Saving Santee Boulders and it's History . . .

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Klimmer

Mountain climber
San Diego
Topic Author's Original Post - Apr 1, 2006 - 01:26pm PT
I am amazed at the power of ST Forum. I have learned so much recently about S. Cal climbing history from many of the Stonemasters and the Poway Mtn. Boys as well as many others who have all been posting. Another wonderful thing about ST is the feature for locating past posts - this is a great archival tool (I hope that will always be the case).

In this process, there also has been many stories, anecotes, and even pictures regarding Santee Boulders that have been shared.

Too much for one person to pull all together, and there are still some unanswered questions so . . .

My plea is this, especially from the old-timers (Stonemasters, PMB, any of the old guard, and those who climb there now). Can you please answer the following kinds of questions in brevity, and add links to your own posts here at ST or another forum that you may have posted on regarding Santee Boulders? (See below)

Documenting the history of Santee Boulders will go a long way in helping to preserve them, as well as generate a valuable resource that those involved in trying to preserve this great bouldering location (San Diego Alliance of Climbers, and the Access Fund) can use and refer to, as a living and breathing cyber community. In this process we can all benefit and learn something new, and know we are helping to save a beloved climbing location.

Questions:

1) Who are you? ST post name and/or real name.
2) What year did you first climb at Santee Boulders?
3) How many times (approx.) have you climbed at Santee Boulders, or from what year to what year?
4) Do you personally know of anyone that climbed at Santee Boulders before you ever did? Do you know who first climbed at Santee Boulders and what year it was?
5) Are you aware of a climbing guide(s) in any form (even scribbled notes) for Santee Boulders, that pre-dates Doug White's "Crags and Boulders of San Diego County" (1978)?
4) Did you climb at any of the Great Western Bouldering Championship climbing contests held at Santee Boulders in the 1970's or '80s? Do you know the specific dates of these contests and who organized the contest?
5) If you did climb at said contests, can you list some names of any noteable fellow contestants? Who actually won?
6) Please link to any posts you have made regarding Santee Boulders in any meaningful way.
7) Say something about what Santee Boulders means personally to you. Why should Santee Boulders be preserved?


Here is something I posted earlier when HV alerted to what was happening with Santee Boulders:
http://www.supertopo.com/climbing/thread.html?topic_id=173604#msg173921

"HV-- Please tell me this isn't true concerning Santee Boulders. I was working with Dr. Chuck Berry (UCSD), of Sierra Club RCS fame, in PB, in the mid '90s concerning saving Santee Boulders from the developers. The land owners are a consortium called "East Elliot Planning Community" named after the old Army
training base that used to be there in WW2. One of the owners is none other than Dr. Coad and another guy that owns an exterminating company I think in La Mesa. Randy Vogel got involved then and wrote a letter to the land owners concerning liability laws to calm their fears. Went to several of those
planning meetings at Rick Engineering. They definitely know about the climbing on Santee Boulders. Sounds like I need to get back involved and find out what's up. I haven't been. Is the Access Fund involved? We need to get on this. Please
let me know what you heard. Santee boulders is a real treasure, and now I even know more of it's history thanks to all this time we've been blowing at SuperTaco. Like the fact that some of the first bouldering contests ever where held here, and just about all of the Stonemasters made it down to climb at Santee Boulders at some time or other. And all the history and beta that bvb, DW, Greg C. and WL have on the place.

I used to have nightmares about losing Santee Boulders back then when I was involved working with Chuck (Charles) to save it and going to those meetings. Pretty stressful. At that time they were planning on developing around it and setting it off as open space. What has changed? I need to know. Damn it. My
previous job before becoming a HS science teacher was working in environmental consulting, and I had my ear to the ground real well at the time."


Here are some more threads on Santee and Woodson history:

http://www.supertopo.com/climbing/thread.html?topic_id=161163

Check-out all the Stonemaster threads. Little gems of history here and there concerning the Stonemasters visiting SD crags including Santee and Woodson:

http://www.supertopo.com/climbing/thread.html?topic_id=173337&f=0&b=0



Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Apr 1, 2006 - 01:46pm PT
for slightly more background check out Tim Toula's Rock 'n Road

references listed for the Santee Boulders:

Rock & Ice 13 (3/86) p53
Climber's Guide to Santee Boulders, G. Schaffer & T. Walker, 1982
Climber's Guide to Southern California, Paul Hellweg & Nathan Warstler, 1990
Southern California Bouldering Guide, Craig Fry, 1990
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Apr 1, 2006 - 02:04pm PT
Google Maps is cool for this too... since it's urban, the resolution is high, and the encrouchment is easy to see...



Klimmer

Mountain climber
San Diego
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 1, 2006 - 02:20pm PT
1) Glenn Simpson (aka "Klimmer")

2) Approx. What year did you first climb at Santee Boulders?
I first climbed at Santee Boulders about 1978 or 1979.

3) How many times (approx.) have you climbed at Santee Boulders, or from what year to what year?
Once in '78 or '79, then extensively from 1987 (while a student at SDSU) until even now. I live not too far from Santee - it is a short 15 min. drive.

4) Do you personally know of anyone that climbed at Santee Boulders before you ever did? Do you know who first climbed at Santee Boulders and what year it was?
Yes, I know the "Scumbags" and PMBs did, and have recently learned many of the Stonemasters have also. I don't know who first climbed at Santee Boulders or who discovered them. I would like to know this. My guess is at least the late '60s if not earlier.

5) Are you aware of a climbing guide(s) in any form (even scribbled notes) for Santee Boulders, that pre-dates Doug White's "Crags and Boulders of San Diego County" (1987)?
Nope. But there must be right?

4) Did you climb at any of the Great Western Bouldering Championship climbing contests held at Santee Boulders in the 1970's or '80s? Do you know the specific dates of these contests and who organized the contest?
Nope. My first bouldering contest was in '78/'79? at Magnolia Boulders. Missed the ones at Santee. I do know that Werner Landry and ? a climbing shop owner in PB (John Vawter knows) first organized the contests at Santee Boulders? I think.

5) If you did climb at said contests, can you list some names of any noteable fellow contestants? Who actually won?
Nope, but others can.

6) Please link to any posts you have made regarding Santee Boulders in any meaningful way.
See links in original post above.

7) Say something about what Santee Boulders means personally to you. Why should Santee Boulders be preserved?

Santee Boulders is a treasure, and not just for the incredible climbing, and the climbing history it provides - it is rich in all of that. Many noteable climbers have climbed at Santee Boulders over the years: Poway Mtn. Boys, "Scumbags", and the Stonemasters and anyone and everyone in the San Diego climbing scene, (just talk to Werner Landry).

Having climbed out there countless times especially from 1987 until now, I have great memories of time spent with friends and family there. As well, I have spent time solo boulder climbing there for peace and solitude. The climbing is very good and a climber can get very strong and learn a rich repertoire of movement over stone. As an outdoor leader at SDSU in the program "The Leisure Connection," we taught many students to boulder there and introduced them to a wonderful activity and location. When I student taught at Westhills HS I would often go there after work and boulder.

Santee Boulders also has a great climate with an almost daily on-shore breeze and an abundance of wildlife that I've seen over the years that includes: deer, California Gnatcatchers, Hawks, Eagles, Ravens, snakes, lizards etc. The plant community is Coastal Diegan Sage Scrub which has a wonderful aroma, and provides the needed habitat for the Federally Listed and Endangered California Gnatcatcher. Many Herpitology in the area are also very sensitive. The hillsides bloom wonderfully in the spring, in addition to turning a bright emerald green.

