Trip Report
A Week in Red Rock — A Photo Essay
Sunday March 7, 2010 1:37pm
Mount Wilson and Rainbow Mountain
Mount Wilson and Rainbow Mountain
Credit: RG

Steve Molis and I spent a week in Red Rock in mid-March. We were a rather motley crew, since Steve, with a resume including the Diamond on Longs Peak and the Leaning Tower in Yosemite, has been logging mostly gym time in recent years, and I am staggering on to my fiftieth year of climbing. The effect of the advancing years has been to provide me with opportunities to re-experience adventure on moderate routes. In this regard, I'm reminded of the various comments I've seen about increases in technique compensating for the inevitable loss of strength that comes with age. I am happy to report that these comments are true; technique can indeed make up for the ravages of time. In particular, photo manipulation technique enables me to make the climbing look harder, thereby compensating for my reduced level of ability. So it is without apology that I note that some of the photos are not quite as they came out of the camera---the viewer will have little difficulty, I suspect, in noting the distor...ah...enhancements.

Steve was really determined to get photos of the climbing, while I was considerably less dedicated to pulling out the camera while belaying. The result is that I am over-represented in the final result. (Sorry about that, Steve.)

Here's a beta panorama of the area (click for the enlarged version). Out of the picture to the South (left in the picture) are Windy and Black Velvet Canyons, and to the North, Calico Hills. For those like me who struggle to remember the canyons, note that, reading from South to North (left to right in the picture), the first letters spell FOJPI, which I remember, especially when hungry, as "Fudge Pie."

First Creek Canyon to Icebox Canyon
First Creek Canyon to Icebox Canyon
Credit: RG, using a panorama from somewhere on the web

I arrived a day before Steve and took a little walk out to Calico Tanks. The rocks at Calico hills are a fascinating sight:

Credit: rgold

On the trail:

Credit: rgold
Credit: rgold
Credit: RG


The main tank:

Credit: RG

Three views of the main tank environs:

Credit: RG
Credit: RG
Credit: RG

Our first climb was on a weekend during Spring break, so we avoided the popular destinations and headed for Jubilant Song on Windy Peak. This was a good call; there was no one else in Windy Canyon that day. The hike in, our first of the year, was more like a Mournful Lament than anything either triumphant or tuneful, but at its end we found a very nice climb in a lovely remote setting, with an exciting crux high on the route and stoutly undergraded in my opinion---we thought it as hard or harder than pitches rated 5.10a on Dream of Wild Turkeys and Overhanging Hangover, with the protection further away and not drilled.

We took all the standard "hard" options on the route, the 5.8 overhang at the end of the big roof traverse and the crux continuation of the water groove on the second-to-last pitch. The original Urioste guidebook calls the second water groove pitch 5.7--5.8, and Handren goes no further than dropping the illusion that it might be 5.7. The Mountain Project description refers to the second water groove pitch as "difficult 5.8." Brock grades the climb 5.7 and then immediately takes it back, saying it is "more like 5.9." (She also includes a full-page picture of the 5.6 traverse under the overhang and incorrectly labels it the "crux pitch.") Swain and Barnes sensibly avoid these issues by not mentioning the climb at all.

In view of the difficulty of the second water groove pitch, the spaced (and leader-placed) protection, the position of the crux high on the climb, and the relative remoteness of the setting, I'd suggest a leader ought to be comfortable on 5.9 for this route.

Windy Peak from the pull-off:

Windy Peak
Windy Peak
Credit: RG

Hiking in---Jubilant Song is marked.

Credit: RG

SM at the base of the route:

Jubilant Song
Jubilant Song
Credit: RG

RG starting up the first pitch.

Credit: SM

RG following the second pitch.

Credit: SM

RG on the start of the third pitch. The main problem on this easy pitch is figuring out how not to pull on loose blocks, one of which is, as we speak, right between my hands.

Credit: SM

SM traversing under the big roof.

,
,
Credit: RG

SM arriving at the awkward belay below the 5.8 overhang.

Credit: RG

RG starting up the roof traverse pitch:

Credit: SM

Two shots of RG on the traverse under the roof:

Credit: SM
Jubilant Song, Windy Canyon, Red Rock, Nevada
Jubilant Song, Windy Canyon, Red Rock, Nevada
Credit: Steve Molis

Unfortunately, even Steve's dedication to photojournalism was not enough to enable further pictures of the crux sections, and our next shot is a summit panorama:

Summit of Windy Peak
Summit of Windy Peak
Credit: RG

The descent is supposed to be an easy 45 minutes back to the packs at the start, but we got lost, first wandering up because we thought we were too low, than wandering down because we realized we were too high. By the time we got back to our packs, the light was fading, and a hike back in the dark was assured.

Here, in retrospect, is an approximation of what we should have done, courtesy of Google Earth:

Descent from Windy Peak
Descent from Windy Peak
Credit: rgold

Even with good headlamps, the return trip proved to be problematic, since every gap between bushes looked like the trail under headlamp light. We were saved many long hours of wandering by having a gps unit that created a track log on the way in; this allowed us to continually correct our off-route meanderings on the way out.

An overnight snow storm and cold weather made for a day better suited to photography than climbing.

Credit: RG

Credit: RG

Credit: RG

Credit: RG


With the weather still cold and blustery...

Credit: RG


...we headed over to the Solar Slab to try to stay warm...

First light on Solar Slab
First light on Solar Slab
Credit: SM


...opting for the combination of Beulah's Book and Heliotrope. No complaints about the grading on Heliotrope, but the 5.8 climbing is pretty run-out, and sometimes the pro you are running it out over is questionable, either because of the placement itself or because the feature employed fails to convey a sense of permanence.

SM belaying after leading the 5.9 second pitch of Heliotrope:

Credit: RG


RG placing the only solid protection for a while at the beginning of the third pitch traverse.

Credit: SM


RG higher on the third pitch:

Credit: SM


RG following the poorly protected fourth pitch:

Credit: SM


Looking across to the building traffic jam on the Solar Slab route:

Solar Slab route from Heliotrope
Solar Slab route from Heliotrope
Credit: SM

RG leading the rope-stretching fifth pitch:

Credit: SM


SM at the top of the route:

Credit: RG

RG at the top of the Solar Slab rappels:

Credit: SM

On the descent, we experienced the worst rappel hang-up I've ever had: after releasing from the anchor, the end of the rappel rope hung in the middle of nowhere and absolutely refused to budge no matter how hard we pulled. By the time we gave up trying to pull the rope off whatever it was wrapped around, it was getting dark. Since we were using half ropes, we had one we could still lead with. Climbing by headlamp light, Steve led up the regular Solar Slab route and got high enough to free the rope from above, even though he couldn't reach it. He then downclimbed back to the anchors, an inspired performance that saved the day figuratively and the night literally.

I've pretty much stopped climbing with anything but a pair of half ropes. In this case, had we used a single with a tag line and, as is most common, pulled the tag line and therefore hung the single, we would have really been up the creek.

