Kinder Joey by Brian Weaver
Joey Kinder is touring the country, giving slide shows and coaching our youth team. If you've been dying to meet this enthusiastic and energetic climber then check out Brian Weaver's first impressions of meeting Joey.
I had been looking forward to meeting Joey for a while before I arrived at the Sun Square Hotel at Monte Casino. When he walked out of the elevator at 8 in the morning and shook my hand he looked pretty tired but as soon as I mentioned the word climbing the tiredness melted into excitement. He, Colette and I jumped into my car and headed off to the Chosspile. After I took a few wrong turns from Joburg (and wound up back in Pretoria) we finally made it to our destination. The walk was brisk and psyche was very high! Joey told me how excited he was to be in South Africa and couldn’t believe that he had actually been invited to be here!
As soon as Joey saw the crag we were both smiling and excited. He told me that it looks a lot like a crag in Rifle, Colorado, blocky and full of kneebars. Sure enough, that is exactly how the climbing feels at Chosspile. After he warmed up on Gandalf (24), and thrashed up Morn Not Over Much (25), the day was ready to begin. Paul was putting up draws on the project to the left of Fossil Fuel while I put up draws on the Shadowfax Project. Colette looked like she was having fun on Halfling (27) too!
The day was off to a great start with Greg having a warm up send of Grimslade! Congrats! Both Paul and I were very close to opening the project by Fossil Fuel, but neither of us managed. Joey crushed Fossil Fuel second go and at the end of the day with time expiring, crushed the project too! It is a fantastic line! Bouldery crux which then moves into the top section of Fossil Fuel, finishing at the same anchors! Fantastic climbing. We’re still waiting for a name.
On our way back to Joburg, I got us lost again (don’t look at me like that, I’m from Pretoria). At least they got a scenic tour of the area. We still made it back with some time to spare.
Joey was great with the primary school kids; his energy just filled the room and lit up their faces as a told some interesting stories about his climbing overseas. Afterwards, they all lined up for autographs and pictures! Colette and I watched on. She was snapping away, not wanting to miss a moment. She looked like she was so proud of him. Joey has a way of lighting up the room with his smile, it’s great to see.
I had a chance to chat with the two of them more during dinner, Chinese food in Monte Casino. We chatted quite a bit about life on the road, the freedoms and the stresses. It’s not all fun and games all the time. Joey puts in a great deal of effort to making films for other people along the way, a skill which he was able to demonstrate to us in the form of the advertisements he shot for Sterling Ropes in Europe. Top notch work and very time consuming.
We headed back to the Verona room for the unveiling of the South African Youth Team for the World Cup in Imst, Austria. Neil introduced each of the athletes, who had provided a quote about what climbing means to him/her. As he read the quotes and the climbers walked to the forefront, a buzz filled the room. Flashes were going off left, right and centre; proud parents smiled while team members were given the spotlight. The team clothing was fitting and more photographs were snapped away with sponsors’ names in the background. This would be impossible without the likes of you! Many thanks goes to Southern Suns, Tranquilitas Adventure Farm, Black Diamond, Beal, Saltic, The Barn, South African Climbing Academy, Black Pepper and Go Plast.