It's a wonderful oasis that many people enjoy and not just for climbing. Many in the community hike there, observe wildlife, and Mtn. Bike. It's a wonderful place for so many people. We can't let this location be lost to developement. Every stone has a name and history.
Off White

climber
Tenino, WA
Apr 1, 2006 - 03:01pm PT
Crags & Boulders was published in 1978, not 1987. Santee section was written by Galen Kirkwood, with the agreement that I would not use his name. Obviously, I'm a rotten friend since I put his monniker on as author. There was no prior guide, people didn't much do guides for bouldering back then. Many formations did not have names, so Galen and I made them up: chutzpah often begets history and traditon. In fact, prior to that guidebook, the only guides in San Diego I was ever aware of were Eric Beck's guide to Mission Gorge and Werner Landry's Gorge guide.

I started climbing there maybe in 74? Certainly a lot from 75-78. I moved away in Jan 79, but most visits back to San Diego include a trip to Santee. Plenty of people climbed there before any Scumbags ever showed up on the scene, but I don't know much of the history. JV is more closely connected to the generation before us, he might be a good source.
Klimmer

Mountain climber
San Diego
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 1, 2006 - 03:15pm PT
OW --

Doug, yes you are right. You published in '78 not '87. I got dsielicx, oops I mean dislexic.

JV shot me an email the other day and he is offering his legal services to those involved in the fight. Hope he posts up again. Would really like Werner Landry to come on board. I know I would love to hear all his stories.

Edit: fixed now, 1878 right? (he-he)
Hootervillian

climber
the Hooterville World-Guardian
Apr 1, 2006 - 05:53pm PT
more specifically what i heard was that the land was/had changed ownership and that the [url="http://www.tierrasantacc.org/Sycamore%20Landfill/sycamore_landfill.htm" target="_blank"]Sycamore Landfill[/url] was somehow involved.

third hand, for sure, but that property has been in the crosshairs for a long time. an ugly clue may be in the website intro paragraph. they (my friends) also mentioned condo's? not sure how that fits.

i am an Aztec and bouldered fairly regularly at Santee from 91 to 2000. nothing historic to add, of course there were many others before and during that time.

F10 Climber F11 Drinker

Trad climber
e350
Apr 1, 2006 - 06:01pm PT
Started bouldering there in 71. You could drive right into the boulders, put the speakers on the roof and have a bitchin time. Have bouldered there many many times, to many to even count. Klimmer email me for any other info, JB
Klimmer

Mountain climber
San Diego
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 1, 2006 - 10:58pm PT
Everyone responding so far thank you.

From HVs post I also found this link which talks about Camp Elliot history which includes the Santee Boulder area, known as East Elliot. Very interesting. Perhaps US Army soldiers in training for WWI and WWII, and then later the Marines all climbed on them? Hey, you never know. What soldier roaming the area could resist jumping on those fine miniatures and recreating for awhile after a lunch of c-rats? (LOL)

http://www.tierrasantacc.org/safety/Unexploded%20Ordinance.htm

Has anyone ever found any unexploded ordinance at Santee Boulders?

From the above article:

"Camp Elliott was used during World War I by the U.S. Army as an artillery and machine gun training facility.
From 1941 to 1944, Camp Elliott was a tank training base, with the tanks housed at what is now Admiral Baker Field (just off Friars Road). Camp Elliott was home to several commands including the Fleet Marine Force Training Center-West Coast, and the Troop Training Unit of the Amphibious Training Command for the Pacific Fleet. The base provided encampments, bivouac areas and 41 firing ranges that were used for tank, anti-tank, artillery training, demolition training, mines, raw explosives and for parachuting practice. In addition, there were specialized schools on site for infantry, scout, mortar and sniper education.
According to the Final Ordnance Report prepared for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers by Environmental Chemical Corporation in 1995, "The base and ranges were used for training on every type of weapon in the Marine inventory until 1944, when they moved to Camp Pendleton."
In 1944 the Marines no longer needed the area and it passed to the Navy for use as a retraining center. From 1946 to 1947 the Army had jurisdiction over the land but it was not used during those years. The Retraining Command had jurisdiction from 1947 until 1960.
During World War II and the Korean War, Camp Elliott was home to more than 250,000 troops.
Camp Elliott was annexed to the City of San Diego in 1960 and in 1961 the government declared nearly half the land surplus. The land was zone R-1-40 residential."

Seems like the earliest Santee Boulders became availabe for public recreation was about 1960.

When I was in environmental consulting I recall seeing a B&W image of Paratroopers jumping at Camp Elliot in a file for Biological survey work we were doing within the region. My boss at the time was Mitch Beauchamp, well known biological consultant and author of "A Flora of San Diego County," the bible at the time for plant identification. Here is the kindest article I could find on Mitch: http://www.sdearthtimes.com/et0494/et0494s3.html

Perhaps the East Elliot Planning Community a consortium of private landowners has sold their properties? I don't know. The copy of the GIS map "Multiple Habitat Planning Area (MHPA)" below does show that Santee Boulders just above Mast Blvd. does fall within the City of San Diego's Multiple Species Conservation Plan (MSCP), a region wide mapping effort and attempt at conservation. It is an attempt to save endangered plant communities and open space through land swaps and mitigation deals with developers - which is a load of crap. The end net result is always less openspace and erradication of native flora and fauna. We are conserving less and less openspace in S. Cal., and our quality of life is now suffering, and future generations to come will never know what they missed.

http://www.tierrasantacc.org/Sycamore%20Landfill/sycamore_landfill.htm

The developers' motto truly is as the song says-

"Pave Paradise . . . put up a Parking Lot"

Yea, but -

"But, you don't know what you got - till it's gone!"
Mtnfreak

Mountain climber
Bellingham, WA / Bishop, CA
Apr 2, 2006 - 05:24am PT
Nothing historical, but I climbed there from 1993 - 1995 while stationed at the Naval School of Health Sciences in San Diego and at Camp Pendleton. My grandfather was at Camp Elliot back in WWII, and as part of his training "graduation" marched from Elliot to Pendleton to load up and be sent to the Pacific.
mtwoodsonguide

Big Wall climber
San Diego
Apr 2, 2006 - 11:15pm PT
I personally talked to the guy who owner the east half of the boulders from the 60's until this winter. He never made any attempt to develop the land. He also said it could never be developed, but was worth alot of money in, ah whats the word, drawing a blank, When you use as leverage to develop something else. He tried to talk the guy who bought it, some arab guy in Orage County, out of buying it.
The last thing I heard from the access fund was the city was buying the property. The piece of property which the city did buy was way over on the other side of the freeway. brilliant research.
So what parcel of land exactly are you talking about here, because these rumors fly regularly.

BPorter

Big Wall climber
Quartz Hill, Ca
Apr 2, 2006 - 11:30pm PT
Klimmer,

Grew up in San Diego and climbed at the Gorge and Santee Boulders in the early 70's. I remember Greg Epperson climbing out there all the time. Hate to say it, but I think Santee Boulders is doomed. Hell, that's why I got out of San Diego. The "sprawl" will never end. I saw development work it's way right up to the boulders over ten years, and I am quite sure those nice little hills are now on some developers "to do" list.
Still, it would be nice to set them aside if we can create a loud enough voice. Count me in !!!

Cracko
Off White

climber
Tenino, WA
Apr 6, 2006 - 08:59pm PT
Here's an overview taken in September 1979. I can tell by the knickers that's BVB topping out on the scary highball on the end of the Bullethole Wall.

bvb

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Apr 6, 2006 - 11:18pm PT
i humbly submit that these beautiful boulders are worth saving.

