Trip Report
5 Climbers, 1 Rope, 10000 Holds, Many Friends
Friday November 22, 2013 11:55am
It has become a sorta tradition for the Kos family to go to JTree on dad's birthday. As part of his gift he gets to drag everyone up a climb of his choice.

This year, he picked the Wall of 10,000 Holds, on Ranger Station Rock, found at the end of Lost Horse road.

Not much of a climb, more of a technical scramble, but a good adventure nonetheless.

Credit: Dave Kos
Of course the road ends at a gate, about half a mile short of the ranger station.

Little Sis somehow manages to get out of carrying a pack.

Why can't we just drive on the road?

And the end of the road, a short hike through a wash, and the "approach" begins.

It's a maze of boulders.

Providing some motivation.

Not there yet, but let's celebrate our progress!

Why can't my husband just watch football on Sunday, like everyone else?

This approach never ends...

Finally at base camp. Time to refuel.

The guidebook describes this area as a "sunken garden." It's a fun little spot. We still aren't at the base of the climb, but the terrain is getting pretty sketchy. We decide to rope up to get over the last few obstacles.

Ready to climb: Shoes, harness, helmet, lolipop.

The first "pitch." Twenty feet up a chimney with an exposed move over a bulge.

This takes us to another tier where we had to negotiate a short hand crack boulder problem, probably about 5.3, to get to the base of the climb.

The actual climb.

The kids thought that it should be called 10,000 "holes" instead of "holds."

The climb was great fun, and easier than the approach.

Big brother.

Brothers on the summit.

The girls come up together. I have no idea what was in the pack.

We summited as the sun was starting to set. The guidebook mentioned a walkoff, but I didn't see any easy route back down to our packs. I lowered the kids, as the sun was setting. There was no moon, and it got dark quickly. I carry a small headlamp in my chalk bag and I'm glad I had it.

After lowering everyone, I rapped off. I pulled the rope, and it almost made it. We all know that feeling when the rope goes taught. Bummer! The beam of my headlamp shone up into the darkness but I couldn't see where it got caught up. I wasn't surprised that it snagged, there were 10,000 possibilities.

I paid $80 for that rope. I was somewhat fond of it just because it was such a good deal, but we still had a tough scramble down to the base. I left the rope for booty.

Preparing for the scramble down in the dark.

We hiked back to the truck, and the kids had a good time with it. Lots of sliding down boulders by headlamp. On the road we turned off the headlamps to see the milky way spanning the night sky.

The next day I made a post on Mountain Project about the rope. I don't think that part of JTree gets much traffic, and I didn't want the rope to become litter.

I really didn't expect to see that rope again, but there are some generous folks out there in the climbing community.

Brandt picked up the rope a few days later, he got it to a friend of mine, who passed it on to another who lives in San Diego, and a couple weeks later I had my rope back.

The mountaineers are reunited with their lost rope.

  Trip Report Views: 3,043
Dave Kos
About the Author
Dave Kos is a social climber from Temecula.

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Comment on this Trip Report

  Nov 22, 2013 - 11:59am PT
WOW. . . what a beautiful TR. . . and there's that kid I wanna hug!


A N D . . . . HapBirDayDAD!


Social climber
  Nov 22, 2013 - 12:01pm PT

Brandt is a good guy.

Big Wall climber
Terrapin Station
  Nov 22, 2013 - 12:03pm PT
Awesomeness has descended upon Crew Kos!!

Beauty way to go eh?

Random Nobody
  Nov 22, 2013 - 12:06pm PT
Famous family outing.

Thanks for the post..

Trad climber
the middle of CA
  Nov 22, 2013 - 12:11pm PT
Love the family TR's!

Trad climber
Santa Cruz/New Zealand/South Pacific
  Nov 22, 2013 - 12:13pm PT

Trad climber
Nothing creative to say
  Nov 22, 2013 - 12:14pm PT
Lovely trip and family and solid reporting of adventure!

Trad climber
Nor Cal
  Nov 22, 2013 - 12:17pm PT
Nice, thanks for posting.

4 Corners Area
  Nov 22, 2013 - 12:26pm PT
"Why can't my husband just watch football on Sunday like evereyone else"


In my house, it's the ladys who are the biggest football fans . . .


Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
  Nov 22, 2013 - 12:28pm PT
Very, very nice dad! Looks like a great birthday.

Social climber
Ridgway, CO
  Nov 22, 2013 - 12:33pm PT
Dave Kos thanks for the uplifting climbing and family experience . . . very cool story about your rope.

Trad climber
  Nov 22, 2013 - 12:40pm PT
Great TR! Made my heart glad.

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
  Nov 22, 2013 - 01:02pm PT

For a non-breeder, I sure am partial to these TR of kids and families on rocks and hiking the the back country. The thread of the father and two daughters doing the John Muir trail also comes to mind. I loved that one, too.

David, I've admired your icon-photo for a while now. Are you just a big fan of Dr Strangelove?

  Nov 22, 2013 - 01:05pm PT
Lots of smiles! Good choice!

Happy day
Lynne Leichtfuss

Sport climber
moving thru
  Nov 22, 2013 - 01:06pm PT
Kos, Wonderful TR. Pics and subtitles super enjoyable. I'ts all even greater because I actually know you and your great wife.

You asked what's in her pack....why "Mom" stuff of course. Food, First-Aide and Fun.

Cheers and hope to climb with you all in the New Year. Cosmic and I are cooking something up.


Trad climber
Fresno CA
  Nov 22, 2013 - 01:29pm PT
Wonderful TR, Dave. I had a particularly annoying commute this morning, and reading this was the perfect antidote to my brewing hostility. Happy belated birthday, and I hope that your family outings get even better.

Thanks again.

