Accomplished Friday, March 21st 2014
Basically I equipped the route 2 years ago. I saw the line one day, rappelled down to see if there were holds and there were. I came back the next day and bolted it and immediately started climbing on it to learn the moves and see if it was possible for me. It was for sure and I fell in love with the route. The style is athletic, muscley, and HARD! On and off for two years I would try the line when I was in the area, but could not send it. I would get close some days and others fail miserably. This is the game of climbing hard routes. Its a process.
This year I set aside a chunk of time to climb it. I knew it was going to be hard but knew it was possible. The thing about doing a route first (First ascent) is the mentalgame is different. When you repeat a route after someone else has done it, the mental game is different because you know it can be done and is in fact possible. First ascents take a different pioneering approach and involves another mental challenge. We fail a lot in climbing and we work for it. This route in particular was a total testament to that for me. I invested, worked for it, and put in lots of emotion to make it happen.
Last Friday on my last (tired) try somehow I got through the spot I would fall at. I battled out the ending of the route barely sticking it and not clipping any draws (protection to fall on). My arms were cramped, my head felt like it was going to explode and I made it to the top ofthe wall…MY GAWD that was cool.
Maquina Muerte was then a reality and a real route. I love that climb and will forever respect it as it really gave me a run for the money.
It is one of the hardest routes I have done and will surely give people who try it after me a lot of satisfaction. It is a contribution, it is a test piece, and it is an amazing route that I have added to the US soil. I am very proud of this one.
Here are some photos from James Lucas.