Back in the Valley / by Mayan Smith-Gobat

Ahhh... Yosemite! It feels amazing to be surrounded by these giant rock walls again, to feel dwarfed by their sheer enormity and scarred of the unforgiving and endless perfect cracks. There is something so striking and pure about a splitter crack running up an otherwise featureless wall of granite - they excite me and cry out to be climbed, yet at the same time are insanely intimidating!

I am concentrating on getting fit and trying to reacquaint myself with crack climbing, climbing as much of every size crack as I can. So far this has been confined to single pitch climbs, though I seem to be remembering what I had learned last year much more quickly than I expected, and feel as though I am almost ready to attempt something longer. Over the last few days I have thrown myself at everything I come across, super thin face climbs, finger cracks, perfect endless hand cracks and brutal off-widths. It has all combined to form a perfect re-introduction to Yosemite climbing, and my body is enjoying a day of rest from the punishing cracks.

I am so psyched to be here, this place is incredible - there are so many walls to climb, so much to learn and so much to aspire to.