Friday, November 22, 2013

Ostrov in Autumn (shocking end of the highline season)

During last weekend of November Jordan, his girlfriend Lidia and I made a short trip to Ostrov in Czech Republic. This place is magical and we always come back. You can not get bored of it, always finding new places, re-discovering old ones and during this time of the year enjoying natural painting made by nature and colorful trees all around you.

Jordan with Lidia - lovely couple :)
Autumn in Ostrov (photo by Jordan Tybon)

We thought it's going to be really quiet time but it happened to be lots of friends had the same plan (or just Facebook did its job). It was actually really cool to meet again all the friendly faces, got to know some new people, highline and then enjoy some party time in Pod Cisařem.

Where there is a lot slackliners there is also a lot of lines. It wasn't any different this time. You had anything from short up to "Master of Universe" Highline which is 96.5 meters long. I have some unfinished business with this line (have to full-man it) but both Jordan and I felt mostly like chilling, climbing a bit too, having good time not stressing too much on a bigger lines.

The first day was really windy, foggy, cold and wet. Jordan and I walked just one short highline and went down to eat delicious Czech food and consume large amount of bear and Kofola.

Petr "Peeto" Kučera (aka I call him 'Czech beast') free soloing the short line first day (photo by Jordan Tybon)

The second day started with bad weather but soon after that it got really pretty. Together with Jordan we decided to rig new line we saw last day. It wasn't anything big (probably 25m long/25m high) but it esthetically it was really pleasing. The line was located between two thin towers, perfectly leveled - just waiting to be rigged. The boulder sitting on top of one of the towers looked like half old lady and half a slug with a backpack on her back. That is why Jordan named it "Old Lady Slug with a Backpack".

Danny Menšík on one of the new highline and characteristic boulder on top of the tower (photo by Jordan Tybon)

But before we had a pleasure to name the line we had to rig it, which wasn't that simple. Because the rock was still totally wet and slippery we couldn't climb it. By using combination of throwing ropes over stuff, jumping from tower to tower, a bit of climbing, scrambling and other shenanigans we were able to reach the top of both towers.

Jordan on the way back, definitely way more sketchy (photo by Lidia)
Flying Jordan

Rapping off the second tower (photo by Jordan Tybon)

From there it was classic Ostrov rigging; sling the towers, protect it, tension your like and send it. We rigged the line with Slackline Brothers pulleys and piece of VecTec. It was really nice to walk. Both of us sent the line free-solo and then went back down.

Jordan sending like a boss
Free solo on the "Old Lady Slug with a Backpack" (photo by Jordan Tybon)

The last day was even more fun. We started by free-soloing the line we walked first day and then went back to new tower line. During the day Czech guys rigged another two new highlines sharing one common anchor with the line we rigged the day before. Jordan and I free-soloed all of them. I got to realize my stupid idea which was the 'ear-shackles' meaning the leash attached to my ear piercings going under the line. It was silly but it had to be done!

Ready for some silliness (photo by Jordan Tybon)

It was great time and I recommend this place to everyone who didn't visit this yet. It is amazing every time and you will definitely come back.

Lately my new addiction - exposure turns for full length of the song. Here in an ankle-leash and when I'm recovered free-solo version has to follow (photo by Lidia)

We drove back same day back home to Berlin. Back to work, back to training ... the next day I had a climbing accident at Ostbloc breaking my right leg. To make it more exciting I managed to make sure it was an open break. Lots of pain, fear, stress and uncertainty in a split of second when I slipped from the top hold on a boulder problem. On the other hand during this three weeks I already feel like I didn't do before. I can not describe with words how grateful I am to all my friends who were there for me since the day of the accident, then everyday in a hospital (yes, there was no single day when I was alone) until now ... Well, I will write separate post about it, but right now what I would like to  I miss Ostrov and I really appreciate that trip which happened to be the end of the highline season for me. I had some goals for which I wanted to come back even this year and this kind of bad experience made me realize even more how wonderful is to have a place like this and play in it together with friends. I think a lot of times I took this thing for granted ...

Now as an extra if you want you can enjoy a movie I made a while ago about free soloing in Ostrov. I think I might have just enough time to do something with tons of footage from that place which was never used before.

Peace & SlackOn!

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