Trip Report
2011-01 El Cap Base, breaking in a newbie
Thursday February 3, 2011 7:59pm
Folks, no major adventures here, but some impressive showing for a dude on his 1st ever day climbing cracks and 2nd time ever climbing outside!

It all began late one night as we pulled into central station. No waiting for a campsite!




We slept where we fancied:


We opted for the easy way out and bought breakfast in the cafeteria rather than mess up this beauty:


Perfect conditions on the backside of Columbia boulder:


We had to keep an eye on these dudes or they would try to steal our snacks. Winter's tough:


We decided to look for life at the base of El Cap, because we were lonely at Camp 4:


But we had to stop for some artistry on the way:






Boy that rock do look purdy, and my new point and shoot can zoom pretty well! But no bodies to be found here


Except this one:




Here's le_bruce and I getting ready to do battle:


And bing:


bang


boom!


stutter


and there we go...



And here's our newbie hero on his first ever crack, Moby Dick Center, with Ahab looking all juicy in the background:


Some moves he looked like pro:


Others not:


But look at that mix of suffering and bliss, I think he's addicted now:


Even this...


Couldn't dampen this


And then my main hombre brought up the rear:




But just one pitch was not enough, and I'd never been above that, so onward and upward




And then a rap from the tower:


And he took this picture from the ground looking back up at us. Moby Dick left is tantalizing:


And Little John Right is pretty cool too:




Here's from above:


And then it was time for le_bruce to set off into the great wide open:


Not exactly sure which way to go, but he committed this way and it worked out:


Toward the end of Little John Right, El Cap Base
Toward the end of Little John Right, El Cap Base
Credit: nutjob

With a cool little step-across:


About then a flood of cold air started rolling into the bottom end of the valley from the high country. It revealed its path to us:












And then from one minute:


To the next, we were enveloped:


Time to pack up and hit the road:


A little frozen fog catching on the flash:


And another wonderful day snatched from the jaws of winter!


Good times.




  Trip Report Views: 1,901
nutjob
About the Author
nutjob is a climber from Berkeley, CA.

Some people call me the space cowboy yeah
Some call me the gangster of love
Some people call me Maurice
'Cause I speak of the pompetous of love

Comments
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Slakkey

Big Wall climber
From Back to Big Wall Baby
  Feb 3, 2011 - 08:09pm PT
Nice great pics nothing better than spending a little time on El cap Cool stuff
sullly

Gym climber
  Feb 3, 2011 - 08:15pm PT
Nice TR Nutjob. Like the hat and your sentence about mix of bliss and suffering.
Captain...or Skully

climber
in the oil patch...Fricken Bakken, that's where
  Feb 3, 2011 - 08:15pm PT
Right on, Nutjob! TFPU, man!!
Gotta love those days. Nicely done.
scuffy b

climber
heading slowly NNW
  Feb 3, 2011 - 08:21pm PT
Your trip reports are always worth checking, THANKS
Roxy

Trad climber
CA Central Coast
  Feb 3, 2011 - 08:40pm PT

Wow, second time out and he's craggin' on El Cap.


that's so awesome!

Jaybro

Social climber
Wolf City, Wyoming
  Feb 3, 2011 - 08:53pm PT
Coolio!

Hey, any ice falling from above?
skywalker

climber
  Feb 3, 2011 - 08:59pm PT
Bump!


Cheers
S....
neversummer

climber
30 mins. from suicide USA
  Feb 3, 2011 - 08:59pm PT
looks like a blast....good job.
nutjob

Sport climber
Almost to Hollywood, Baby!
Author's Reply  Feb 3, 2011 - 08:59pm PT
Ice falling... there were actually a couple of hardcore looking ladies who decided not to climb there that day out of concern for falling ice. I'm guessing they were local and were more picky than us.

There were little specs falling, but I didn't hear any major chunks at all through the day. I think a marble-sized mushy piece hit me on the shoulder or helmet once.
Ezra Ellis

Trad climber
North wet, and Da souf
  Feb 3, 2011 - 10:30pm PT
Awesome Pics nut job, thanks for sharing, way to kill it in the snow!
Hankster

Social climber
Golden, CO
  Feb 3, 2011 - 10:47pm PT
NICE! That looked like a riot.