WBraun

climber
Apr 6, 2006 - 11:23pm PT
Yeah, if only because there is very little left where one can go to find some peace from all that urban chaos that is constantly encroaching on everything beautiful.
Trenchdigger

Trad climber
Santee, CA
Apr 7, 2006 - 12:06pm PT
Hey, thanks for starting this thread...

1) Who are you? Adam Kimmerly aka. Trenchdigger and/or Tradmonkey
2) What year did you first climb at Santee Boulders? About 3 years ago - March 2003.
3) How many times (approx.) have you climbed at Santee Boulders, or from what year to what year? I would estimate that I've been there between 100 and 200 times.
4) Do you personally know of anyone that climbed at Santee Boulders before you ever did? Yes, Dick Shockley, most notably. I have his home phone number as well. Haven't seen him lately, and this is reminding me that I should give him a call and see how he's doing. I also know Tim Powell and will pry him to see what info I can get. I don't believe he climbed there much, but he may be able to round up info from family or friends.
5) Are you aware of a climbing guide(s) in any form (even scribbled notes) for Santee Boulders, that pre-dates Doug White's "Crags and Boulders of San Diego County" (1978)? No, but I'm currently in the process of working on a new, updated guide with Erik Roed (another santee regular). Any of you old-timers interested in seeing/reviewing a draft, please send me an e-mail at tradmonkey(at)gmail.com.
4) Did you climb at any of the Great Western Bouldering Championship climbing contests held at Santee Boulders in the 1970's or '80s? Do you know the specific dates of these contests and who organized the contest? I either hadn't been born yet or was still in diapers!
5) If you did climb at said contests, can you list some names of any noteable fellow contestants? Who actually won?
6) Please link to any posts you have made regarding Santee Boulders in any meaningful way.
7) Say something about what Santee Boulders means personally to you. Why should Santee Boulders be preserved? The santee boulders are where I basically learned how to climb. Still the place challenges me with new problems I find that nobody has climbed for years, if ever. The current working version of the guide contains around 60 boulders with 350+ problems. It is no small project! We hope to have this thing complete by summer, as it's a back-burner project. We're still not sure about how we'll publish it. If we can get it printed cheaply enough, we'll sell them for a reasonable price. If not, it'll likely end up on the web in PDF format.

I look forward to seeing more in this thread as I am, of course, interested in the history of the Santee Boulders as well for the purpose of including it in the guide.
John Vawter

Social climber
San Diego
Apr 8, 2006 - 05:38pm PT
I have a few photos of the first Santee contest dated 10/29/73. I didn't participate in the contest at Mission Gorge a year or two before, but it was organized by Tom Compare, owner of A Striving After Wind, a mountaineering shop in Pacific Beach. Tom and Werner Landry co-organized the Santee contest, bringing in A-16 as a co-sponsor, and possibly Stanley Andrews Sporting Goods. They had a list of problems, and gave everyone a card with like ten spaces. You picked a problem and gave your card to the judge. If you did the problem, you got the points. If not, you got a zero. After several hours, they totaled up the cards for the finals.

There were seven in the finals in '73. Rick Piggot, Greg Cameron, Mike Wise, Dennis Sullivan, a kid from the neighborhood (literally from the nearby housing tract), Kenny Cook, and me. I had the lowest point total of all the finalists, so I was last to try each problem.

The first problem was the lieback on Lieback Rock. It was easier then, .10-, before someone took a pry bar to it and removed all the crumbly stuff from the lower 6 feet. But it was tricky at the top. Everybody cruised it, except me. I had on my RR's, which were great for edging, but like bricks for everything else. It took me almost all of my 2-3 minute time limit to get it. The judges scored each contestant on time and style, so I stayed in dead last.

Then we went over to Bullethole. Tom had chalked vertical lines to corral us into either Bullethole Center or Right. But at that time, this was not a commonly done problem. In fact, no one in the finals had ever done these. Six guys lined up to take a whack at it, and six guys came close, but never pulled over the top. I asked Tom if I could use a high dime edge that was just outside the chalk line on the right. He said ok. I got it clean first try, and a roar went up from the crowd. I went from dead last to first.

Then we went to the "5.10 ow" just across from the Light Bulb. This stymied several, including me. Kenny had a novel solution. He came in on the horizontal crack from the right. They gave him full credit. But here the kid from the neighbrohood got to show his stuff. He was thinner than the rest of us, and he wiggled up high enough to get the key fist jam easily. That tied him with someone else, probably Greg or Rick, for first, so they went to the ".11+" face to the left on the same boulder. No one could do that, but the kid from the neighborhood was ahead on points, so he went home with the rope.

I vaguely remember the contest where the final was a climb off on the Aid Boulder. Yaniro and another guy duked it out, and Yaniro got higher, nearly pulling it off. but I don't have any way to date that, and no pictures.
mtwoodsonguide

Big Wall climber
San Diego
Apr 8, 2006 - 06:01pm PT
Whoa John V that was sweet except the last part, there is no problem to the left of that offwidth.
The next one left is on the opposite side of the boulder. Could be called .11+ if your tall enough and the frictions sellar, but it's got a bad landing and would have been pretty damm hard before sticky rubber.
Think hard, where was that 11+ at.
John Vawter

Social climber
San Diego
Apr 9, 2006 - 11:43pm PT
That was it, around the corner to the left, facing west (?), bad landing, kinda otd and way hard. Nobody got it, or even close. And even now you rarely see anyone try it.
bvb

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Apr 9, 2006 - 11:45pm PT
yep, i done that problem. goes up a scoop. if you were a santee regular, it was no big deal and routinely in the circuit.

familiarity breeds...having stuff wired??

the contest with the climb-off (yaniro et. al.)on the aid crack was in '81. i remember 'cause i'd spent most of that winter in the hospital.
Klimmer

Mountain climber
San Diego
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 10, 2006 - 12:12am PT
All good stuff you guys :-)) Hope there is more!

JV-- You have a memory like a steel trap!

Mine seems to be more like Swiss cheese ;-)
mtwoodsonguide

Big Wall climber
San Diego
Apr 10, 2006 - 01:36am PT
If your facing the problem your facing NE. I have to get my feet up high on the left side of the scoop and kind of walk my fingers up one at a time until they find good enough friction to crank off of. Be pretty hard getting those feet up above the best part of the scoop without good rubber.
ikellen

Trad climber
San Diego, CA
Apr 10, 2006 - 01:59am PT
1) Who are you? Kellen Holt (ikellen on ST)
2) What year did you first climb at Santee Boulders? 2003
3) How many times (approx.) have you climbed at Santee Boulders, or from what year to what year? 2003 to 2006, probably 40 to 50 times.
4) Do you personally know of anyone that climbed at Santee Boulders before you ever did? Do you know who first climbed at Santee Boulders and what year it was? no, sorry.
5) Are you aware of a climbing guide(s) in any form (even scribbled notes) for Santee Boulders, that pre-dates Doug White's "Crags and Boulders of San Diego County" (1978)? No
4) Did you climb at any of the Great Western Bouldering Championship climbing contests held at Santee Boulders in the 1970's or '80s? Do you know the specific dates of these contests and who organized the contest? No
5) If you did climb at said contests, can you list some names of any noteable fellow contestants? Who actually won? No
6) Please link to any posts you have made regarding Santee Boulders in any meaningful way.
7) Say something about what Santee Boulders means personally to you. Why should Santee Boulders be preserved? Santee boulders, although not the greatest blocks, are a little pocket of rock that is more accessible to more climbers than any other area in San Diego. While they require a precise and certain technique that can only be honed by many return trips, their is full of old school hardmen who put up the early problems in great style and boldness, in the same way that Mt. Woodson gained it's fame. For climbers nowadays, Santee brings a true commodity in San Diego - Real Climbable Rock - to the masses and brings with it variety, committment, and excellent enviroment. To take away this land from climbers would be ripping a chapter out of history.
illusiondweller

