BD Sales Rep Matt Ginley reports from the 2012 Hound Ears Bouldering Competition
Aside from enjoying a long history and kicking off the Triple Crown Bouldering Series, the Hound Ears Bouldering Competition is notably unique in the fact it is the only time each year climbers can access the rock at Hound Ears near Boone, North Carolina. The world-class boulders sit on private land in a gated community/country club and the landowners only allow, graciously, legal access to them for this one event each year. Below is Black Diamond Southeast Sales Rep Matt Ginley's account of this unique and important event that is nearly two decades old.
[All photos by Alex Hooks]
Let's face it, 19 years is a long time for anything. Think about that: 19 years. Some of you reading this haven't even been on this earth for that long. Nineteen years is especially long in terms of rock climbing events in the United States that attract over 400+ climbers each year. Thanks to tremendous efforts of Jim Horton and Chad Wykle, this year the Hound Ears Bouldering Competition can boast these numbers as this was its nineteenth anniversary and one of the best events yet.
What started back in 1995 as a tiny local bouldering comp just outside of Boone, North Carolina, the HEBC has become one of the most attended and popular bouldering competitions in the country. Event organizers Horton and Wykle have done an amazing job not only growing this event into something fun, but they have also made it into something more: Hound Ears was the catalyst for the entire Triple Crown Bouldering Series. This series of events has become one of the top fundraisers for both the Southeastern Climbers Coalition and the Carolina Climbers Coalition. The event is all about having fun, climbing at a rad boulder field that is only open once a year (for this event), and trying to pull down as hard as you possibly can on its razor sharp holds. It is also about giving back and making a difference. By entering these comps and paying the entry fee, participants help keep access open to countless climbing areas in the South that would otherwise be in threat of closing, or already gated off with big "NO TRESSPASSING" signs.
This year over 450 people were psyched to wake up to a nice brisk breeze and cool dry temps up at the boulder field, and the conditions could not have been much better!
For more information on the HEBC or the Triple Crown Bouldering Series, click here.