The rappels in the lower Solar Slab gully were a major pain. In the daylight, I've downclimbed most of this gully, but in the pitch dark we rappelled almost every non-horizontal foot of it. Throwing the ropes into the darkness and finding them sitting, massively tangled, on slabby rock 20 feet below was the order of the day---or night---and the process of rappelling, untangling, throwing, rappelling, untangling, broken only by the concern about rapelling past the next anchor, seemed to go on forever. As darkness enveloped us, the lights of Las Vegas mocked us with the reminder that, while we were fumbling in the inky confines of the gully, sensible people were enjoying the pleasures of Sin City...

Credit: SM

After spending a good part of the night out, it was surreal to walk through the lobby of Arizona Charlie's to the sounds of the slot machines' electronic siren song. All around us, diehard gamblers slumped in various postures of defeat, staring in bovine incredulity as their bank accounts flowed into the casino's coffers. Out of place and returning from pursuits no more rational, we threaded our way past the Zombies of Slot and collapsed in the synthetic comfort of our hotel room.

Our next climb, and arguably the best of the trip, was Dream of Wild Turkeys, a terrific line that links together features of the Black Velvet wall rather than just bulldozing up.

Dream of Wild Turkeys
Dream of Wild Turkeys
Credit: John Heyges

SM at the top of the first lead:

Credit: RG

RG at the first belay:

Credit: SM

RG starting up the second pitch:

Credit: SM

The second pitch is long!

Credit: SM

SM arriving at the second belay:

Credit: RG

SM starting up the third pitch...

Credit: RG

...and traversing over to the belay:

Credit: RG

RG following the traverse. Graded at 5.10a, this part seemed more like 5.8 to us.

Credit: SM
Credit: SM

A shot from across the canyon of two climbers on this pitch.

Credit: Darshan Ahluwalia

RG starting up the fourth pitch:

Credit: SM

SM nearing the final crux few feet at the top of the fourth pitch. These are the hardest moves on the climb, and I managed to fall off them on the lead. I high-stepped onto a sloping foothold, both hands crimping on, well not really on anything, just lower-angle ripples, and a cam hooked itself under the pant cuff of the raised leg, making further upward motion impossible. I succeeded in shaking loose the cam, but unfortunately the method employed was a bit too vigorous, and I immediately found myself quite a bit lower. The second attempt was uneventful.

Credit: RG

SM diagonaling upwards on the fifth pitch:

Credit: RG
Credit: RG

RG following the fifth pitch:

Credit: SM

RG moving leftward on the sixth pitch:

Credit: SM

SM in approximately the same spot following the sixth pitch:

Credit: RG

SM at the crux of the sixth pitch, just before the belay:

Credit: RG

RG following the seventh pitch...

Credit: SM

...and arriving at the belay, just a bit worse for wear than at the start of the climb:

Credit: SM

My leader fall and a badly stuck cam had consumed enough additional time that we decided to call it a day at the end of the seventh pitch. Additional motivation for this decision came from the fact that the day itself had also made the same decision:

Credit: SM

After Dream of Wild Turkeys we returned for a rest day ascent of Frogland, a great classic I had done once before and still enjoyed immensely the second time around.

The first pitch corner of Frogland glowing in the morning light. The prominent sharp white flake marks the route:

Credit: RG

RG stemming high on the first pitch

Credit: SM

SM on the fourth pitch:

Credit: RG

Credit: RG

RG near the top of the fourth pitch...

Credit: SM

...and about to tunnel under the giant chockstone at the end of the fifth pitch:

Credit: SM

A very fast Welsh team followed us up the route and took this summit shot of us. Our car (the black one) is visible on the stretch of road appearing between my right hand and Steve's left knee.


Steve found this Chuckawalla lizard on the way down...

Credit: SM

...and we enjoyed, for once, returning along the trail in daylight:

Credit: RG

Our final climb, done on the morning of Steve's flight out, was Birdland.

Credit: SM
Credit: SM

RG on the very easy first pitch. Interest is maintained because the features on this face are a bit too big and thin for mindless romping.

Credit: SM

A bighorn sheep crew paid little attention to our presence:

Credit: RG

SM leading the second pitch...

Credit: RG

...and RG following it:

Credit: SM

The third pitch is a little smoother;

Credit: SM

Credit: SM

SM leading the fourth pitch...

Credit: RG

...and RG following:

Credit: SM

SM following the justly renowned fifth pitch:

Credit: RG

RG starting the fifth pitch rap...

Credit: SM

...and SM waiting his turn:

Credit: RG

Our dedication to showing up early really paid off, as a conga line of climbers of varying degrees of experience and ability clogged the pitches behind us without every getting close enough to be noticeable---until we had to rappel past them on the way down. As we walked out to make Steve's flight, they were still strung out along the route:

Credit: RG

I might add that, thanks to early starts, we were either the first or the only party on every climb we did, and so did not suffer at all from the effects of Red Rock overcrowding, even on some of the most popular lines.

I think it is possible, especially for visitors like ourselves, lulled by the superb climbs and beautiful desert, to fail to register to the ghastly urban development in Las Vegas that crowds ever closer to the mountains we may be taking for granted. These lands are available to the highest bidder as never before...

Credit: RG

...and the mountain environment is just some developer's best buy.

Credit: RG

So I think it appropriate for this TR to end, not with a glorious sunset to bracket the sunrise I began with, but rather with a catalog of a lurking danger, the obscene developments whose ultimate effect can only be to strangle the wild places we cherish.

Instead of old-fashioned "development" like this,

Credit: RG

we have instead modern developments like these:

Credit: RG
Credit: RG
Credit: RG
Credit: RG

Is this really the American Way?

Credit: RG

Does it have to be?

  Trip Report Views: 9,713
rgold
About the Author
rgold is a climber from Poughkeepsie, NY.

Comments
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Comment on this Trip Report
Russ Walling

Social climber
from Poofters Froth, Wyoming
  Jun 11, 2008 - 06:46pm PT
SUPER!
looking sketchy there...

Social climber
Lassitude 33
  Jun 11, 2008 - 06:53pm PT
Rich, What a great TR! Looks like you not only had fun (descending in the dark is fun right?), but ticked several long classics. Now I'm motivated to head back to Red Rocks this Fall and do some long routes. The only upside of a recession may be a slow down in the mindless development. Thanks for posting.
steelmnkey

climber
Vision man...ya gotta have vision...
  Jun 11, 2008 - 06:55pm PT
Very nice RG!!!
cowpoke

climber
  Jun 11, 2008 - 07:09pm PT
looks like a fun trip -- thanks for sharing the report!
Rick A

climber
Boulder, Colorado
  Jun 11, 2008 - 07:11pm PT
Nice trip. Quite jealous.
Rick
NMClimber

climber
New Mexico
  Jun 11, 2008 - 07:18pm PT
Damn fine post rgold! What an inspiration. Thank you!
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
  Jun 11, 2008 - 07:19pm PT
Thanks Rich - a nice report!

A Dream of Wild Turkeys is a good route, with something of a natural line for the first half. It does have its moments, though.

