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The Salty Blog

The official blog of Salt Pump Climbing Co. - Featuring news, stories, tips, and inspiration for the New England climber.

One Day at Pawtuckaway

When the Salt Pump crew hits Pawtuckaway, they try hard and laugh often in equal measure.  Each fall, as the leaves begin to drop and the air starts to chill, the razor sharp boulders of Pawtuckaway State Park in Nottingham, New Hampshire, lure bloc-hungry climbers from near and far. When a youthful crew of some…

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Conquering Cathedral Ledge

THE THRILL OF STARTING FROM THE BOTTOM If you have ever been to North Conway, you have seen Cathedral Ledge. Although it doesn’t  dominate the landscape like Mount Washington, it holds its own. Just beyond the village to the Northwest, you will see it – standing 500 feet tall, a sheer rock face of beautiful,…

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What Goes Up Must Come Down – A Lesson in Lowering from Above

  The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn… -Alvin Toffle Seldom taught are quality methods for lowering a climber from above. Yet this skillset, which often gets lumped in with other multi-pitch processes like rappelling, anchor building, and transitions,…

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Cathedral Ledge’s New Masterpiece

Life, The Universe and Everything: Jay Conway on the spectacular and difficult 5.13c fourth pitch of his new line on Cathedral Ledge. Photo: Brent Doscher. ANNALS OF TRY HARD Jay Conway isn’t normally one for tantrums, but there he was, hanging from a rope three quarters of the way up Cathedral Ledge at 5 p.m.…

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The Book Wall Part II: The Book Wall Returns

From The Ministry of Routesetting It’s getting into winter now, which means it’s time to forget about those cold, snow-covered rocks, and start training for the Spring! To help you with this, we’ve reinstalled The Book Wall on the 50º board. This will stay up for at least two months. The Basics Make up your…

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Salt Pump Circuits!

The Salt Pump bouldering area is about to get more colorful by circuit grading. This system will give a more intuitive feel to your bouldering sessions and workouts. Currently all of the problems are marked with a white SP logo tag with the grade written on the back. These tags will be replaced with colored…

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Member Spotlight: Jean Juliano

Maine life comes easy to Jean Juliano, even if her current home in Portland is a long way from where she was raised – the island of Kaua’i in Hawaii. “I like living the coastal life like I did growing up on an island, but here I can venture farther and the roads don’t end.…

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Inside Game no. 8: Michaela Tracy

Michaela Tracy on “Numb Thumb” (V7) at Pawtuckaway State Park. FINDING HER ZONE Michaela Tracy has always struggled to define ho­­me. The daughter of two American ex-pats, she was born in London, where her father Jack worked for more than twenty years. As she spent the majority of her early life in the UK, Michaela…

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Our Fall 2018 Youth Bouldering Comp Was A Huge Success!

On Saturday, September 29, 2018, Salt Pump welcomed more the 180 youth competitors from across New England for our U.S.A Climbing Local Youth Bouldering Competition. Competition Results have are posted here. Huge thanks to all the parents, coaches, volunteers, and route-setters who made this event a success!

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Journeying into the Great Outdoors

By Zack Sawyer Climbing long existed on the outskirts of society and sport. Climbing gyms, especially today’s modern and inclusive ones, have dramatically changed this. At Salt Pump, we feel privileged for the daily opportunity to introduce people to the sport and enrich the lives of new and old climbers alike. We are also aware…

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Member Spotlight: The Climbing Art Teacher

Meet Alison Crofton-MacDonald “The nice thing about teaching art is you always have something in your hands,” says Alison Crofton-MacDonald. Alison is a twenty-seven year old middle school art teacher in the Saco school system. When she discovered climbing four and a half years ago, she was immediately hooked, and in short order her passion…

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Inside Game no. 7: Mike Morin

Our Man in the Trenches “It’s funny, people’s idea about what a bolt or fixed protection is,” says Mike Morin, the Access Fund’s Northeast Regional Director. “If you’re not a climber, ‘bolting’ can sound so ominous. A big part of my job is to explain and break down those barriers.” A self-described access “nerd”, Morin…

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