Kicking Off the Season Right!

Although we’ve had a ton of rain (that we need) these past few weeks, the sun came out today, YAY!!¬† I thought it appropriate to get out ‘Le Petit Dragon Vert’ and start the season off right. Set the Dragon to 115 feet (35m) and had an hour or so of practice. The video for today shows one of my early attempts to walk. Later in the day I was able to get about half way across, but it is clear that I need way more practice on this type and length of line.

Bring on the Summer!!

Vail Colorado Slackline Competition

Today we trekked to Vail, Colorado for the GoPro mountain games. These games inlcude events in river kayak, rock climbing, and, of course, SLACKLINE!!!! Gibbon was the major sponsor and there were competitors from around the world. I was able to get some video of a couple of great slackers, Jaan Roose, and Carlos Neto before my camera’s memory filled to capacity. Here is a short video from the events today. Good luck to all the competitors!

Elk Creek Highline Fun

Recently watched some friends highline in a nearby canyon. Highline is another level of Slackline that gets people excited! I have yet to try out highline, but would like to some day. So far I’ve only tagged along to help setup or just watch others do it. I am intrigued by it because I see it as low impact and therefore fewer (although perhaps not less severe) injuries.

Here is a link to some video from the highline session.

Chongo Mount

This past weekend, the kids over at Colorado School of Mines held a slackline festival. There were tons of slacklines set up, and people of all ages and skill levels participating in the fun! We were near this particular 150′ line, so I decided to practice my chongo mount. The video below shows one of my attempts. Although I did not walk far, I was mostly trying to mount the dang thing! Later in the day, I was able to walk 10 steps (at the opposite end of the line).

Denver Slackline Competition 2013

Today’s post includes a video below.

This past weekend Gibbon Slacklines held a Slackline competition at the Colorado Ski & Snowboard Expo in Denver, CO. Lots of people from the local Slackline scene were there, in addition to competitors from around the USA. We had the chance to watch the Semi-Finals today, and to meet some of the folks involved.

First off I met Frankie Najera, one the early influences on my Slacklining. I learned from Frankie’s beginner video featured in my beginning Slackline post. It was a pleasure to meet Frankie, and I thanked him for his influence and contributions to this wonderful sport.

The four competitors in the Semi-Finals were Mickey Wilson, Zack Andrews, Alex Mason, and Wes Duckworth. Mickey Wilson is a great Slackliner, and the second person to complete the infamous “Luke Skywalker” move, Zack Andrews has been doing Slackline for 6 months (same as me!) and he’s only 12 years old! Alex Mason is the current national champion, not bad for 16! and Wes Duckworth is a super Slacker from Fort Collins! Like everyone I have met so far in the Slackline community, these guys are top-notch and some of the nicest people you’ll ever meet!

Here’s a bit of video I shot at the Semi’s today. I was very impressed with all of them, and I think Zack Andrews is going to be at the top of the sport very soon. Enjoy!

Progress Update

Today’s entry includes a video link below.

We spent about an hour or two with the slackline set up in the backyard on Friday afternoon. Then about another hour or so on Saturday. My wife was able to take four steps on Saturday! She is improving, although not as fast as she’d like. She took today (Sunday) off from slacking, to use the day to prepare for a 10K tomorrow.

I set up the line and walked this afternoon. This was the first time I set it up by myself. Usually, it takes two of us to pull the line tight enough so that I am not on the ground. This time, the line was as high as my inseam. I found the line to be a bit more loose, and took a bit to get used to it again.

After getting used to the line and walking a bit, I started trying to turn around on the line. I can now walk most of the line in one direction, so I figured it would be a good time to start learning to turn around. This video shows various methods of turning. I use a version of Adam’s shown first in the video. I step backwards and spin as I shift my weight to my back foot.

It’s been two weeks since Mother’s Day, and I am now learning to turn around. I was able to do it successfully, although not very pretty, about 3 or 4 times. It takes some chance, and some getting used to the art of spinning your weight around without losing balance, but this is yet another milestone in my trek to be proficient. I hope you folks see this as encouragement.