I believe that until a year or two ago Las Vegas was the fastest growing city in the U.S. Apparently quite different now.
Cosmiccragsman

Trad climber
AKA Dwain, from Apple Valley, Ca. and Vegas!
  Jun 11, 2008 - 07:29pm PT
Awesome TR, RGold!!!!

I agree with you on Jubilent Song.
When I did it back in the late 80s,
I thought it was harder than 5.8.
I would say it is 9 plus or 10a.

Nice pics of Dream also.It's one of my favorites at RR!!



Cosmic
crusher

climber
Santa Monica, CA
  Jun 11, 2008 - 07:35pm PT
GREAT photos and TR, thank you.

The amount of Vegas "development" is sad. Tract homes on Charleston almost all the way up to the loop road and I suspect those mini malls pictured are the ones all along the 215?

Anyway thanks for the wonderful pictures and writing!
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
  Jun 11, 2008 - 07:38pm PT
great TR Richard! good on you guys...
HighGravity

Trad climber
Southern California
  Jun 11, 2008 - 07:39pm PT
Love the photos! Great TR!
Lynne Leichtfuss

Trad climber
Will know soon
  Jun 11, 2008 - 08:37pm PT
Really great photos! Took the viewer right along with you! Great commentary also....(In the old days Chuckawallas were considered tasty treats!) Thanks for taking the time to post all that good stuff! lrl
SteveW

Trad climber
The state of confusion
  Jun 11, 2008 - 08:38pm PT
Great TR guys!
It looks like you had WAY too much FUN!!!!
happiegrrrl

Trad climber
www.climbaddictdesigns.com
  Jun 11, 2008 - 10:25pm PT
Beautiful photos and descriptions! I started to load the page and, seeing the number of shots, decided to go take Teddy for his walk while it came in!

Thanks for taking the time to write it up for us.

le_bruce

climber
Oakland, CA
  Jun 11, 2008 - 10:50pm PT

You have made ST a better place today, rgold. Thanks for taking the time.

Good puns on day/night, I think I counted two solid ones:

"...an inspired performance that saved the day figuratively and the night literally."

and

"My leader fall and a badly stuck cam had consumed enough additional time that we decided to call it a day at the end of the seventh pitch. Additional motivation for this decision came from the fact that the day itself had also made the same decision..."

That's my kind of humor.
nature

climber
Boulder, CO
  Jun 11, 2008 - 11:03pm PT
There have been some incredible trip reports posted to this forum - this is one of the best! Thanks for putting the time in. What an enjoyable way to sip a Black Hook.
Largo

Sport climber
The Big Wide Open Face
  Jun 11, 2008 - 11:09pm PT
Great routes and great pics, RG!

JL
maldaly

Trad climber
Boulder, CO
  Jun 11, 2008 - 11:17pm PT
RG, thanks for the effort on that TR. Made my day! What a great trip.
Mal
Peter Haan

Trad climber
Santa Cruz, CA
  Jun 11, 2008 - 11:19pm PT
For those of us who don’t know who rgold is, who Ritchie Goldstone is, he was a completely unique legendary climbing figure in late sixties, early seventies climbing in the Gunks and environs. An accomplished gymnast and intellectual at the same time. He came out to the Valley then and had the plan to do “our kind of climbing”. He was always in white, did daily extreme gymnastic routines on his tarp, and kept really clean. He could do iron crosses, one arm hand stands and everything else that was expected of a professional gymnast. A really elegant one-armed pullup also. Either arm. I mean, he was terribly strong. Meanwhile, he was also very shrewd and intellectual while being incredibly funny and wry. What a joy to have him in camp; thinking back on it, I just am so grateful we were friends then. His wife was Evie, who was still back east and perhaps at contretemps. Ritchie was working on himself in his own way and we all thought he was fantastic.

As you can see from the phenomenal grace detail and depth of his post, Ritchie is still working deep and it is not surprising because he had all this stuff in place even before 1971.

best to you, PH.
Jingy

climber
Somewhere out there
  Jun 11, 2008 - 11:42pm PT
I know you've heard this already... But.. THAT IS AN AWESOME REPORT!!!!

I feel as though I'm wasting time sitting at my computer when I could be out doing the same...


Plenty of climbing, on some pretty amazing looking rock formations....

WOW!!!

Wish I was there.

P.S. The photos are amazing! Thank you for sharing.
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Author's Reply  Jun 12, 2008 - 12:11am PT
Oh my goodness Peter, thanks for all those kind words. I remember my time being schooled by you with the greatest fondness and nostalgia. Whatever little I know about offwidth climbing I learned, first from Pat Ament in Colorado, and then from you. You were the Gods of Granite, I was the Schmuck of Shawangunk, and those were among the best of times.

Perhaps I could make a small effort to correct and add to the historical record?

First, I am sad to report that I never did master the one-arm handstand, in spite of much instruction from my friend Joe Bridges. You might have seen me falling out of one (slowly on the best of days), but I have no recollection of every staying up there the requisite 3-second minimum. I have to plead guilty to the crosses, front levers, and one-arm pullups, learned in a utterly futile attempt to emulate the Master of Rock, John Gill. Their main effect on my climbing was to make my chest too big fit in places everyone else seemed to be squeezing into, a problem that could have been offset by technique, if only I had some.

As for Evy, as you guessed, we were already at the end of our relatively brief marriage during my visits to Camp 4, a union conceived by two people, barely grown up, who were far too busy trying to extricate themselves from dysfunctional family situations to recognize that the demands of matrimony would outlast the need to escape. In 1983, after several years of living together, I married my wife Mara, and we have a 21 year-old daughter Sarah who is truly the joy of our lives.

At 64, I don't know whether I am "working deep" or perhaps just sinking deep, but whatever it is, climbing still seems to be part of the plan, and my connections to climbers over the years form an integral part of the fabric of life.

Hope all is well with you Peter.
10b4me

climber
  Jun 12, 2008 - 12:36am PT
thanks, I really enjoyed the tr
philo

Trad climber
Is that the light at the end of the tunnel or a tr
  Jun 12, 2008 - 12:49am PT
That surely was one of the best TRs on ST in a long time. Humble and witty well written prose and super, even if somewhat enhanced, photos. Thank You RG it was a joy to read.

I too have become appaled at the gross over development of that fragile desert terrain. Having been going to RR since the late seventies I have witnessed tragic changes to an area I love.

Being true dirtbags we used to drive out on the simple roads of the day and just randomly pull in to an empty lot to bivy. Those places are now luxury homes and casinos and strip malls.

I take some perverse pleasure in the secret knowledge that long before all that development I had pooped in their front yards.

Long live RR. and RG!

Oh, and Mr Hahn huge congratulations on ten ticks on the Big E.
couchmaster

climber
  Jun 12, 2008 - 12:49am PT
The crew looked a little like Bighorn sheep there, not Mt Goats. Great stuff RG, love the pictures, awe inspiring! Thank you for sharing it!
Double D

climber
  Jun 12, 2008 - 12:50am PT
RG: Nice photos & TR! Brings back redish-rock memories.
Ghost

climber
A long way from where I started
  Jun 12, 2008 - 02:27am PT
Thanks Rich.