Boulder climber
San Diego, CA
Apr 14, 2006 - 10:32am PT
1) Who are you? My name is Gary McCay aka illusiondweller.
2) What year did you first climb at Santee Boulders? 1981
3) How many times (approx.) have you climbed at Santee Boulders, or from what year to what year? 1981 - 1996 on occasion thereafter till 2004.
4) Do you personally know of anyone that climbed at Santee Boulders before you ever did? Do you know who first climbed at Santee Boulders and what year it was? My climbing "mentor" was R. Barnes from Poway, CA. who introduced me to Santee. G. Epperson, R. Amick, the Almadovar brothers, and M. Paul were there before me.
5) Are you aware of a climbing guide(s) in any form (even scribbled notes) for Santee Boulders, that pre-dates Doug White's "Crags and Boulders of San Diego County" (1978)? No
4) Did you climb at any of the Great Western Bouldering Championship climbing contests held at Santee Boulders in the 1970's or '80s? Do you know the specific dates of these contests and who organized the contest? Not at Santee but I did compete in a GWBC at Magnolia Boulers in '83? when Tony Yaniro walked home with first prize after doing a first ascent of a thin overhanging finger crack, sans shoes, with his toes taped up!

Personally, Santee Boulders offers a great gynasium to those who choose to stay fit outside as opposed to indoors. It is unique in that it gives you a sense of climbing in a private, secluded area in a urban setting. Climbing is not a sport that is readily recognized by the general public. It is this uniqueness that draws someone to climbing. The ability to excel at something, away from the public masses, in private, in a peaceful setting while sharing your accomplishments with a select few that have an appreciation for the craft, the outdoors and the beauty that accompanies it. It would be a shame if fitness centers began to disappear in order to make room for something else. So, make an exception for this small parcel of land that so many have enjoyed for decades.

Grug

Trad climber
Golden, Colorado
Apr 14, 2006 - 11:32am PT
I (Greg Cameron) only climbed at Santee boulders maybe 6-8 times or so, in spite of growing in nearby Poway. My proximity to Woodson (and lack of a car for much of the time I lived there) made climbing at Woodson much more reasonable.

Always enjoyed myself at Santee, in spite of th fact that it offers the kind of hard problems that I've never been particularly good at (more of a crack guy).

I was in the contest in 1979. JW, unless my memory is worse than I thought, I don't think I was in the 1973 contest. I was IN to waterpolo that year and don't remember climbing much at all.
John Vawter

Social climber
San Diego
Apr 14, 2006 - 01:06pm PT
Grug: Maybe it was Jim. I don't have a shot of the finalists so I'm just going on my foggy memory, but I'm pretty sure it was another PMB.
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Dec 15, 2009 - 10:00pm PT
there are some video clips on YouTube that might be of interest to the Santee Boulder set...

HERE
mojede

Trad climber
Butte, America
Dec 15, 2009 - 10:33pm PT
One from Ed's link page--a short home made vid I liked:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QkfZ5ADq-2k&feature=fvsr



Looks like a pretty proper place to pebble pull, IMHo...

F10

Trad climber
e350
Dec 15, 2009 - 10:43pm PT
Thanks Ed,

I would have lost that bet,

Santee boulders on You Tube,

I must be living under a rock
pyrosis

Trad climber
Flagstaff, AZ
Dec 18, 2009 - 08:19am PT
1) Who are you? Tavis Ricksecker
2) What year did you first climb at Santee Boulders? 1995
3) How many times (approx.) have you climbed at Santee Boulders, or from what year to what year? 1995-1997, 2-3 times/week
4) Do you personally know of anyone that climbed at Santee Boulders before you ever did? Do you know who first climbed at Santee Boulders and what year it was? no
5) Are you aware of a climbing guide(s) in any form (even scribbled notes) for Santee Boulders, that pre-dates Doug White's "Crags and Boulders of San Diego County" (1978)? No
4) Did you climb at any of the Great Western Bouldering Championship climbing contests held at Santee Boulders in the 1970's or '80s? Do you know the specific dates of these contests and who organized the contest? No
5) If you did climb at said contests, can you list some names of any noteable fellow contestants? Who actually won? No
6) Please link to any posts you have made regarding Santee Boulders in any meaningful way.
7) Say something about what Santee Boulders means personally to you. Why should Santee Boulders be preserved? I learned to climb at Santee during high school. Although bouldering at Santee never developed a lot of power, it is an excellent place to develop technique, footwork, and manteling ability. Many pleasant afternoons were spent there trying to dial into those dime edges, and hopefully the place will hold many more for other locals. I would be very sad if this place was paved over into yet another subdivision. As if San Diego county needs more ticky tacky houses.
gonamok

Trad climber
Dont look at me like that
May 9, 2010 - 12:36pm PT
1) Ron Amick

2) What year did you first climb at Santee Boulders? Around 19753) How many times (approx.) have you climbed at Santee Boulders, or from what year to what year? Thousands of visits starting in the mid 70's

4) Do you personally know of anyone that climbed at Santee Boulders before you ever did? yes

Do you know who first climbed at Santee Boulders and what year it was? I have talked to eric beck, werner landry, kenny cook, jerry galwas and other 1st generation SD climbers, and the general consensus is that people were climbing at santee boulders in the early 60s Everyone has climbed there, including John Gill

5) Are you aware of a climbing guide(s) in any form (even scribbled notes) for Santee Boulders, that pre-dates Doug White's "Crags and Boulders of San Diego County" (1978)? yes, mine

4) Did you climb at any of the Great Western Bouldering Championship climbing contests held at Santee Boulders in the 1970's or '80s? yes, all of them

Do you know the specific dates of these contests and who organized the contest? i can look it up

5) If you did climb at said contests, can you list some names of any noteable fellow contestants? Who actually won? yes i know most or all of that, but too long to list here

6) Please link to any posts you have made regarding Santee Boulders in any meaningful way.

7) Say something about what Santee Boulders means personally to you. Why should Santee Boulders be preserved?
more on this later
hossjulia

Social climber
Eastside
May 9, 2010 - 03:35pm PT
I'm surprised I have not already posted to this. (had to look to make sure)

I lived on Rumson Dr. from 1970 to 1975 or so and played around on those rocks all the time. Would see climbers from time to time, mostly I remember them practicing aid on the big rock we called Moby Dick.

Anyone on this forum live on Rumson back then with a blind Irish Setter and a Sunfish with the name Meatybeatybigandbouncy? Took up the whole side of the boat.

He lived up the street from us and took my brother climbing a few times. Sure would like to find him and chat.

After moving back to SD in the mid 80's, I bouldered there probably a dozen or more times as a climber, amazed at the stuff I got up at 10-14 with tennis shoes.

Sorry I missed the comps, might have gotten me into climbing sooner.

I know it has always been a liabilty issue to climb there, we got chased off by the sheriffs more than once, the property belonged to the school district.

