just-spent-5-months-away-computer-here-apologize-explain-my-hospital-stay-1518817/

I’ll probably go visit him really soon. I think it’s pretty crazy how your life can just change in the blink of an eye. Good luck to him and his recovery.

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Red River Gorge 2015

Hey guys, here is my Red River Gorge Trip Report:

We’ve been wanting to go to Red River Gorge (RRG) for a long time now. We’ve heard great things regarding the variety of climbs and how big it is. With my girlfriend and I moving to Colorado this summer, we kind of viewed this as our last chance to road trip out to RRG, which was 12 hours from Nebraska.

5 of us were going on this trip and we planned on staying there for 5-6 days. Our destination was Miguel’s Pizza, which is the campground for climbers in the Gorge.

Sunday:

We drove all day, passing through Kansas City and St. Louis. All in all, the drive took about 13 hours. We met up with our 2 friends, who was already there. Miguel’s Pizza is an awesome campground for climbers. It’s $2 a day to camp (no camp fires unfortunately but whatever). The food is good, there’s free wifi, and the facilities are serviceable. The community is nice as well. http://www.miguelspizza.com/

RRG is mainly comprised of hard sandstone, which is one of my favorite rocks to climb on. It’s the same texture/quality as Horseshoe Canyon Ranch, our regular outdoor place. The approaches are a bit long (maybe 20-50 minutes hiking in addition to 20-30 minutes from Miguel’s pizza).

Monday

We woke up a bit later than usual (8:30am) due being tired from the drive. Monday and Tuesday were the best days to climb by the projected weather forecast, so we wanted to the bulk of our climbing on these days. We went to Muir Valley first and didn’t get to the crags until pretty late (like 12 noon). We did several easy climbs to warm up (I think 5.9s >)-

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After leaving that area, we went to a much taller area (can’t quite remember the name, maybe slab city?). This area was really fun and some of the climbs were much taller than normal (90 feet +).
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We ran out of daylight and cooked food/went to bed early.

Tuesday:

Feeling much more rested (though pretty damn cold, it was like 35 degrees at night), we traveled to Pendergrass-Murray Preserve and went to The Gallery:

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We warmed up on that easy climb (name escapes me) and then did a 5.10b, a ‘Brief History of Climb’. This route is comprised of a early crux off some bad crimps followed by two sit down rests on ledges and then a huge overhung jug ladder. REALLY fun route: http://www.mountainproject.com/v/a-brief-history-of-climb/106125070

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We went to the neighboring area and climbed a 5.11a (or b, can’t recall the name) before rain shut us out. It was a weird pocket route with one really hard section and the rest being okay. Here are some photos of that one:

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Wednesday:

We went back to Muir Valley and went to Coyote Cliff (or near that area). We expected rain throughout the day due to the forecast and We climbed a very unimpressive 5.11a that was fairly technical. There was a very hard middle crux with a series of foot switches/bad crimps, but otherwise, it was fine. Not a very fun climb, though. We wasted a lot of time in this area, unfortunately.

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Finally, we got to go to my favorite area: The Solarium. The Solarium is an area with a ton of overhanging roofs, with loads of 5.11s-5.12s. We did a 5.11a classic called “Air Ride Equipped”:
http://www.mountainproject.com/v/air-ride-equipped/106586504

It was a huge jug fest up a big roof and all overhung. There was a bottom area where you could sit on a ledge and rest. This route wasn’t very tall, maybe 60-65 feet.

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My friend here (in the red) climbed to the top of the climb, right near the anchors and then took a big whipper and fractured his ankle. It was a very minor fracture (so we hear) and I think it only required a week or two off. Getting him back was pretty hard (he was hobbled) and it was about a 1-2 mile hike back.

Thursday:

The weather on Thursday was supposedly the worst day, with like a 75% chance of rain. Our friends decided to stay at camp due to his ankle (him + his girlfriend), so myself and 2 others went out to go climb. By Thursday, we were pretty tired, having climbed for 3 consecutive days previously. I hadn’t slept great either, given the overall storms and cold at night. That being said, you’re only in Kentucky once and I’m not sure how long it would take for me to get back there.

We went back to the Solarium and got on Banshee, a 5.11c classic. There were two giant Huecos (huge holes in the rocks) where you could sit. As you can see in the pictures, the weather conditions were not great and midway through the climb, I actually was in a Hueco deciding if I wanted to come down or not (due to rain). I decided to push onward due to the route being overhung and the rain not being too severe.

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I actually got stuck in the first Hueco and it was really hard getting out due to the lack of good hand holds around it. All in all, Banshee was a very fun climb. There were a few tough crimps throughout the route and there was a tough sequence before the second huge Hueco (where you could take a nap in if you wanted) where you had to pretty much hump a smaller heuco to get to a good hold. The last sequence was a jug ladder and very easy.

The second climb of the day was ‘Super Best Friends’, a 5.12b roof. This one had a massive roof and the overhanging section was far bigger than anything I’ve ever done.

There was a bouldery start followed by a early rest ledge. After that, it was pretty much on like donkey kong and everything was overhung (the holds were pretty good but less numerous than some of the other routes we did).

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After the boulder start:

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I got up to the roof section and couldn’t pull the crux overhang and fell/got lowered. Girlfriend did the same and got lowered, but she did a lot better than I did (and pulled past the crux).

Here are two videos of us falling:

https://www.facebook.com/video.php?v=10101843569997913&l=764678445855005322

https://www.facebook.com/video.php?v=10101843569229453&l=4489046784323989104

Friday:

Unfortunately, my friend’s ankle was too swollen for him to continue. Because we took a van to get there, we had to borrow swollen ankle friend’s Suburu to get to most of the climbs (as our van couldn’t make it on the dirt roads, much less so when they are muddy). This pretty much forced us to leave a day early and we went back to Nebraska. We hit up some nice ribs along the way (went to a place called ‘Paddy’s’ in St. Louis). I slept a ton the following days and my fingers were pretty raw.

All in all, I very much enjoyed RRG. I was EXTREMELY disappointed I did not have a chance to go to the Chocolate Factory area to see some of the climbs out there. Next time, I will be sure to take a car that can make it to some of those climbs. Furthermore, I would like to stay a bit longer than I did (hopefully with a few more rest days). Thanks for reading.

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