Bill Mc Kirgan

Trad climber
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
  Nov 22, 2013 - 01:39pm PT
Very cool Mr. Kos!

Trad climber
Sierra Vista
  Nov 22, 2013 - 02:13pm PT
Great Dave,

Definite material for a bump!


Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
Maestro, Ecosystem Ministry, Fatcrackistan
  Nov 22, 2013 - 02:15pm PT
Good job Dad. You can never get back lost time. But you will never have to! Keep after it Pops.


Trad climber
Yacolt, WA
  Nov 22, 2013 - 02:56pm PT

Social climber
Moorpark, CA.
  Nov 22, 2013 - 03:13pm PT
Nice... enjoy the time with the kids.

it's a short time indeed.

Trad climber
Upland, CA
  Nov 22, 2013 - 04:20pm PT
I'm a sucker for anything heart-warming. This was heart-warming.
You have a beautiful family, and a great birthday tradition!

Sport climber
  Nov 22, 2013 - 04:33pm PT
Awesome family adventure and great teamwork... TFPU!

Trad climber
Joshua Tree, Cal.
  Nov 22, 2013 - 04:54pm PT
The picture of your kids holding the rope gets me all warm and fuzzy.
Glad it all worked out well.

Brandt Allen
mike m

Trad climber
black hills
  Nov 22, 2013 - 04:53pm PT
Nice looks like fun. Glad you got your rope back, I was just about to start a "Can someone help Dave Cos get is rope off JT" thread.

Trad climber
The pitch of Bagalaar above you
  Nov 22, 2013 - 04:58pm PT
Sweet dude, great looking family outing.
Ezra Ellis

Trad climber
North wet, and Da souf
  Nov 22, 2013 - 08:17pm PT
Beautiful family Dave, thank you!
I have that same rope ;)

Trad climber
  Nov 22, 2013 - 08:29pm PT
Really nice TR

Trad climber
  Nov 22, 2013 - 09:05pm PT
Cosmic and I are cooking something up.

Be careful what you get into. :)

Thanks for the TR; those kidz smiles speak volumes.
mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
  Nov 22, 2013 - 10:44pm PT
Another great day in SoCal for the Kosses.

Thirty years from now, they'll be top-roping your old butt, so it pays to show them how now.

And another fantastic TR, Dave!
Peter Haan

Trad climber
Santa Cruz, CA
  Nov 22, 2013 - 11:32pm PT
Remarkable images. Looks like an upper level Nikon, a D3? or? Great format and quality. Are you actually using Photoshop 1?? That's all I could get from the metadata.

Trad climber
Fresno/Clovis, ca
  Nov 23, 2013 - 12:47am PT
Fantastic. May you have many more days like this as they grow older and even more fun to be around if you can imagine it. Theres nothing better than a day in the hills with kids who love being there.

Mark Sensenbach

  Nov 23, 2013 - 05:47am PT
awesome ;)))))))))))))))

Trad climber
June Lake, California....via the Damascus Road
  Nov 23, 2013 - 09:14am PT
Hey..something out of you worth reading!

Very nice outing! Family = priceless.

Good on ya.
Dave Kos

Social climber
Author's Reply  Nov 23, 2013 - 09:58am PT
Thanks for all the responses. Glad that so many enjoyed this TR.

Darwin: Yes, I'm a big fan of Dr. Strangelove. I've seen it too many times. There's something about it ... hilarious and genuinely terrifying at the same time.

Lynne: Your are right about the "mom stuff" ! Although I tend to pack pretty heavy myself, especially with the kids. The pants that Sherry is wearing are the ones that you recommended to her. She loves them.

Ezra: I found that super deal of a rope here on ST. Was it you that posted it? Although after getting such a deal, I think every rope I buy in the future will seem so expensive...

Peter: Not quite a D3. It's a Canon 30D with a decent (but not "L") lens. It's a few years old now and I've demoted it to my climbing camera (I bought a 7D this year.) The 30D setup is a bit heavy, but I often just clip it on the back of my harness when doing anything with the kids. So far I've managed not to break it. I use a lens hood and that helps absorb the abuse. I use Photoshop Elements for organizing, but rarely edit anything, as it's just too time consuming.

Brandt (handcrack): You're the hero of this story!

  Nov 23, 2013 - 10:29am PT
now that was cool. tfpu...

some of my favorite days are when out climbing with the family...
Myles Moser

Lone Pine, Ca
  Dec 1, 2013 - 10:06pm PT
Should of never over looked this one...l beautiful!

Awesome outing!

Big Wall climber
santa cruz, ca
  Dec 1, 2013 - 10:15pm PT

Social climber
  Dec 2, 2013 - 08:39am PT
inspirational for a man 3 years into child farming!

  Dec 2, 2013 - 08:56am PT
Nice TR! Looks like you picked a very good route.

Trad climber
Erik O. Auburn, CA
  Dec 2, 2013 - 05:18pm PT
Really fun! Thanks for posting. Now I have at least one climb on my list for JT.

Trad climber
Santa Clara, CA
  Dec 2, 2013 - 05:41pm PT
Priceless! Save those pics.

Trad climber
  Dec 2, 2013 - 07:52pm PT
awesome tr.

and bonus brandt sighting.

Social climber
Prescott, AZ
  Dec 3, 2013 - 02:34pm PT
Excellent! Thanks for the great TR! Completely inspiring to this Dad.

  Dec 3, 2013 - 03:23pm PT
This is rad!


Crewe, England
  Dec 4, 2013 - 05:17am PT
Excellent read, lovely photos, looks like you had a great day out, and nice to see the rope return, you have a good crowd there.
Larry Nelson

Social climber
  Dec 4, 2013 - 05:36am PT
This TR brought a great smile. Thanks for sharing. Great looking family, you're a lucky guy.
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