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Jutting out into the air like a ship's bow, enshrouded in mystery by the cryptic elephant skin diabase texture like a vessel in the mist, sits The Prow. Technical, physical, involved and committing, this problem embodies everything of Mount Gretna and the rock type. The sit start to the Prow is my all time favorite diabase boulder problem out of all areas in Pennsylvania, a state I was born in and never left until the age of 20. I grew up on Mount Gretna Road, just a ten minute drive from the main boulder field. I have a special connection with this problem. The stand start at a stiff V5 was one of my first V5's. I completed the sit start to The Prow on April 1, 2003. I remember that day vividly. It was one of the first advanced boulder problems I had ever completed, both mentally and physically. It took me probably 7 to 10 visits to do the stand start, and by the time I was working the sit start full line a season later I was doing the stand three to five times in a day in preparation.
I understand that now a hold has broken and it is most certainly the crucial left hand half pad three finger sidepull crimp that has enlarged. The stand start is a sandbag or solid at the grade at V5. Right hand up anywhere you want on the arete, scrunch up, and highstep onto the blade. The right foot will be smearing on a downsloping feature, if it blows you will graze your shin on the underside of the roof. A large deadpoint for a one pad left hand sidepull immediately follows. It is the largest hold on the problem but is utilized for a very short period of time. Delicately balance your way around the right arete after more slapping, 1/3 pad sidepulls and a high right foot smear. There are at least three ways to get to the lip; technical and in control, shouldery and barndoorish, or all out dyno. I prefer the former.
For the full V7 or V8 sit start line that nearly doubles the length and quality of the problem, start underneath the roof blade in a true sit start and work around left on solid, almost one pad crimps. Make a very strenuous pull from a three finger three quarter pad left hand sidepull and grope up and right on the arete to a veiny pinch and swing both feet up and to the right. It may help to be short on this sequence because it is so scrunchy. High step like you would off of the ground to begin the stand start then execute the above.
Top of the Prow/Warm Up area.
Multiple pads due to the real estate that needs to be covered rather than the height. A spotter because barn-dooring is likely. A crowd for moral support.
By skinny legs and all
From: Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania
Feb 3, 2013
Lend me your arms
So I may learn perfection
To attain balance