Roads around Planet Granite SF may be impacted by the Rock and Roll Half Marathon on Sunday, Mar. 26th. Please plan accordingly! 

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6:30am - 11:00am, 10,000 participants. Expect heavy traffic demand early in the day with detours and road closures.

PARKING: All street parking and parking lots along the route will be closed during the course of the race.

ROAD CLOSURES: 25th Ave. Gate from Lincoln Blvd. to McDowell Ave. and all roads intersecting Lincoln Blvd. such as Washington at Kobbe + Mason Street from Warming Hut to Marina Gate and all roads intersecting Mason, including Crissy Field Ave., Long Ave., Marine Ave.

900 BUSINESS ACCESS: Access and parking will be temporarily suspended during the course of the race. Parking will be at the McDowell Stables.

GGB ACCESS: There will be NO vehicular access from the Presidio to the GG Bridge during this event. Marina Gate GGB on ramp is open.

BICYCLISTS: All recreational bicyclists will be diverted toward Storey Ave. westbound onto Lincoln Blvd. @ a controlled crossing at the corner of Lincoln Blvd. at Merchant Ave. /Storey Ave.

TRANSIT: PresidiGo will be unaffected and MUNI will operate on an altered schedule during race times.

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With Belmont's Friction comp done and a few weeks passed, it is time to start looking forward to the next comp at PG San Francisco! We'll have routes for everyone, food, snacks and Fort Point Beer Co., local sponsors, and a raffle full of awesome prizes! 

San Francisco Friction Series is Saturday, Mar. 25, 2017 and registration opens at 10am! 

After San Francisco, Sunnyvale holds the final comp on May, 6th which includes the Series Finals where the top 5 climbers from all the events compete for a cash purse! 

New this year – Each Gym will host an Onsight Final! Cheer on the top climbers (or compete yourself!) as they battle for the top spot at their gym and a chance to win a cash purse in Sunnyvale where we’ll be hosting the Series Final. Plus, we’re crowning a Series Champion based on points across all three comps!

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Hello Fitness Adventurers! Are you breaking a sweet sweat with our Passport to Fitness challenge? If you haven’t yet, it’s time to pick up your card and get started!

What’s at stake? Our Bay Area gyms are sponsored by PrAna for the occasion! They’ve been kind enough to donate a plethora of prizes for our Passport participants. Each row completed of the Passport card gives you one raffle ticket for a chance at PrAna wear and gear.  Make sure your card also has your email on it so we can notify you if you won!

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We’re at the last week in this month-long fitness challenge, and we’re psyched to keep your motivation and your body strong. Our San Francisco Abs ‘n’ Core Instructor Alison has kindly taken the time to answer some questions you may have about the fierce task of core training! We’ll be hosting a special Bonus Challenge Day on March 1st at PG San Francisco, where you will have an opportunity to snag one free space before we wrap-up the Passport challenge. February 28th is the last day to receive credit for regular classes.

To prepare you for Bonus Challenge Day, our Abs and Core Instructor Alison has kindly taken the time to answer some questions you may have about the fierce task of core training.

What kind of benefits stem from regular core exercises?

Alison: Core training has a seemingly endless amount of benefits! Core strength a.) helps with injury prevention, b.) improvement of spinal and postural control, c.) teaches the muscles to move together more effectively and efficiently, d.) can improve respiratory function, e.) For climbing, it maintains body tension and helps toeing in on overhangs and f.) partnered with good nutrition, gives you a badass looking midsection . . . to name a few.

What can a participant expect from your class on their first day in Abs & Core?

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Alison: My advice to an Abs & Core newb would be to arrive with an open mind and a willingness to be uncomfortable. The class is challenging so you will want to move at your own pace - don't be intimidated by those around you! If they look like pros, it's probably because they have been attending class for years. They, too, had a first day. Trust me - we have all struggled with these movements. Take your time, be patient with your body, and bring your sense of humor! If you can't laugh at yourself then you will miss out on half the fun of the class :) Bring a mat and a towel - you will sweat!

How do you keep your fitness enthusiasts motivated during a workout?