Makes me sad to go back there and see how it is, the borrowing owl village was where the road is now.
gonamok

Trad climber
Dont look at me like that
May 9, 2010 - 04:34pm PT
I started climbing in 1974, and at that time there were really only 3 developed climbing areas; Mission gorge, the cradle of SD climbing and what was long thought to be about the only quality cliff in the county, Mt Woodson, remote and undocumented but legendary already. In 1975 if you were leading 5.8 then you were considered a good climber, so rumors of desperate cracks and death falls, plus a dearth of moderate routes made woodson more of an aspiration than an option for alot of us. The third area was santee boulders. By the mid 70's santee had seen lots of climbing traffic, and the classic problems were well known trade routes. Infamous for thin, crimpy face problems and greasy, yosemite style friction and plagued by urban type grafitti, broken glass, trash dumping, shooters and off road maniacs, santee was nonetheless a beloved SD institution.


We just knew SD was not a climbing friendly place, and were thankful for the few climbs we had. The back country rock was chossy, small and universally regarded as brushbound talus with zero climbing potential at a time when you went to yosemite to climb, and tahquitz was a poor substitute if you were short on time. Ideas change, but 12 foot tall rounded boulders were not climbing as we knew it then.

Santee got you good tho. It taught edging technique, developed finger strength and bullet tips, and the better you get, the more problems you begin to see there. As hard as you can handle. Mantles, palm and slap technique, friction footwork get honed. The highly disciplined technique and precise sequencing required to send the higher end problems built the mental toughness and control i needed to lead harder more runout routes. Mission gorge was where i learned to climb, santee was where i learned to climb hard. I love the place.

As far as history, forget it. Who knows? Its absolutely pointless to try and claim FAs on a bunch of shopworn boulders. People are constantly trying to rename the problems, some make guides to name and claim things that are older than they are - why, i dont know, but its futile. Everything that needs a name has a name, and no new guide is going to change anything. The history and lore of santee has been built day by day for decades by every person who has climbed there. It is a continuum not subject to revision and not known in its entirety to any single person that we are all a part of. Santee is just there, and that has always been a blessing. We can have it but not own it. You could climb there every day for 20 years, but as soon as your chalk blows off the holds, its like you were never there. Nobody cares and nobody should care who climbed what and when at santee. climbers come and go. Climbers, like the ants and lizards there, are insignificant. The boulders are the stars.
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
May 9, 2010 - 06:54pm PT
i've been to Santee but just for a little while (dated some surfer/FS chick from O.B.) and absolutely loved the place!

Cracko

Trad climber
Quartz Hill, California
May 10, 2010 - 11:37pm PT

A Young Cracko enjoying the classic lieback boulder uphill from the Carosel boulder in the "very" early 70's. Every time I return to San Diego, I head out to enjoy the Santee Boulders !!! Hey F10, how did I miss you at Bridwellfest ?? Patrick Henry Alums need to stay in touch. Sorry man !! I think Epperson took this picture with a disposable camera !!


Cracko
F10

Trad climber
e350 / Bishop
May 11, 2010 - 12:19am PT
Nice words gonamok,

Cracko i need proof you were there, I have proof if you need it, bummed we didn't cross paths,

Mr. gonamok is a PHHS alumni also
Festus

Mountain climber
Enron by the Sea
May 12, 2010 - 01:45pm PT
I've actually climbed (there) believe it or not, and the photo evidence won't be pretty if I haven't managed to destroy it all. Another reason why I'm not ever going to call myself a climber.

But I'm glad Santee Boulders have survived as long as they have, because I've gotten to go there with my kids (led by their uncle Bob) a few times and they love it. It was still a wide open space filled with limitless possibilities for adventure in the eyes of 7- and 11-year old boys. Really fun to see them charging around the place looking for the next climb, and getting to see it fresh again through their eyes.
Anxious Melancholy

Mountain climber
Between the Depths of Despair & Heights of Folly
May 12, 2010 - 04:44pm PT
santee is a pit.
Watusi

Social climber
Newport, OR
May 15, 2010 - 03:32pm PT
Wow cool thread!! Yeah it's a pit, but I loved it to death!!:)
ionlyski

Trad climber
Kalispell, Montana
May 15, 2010 - 05:40pm PT
Right on Gonomok. Puts it into perspective.
Arne
TripL7

Trad climber
san diego
May 15, 2010 - 07:01pm PT
As far as i can remember, the first GWBC was held at the Pink boulder, and the the smattering of boulders along the 'river' and canyon below the Mission Gorge Cliff. The second one was at Woodson...i think! And the third at Santee. I have probably gotten this wrong.

I did attend the first one at the Gorge. And two GWBC held at Santee('73 & ??) and the GWBC contest held at the Magnolia boulders Spring 1979 which attracted such greats as John Bachar, Mike Paul, Ron Amick, Bullwinkle etc.

And I also attended the '86 GWBC at Woodson, but missed the first one at Woodson in the early '70's.

I was good friends with Kenny Cook(R.I.P. Bro). and climbed all around San Diego, Tahquitz & Suicide and the Sierra with the man and miss him dearly.

Also climbed with Werner Landry back in those days. The reason i mention this is i had a small part in introducing these guys to the Santee Boulders around 1971. I started bouldering there quite by happenstance late 1970/early '71. Although there were some bolts and no doubt the occassional wanderer, I never saw a trace of another climber i.e, chalk etc. during my first 6+ months that i bouldered there.

Although i suspect the likes of E. Beck and Gallwas(who i did climb with once)had frequented the place early on during their heyday, or at least checked it out. I did see Eric there early on(mid '70s, and he did continue too boulder there, i suspect, long after i left(i last saw him one evening around 1986). He always came and went without saying much...so i am not sure when he or anyone else started climbing there.

I did introduce the place to Ken Cook and Werner Landry about '70-71. And they along with Steve Williams from A-16 decided to stage the second or third GWBC contest there.

Like i said there was nary a soul there in '71, and i felt as though i was the first soul that had just topped out on Everest on many of the harder boulder problems...i had quite the imagination.

Santee Boulders was much like a cool breeze and a swig of cold lager after a long day swinging a hammer for the going wage...if you know what i mean.

A place to sit on top of a boulder and dream...far from the maddening crowd!

And Oh, what sunsets...

EDIT: Haven't read any of the other posts...will do!
Truthdweller

Trad climber
San Diego, CA
Oct 27, 2011 - 01:25am PT
After (30) years of bouldering at Santee I was just informed that the "No Hands Traverse" actually goes with NO HANDS! I'm sure many already knew this, but back in 1981 I watched many crack the puzzle by at least using ONE handhold! I just figured that it had such a name because it used mostly feet and little hands. Well, just last week, Eric Roedes informed me that it actually has a no handhold solution. This always confounds me when someone gives me new information after (30) years of doing something the same way every time! Then again, misinformation in climbing....nah, never happens!

After disbelieving Eric at first, then being timidly careful of a sandbag, I dragged my butt back to the addicting (15) foot traverse to start from the beginning so as to fathom how anyone could do that silly problem without using a handhold! Recently, I was excited to solve the problem differently by eliminating a key foot "chip" down on the lower face to finish the crux end section by staying on the ramp the whole way: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XiAqPBTgSSU

But to eliminate the two handholds? I just couldn't picture it! I was a bit optimistic though for I had figured out a new "step through" that I hadn't thought of before. Maybe this was a key. Well, after a handful of attempts I cracked it!: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xCDUWAxo1Zw&feature=related
Mungeclimber

Trad climber
sorry, just posting out loud.
Oct 27, 2011 - 01:47am PT
dig the climbing content


did your hands not touch the wall at all?
Truthdweller

Trad climber
San Diego, CA
Oct 27, 2011 - 01:49am PT
Yes, they touch but I thought of that too and tried it but haven't been able to do that yet! After unsucessfully trying to hang my arms to my sides I conceeded that my elbows and arms can touch but not my hands. I'll keep trying...I'm sure it'll go!
ramonjuan

climber
Oct 27, 2011 - 01:52am PT
Now you gotta stop bye on the way out when it's dark and do it with no hands.
Truthdweller

Trad climber
San Diego, CA
Oct 27, 2011 - 01:52am PT
No headlamp?

