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The Craggin’ Classic, Chattanooga Style

Posted on: May 5th, 2010 by Erik Lambert

Whitney Boland, Lynn Hill, and Brittany Griffith at Foster Falls in Chattanooga, TN. Photo courtesy of Dana Richardson.

Brittany Griffith reports back on last weekend’s Craggin’ Classic:

Another Craggin’ Classic and another excuse/opportunity to climb with complete strangers (emphasis on the “strange”) that you would never ever climb with because they are outside your comfortable circle of climbing buddies. Thank God for Craggin’ Classics, I say. That’s absolutely the best thing (no, it’s not the free beer) about these and other like AAC events.

We started things out in the lovely riverside town of Chattanooga, TN. We met our hostess for the night, Whitney Boland, at the Terminal Brew Pub. This pub, and I typically don’t think this of brew pubs, has excellent food. Unfortunately, I can’t say this for the gin and tonics, but that’s what I get for ordering booze at a brew pub…

The next day Whitney and Tim graciously offered to show us around Foster Falls, a typical southern sandstone outcropping offering stacks of single pitch fun. Lynn whined, “Why does the Southeast have all the good rock?” We climbed half a dozen three star routes and then headed back to town for the slideshow. As usual, an eclectic crew showed up and there were at least two keg stands before the show started.

Lynn Hill started with a nostalgic and engaging summary of her climbing highlights, which included shots of her in leotards and swamis– HOT. I’ve seen a lot of Lynn’s slideshows and I have to say that this was one of her best, mostly because she showed rare footage of her stint on The David Letterman show, which was THE funniest sh** I’ve seen in a long time. I can’t believe it’s not on YouTube.

Saturday’s “challenge” consisted of climbing “the Nose in a day,” which meant that if you could climb 28 pitches in a day at Foster Falls you were in the running for a $100 gift certificate from Rock Creek. The day’s forecast was grim, 80% chance of rain, but we called it rain or shine. The next morning, one keen crew of two actually showed up before the 8am starting time and had four pitches in before Lynn and I (hells yeah we were competing too!) had even tied in.

We ended up having a really fun day, climbed 22 pitches each and ended up getting a ride home with the “competition.” The boys beat us, but that was okay.

We headed back to town for the party at Urban Rocks climbing gym where we scarfed down Mojo burritos, slugged Big River beer and danced the night away to Krss24 and Sillyill.

What more could you ask for?

(more photos can be found at the AAC Facebook page: www.facebook.com/americanalpineclub)

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