CHOOSE LIFE ( 5.13+), SEAL ROCK
Climber: Chris Taylor
First ascent: Matt Samet, Ted Lanzano; 2012
The mega-popular Choose Life was sussed out on toprope for its lead potential during the ban but then abandoned as being total death as a gear lead—hence the name. Opening the south face of Seal Rock, one of Boulder’s premier walls, to bolting involved seven years of negotiations with OSMP, but the wait was worth it. The wall now has eight sport climbs from 5.11b to 5.14b. Best of all, OSMP and the FCC teamed up to build an amazing trail up the final, steep approach grade.
Choose Life follows water-fused stone up a wide black streak on ribs, flanges, mini-pockets, and pebbles, with an airy crux passing the next-to-last bolt. “Choose life. Choose a job. Choose a career. Choose a family. Choose a fucking, big television. Choose washing machines, cars, compact disc players, and electrical tin can openers….” Irvine Welsh wrote in
Trainspotting. Or you could choose to hang on for dear life, avoiding the infamous crux whipper.