Edit: I tried to reverse it but that's another project!
mooser

Trad climber
seattle
Oct 27, 2011 - 02:30am PT
1) Who are you? ST post name and/or real name.

Mooser - Tom Patterson

2) What year did you first climb at Santee Boulders?

1975

3) How many times (approx.) have you climbed at Santee Boulders, or from what year to what year?

75-85, with occasional visits when back in town. Impossible to count how many times over that 10 year span.

4) Do you personally know of anyone that climbed at Santee Boulders before you ever did? Do you know who first climbed at Santee Boulders and what year it was?

Yes to the first question...not sure about the second.

5) Are you aware of a climbing guide(s) in any form (even scribbled notes) for Santee Boulders, that pre-dates Doug White's "Crags and Boulders of San Diego County" (1978)?

**No.
**
4) Did you climb at any of the Great Western Bouldering Championship climbing contests held at Santee Boulders in the 1970's or '80s? Do you know the specific dates of these contests and who organized the contest?

Yes - 1981 or 82, I think it was. I was a judge, rather than a contestant.

5) If you did climb at said contests, can you list some names of any noteable fellow contestants? Who actually won?

A few of the notable climbers there: Yabo (RIP), JB (RIP), Reinhard Karl (RIP), Tony Yaniro, Chris Cantwell, and tons of others. Pretty sure JB won that one, or possibly Tony Y.

6) Please link to any posts you have made regarding Santee Boulders in any meaningful way.

7) Say something about what Santee Boulders means personally to you. Why should Santee Boulders be preserved?

Santee was a gathering place for a great "social" scene for bouldering--more so, in a sense, than my home boulders of Woodson, in that you can pretty much see the whole place from any vantage point. At times, it was aesthetically beautiful, like BVB's and Off-White's pics above, and at other times, looked kind of like a scroungy urban pile. But I always loved it. It's one of those places that--perhaps because of its early importance in my development as a climber--will always be very special to me.


mcolombo

Trad climber
Heidelberg, Germany
Oct 27, 2011 - 07:03am PT
Questions:

1) Who are you? ST post name and/or real name.
Marco Colombo /Mcolombo

2) What year did you first climb at Santee Boulders?
in 95.

3) How many times (approx.) have you climbed at Santee Boulders, or from what year to what year?
Between 95 and 2000 when I moved to Europe

4) Do you personally know of anyone that climbed at Santee Boulders before you ever did? sure but I only started in 95
Do you know who first climbed at Santee Boulders and what year it was?
No but they are probably here on ST ;-)

5) Are you aware of a climbing guide(s) in any form (even scribbled notes) for Santee Boulders, that pre-dates Doug White's "Crags and Boulders of San Diego County" (1978)?
No

4) Did you climb at any of the Great Western Bouldering Championship climbing contests held at Santee Boulders in the 1970's or '80s? Do you know the specific dates of these contests and who organized the contest?
No
5) If you did climb at said contests, can you list some names of any noteable fellow contestants? Who actually won?
6) Please link to any posts you have made regarding Santee Boulders in any meaningful way.

7) Say something about what Santee Boulders means personally to you. Why should Santee Boulders be preserved?

Learned to climb there after getting hooked on climbing when I friend from sailing took me up the North Buttress of Tahquitz just after I turned 30. My Parents moved to a retirement mobile home park which overlooks the boulders after they sold their house, I moved in with them to help look after my dad who had Alzheimer’s. I Bouldered there often between 95 and 2000 when I moved to Europe. It would be sad to lose the boulders; they are a great climbing resource for the area and a part of SoCal climbing history. I love San Diego County and the overdevelopment and the destruction of so much of the East County has turned so many cool places into faceless suburban sprawl.
SAVE THE BOULDERS!!!!
Klimmer

Mountain climber
San Diego
Topic Author's Reply - Oct 27, 2011 - 02:54pm PT
Thanks for keeping the stories, videos, and personal history going on this Santee Boulders thread.

This is a good one.

Climbing also! Not OT. Imagine that. ;-)
gonamok

climber
dont make me come over there
Oct 28, 2011 - 03:33am PT
If Im Ron Amok then youre Craig Fried

That was fun helping you do the san diego section of your guide. It got me places I hadnt been (like Crest) that are right in my back yard. Oh and dont worry, we got those mantles for ya.
gonamok

climber
dont make me come over there
Oct 28, 2011 - 03:41am PT
Bachar won the Senior mens division in 1981 and Michael Paul won the Jr Mens.

In 1982 there was a climb-off for 1st in the senior mens division, between Tony Yaniro and doug Munoz, who was going to school in san diego and had been a local for a couple years. The Aid crack, which had yet to see a free ascent, was the tiebreaker climb. Yaniro went first and made a strong showing, then Doug got to Yaniros high point and slapped chalk higher up the seam to take 1st place. Todd Trimble won the junior mens that year
bvb

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Oct 28, 2011 - 04:00am PT
Oh hell yeah Ron, I used to love hucking that jump. Knees don't want the pounding anymore...too brittle.
deepnet

Boulder climber
San Diego
Oct 28, 2011 - 08:59am PT
My memory is really bad.
That being said...didn't Bachar win at Magnolia Boulders?

deepnet= Rick Allenby
Climbed Santee '78 - '89

Greg on his "Epperson's Lunge" (to the right of "Shockley's Lunge") ~ '86
Off White

climber
Tenino, WA
Oct 28, 2011 - 08:07pm PT
Yeah Mooser, the place certainly wasn't always pretty, especially after a fire...



Still though...




the place has its charms.

bvb

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Oct 28, 2011 - 09:31pm PT
Damn, am I lookin' natty in that last pik or what? I remember that cargo pants/tank top/wool skullcap phase. Exactly 35 years ago. Fashion forward, as always.
deepnet

Boulder climber
San Diego
Oct 28, 2011 - 09:35pm PT
Dig the EB's too Bob.
We used to do the Black Spot in those things!
I can't even get close with the sticky stuff now!
nutjob

Gym climber
Berkeley, CA
Oct 28, 2011 - 10:00pm PT
It was either at Santee or Magnolia in 1994 that I did my first ever toprope and rappel. A guy took me out there once and showed me how to make a toprope anchor with nuts, hexes, and cams, and I managed not to kill myself or my buddies for the rest of the education via "Freedom of the Hills."
bvb

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Oct 28, 2011 - 10:30pm PT
Eight-year-old #1 son Kyle airing it out on the ampitheater while mom offers an attentive spot.

bvb

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Oct 28, 2011 - 10:39pm PT
I love this classic little Highball slab. Don't even think it has a name. Did it on my very first visit to Klantee in '73.

bvb

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Oct 28, 2011 - 10:56pm PT
A classic 5.10 traverse that starts beneath eppi's lunge, crosses underneath shockley's lunge, and goes all the way over to the far left hand side of the boulder. One of my favorite problems at Santee. Late Spring, 1986.


