5 Ways to Beat The Heat

Josh Gross staying cool on Wire & Fire, Independence Pass, CO.

I’m sitting here writing this in my upstairs office, without a shirt on. It’s hot, damn hot, and it’s been this way for a couple of weeks in the West. There is the promise of rain on the way this weekend, but here are some helpful tips for dealing with the heat should the waving of scorching weather continue to stay with us.

1) Find Water

The other night I was so warm and sweaty all I could do was just sit in the Crystal River. It’s still pretty cold, so I wasn’t ready to dive in, but simply sitting there cooled my core temp down and felt incredibly refreshing. I recommend finding some water, and going rafting, tubing, or like I did, just chill and let it soothe your soul.

2) Climb at Night

I was reading somewhere recently about some guys that went and did some classic Red Rocks trad routes at night, which sounds like a great way get outside when it’s not so hot and move around in the cooler night air. This works well for moderate trad, though there’s no reason you can’t sport climb or boulder as well, assuming you have a good headlamp. (Having the routes dialed wont hurt either.)

3) Try Something New

I’ve always enjoyed reading Joe Kinder’s blog, as his psyche and endless energy come screaming through, and it’s hard not to be motivated by him. This summer, he’s decided to stop worrying about chasing “sending temps” and instead focus on something that for him is totally new: trad climbing. It’s been fun to read about him becoming a beginner again, and his humility in sharing the process should make us all appreciate there are things we aren’t great at, and maybe this is the time to check them out. Which I guess means I should go bouldering, but it’s pretty hot for that, no?

4) Lower Your Expectations

There’s also no reason why you can’t have fun cragging in the summer if you just tone back your expectations. Sure those foot holds in Rifle are going to feel slick, but so what, you’re still rock climbing, and that in itself is AWESOME! Check out new routes, build up the fitness and just have fun, because before you know it the cooler temps of fall will be here, and then it’ll be game on!

5) Get High

Not just for those over 21, a good bet is to head to higher elevations and explore the areas that are too chilly the rest of the year. Colorado has some great alpine cragging (Independence Pass), but so does Utah (Uintas) and even Vegas (Mt Charleston)! Pack up the Subaru (or Toyota, if that’s your bag) and head for the hills.

As warm as it is, I still love the simplicity of summer. Rolling to the crag with no extra layers, staying out as late as your forearms will last, it’s incredibly free and it doesn’t last for most of the year. So get out there, have fun and enjoy it for what it’s worth!

One Response to 5 Ways to Beat The Heat

  1. I’m moving to Tucson from the East Coast and am very excited to experience the new climbing environment. I bet these tips will be handy!

    Jack September 21, 2013 at 2:41 pm
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