It's the middle of the night in Chicago, a long way from home, in a hotel room that could be in any city anywhere.

Your TR just made things a whole lot better.

D
jstan

climber
  Jun 12, 2008 - 07:18am PT
A good six years before I started climbing and met Richard we were living in the same dorm at school. I came that close to getting a chance to watch Richard and John Gill climbing when they were kids.

A number of people I know have retired to Las Vegas and other parts of Nevada, with generally mixed results. Longer term I hope natural processes will begin to restrict our impact on the desert regions. The Colorado River has all but vanished. Phoenix has built out to the horizon and beyond but one can only ponder what the future will bring. Solar power plants inland to provide the power needed by desal plants on the coast most likely.

If we once would sit down and think through what we are doing, we might just stop.

Prod

Trad climber
  Jun 12, 2008 - 09:11am PT
Wow! Great TR.

On the developement issue, I agree, but I think the house you refered to in Calico Basin as an old time developement is actually new, and would be megga expensive. It also requires extensive irrigation with the gardens. It is a really cool house though, I was checking it out a month or so ago.

Prod.
Euroford

Trad climber
Louisville, CO
  Jun 12, 2008 - 09:28am PT
on development in the west, it freekin blows that you guys have ZERO sense of architectural aesthetic.

that people finance, build and buy that craps just makes me sick.

wort_speenie

Sport climber
The unraveling hem of society
  Jun 12, 2008 - 10:47am PT
Many thanks, RG! My sole 2-week trip to RR in March of '07 was just enough to whet my appetite, and I'm always looking for any RR "fix" I can get. I did the 2-pitch direct start to DoWT when I was there (I believe it's called the Gobbler, but don't quote me on that), which I'd describe as giving full 10a value, though that might be my slab-related discomfort speaking. A bathroom emergency prevented us from completing Dream, but we did get through the high-step-with-slopey-crimps section you described. Great route!

The development is truly unfortunate, but with luck topographic barriers, recreation-area-related restrictions, and the economy will together prevent further encroachment in the near future. Or at least until we can all get back out there.

In the meantime, your TR has provided fresh incentive for me to hone my trad skills and pad my savings account.

ER
Chiloe

Trad climber
Lee, NH
  Jun 12, 2008 - 11:41am PT
Reading your TR started my day on a high note, Richard. Not such a high note but important --
your photos and notes about development consuming the desert add thought to the TR as well.

In the early years of RR climbing you could sort of sense it coming, the city moving outwards,
but we didn't foresee the scale of what was to come.

Joe Herbst absorbs the peaceful view from Windy Peak in 1975:



Say hi to Steve for me. Somewhere among unscanned slides I've got photos of him in the
Gunks, 1978.
Fletcher

Gym climber
A very quiet place
  Jun 12, 2008 - 12:25pm PT
Good stuff! Made for a nice evening of enjoyment and inspiration. Very thoughtful. Thanks!

Fletch
ktoober

Social climber
Bay Area
  Jun 12, 2008 - 02:26pm PT
Sweet. Red Rocks is great!
handsome B

Gym climber
SL,UT
  Jun 12, 2008 - 02:29pm PT
A TR with a point, a sharp point at that.



Nice Work!
eeyonkee

Trad climber
Golden, CO
  Jun 12, 2008 - 04:48pm PT
Great pictures! On a geologic note, Red Rocks occurs in the lower plate of one of the more famous thrust faults in North America, the Wilson thrust. The climbing is on the Navajo Sandstone, which is about 170 million years old, but the Navajo has been overridden by Cambrian dolomites and sandstones that are on the oder of 600 milion years old.

In a couple of these pictures, you can see the older Cambrian rocks sitting on top of the Navajo.
burp

Trad climber
Salt Lake City
  Jun 12, 2008 - 06:56pm PT
65? Sheesh ... I hope I can climb half those routes when I'm 50, let alone 65!

burp
Dogtown Climber

Trad climber
The Idyllwild City dump
  Jun 12, 2008 - 07:59pm PT
Cool,Looks like a tick for the todo list at Red Rocks. TY.
Lissiehoya

climber
Saint Louis, MO
  Jun 12, 2008 - 10:26pm PT
Great post!
ktoober

Social climber
Bay Area
  Jun 12, 2008 - 11:41pm PT
How was the approach to Black Velvet? The dirt road was pretty hairy when I was there in late March.
Grahnen

Trad climber
Laramie, WY
  Jun 13, 2008 - 12:00am PT
Nice TR - very good pictures. Enjoyed talking to you at the second belay on Beulah's Book. And considering the fact that someone 1/3 of your age arrived there huffing and puffing (that'd be me), while both you guys were relaxed enough to wander around a little on the way up, I don't think the years have withered you all that badly. If I'm climbing that strong in 40+ years, I'll wake up laughing every day. :)
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Author's Reply  Jun 13, 2008 - 01:05am PT
Hi Johan! We enjoyed your company on Beulah's Book!

ktoober, we really didn't have trouble with the BV approach drive, but discussions on Mountain Project have since made it clear that the one steep and soft hill after the Windy Canyon turnouts deteriorated seriously, to the point where perhaps only a 4WD vehicle had a chance. We had a 2WD SUV with good ground clearance and it was enough at the time. We sprang for the SUV rental specifically because we knew the BV access road might be a problem.

Dr. Rock

Ice climber
  Jun 13, 2008 - 01:51am PT
Nice pics.
Any place to sleep at the top of these climbs?
Pack a bag and spend the night for crissakes.
Anybody not like LED flashlights?
I think they suck. Eye fatigue, lack of contrast, some marathon runners who run at night sometimes use regular bulbs when they get fatigued. Easier to see, despite the xtra weight.
See any Rattlers? Ants? Wasps? Killer Bees?
Good deal.
scottpedition

climber
Just south of one Valley or the other
  Jun 13, 2008 - 11:55pm PT
Wow; great trip report, great pics, and sounds like a great time!

I loved that parting shot given your point -- it looks like development is pushing the flag right out of the picture.

Scott
Fluoride

Trad climber
West Los Angeles, CA/Joshua Tree
  Jun 14, 2008 - 12:36am PT
One of the best TR's since I can remember, bravo!! You put a lot of time and thought into it and it was a pleasure to read. Love the pic of the conga line on Birdland. Luckily the time I did it, we had the route to ourselves (then again it was a SuperBowl Sunday).

I especially like how you countered the beauty of the climbing with the horrible urban sprawl taking over that area. Every time I take the back way through Blue Diamond, I'm always stunned how much further they built those stupid McHomes into the desert. They're heinous, ugly and all look the same. Like some urban gulag.

Half of those monstrosities are probably in foreclosure now anyway.
Rudyj2

Trad climber
UT
  Jun 14, 2008 - 12:03pm PT

Very entertaining and enjoyable TR. Thanks.

Love the ending comments on the American Way.
Zander

climber
  Jun 14, 2008 - 12:24pm PT
RG,
Thanks for the great report. The pictures are just beautiful, one after the other. Great commentary- low key, amusing, thoroughly enjoyable.
Zander
L

climber
California dreamin' on the farside of the world..
  Jun 14, 2008 - 01:10pm PT
Ritchie,

I started reading this thing last night after midnight, and if my eyes hadn't gone all crossed as it was so past their bedtime, I would've posted just what a fantastic TR I considered this.

