Saturday, May 12, 2012

Northwest Branch guide draft on mdguides

It took a while to get started, but I've finally moved most of my Northwest Branch information into an updated guide document for the area.  This guide is by no means intended to replace Cory Hanson's fantastic topo guide that so many of us relied on for our initial trips there.  That guide is still a great resource, and I continue to be impressed by the quality of the mapping.  My new guide simply provides users with a different view of the boulders, more in line with the guides currently existing for other areas in the region.  It's about 50% complete so far, and I'm hoping to get the rest of it done over the next month or so.

The current draft of the guide is posted here on mdguides, a new website created specifically to host free mini-guides for Maryland climbing areas.  Most of that site's content will be focused on bouldering, since Indy's website and guide already cover most of our route information so well.  The best part about the site is that contributions are accepted from anyone who has knowledge of an area and is willing to share that information for free.  That being said, creating guides (even small ones) is a lot of work, so it's completely understood if anyone decides they'd rather be compensated for their time and energy.  Ideally though, we'll be able to see the majority of our bouldering well documented within the next year or so.

Do you have an area where you boulder frequently and would like to write a mini-guide for?  If so, contact the site's administrator at  (Unfortunately the site's administrator is temporarily unable to access the email account, and requests that feedback/questions be posted directly in the comment section for now).  And on a somewhat related note, I'm still trying to compile a list of Maryland Bouldering Videos.  If you've made one and don't see it on the list, feel free to email me or make a comment on the page.  Thanks!


chris bursey said...

Thanks for posting the link to the MD guides website, it made finding the levitation boulders super easy with the mini guide. Went out solo and took some big falls off muligan flash onto one pad. That area is amazing, the jam boulder is fantastic. The fat man project line was super fun, took a few tries but got the stand, the low start looks good. The project next to it looks impossible, maybe matt bosley could come out and try it. Super grateful to whoever made the mini guide and to you for posting it. Thanks!

Robin said...

Hey Chris, glad it helped! Saw your other comment too and kept meaning to respond, but glad you got out there and had a good time, and extra glad you got back from Mulligan Flash intact. It really is an amazing area, isn't it? I feel like I could happily run laps on the Jam Crack all day. The "Fat Man Project" actually has two variations off the left hand pinch. One makes a big right move out to a dish and then continues right from there. The other makes a big right hand move straight up and continues up. If you haven't seen it yet, Brian Spiering posted a video of the straight up variation that I linked in the "Maryland Bouldering Videos" section, and said he'll also post video soon of the two lines he did right of Mulligan Flash. Looking forward to seeing that hard line on the Jam boulder go down too.

Are you still using the same email address you had last year? I can let you know when some of us are heading up to Levitation if you ever want to get back with extra pads and spotters for that high stuff. Also, not sure if you've been following Conrad's posts on the Harpers Ferry blog about the routes that Dan and Martin have been putting up, but if you're still in the market for some hard trad there might be some things that would interest you.

chris bursey said...

Ok, it makes sense that that problem has 2 variations, going right off the sloping pinch seem hard so i matched and went up left to a tiny 2 finger crystal then up the the good pocket above and topped out. Gotta go back and try going out right to the shallow dish next, and the low start too. The other two lines next to mulligan look sweet but i wanted to wait til i atleast had a spotter, i'd def like to know when you guys head out, I live in westminster so it takes under half an hour for me to get there, I'll be going there alot most likely in the evenings. I hadnt been following the stuff about harpers ferry but ill def check it out, I've only done the sign route there but would love to get on some harder lines out there. I still have the address so hit me up whenever you guys go out and if I can swing it i will. Be safe and have fun!

Shawn Seifert said...

What a great job, Robin! Nice layout and clear information. What did you use to draw your overlays? And layout design? Well done.

Robin said...

Thanks Shawn! I did all of the overlays in Powerpoint. Originally I tried to do the actual document in Open Office, but was having trouble getting it to do what I wanted, so I ended up going back to using Word. I put it in the publishing layout view so I could drop down guide lines that all of the text boxes and photos would automatically line up with. So much easier to keep a consistent layout that way.

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