Further along on the traverse. It goes and goes and goes.

bvb

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Oct 28, 2011 - 11:08pm PT
The Ex took to climbing like a duck to water and got really good, really fast. This is 1985. She'd been climbing just a little over two years and had every problem on the Ampitheater wired. In the Spring of '86 she led Rebolting Development at Suicide. It was maybe her 9th or 10th lead.

bvb

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Oct 28, 2011 - 11:19pm PT
Most of the Graffiti at Santee is a cryin' shame, but this was almost forgivable.

gonamok

climber
dont make me come over there
Oct 29, 2011 - 01:12am PT
Ya bub, Jocelyn was pretty awesome. I remember you had told her you would do dishes for a month if she could crank hear my train a comin, and she was working that thing like a maniac. One time me you and her were walking up the hill and Jocelyn was begging and pleading for us to stop at HMT so she could work on it. You were like "nope, nope we got work to do" cuz me and you were hot to get on a particular deal. She kept begging as we were passing HMT, and finally she looked at me for the tiebreaker vote.

I said youve been working on that thing every time youve been up here, right? She nodded. I still remember my sage reply. "lack of variety killed the cat". And we walked on by.

A mans gotta do what a mans gotta do. Plus, she mighta sent it, so you owe me one bobo.
bvb

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Oct 29, 2011 - 01:23am PT
Yeah Ron, I made the mistake of agreeing to a cheatstone so she could start with the same jam I did. You wanna talk about dishpan hands. That was a long month. I insisted we eat out a lot.
mooser

Trad climber
seattle
Oct 29, 2011 - 07:22pm PT
A few early-80s grainy shots, bouldering at Santee. Definitely not as clear as BVB's and Off-White's above!



gonamok

climber
dont make me come over there
Oct 29, 2011 - 10:49pm PT
You mean she cranked it bob? i didnt hear about that
bvb

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Oct 30, 2011 - 03:41am PT
Yup, she did it, with about 5" worth of cheatstone. It really wasen't that surprising. Right about that time she did about 9 or 10 back-to-back laps on Jaws for Epi who had her changing from one Patagonia outfit to another. It was a good couple of months for her at Woodson. Alcoa, onsighted Out Of Sight without even breaking a sweat (easy route, but too high to really be consided a boulder problem), hucked some laps on Cali Night, the usual suspects. She never did get Driving South. I find some comfort in that. When we moved to Yosemite a few months later she was flashing 11+ thin cracks right and left. My Creation. Her having been a gymnast in High School didn't hurt.

Lap #I don't even know what.

loosepuck

climber
Nov 7, 2013 - 07:19pm PT
I climbed here back in 1980 to 1984. My dad gave me the guide book "Crags and Boulders of San Diego County". He climbed it back in the 70's with the San Diego Mountain Rescue Team. I just recently came across the book during a move and it brought back great memories of heading there after work or school and tooling around.

If anyone knows of an effort to save access to this awesome place, I would be interested in donating my guidebook for an auction to raise funds. It is one of the original 400 and is in excellent shape. It has one page that is loose, but the cover and spine are pristine.

Anything to help save the roots of SD climbing.
Splater

climber
Grey Matter
Nov 7, 2013 - 11:26pm PT
At this time the city of San Diego has acquired some of the parcels with boulders from Pardee. Not sure if there are any other parcels still left to acquire. Pardee is building Castlerock homes just east of there, which may become part of Santee city.
Santee boulders will become part of Mission Trails Regional Park.
The park is about to issue a draft of their new Master Plan, written by the city park planning and consultant KTU&A.
I have not seen the draft yet but am told they are not planning to limit access. They do propose fixing the trail system.

If they do try to limit access in the name of conservation/MSCP/MHPA,
then the response by climbers/hikers/runners/ scramblers should be to sue for a prescriptive recreational easement, since it meets the state requirement of at least 5 years of regular public recreational access before 1973.

The other thing the city is about to do is to close some of the mtn bike trails in East Elliot, mainly the newer ones since 2010, which are the best. They feel some obligation to control the area and meet some of the recent opinions of the USFWS and CalFish&Game. There is also an issue with trails that continue onto MCRD. They do propose some new trails which they say will have less impact. http://www.sdmba.com/site/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&layout=blog&id=11&Itemid=19

The next MTRP task force meeting is Thursday, November 21, 2013, at the Visitor Center. The Task Force meets at 1:00 PM on the third Thursday of odd numbered months. http://www.mtrp.org/cac.asp?idno=203910
bvb

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Jan 9, 2016 - 02:19pm PT
Santee Bump. If you like Santee, conditions do not get better than they are right here, right now.
eeyonkee

Trad climber
Golden, CO
Jan 9, 2016 - 04:44pm PT
Gotta be honest. I always thought the Santee boulders sucked compared to Woodson. Undoubtedly because I am such a poor natural boulderer.
Klimmer

Mountain climber
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 9, 2016 - 06:42pm PT
SBs truly are a treasure. 2 thumbs up!

There are climbs out there that haven't been done yet. Sharma or someone needs to visit and send the hardest. Seriously.
dee ee

Mountain climber
Of THIS World (Planet Earth)
Jan 9, 2016 - 10:38pm PT
1) Who are you? ST post name and/or real name.
David Evans....DEE EEE

2) What year did you first climb at Santee Boulders?
1982

3) How many times (approx.) have you climbed at Santee Boulders, or from what year to what year?
1982-1985 4 times a week during that time period, so maybe 500 times.

4) Do you personally know of anyone that climbed at Santee Boulders before you ever did? Do you know who first climbed at Santee Boulders and what year it was?
All the SD locals of that time climbed there before me. Greg Ep, Almodovar Bros, BeeHay, Mike Paul, Gonamuk, Bruce Nyberg and many who don't come to mind immediately.

5) Are you aware of a climbing guide(s) in any form (even scribbled notes) for Santee Boulders, that pre-dates Doug White's "Crags and Boulders of San Diego County" (1978)?No

4) Did you climb at any of the Great Western Bouldering Championship climbing contests held at Santee Boulders in the 1970's or '80s? Do you know the specific dates of these contests and who organized the contest?

No, the first climbing contest I participated in down there was earlier at the Lakeside boulders in which many of us placed 2nd!

5) If you did climb at said contests, can you list some names of any noteable fellow contestants? Who actually won?
No

6) Please link to any posts you have made regarding Santee Boulders in any meaningful way.
No can do. I have many old photos from there.

7) Say something about what Santee Boulders means personally to you. Why should Santee Boulders be preserved?

When I moved down there in the early '80's I loved that place more than any other SD bouldering area.

5-12 of us would meet every day (Mon. - Thurs.) in the afternoon to boulder. Sometimes it was Woodson or Lakeside or one of the other areas but most often it was Santee. I could see the boulders from some of my classrooms at Grossmont Community College, which made perfect attendance impossible. Friday was reserved for driving to do "real" climbing.

I lived in a climber only household with transplanted northerners John Freriks, Doug Munoz, Mike Casper and the Manx, with frequent visits from Mike's bro John Casper and all (and I mean all) of the active members of the San Diego scene of the time. A week day did not go by without a semi-party at our house, it was the best! On the weekends and holidays everyone bolted for the crags, be they Tahquitz, Joshua Tree, Yosemite, the Sierras or the Trono.
I have some bad memories about certain people killing rattlesnakes unnecessarily but be that as it may....

That place will always be special to me.

Here is me and The Manx on a typical afternoon.


mooser

Trad climber
seattle
Jan 10, 2016 - 07:51am PT
Thanks for bumping this thread, bvb. As Greg (eeyonkee) said, the boulders as a whole don't compare to Woodson, but it's got its own scrappy identity, history, and charm.