Sooooooo, without further ado...Dang this is a Fantastic TR!

How were you two able to climb and get those great photos? And I mean those photos are incredible. I also really appreciate your diagrams on some of them--nothing like someone showing you a big blank mound of rock and you not having the slightest idea how or where they climbed. And the conga line--loved the arrows. Made me laugh.

You can talk about being "old dudes" and all that, but you and your partner are a couple of the youngest-at-heart guys on this site. And the wit with which you write, not to mention the meaningful observations you make, has your TR of RR right up there with my all-time favorites.

I certainly hope you post many, many more...


Your newest fan,

Laura
pc

climber
  Jun 14, 2008 - 01:32pm PT
Thanks for the great story and pics. This brings ST back to its virtual campfire core.
pc
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Author's Reply  Jun 14, 2008 - 04:09pm PT
Laura,

Thanks so much for your comments. I had a lot of fun putting the TR together (it is my first) and of course it is nice, after all the effort, to find that folks are enjoying it. Thanks too to everyone else who has been kind enough to post words of praise and encouragement. It's nice that a bunch of moderates can still generate interest and enthusiasm.

As to how we got good photos, I can assure you that I'm a world-class expert in how not to get any photos. Leave the camera home, leave the camera in the pack at the base, take the camera on the climb but leave it in the climbing pack and never get it out, I've been a master of intention and a failure at execution.

The difference this time was Steve, who hasn't been able to take all that many trips and really wanted to have a decent record of this one. Without Steve's determination to document our climbs, it wouldn't have been possible to produce anything like my post. Steve's committment didn't end at the use of his own camera; it included repeated admonitions to me to use mine while we were climbing, and the end result is a consequence of his efforts in the field.

Some details for anyone who is interested.

We were convinced that it was important to have the camera on you; a camera in the pack is going to stay there most of the time. We also felt that both climbers need to have a camera. Steve and I both had small point-and-shoots, nothing fancy (mine is totally out-of-date at this point at 4 MP). We both felt that optical viewfinders were important to have, since the LCD screens we have seen are often indeciperable in bright light.

Steve carried his camera on his waist in an extra chalk bag, I carried mine in a case mounted on a dedicated belt. Both methods allow the camera be to be spun away from abrasion, kept out of the way of climbing, but easily accessed. My camera has an 8" loop of very thin cord through the wrist-strap eyelet with a toy biner attached. When I zip open the case, I immediately clip the biner to whatever over-the-shoulder runner is available. The 8" inch length is enough to bring the camera to my eye in horizontal or vertical format, but is also not too long, so the camera can be gently dropped into a hanging position that isn't too far down.

As soon as the belay was put on, we opened our cases and readied the cameras. Well, at least Steve did---he had to remind me. Shooting had to be done one-handed of course, since the other hand was pretending to belay. It is very difficult to use most cameras left-handed, so the belay strands had to be transferred momentarily to the left hand so that the right hand could grab a snapshot. Steve and I both come from a time before safety Nazis outlawed such practices, and we were comfortable with the short-roping or slack accumulations that sometimes occurred. One does, after all, have to sacrifice for one's art, but not too much: photography did not occur in the middle of crux moves with this system. Still, we should probably be made to wear giant bright orange tags, equipped with a skull and crossbones and saying, CLIMB AT YOUR OWN RISK: BRAKING HAND MAY LEAVE ROPE.

Under these circumstances, it is hard to concentrate on the alignment, much less the esthetics of the shot, and I think the best approach is to include somewhat more in the frame than you actually want, with the intention of cropping the picture later on. I suppose it goes without saying that one should take lots of pictures in the hope of getting a few that one likes.

I was far more diligent about taking scenery (and anti-scenery) shots, and for them I had a Nikon D80. I ran all our pictures through PS (Elements) for cropping, contrast, saturation, sharpening, and perhaps some dodging and/or burning.

I ended up posting about 80 pictures; I'm sure we started with four or five times that.
L

climber
California dreamin' on the farside of the world..
  Jun 15, 2008 - 03:27pm PT
Thanks for the beta and details, R. We're obviously from the same tribe.

I take my little point-n-kill with me everywhere I go. If I don't actually forget that I have it, then I think I'll wait till the next Kodak moment appears because NOW is just a bit inconvenient. Or even better...I've filled the card the last time I used it and forgot to download. Or forgot to charge the battery.

It's a wonder I ever get a photo of anything...so your buddy there is truly an asset. He may have annoyed you a bit (probably not, but who knows with us photo-challenged, huh?), but at least you have photos!!!

Looked at the TR again...just incredible.
pimp daddy wayne

Gym climber
Manchester, VT
  Jun 15, 2008 - 08:45pm PT
AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Chiloe

Trad climber
Lee, NH
  Jun 22, 2008 - 06:24pm PT
Inspired me to dig out & scan a few slides Steve might not have seen ... Rich's shot of Steve Molis, RR '08:



and 30 years earlier, in the Gunks:


Double D

climber
  Jun 22, 2008 - 07:46pm PT
Great TR, great post!
smolis

Trad climber
Patterson, NY
  Jun 22, 2008 - 09:12pm PT
Wow.... Chiloe

What a great photo! Real good scan! CCK Right? I don't have many photos from that time period. EBs with sewn-on leather.. Forrest legloops... and what's in that red bag?? Could be a camera... I'll have to check if I have any photos of you from that day.. However, if I did they would be "pocket Instamatic quality".

Thanks for sharing that one. I would be interested in what others you might have. Holly thought it was great as she hasn't seen many old climbing photos of me. Wish I had some of that hair now!

Richard and I had a great week at Red Rock. Thought about you trying to hold up part of the Rainbow Wall every time I looked up there.

Steve
Chiloe

Trad climber
Lee, NH
  Jun 22, 2008 - 09:41pm PT
Hey Steve, glad ya liked that one. Hasn't seen the light of day in, umm, 30 years -- Rich's TR
just brought it to mind, so I scanned it this afternoon. Here are a couple more, from that same
ascent of CCK. I might have one more from Birdland as well.






Richard and I had a great week at Red Rock. Thought about you trying to hold up part of
the Rainbow Wall every time I looked up there.


One of my better stories. There haven't been many other moments like that, fortunately.

cheers,
L
L

climber
California dreamin' on the farside of the world..
  Jun 22, 2008 - 09:46pm PT
Alrighty then!

Larry--we want to hear that story!
Chiloe

Trad climber
Lee, NH
  Jun 22, 2008 - 09:54pm PT
Larry--we want to hear that story!

Uh-uh, I can't tell it no more -- you'll have to buy Jerry Handren's guidebook!

