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Rippin it up in So Ill on the Sandstone

Alan rapping off Cranial Implosion (12a) at Jackson Falls, So Ill

Alan rapping off Cranial Implosion (12a) at Jackson Falls, So Ill

Went to Southern Illinois over the weekend to rock climb at Jackson Falls with my friend from the gym, Alan. We had a great time and got on some good routes including some 5.8s to warm up on the east side of the canyon and Cranial Implosion, a 5.12a I’d really like to get at some point. I worked out the crux sequence which I haven’t been able to do before, so that was encouraging. Also got on Lovely Arete again, but it was soaking wet so much more difficult and scarier to do as it was slippery, so no dice. It’s an 11a. It was hot and muggy and the rock was mostly wet so we climbed hard most of the day Saturday and came back to the city late Saturday night, getting in around 2am. I swam in the pool under the falls again to cool off, I was covered in sweat after each climb, soaking my shoes and slick with the stuff, what a relief to jump in a pond after. Here’s a good site showing how to get to the crags and some details on the climbing at Jackson Falls in Shawnee National forest if you’re interested.  And here’s an even better site showing a map of some of the climbs and grades and how to get there.  It’s a five-six hour road trip from Chicago.  We drove through a long, massive rainstorm on the way down – bonus was a full rainbow across the highway – so gorgeous!  Snapped a shot of it with my Blackberry.

June rainbow in Southern Illinois from the car

June rainbow in Southern Illinois from the car

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