My wife and I (and whatever friends we were bouldering with us) had a tradition of (as often as possible) stopping by a pizza place in Santee on our way back to La Mesa after an afternoon of bouldering. I can't remember the name of the place (Fillipi's, maybe?), but it was a great capper for the evening.

I miss the days of being able to drive up to the rocks, but am happy to see the area off limits to motorized vehicles now. I'm also happy to hear that it might be accessible and protected. It'd be such a sad shame if that area had become the yard of someone's McMansion. That happened to some really sweet boulders in the Rancho Bernardo area.
BeeHay

Trad climber
San Diego CA
Jan 10, 2016 - 12:27pm PT
Thought I had posted here, there must be another thread?

Need to set some of you old f*kers straight about the '82 contest, some of us still have a couple of brain cells left…

Yaniro and Moony did have a climb off on the Aid Crack, but when neither one got it the action was moved to the previously discussed scoop on the off width boulder. Moony grabbed first place on that one in waning daylight. I remember it well, because in a freakish display of local's advantage (and thanks to BVB for being sick and Watusi still junior class) I was tied with Lechlinski (sp?) for 3rd. We were up next for a tie breaker, luckily darkness intervened and I won the coin toss and an ice ax!

Notes on local advantage; I think at least half of the problems I did were new to me, the big advantage was knowing which climbs NOT to try. Like the arete on the left end of Amphitheater, I think it was 12 points, that thing is way to hard to start for a short boy. Word spread about a 20 pointer way over at the west end that was a give away. Sure enough, I bagged it sight unseen after the strong guys had filled their cards with sandbags.

I never dreamed at that time, that the place would still be accessible in 2016. "Urban Sprawl" can be sad to watch, but most of us do in fact live in a house. My house was built in 1927, and I'm sure some old codger was pissed off to see the open space disappear…

BH
Rick A

climber
Boulder, Colorado
Jan 11, 2016 - 02:06pm PT
I lived in San Diego from 77 through the summer of 1980 when I was going to school there. Since it was closer than Woodson, I visited Santee quite a bit. Had some great sessions out there, most of the time with Dick Shockley, who figured out problems with the cerebral precision expected of one with a PHD from Cal Tech.

I did a top-rope FA on the tallest side of Moby Dick, probably the longest route at Santee at 20 feet or so. I missed the following thread when it was originally posted, and it has has a Rich Sims photo of me on the route. I remember it consisting of very hard cranking on particularly thin holds.

http://www.supertopo.com/climbing/thread.php?topic_id=724572&msg=724699#msg724699
eeyonkee

Trad climber
Golden, CO
Jan 11, 2016 - 02:15pm PT
As I recall Santee, they're all particularly thin holds. I like holds with some meat on 'em.
dirt claud

Social climber
san diego,ca
Jan 11, 2016 - 02:27pm PT
Has anyone climbed this seam on Synchronicity boulder before?


bvb

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Jan 11, 2016 - 02:36pm PT
The first time Mike and I met Dick Shockley was 1973, at Santee. We had hitch-hiked (and walked miles) over from Mission Gorge to check it out, having never been there. That was one of the first times we began to realize that at the crags, vast differences in ages -- we were young teens, he already had a receding hairline -- went unnoticed when you could keep up, as a climber. For most of my life the age spread among people I climbed with regularly would easily run decades in either direction.
bvb

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Jan 11, 2016 - 02:38pm PT
Has anyone climbed this seam on Synchronicity boulder before?

Yeah, I think it's 12c? It's also the 1982 climb-off aid crack BeeHey is referring to a couple posts upthread.
dirt claud

Social climber
san diego,ca
Jan 11, 2016 - 02:51pm PT
cool, thanks for the info. That overhanging climb on the right side of dog pile looks gnarly too, never seen anyone on it. You know who did an FA on that BVB? Guess it's called Kung Poa.

darkmagus

Mountain climber
San Diego, CA
Jan 11, 2016 - 03:01pm PT
Kung Pao!! Kind of an interesting climb for Santee, a bolted sport route! Never tried it myself though!

I really like the place, despite the graffiti, trash, and overall scrappiness. A great place to learn how to stand on dimes and mantel slippery sloper shelves.

I think a lot of the thin faces at Santee feel similar to routes at Suicide Rock, am I right or nah?

Not sure what specific mega-hard projects were being referred to upthread, but in recent years Dan Beall has added a hard route to the steep face of the Suzy boulder called "Mean Streak" (V11). What else is there for SUPER HARD STUFF?
dirt claud

Social climber
san diego,ca
Jan 12, 2016 - 09:08am PT
Terrible face is pretty damned terrible :)

jgill

Boulder climber
The high prairie of southern Colorado
Jan 12, 2016 - 08:26pm PT
Walked around them once in my old age. Way too smooth.
sd-nick

climber
San Diego
Mar 6, 2017 - 11:27am PT
Good conditions bump for the Santee Boulders. Special place to me it's where I discovered climbing. Apartments are being built next to the boulders but hasn't effected access yet.
bvb

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Mar 6, 2017 - 06:03pm PT
I've lived through at least four or five Santee burnouts; here's 1992 and 1977


sd-nick

climber
San Diego
Mar 7, 2017 - 08:47am PT
Yo BVB man those are cool fire photos, complete with a 1992 crash pad. That's gotta be around the time pads came out? Also I think Homegirl is on the dogpile traverse one of my favorites! Did you guys ever do it backwards? Starting at the hand crack going right, you can do a complete traverse with some hard reachy moves turning the corner onto the highball slab.

There is a locals only top secret hush hush silly fa proj where you can keep traversing right thru the overhanging "kung pow" face, drop down around the corner past Piggots mantle and the horizontal traversing seam, finishing with a mantle out back. As far as I know it hasn't been all linked together? Contrived and silly but its gotta be at least 200ft of traversing with cool hard moves.



















NutAgain!

Trad climber
South Pasadena, CA
Mar 7, 2017 - 09:33am PT
Is Magnolia Boulders considered part of Santee?

Magnolia was the first place I ever climbed with a rope in the early 1990s. I remember being on a 5.10c toprope after a few months of gym climbing, and thinking it was impossible, that my fingertips would explode from the razor blade edges cutting into my finger tips. I remember my first ever rappel there, the fear and determination of committing to drop off an overhang.
Juan Maderita

Trad climber
"OBcean" San Diego, CA
Mar 7, 2017 - 10:03am PT
NutAgain, Magnolia Boulders is in Santee (city) but a few miles from "Santee Boulders", on the opposite side of town.
bvb

Social climber
flagstaff arizona
Mar 7, 2017 - 02:42pm PT
Magnolia! If the access and approach were better (meaning flat, and legal) it'd probably be the better, more popular of the two Santee areas. All the thin face you could ask for, along with plenty of hard splitters.


Klimmer2.0

Mountain climber
San Diego, CA
May 22, 2019 - 10:28am PT
I just cant imagine that threads like this will be lost. Where else is all of this history? Where else are these incredible historic images?

I think the ST Forum should be archived with all the images. Too much history will be lost. I hope that CM will reconsider. Include the images in the archive.

Lots of great images from BVB here at Santee Boulders. RIP BVB.
AKDOG

Mountain climber
Anchorage, AK
May 22, 2019 - 09:43pm PT

Santee was always a fun place. Going to SDSU and living in La Mesa with DE, Ferricks, Manx, Mike is was a great place for an afternoon bouldering session. Fun time...lots of fun locals and back then nobody even had a crash pad.
Off White

climber
Tenino, WA
May 23, 2019 - 10:54am PT
Klimmer, this little thread of less than 100 posts is some of your best work here, thanks for the bump.
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