There's a short version in Larry DeAngelo's book (Red Rock Odyssey) too. Every
climber's bookshelf needs them both. ;-)
L

climber
California dreamin' on the farside of the world..
  Jun 22, 2008 - 10:06pm PT
It's in print? Oh man...it must be good. OK, tell me where in Jerry's book--
Chiloe

Trad climber
Lee, NH
  Jun 22, 2008 - 10:10pm PT
tell me where

In the table of contents, look for Rainbow Wall story.
Chiloe

Trad climber
Lee, NH
  Jun 23, 2008 - 12:46pm PT
Here's the other "then" picture of Steve that I promised -- at the belay on Birdland, Gunks, 1978.
Hexes and stoppers only, of course.

Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
Maestro, Ecosystem Ministry, Fatcrackistan
  Jun 23, 2008 - 01:33pm PT
rgold

Thanks man for posting that. You've always been an inspiration to me, both on the rocks and on the net. Your kind and giving nature is a thing to behold and a level to which I can only aspire (again, on the rocks and on the net).

What a fantastic trip you guys had!

You went on to write,
"It's nice that a bunch of moderates can still generate interest and enthusiasm. "

Moderates only in the stern humor of rock climbers, dude. Those routes aren't moderate at all - you saw the American version of 'moderate' at the Zombie Slots my friend.

Thanks for posting the TR. I only just now noticed it and a big ole grin is plastered on my face. There are days when my bones ache, literally. When I scold myself, 'too old, too fat, too broken, too pathetic.' See I never really did live up to my own potential, at least not in my own eyes.

Then there are other days when my hands and feet touch the grace that is moving over stone and I know a sense of rightness that words alone will never formulate justice.

You show us the Path. You demonstrate the Way. On the rocks. And on the net too.

Thanks man
DMT
smolis

Trad climber
Patterson, NY
  Jun 23, 2008 - 08:14pm PT
Chiloe,
Thanks again for the additional pics. They are the best vintage photos I have of me climbing. Already printed them out on glosssy paper. You mentioned that you scanned them from slides? Is that done using a flat bed scanner or a special slide digitizing system?
Steve
Chiloe

Trad climber
Lee, NH
  Jun 23, 2008 - 10:24pm PT
Steve, I've got nothing fancy, an Epson 4990 flatbed, but it works well enough for my purposes -- the original slides are often murky anyway. Glad you liked this set, though. I'll e-mail you some slightly sharper versions.
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Author's Reply  Jun 23, 2008 - 10:53pm PT
Chiloe, great pictures of Steve! Wow---look at that shock or red hair! The hair may be gone but I can tell you he's doin' great on the rock after thirty years before the mast.

Dingus, praise from you is an academy award. And I think I understand the dichotomy one tends to feel on the rock as one ages. Some days all is right and you feel the flow you imagine was constant in your younger days. And then there are days when strength ebbs too quickly, the feet are clumsy, the smears insecure, the left hand always seems to be where the right hand should be, and a nameless dread mocks you in spite of the perfect pro at your knees.

What keeps me going is that our sport is all about coping with what is. The rock neither knows nor cares whether we are above or below our potential, on or off our game, focused or distracted, happy or miserable. It merely says, "Here is a problem. How will you deal with it?" And our answer, which may not be the answer we could have given years ago, and may not be the answer we will be able to give tomorrow, is, "Here is the best I have to give. May it be pleasing in your sight, grant me passage on my journey, and let me rise up, once again, to the heights I have loved."
L

climber
California dreamin' on the farside of the world..
  Jun 23, 2008 - 11:54pm PT
"And then there are days when strength ebbs too quickly, the feet are clumsy, the smears insecure, the left hand always seems to be where the right hand should be, and a nameless dread mocks you in spite of the perfect pro at your knees."

Jeez Ritchie...that's not age! That's just one too many margaritas from the night before. ;-)
Scary Larry

Trad climber
Las Vegas
  Jun 24, 2008 - 08:46am PT
Great TR, Rich. You have a great way with words. I especially like the following turn of phrase:

"... because the feature employed fails to convey a sense of permanence."
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
  Jun 24, 2008 - 11:41am PT
I think that's one or more margaritas the night before...
drljefe

climber
El Presidio San Augustin del Tucson
  Nov 9, 2008 - 01:37pm PT
Had to bump this one up as it is one of my all time favorite TRs.
Having not been to Red Rocks in 15 years this essay is both inspiring and discouraging. Development and crowded routes aside, I cannot wait to return this season.
Ezra

Social climber
WA, NC, Idaho Falls
  Nov 9, 2008 - 01:49pm PT
Thanks Guys!

Amen to what you said 'bout the excessive development.
-best
wack-N-dangle

Gym climber
the ground up
  Nov 9, 2008 - 02:21pm PT
Amazing perspective. Thanks for the report, and thanks for re-bumping it from the archives.

Hopefully with the latest regime change, BLM, state park, NFS, etc. land use policies will be re-examined.
Geno

Trad climber
Reston, VA
  Nov 9, 2008 - 03:04pm PT
Rgold, Incredible TR. I missed it when it first came out. Glad I just caught it. Laura and I may go out there and meet Perch this March. Are you going to go again? Geno
healyje

Trad climber
Portland, Oregon
  Nov 9, 2008 - 03:37pm PT
Lord knows none of our little SoIll band could ever be accused of being deep or disciplined, but the planets did seem to align on occasion and forgive our sins. Now at fifty six and having [to-date] survived ourselves, I have lofty ambitions of climbing another twenty years or so. To that end, there is absolutely nothing I like seeing more than 'old guy' TRs, even old ones.

==

"Hopefully with the latest regime change, BLM, state park, NFS, etc. land use policies will be re-examined."

Yeah, and hopefully the rapacious bolting happening back up in the canyons will be re-examined as well...
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Author's Reply  Nov 9, 2008 - 04:47pm PT
Nice to see my ol' TR risen from the dead. I almost forgot I was there half a year ago, so kinda enjoyed reading it myself. So much seems to have happened since then.

Gene, it is too early to say, but there is a chance I could go again this March. It would have to be during my Spring break, which is essentially the third week in March.
Chiloe

Trad climber
Lee, NH
  Nov 9, 2008 - 05:30pm PT
Rich, I'm seeing a "bandwidth exceeded" note instead of your excellent TR pics.
Does your photo host offer a way to up the bandwidth allowance?
sirloin of leisure

Trad climber
X
  Nov 9, 2008 - 06:45pm PT
exellent
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Author's Reply  Nov 9, 2008 - 09:26pm PT
Yeah, I had a free account at Image Cave and I guess there have been enough views to exceed the monthly bandwith limit. I just upgraded the account to unlimited bandwith; don't know exactly how long it will take for the photos to reappear; perhaps I'll do an uncool self-bump when they come back...
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Author's Reply  Nov 10, 2008 - 01:42pm PT
Ok, it's bad form to bump your own thread, but I just anted up $25 for six months of unlimited bandwidth so Image Cave doesn't turn off my pictures when two many people look at them in a day.

So please, make my expense worthwhile!
Indianclimber

Trad climber
Las Vegas
  Nov 10, 2008 - 02:02pm PT
Those houses are now available 50% off in the foreclosure market
Great TR
Chiloe

Trad climber
Lee, NH
  Nov 10, 2008 - 02:04pm PT
Ah, good to have all your photos back online.

