Topic Author's Original Post - Jun 17, 2013 - 09:22am PT
It looms out of the woods. Not foreboding, at least not in this weather. Not impossible, at least not for me. Quite doable actually, a good sign all things considered. Been up there, done that climbing, a bunch of times actually.
So its not if I want to do the route again. Of course I do. Its more a matter of with whom...
For me its a test... can I STILL? Can I still pack my pack, walk the walk, talk the talk, climb the pitches, remember all the tasks... can I remember how to get up and get down again?
The approach was heinous (right after the carabiner-post marking the climbers' trail to the base of the cliff, lol)
When we pop out of the woods there is no ignoring the large chunk of granite before us.
The crux first pitch was wet. The sole party above us bailed and rapped, complaining of fatigue and first pitch jitters. That gave us top rope on the morning queue. After chatting with some dudes from Colorado about the smokey Tuolume morning air and giving them a proper 'Welcome to California', I wandered up the pitch and managed to get past the wet spot with the minimum of pulling on gear.
Everyone I watched during the day struggled with that 10-feet of wet crack. Sasha was no different. She was all smiles once past that difficulty. After watching her send it I knew we were going to get up the rock.
She even tried a Beatrix Kiddo move - poke your fingers through a rock, ka CHA!
The 2nd pitch was money. Dry, warm, lovely granite, easy to the touch, begging to be climbed, with jam after lovely jam, mostly fingers actually!
I could tell she was liking it.
I was too.
I jacked the Colorado team below us by setting my 2nd belay too low. They were climbing faster than us and I wanted to let them pass. So I joined the next two pitches, of course. After allowing them to scoot by we had the dome to ourselves... the only other party also bailed after the first pitch.
I asked the Little Sherpa Girl, "Your lead?"
She just smiled and reached for the rack.
I smiled right back. I had complete confidence in her.
Getting to the goods
Told you she had it.
Another 500 feet of climbing, give or take, would put us on top.
But I ran out of space on the memory card (ah the modern life)
A little post-climb bouldering to work the kinks out, nawmean?
And then the trip was over and it's all 'back to the grindstone.'
Monday's Suck. Officially. But I sure do have a warm glow thinking about the climb we just did, all casual and shyte like that.