Alison: I motivate my class by being my 100% authentically weird self. I make jokes, tell random stories about the movements, and share my process for creating the workouts with everyone. I believe in what we're doing and building together as a team, and I want them to feel like active participants in the dynamics of class. Standing at the front of a room and preaching is just not my style. I want everyone to feel like they are a part of this Abs & Core community so laughter is pretty much mandatory. :) Groans, grunts, eye rolls, and random outbursts are all welcome.

What other classes would you recommend as a compliment to the Abs & Core class?

Alison: I would definitely recommend Power Yoga as a great compliment to Abs & Core class, as well as Total Body Fitness. Both of those classes will match the intensity of A&C and follow similar movement patterns. Of course, at least once a week it's good to get in a slower-paced class for the body, and I would recommend Yin/Restorative yoga for all attendees. We have such a phenomenal yoga and fitness program at PG SF that you really can't go wrong with any of the rockstar instructors.

What can we expect from your class on Challenge Day?

Alison: We have a very special Core Challenge coming up on March 1st that will be extra sassy (if that is possible with me) and hardcore . . . pun intended. All are welcome to come and participate as we wrap up the Passport Challenge, but be sure to bring your water bottle because these moves will be fire! Ok, I didn't say I had good jokes, you guys . . .

A huge thank you to Alison! She’s been killing it as an instructor and she’s an incredible source of motivation. Be ready for an intense workout when she hosts one of our final Passport to Fitness challenges!

Bonus Challenge Day @ PG SF:  On March 1st at PG SF, you can stop by for one of two bonus classes that will count towards Passport to Fitness! At 6pm, Alison will be signing off for Abs ‘n’ Core classes and at 9pm, Andres will sign off for F10 Fitness! Bonus to the bonus – when you attend one of these bonus day classes, you will also get a bonus sign off! So we’ll mark off your Abs ‘n’ Core or F10 Fitness but also give you one “freebie” sign off! This is perfect for if you weren’t able to get to that last class on your card  

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The first comp of Friction Series 2017 is over and it was a great time! Read on for pictures, scores and highlights!

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This is a guest post by AJ Dexter, climbing photographer and author of We Are: Smith Rock, a community collaboration and passion-driven project on Smith Rock. We offered AJ a spot to talk about why he put together this project and what it means to him personally. We are pretty psyched about this book too - so many of our community experience great things at Smith Rock; plus, all proceeds from the book go to the Access Fund who works diligently on keeping our outdoor climbing areas open for us to enjoy. Interested in supporting the project? Check out the website, join the mailing list, share it with others and pick up a copy of the book!

What is this all about?

Originally, "We Are: Smith Rock" was a way to get the climbing photos I shot at Smith Rock out there to the world but the book took on a life of its own. It’s not really about the photos anymore, or about me. The book is about Smith Rock but more importantly, our climbing community:

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  • All profits go directly to the Access Fund who include conservation tips for protecting our crags in the book
  • The stunning photos in the book are all from notable and up and coming photographers and are shot at Smith Rock
  • The writing, photography, layout and design were all crafted by climbers
  • It’s not just a photo book. Read stories from big name climbers you’ll recognize and some that you might not.

My Inspiration: The Forward of We Are: Smith Rpck

"It was during a trip here, standing atop the summit that inspiration hit me. I don’t know why, or what about it spoke to me, but I looked over the park and saw it in a new way. I truly saw the varied terrain and rock, the views, the many experiences made here. Smith Rock offers something for every climber, if you need a beating it can deliver. If you need a confidence boost... you got it. Short climbs, long climbs, trad climbs, sport climbs. Smith Rock inspires adventure and in that moment alone on the summit I realized I needed to give something back.

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Naturally, I wanted to create something photographic, but the more I thought about it the more I realized that it deserved a lot more than just me. If I truly wanted to share the park and do something powerful I needed others too. I needed to share the story of Smith Rock, not just the story of my experience there.

The result of that idea is this book. It has evolved naturally and entirely through the support of the climbing community. Every image, word, and page was created by a climber because of the shared belief that it could inspire others and help protect areas that we all seek to find ourselves."