I had the good fortune to climb Birdland during a weekend visit last
month, and can see that Rich and Steve took photos (looking down or up) in just
about all the same places I did. Here's Steve's photo of Rich on P4:




and my old friend Joe Herbst thinkin' life is fine, at the same place last month:

GDavis

Social climber
SOL CAL
  Jan 30, 2009 - 03:31am PT
bizzump.
jbar

Mountain climber
urasymptote
  Jan 30, 2009 - 04:01am PT
Dam fine post! Those first photos were outstanding. I never really wanted to visit Vegas but now I do.
philo

Trad climber
Is that the light at the end of the tunnel or a tr
  Jan 30, 2009 - 11:32am PT
I am really pleased this thread got bumped. I really liked it the first time around. But it was so good I went through the whole thing again from start to finish. What a delightful read. A fine way with a word and not too shabby of a shutterbug.
Jeremy

climber
  Jan 30, 2009 - 12:28pm PT
SWEET!!!!!!!!!!!!
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Author's Reply  Jan 30, 2009 - 02:13pm PT
I hope it doesn't sound conceited to say that I enjoyed rereading this again myself. After all, we partially create these things to remind ourselves about our adventures, and it is certainly gratifying to see this one resurrected long after it passed into the outer reaches of SuperTopo Space. Thanks, folks.

My enjoyment is heightened by the fact that, the financial situation being what it is, I probably won't be able to go anywhere this Spring, so that reading may be as close as I can get to a climbing trip.
Roxy

Trad climber
CA Central Coast
  Jan 30, 2009 - 05:03pm PT
The perfect post lunch TR, thanks for sharing your adventure.
hoipolloi

climber
A friends backyard with the neighbors wifi
  Jan 30, 2009 - 05:11pm PT
*THAT* is a fantastic TR. Powerful and oh-so-relevant closing message there.



Wonderful, thanks for sharing.
Dudeman

Trad climber
Idaho/Beyond
  Jan 30, 2009 - 05:14pm PT
Very nice photos! Thanks for sharing. Makes me want to head to Red Rocks
Sherri

Trad climber
WA
  Jan 31, 2009 - 02:36am PT
Great TR, for sure, folks. Thanks!

Fun to see the pic of Joe Herbst there, too. I find his routes particularly appealing--partly because they always kick my butt(keeps me trying hard) and partly because they are always a satisfying puzzle to unravel. Given this, my mantra for tackling a tricky crux has become: "WWJD"(What would Joe Do?) Works like a charm. :)

Doug Robinson

Trad climber
Santa Cruz
  Jan 31, 2009 - 01:02pm PT
Thank You, Rich.

I've come to enjoy over the last year your acuity of perception expressed in words here on the Taco. Now I can add photo wizardry to that. You use it at its best, to enhance the vivid sense of being there.

Missed this first time around. That's the trouble with being out climbing.

Looking at your very first shots makes me want to be out there this very morning, scrambling over mottled sandstone to visit what you and the still waters have reflected.


Glimpsing a current Joe Herbst back on the rock is a huge bonus. He was an apprentice of mine in the Palisades during those same years Peter describes you performing clean gymnastic maneuvers in C4. Just amazing to see where he took it from there.

Joe wrote a piercing Foreword to Larry De Angelo's fine little book Red Rock Odyssey. Here are a few lines from Joe:


"It was May '78 or '79. My world was still working. Most of the people I had known were still alive. None of us could have imagined a climbing world like the one you now live in.

"The sky was cloudless blue, blue, blue. Las Vegas was still keeping its distance. We weren't in a park, we were in the mountains, and nobody else knew or cared where we were.

"The rock was alternately white, red, and a deeply varnished inky black. The red was comfortable, the black was heavenly, and the white was trying to spit me out of its overhanging seven and five eighths inch mouth.

"I had two pieces of protection. The first was deep rhythmic breathing. The second, a homemade relaxation mantra, was fast growing thin. Surely a tube chock placement would present itself soon. 'Slow down and keep moving, loose as ashes, fine as frog hair,' I whisper."

Joe Herbst
January 2004
Captain...or Skully

climber
in the oil patch...Fricken Bakken, that's where
  Feb 1, 2009 - 10:37pm PT
RED ROCKS!!!!

Right on.
drljefe

climber
El Presidio San Augustin del Tucson
  Feb 25, 2009 - 11:24am PT
favorites bump
SteveW

Trad climber
The state of confusion
  Mar 29, 2009 - 07:31pm PT
Bump for climbing
Dirka

Trad climber
Hustle City
  Mar 29, 2009 - 07:47pm PT
Beautiful work.
rhyang

climber
SJC
  Oct 19, 2009 - 03:31pm PT
Missed it the first time. Gorgeous pics and the end note seems like a cautionary tale to us all.
cleo

Social climber
wherever you go, there you are
  Oct 19, 2009 - 10:34pm PT
Great report! Might get to go there myself this fall - yay!
frenchylarue

Social climber
Oregon
  Dec 30, 2009 - 07:26pm PT
Your pictures of Red Rocks Conservation Area and the climbs themselves are superb. Your pictures and commentary regarding Las Vegas are spot on!
Slater

Trad climber
Central Coast
  Jan 1, 2010 - 12:17am PT
Well done! Makes me glad i don't drag a tag but an 8.8mm just for that reason. Experience matters. Thanks for the hard work on the TR!
bubble boy

Big Wall climber
Mammoth, CA
  Jan 11, 2010 - 07:27am PT
YES!
damage

Social climber
olympia, wa
  Jan 15, 2010 - 01:01am PT
Thanks for all the pictures, including the half ropes, clipping into the bolts and placements. I've been curious about this, as a new bumbler. I find myself spending the rainy days reading reports, staring at pictures that make it all look fun (and visually understandable). Your trip report is awesome for that!

DMiles

Social climber
Ridgewood, NJ
  Jan 15, 2010 - 12:05pm PT

Hi Damian Miles Here...aka Mileski Yes Jack's Brother... Your Photos

are so Great...You inspire Me To Get Back Out There...

Limited Climbing Exsperience but somewhat capable because Jack

Mileski was My Brother Ahh Genetics.... A Great Read Thanks Again

Miles... Anyone know.... the Late Great Jack Mileski any Personal

Moments I Might Not Know that You Might Have to Share.....Happy &

Safe 2010 to All the Climbers of Our World from Jack Mileski aka

Mr.Sir/Renaissance Man & Me.....

st.art@rcn.com
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Author's Reply  Jan 15, 2010 - 12:12pm PT
Damian,

Thanks for your kind words! There must be a bizillion Mileski stories out there. Your request for information is, however, buried here in trip report responses and won't be seen by most of the Super Topo users. You should post it to the main forum, and also post to rockclimbing.com and maybe also gunks.com (although there aren't many gunks old-timers over there).
Dirka

Trad climber
Hustle City
  Jan 15, 2010 - 12:47pm PT
Lovin it! Thanks for posting.
rockjock

Trad climber
Las Vegas, NV
  Jan 16, 2010 - 01:48pm PT
Excellent tr and excellent photos! Pushing into my 30th year as a rock climber, I have a great appreciation for the comment about good technique enabling progress as the chassis and body parts wear out.
Joe

Social climber
Santa Cruz
  Feb 21, 2010 - 10:58am PT
very nice
Ricky

climber
Sometimes LA
  Mar 3, 2010 - 10:58am PT
Unlimited bandwidth bump. Really excellent, Richard.