Caylor
klk

Trad climber
cali
  Feb 3, 2011 - 10:50pm PT
great pix.

i dont know about the hat.
murcy

Gym climber
sanfrancisco
  Feb 3, 2011 - 11:11pm PT
Sights for sore eyes. And MDC first crack ever? Hence the "pulling open the crack" technique. You assassins! Thanks!!!xn
Mike Bolte

Trad climber
Planet Earth
  Feb 3, 2011 - 11:36pm PT
this is a great trip report and great time
JOEY.F

Gym climber
It's not rocket surgery
  Feb 3, 2011 - 11:40pm PT
YES!!!
Way to pull out of winter for a few hours.
okie

Trad climber
  Feb 3, 2011 - 11:48pm PT
Ahab "looking juicy"-- maybe from ABOVE! LOL
That left side is pretty fun too.
Jingy

climber
Somewhere out there
  Feb 4, 2011 - 12:04am PT
Bad F*#king Ass!!!!


That's what its all about.

Getting a newbie out there on a solid fun crack in the middle of winter, and walking away with great memory and a smile...



Thanks for the post nut!!!


Cheers to the trio
shipoopoi

Big Wall climber
oakland
  Feb 4, 2011 - 12:27am PT
hey nutjob, thanks for the tr, great pics from bivy to gastoning to fogathon. ss
'Pass the Pitons' Pete

Big Wall climber
like Ontario, Canada, eh?
  Feb 4, 2011 - 01:07am PT
Gotta love Little [Howard] John[son's] - spent a few nights bivi'd up there before launching.

Cool photos and unusual [for me] wintertime angles of the sun, much lower than I'm accustomed to.


See you on the bridge in the spring, eh?
ChampionSleeper

Trad climber
Phoenix, AZ
  Feb 4, 2011 - 01:58am PT
Looks like you guys had a blast. I'll bet none of you will forget this trip soon. Good stuff! And now the rest of us know when to hit camp 4:-)
Daphne

Trad climber
Northern California
  Feb 4, 2011 - 03:30am PT
Dang! Awesome TR-- thanks for sharing!
slidingmike

climber
CA
  Feb 4, 2011 - 03:43am PT
Fantastic, thanks for sharing this!
426

climber
  Feb 4, 2011 - 09:31am PT
Cool stuff, literally.
PhotogEC

climber
In front of my computer
  Feb 4, 2011 - 09:50am PT
First time crack climbing ever is on El Cap? You've ruined him for life!

Looks like everyone had a blast. Great post!

--Eric
Jay Hack

Trad climber
Detroit, Michigan
  Feb 4, 2011 - 10:15am PT
That got me so psyched, thanks for the winter stoke!
this just in

climber
north fork
  Feb 4, 2011 - 10:51am PT
Gotta love those winter crowds. Nice climbing bros!!!
seth kovar

climber
Reno, NV
  Feb 4, 2011 - 10:58am PT
Awesome!!! tfpu, good stuff
ydpl8s

Trad climber
Santa Monica, California
  Feb 4, 2011 - 11:13am PT
Moby Dick Center was the first time I touched Yosemite rock in 1978. It was really slippery in RR's, I was "burning rubber" all the way up!
Denise Umstot

climber
Princess of the El Cap Bridge!
  Feb 4, 2011 - 11:25am PT
Sweet TR! One of my first climbs was Little John! Way to get after it and have fun :)
J. Werlin

Social climber
Cedaredge, CO
  Feb 4, 2011 - 11:50am PT
great TR, thank you.
Thorgon

Big Wall climber
Sedro Woolley, WA
  Feb 4, 2011 - 11:58am PT
Nutjob~

Way to get out there in the winter! Those pictures were great and looks like you guys had a great time! Isn't that what it's all about? Oh, hell yeah!!!

Thor
k-man

Gym climber
SCruz
  Feb 4, 2011 - 12:16pm PT
Great pic of Middle, and way to reel 'em in!
Dirka

Trad climber
Hustle City
  Feb 4, 2011 - 12:26pm PT
Thanks for posting.
survival

Big Wall climber
Terrapin Station
  Feb 4, 2011 - 12:51pm PT
Climbing content-check

El Capitan-check

Lotsa climbing pix-check

Winter-relief-valve-check

WOOT!!
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