There are a lot of really amazing climbers who contributed their stories about climbing at Smith Rock. Here are two of my favorite:

We_Are_Smith_Cover_Photo.jpgBrooke Sandhal (Metolius): "Smith Rock can’t be adequately described by words or image – it must be experienced in person...with all ones senses, the smell of sage in the desert air, the beauty of a raging sunset over Asterisk Pass, feeling the texture of Dzthe heinous clingdz (yes, the route is named after a single painful crimp edge) with your own worn finger tips, sharing beta with a group of folks from a far away country, the pain of depumping while you lower off some Smith tweakfest, it all has to be experienced first hand! One word: Go!"

Paige Claassen: "People describe Smith as very technical, even slabby. It does require very precise technique, but also significant power. Believe it or not, I always feel I boulder best after a trip to Smith. The climbing requires immense body tension, because if you aren’t in close to the wall, you’re falling off. My core will be sore every single day from climbing at Smith, whereas when you’re upside down in a cave you can let your body sag and relax to rest. At Smith, it’s pretty on from the bottom to the top."

Behind the Scenes

This is the first book I'd ever printed or published. So I’ve had to learn a lot along the way:

    1. To Self Publish or Try a Book Publisher:
      Most books come from conventional book publishers (think Mountaineers Books, or Falcon Guides) while some are self published. When I started I really didn’t know whether this book would be successful or even get off the ground so that informed my path. Using a book publisher isn’t a guarantee; there are a lot of requirements to just get in the door. I wanted to keep it climber built, plus it's half photo book, half story book so it might be tough to get in front of a conventional publisher. In the end, I chose to self publish. It meant I could create it exactly how I wanted and keep costs low (yay, more money for the Access Fund!) by not having to buy large quantities of books that would just sit in my garage. Also, if the project flopped, I wasn’t out much money.
    2. I’m Just Not a Writer: 
      I’m a photographer, not a writer. I can write but well enough to sell something. That is a whole other beast and it scared me. So I reached out to a connection in the climbing community, Julie Ellison of Climbing Magazine. I knew she was a rockstar editor, photographer, and writer. I gave her some insight into what I was working on and asked if she wanted to help. She was in. This was such a pivotal moment for the book and gave me confidence to pursue it. She helped with the interview questions, reached out to most of the athletes in the book, and brought on James Lucas to tackle the writing you see in the book.
    3. Help me!...But, I Can’t Pay You:
      The next step was gathering people. This is where the magic of the book really came together for me. One of the hardest tasks I had was to ask people to basically work for free and asking fellow photographers to give me photos to print and publish without paying them is awful. As is asking climbers to take time to answer interview questions from a no name climbing photographer in Portland for a book that doesn’t exist. The magical part though, and what I love about our climbing community, is that everyone understood the concept and believed in its mission. Hard core climbers and photographers donated time, products and services to create something I think is amazing. All to promote climbing conservation and the Access Fund.
    4. Design and Printing:We_are_Smith_Planning.jpg
      The design and printing stage was where I had the least knowledge. Fortunately, I had the impeccably professional and talented Alton Richardson to handle it and  take care of it. I gave Alton a little guidance about what I was looking for with the design and he nailed the look and feel you see in the final book first pass. He’s a rockstar. The printing was pretty easy; because I self published, I opted for a print on demand service for photo books that has worked really well. It's dead simple and gives me the flexibility to print when there are orders vs. buying a thousand copies at a time.

And that was it! We Are: Smith Rock was born! I hope you’ve gotten a sense of the project and that it inspires you to climb more and help protect the places we have an impact on! 

Check out the website at www.wearesmithrock.com, sign up for the newsletter for updates, buy a book at your local Planet Granite or on the site, and share it with your friends on social media.Smith_Rock_Climbing_-_Collage.jpg

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Early this month, our  PG climbing teams attended USA Climbing’s Bouldering Divisionals and in hopes of qualifying for nationals. And they rocked it. 21 of our climbing team kids made top 10 in their category and 9 have been invited to nationals!

Images courtesy of Andrea Laue (on Instagram @andrealaue or www.andrealaue.com)

Divisional Results for Our Team:

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