I take it no more free camping across from the gypsum plant? Arizona Charlie's sounds more comfortable anyway.
coppertone

Trad climber
CT
  Aug 15, 2010 - 12:24am PT
Rich,

Just got back from the family trip to White Mountains. Didn't get to do any climbing but introducing the girls to mountains is thoroughly rewarding and enjoyable. Everyone is asleep but I'm still a little wired so I thought that I would look through some old TR's for some late night entertainment. I've never seen those old pictures of Steve. I'll have to talk to him about that hair when I see him on tuesday.

I have to say that this is a post that does not deserve to die as it as great TR and certainly brings back fond memories of all of the routes that you climbed. Seeing the pictures certainly helps to bring all of the routes that we have talked about and compared experiences to life. I don't have any pictures of the water spout on Jubilant Song either. Definitely not a spot to pulling out the camera.

For those that don't know Rich or new him many years ago I can say that all of the kind words are well deserved. He also still climbing in extremely clean white pants. I thoroughly enjoy the time that we spend climbing together these days and you often make me think about climbing and the outdoors from completely different perspectives than my usual superficial thinking. I also really like the fact that I always get to hear a story that I have never heard or pickup some bit of climbing history that I did not know.

Time to go as my two year old will likely be up in another few hours.
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Author's Reply  Aug 15, 2010 - 12:16pm PT
Dave, thanks for the very kind words. It's amazing and---considering the work that went into it, gratifying---that this TR about a bunch of Red Rock moderates is still soldiering on, edging up now on 4,000 views.

Since you mentioned those white pants, I should put in a plug for Mike Graham; they are Stonemaster climbing pants and everything about them is perfect for summer rock climbing.

http://www.stonemastergear.com

As for their extreme cleanliness, all I can say is, don't look too closely.

coppertone

Trad climber
CT
  Aug 15, 2010 - 04:15pm PT
I would beg to differ that long pants are perfect for climbing on a hot humid Gunks summer day, but with you bouts with Lyme I can hardly blame you.
Thom Campbell

Trad climber
Brooklyn, NY
  Aug 22, 2010 - 03:31pm PT
Rich, a very thoughtful TR which obviously stands the test of time. Thanks for your gentlemanly treatment of the times you enjoyed and shared so well. Best, Thom
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Author's Reply  Aug 23, 2010 - 12:00pm PT
"Gentlemanly treatment?" Is that a good thing?

I'll assume so. Thanks for the kind remarks Thom.
mike m

Trad climber
black hills
  Nov 28, 2011 - 04:53pm PT
Great trip report Rich. Red Rocks has been so much fun the few times I have been there. Seems like you can do bigger routes there for your ability level than anywhere else. Lots of long classics.
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Author's Reply  Nov 28, 2011 - 07:32pm PT
Hey, Mike, thanks for reviving this old TR. Rereading it makes me want to get back there too.
mike m

Trad climber
black hills
  Nov 28, 2011 - 08:14pm PT
Yeah me too. Vegas and Phoenix are the two places you can fly to cheaply from the Black Hills through Allegent usually under $80 dollars. I have been reading a lot about Jubilent Song and it sounds cool. I find it interesting that you thought Dream of Wild Turkeys was rated soft. I still need to do that one.
SteveW

Trad climber
The state of confusion
  Nov 28, 2011 - 10:35pm PT
What an awesome TR to revisit. Again, Steve and Rich, the photography is incredible. And your adventures just as good the second helping!!!
YUM!
Lovegasoline

Trad climber
Brooklyn, NY
  Nov 30, 2011 - 04:39am PT
Thanks for the TR and all the sweet pics! Gazing at those luscious rocks never gets old.
Scary though how when you blink those houses seem to move.
drljefe

climber
El Presidio San Augustin del Tucson
  Apr 16, 2013 - 06:28pm PT
I've always loved this trip report.
Had to revisit it again to get stoked for an upcoming trip!
Yeeeeooooowww!

Not really looking forward to seeing all the development with my own eyes, though.
Some Random Guy

climber
  Apr 16, 2013 - 08:33pm PT
looks like much fun!

but why is there a bolt right beside this crack? boooooo.....
Credit: RG
Kalimon

Social climber
Ridgway, CO
  Apr 16, 2013 - 08:38pm PT
Thanks to the climbers for this awesome visual topo . . . thanks for the bump too. Gotta get out there.
harryhotdog

Social climber
north vancouver, B.C.
  Apr 17, 2013 - 12:40am PT
Fantastic read with some excellent photos.

That's one of the great things about this site. Someone will bump a classic TR and newbies like myself get to enjoy them and all the great comments that come after. You guys inspire me to never let age be an excuse for not challenging oneself. Use it or loose it seems to be what a lot of eternally young folks on this site adhere to.
BMcC

Trad climber
Livermore
  Apr 23, 2013 - 03:56pm PT
Great story and pics! Will be going there again..
JEleazarian

Trad climber
Fresno CA
  Apr 23, 2013 - 04:13pm PT
Last night at the climbing gym, a friend of mine was telling me about his recent trip to Red Rocks. Today, I finally noticed the exemplary trip report. What a place! What a TR! Thanks for posting, Richy, and thanks to those who bumped.

John
drljefe

climber
El Presidio San Augustin del Tucson
  Dec 17, 2013 - 09:21pm PT
Still one of my faves bump
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Author's Reply  Dec 17, 2013 - 09:34pm PT
Whoa---what a surprise to see this ol' thing on the front page after what? Three years?

I haven't been back to RR since, although I'd sure like to go again. Not this Spring break though, I think I'm going to Zion for some non-climbing tourism with my lovely wife.
Charlie D.

Trad climber
Western Slope, Tahoe Sierra
  Dec 17, 2013 - 09:56pm PT
Ha, got it on the rebound....bravo! Thanks rgold, I know it was you in C4 1969!!! May our paths cross again sooner than later.
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Author's Reply  Dec 17, 2013 - 10:03pm PT
Charlie, it's been 44 years; how time flies when yer havin' fun. Best not to let another 44 go by though. I don't know about you but I'll be 114.
tradmanclimbs

Ice climber
Pomfert VT
  Dec 17, 2013 - 10:17pm PT
Verry nice! Those bolts on DOWT look a lot beefier than they were in 86;)
L

climber
California dreamin' on the farside of the world..
  Dec 17, 2013 - 10:31pm PT
Ah, another one of my favs. And now we stay in climbing shape at the same gym...will wonders never cease. ;-)
RyanD

climber
Squamish
  Dec 18, 2013 - 12:45am PT
Wow! Thanks for the bump jefe! Never seen this.


Awesome tr, with all the great comments & back story it makes for such a fun read. Red rocks can be such an amazing place.
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