Aurora A4 5.7

 
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El Capitan


Yosemite Valley, California USA


Trip Report
Aurora - Kait's impulse B-day adventure
Wednesday July 4, 2012 3:20am
It was just another day in the desert, north central Nevada… the vast, wide open spaces kept me occupied. Plenty adventure to be had. I was hanging in “The Muck” contemplating my next move. Do I go to the Ruby’s? Get lost in the Santa Rosa’s again? Some good cliffs to be explored…

The morning routine started with checking my messages and one popped like a soar thumb. Kait wanted to know if I wanted to climb El Cap for her birthday. That’s like asking a junkie if they wanted a fix, so I imagined.

She’s a geologist, working for one of the local mines and waited for a reply from her boss to get the days off. I tried to get a hold of my new employer, an antenna building guru whom I happened to get a chance to work for. Luck was on our side, the project was on hold due to a guy wire being 30’ on BLM land and Kait’s boss was in good spirits about her going to live on a cliff for her birthday. I grabbed my trusty old Donny Reid book and started thumbing the pages. Most of the east face routes were highlighted and a lot of the west face was closed due to peregrine falcons. Aurora wasn’t. Seemed like an obvious choice.

Kait was psyched, “This will be my 5th El Cap route”, she said.

I smiled and reminded her that we weren’t at the summit, yet… nor back to the parking lot, and then gave her a huge grin. We did some quick food shopping, stopped by the storage shed to get our gear and headed towards the Valley within a few hours of this impulse trip. Seat of our pants, spur of the moment, take it as it comes… just like I like it.

Racking up
Racking up
Credit: A. Barber

Kait, me and Mark
Kait, me and Mark
Credit: A. Barber

The usual suspects were at the bridge when we rolled in; Tom Evans, the Captain of the Captain’s. Mark and his partner Cheyenne just got done climbing Shortest Straw, Matt, Pete, Aaron. Tom introduced me to a Korean guy who was ground crewing for a team on The Trip as I was racking. He picked up one of old rigid stem friends from a pile we were leaving behind and just pointed and laughed hysterically.

“Whad iz thiiiis?” he cried.

As I continued to rack our gear I noticed the Valley seemed kinda dead for having such great weather, temps were dropping, looked like mostly mid 80’s while we were going to be on the wall.

Getting ready to hump some loads
Getting ready to hump some loads
Credit: A. Barber

Kait's mom
Kait's mom
Credit: Kait Barber

Kait’s mom drove up from Oakdale to hang out and celebrate her birthday, which was the previous day. We humped loads to the base but the first mission was to pull the Alcove Swing rope. The consensus was that it was a junk show, somebody is bound to get injured or killed and it must come down. I figured I was just the man for the job, YAARRRR!

Cleaning the swing
Cleaning the swing
Credit: Kait Barber

While up there I talked to Kate and Eric, a truly seasoned team, while on their adventure; Tempest. I stripped the wall of tat and hopefully did some good for the community but figured I wouldn’t be too popular with the “Boy’s Town Swinger’s”.

That night Momma Barber (aka: #1supermom) got a birthday dinner at the Mountain Room and Kait and I started towards the base to start our climb. Strange dreams awaited, and seemed to be a theme throughout the wall.

Ready to launch
Ready to launch
Credit: Kait Barber

Getting geared up in the morning… and throughout the night, while bivied near the first bolt… we heard objects being dropped and hitting somewhere in the trees. We decided to go for a bootie hunt. We found six to seven carabiners, mostly Korean. A camera that was still working, lot’s of Korean folk on it, poop bags, some leather gloves, which weren’t fingerless and were too small to fit me. We also found a cache of cams, pins and other random gear. A bear had pulled it out from under the rock it was stashed in. I pushed the gear back, put the camera and gloves in there, placed some rocks around it… and kept the carabiners that were dropped.

We started getting focused on gearing up for the wall just as a couple showed up to climb “The El Cap Tree”. Kait hadn’t heard of this old school route and I was surprised people actually still see it as a goal.

“How is it that I know more about El Cap than you? If you’re climbing Aurora?” the man called Jim, asked Kait.

We discussed strategies and after being showed the The Supertopo recommending a 5.9 direct way, I decided I would check it out even though we just got done scrambling down from the start where the first bolt is.

I climbed 30’ feet and realized I didn’t have a big enough cam to protect myself and didn’t want to ask Kait to dig in the bag for the tool. I down climbed and went to the left. Ahhh yes, this is the 5.9, good climbing but poorly protected, especially in my wall shoes. I called for a hook to get past a thin free move.

“Um, there’s no hooks”, Kait said.

“What,! Really? Are you sure… lower me”, I double checked, and sure enough, no hooks. They must have gotten mixed up with the gear we left behind. We apologized to the “El Cap Tree Team” for the hang up, I was going to have to go get the hook’s.

“It’s ok, it was entertaining to see the El Cap pro, not find his way”, Jim replied.

I laughed, wtf? Nobody is perfect, I was just checking out new terrain and kinda felt derailed by him in the first place. I ran down to the car and sure enough, the hook’s were right on top of the discarded gear.

It wasn’t until after 3pm on Saturday before we re started, I just ran into way too many friends that I hadn’t seen for a long time. I abandoned the 5.9 direct start and went the 4th class start. It felt great to be on the rock again, starting a route that I hadn’t done. It starts on The Trip so had to get to the fourth pitch for new terrain, for me.

The first pitch fell and was onto the second. My memory sucks, I don’t remember any of the next pitch, I thought. Too many routes all jumbled together… perfect, it was like my first time. I studied the chicken scratches on the Reid photo and started second guessing myself if I was in the correct place, Korean cigarette butts stuffed in the cracks gave it away at the belays. I pulled them out and stuffed them in my pocket.

Leading the 2nd pitch
Leading the 2nd pitch
Credit: Kait Barber

Kait cleaning
Kait cleaning
Credit: ElCapPirate

Kait is one tough girl but still figuring things out, she had a hard time cleaning the second pitch. I forgot the tag line while short-fixing and she had to throw it to me. I didn’t leave all that much gear and she had to jummar while traversing, dreading losing her balance and taking a big whip around the ramp. It was getting pretty late and she was nearly in tears when she arrived at the second pitch. Her psyche was fading.

“I don’t bail!!”, she wailed.

Even though I could tell she wanted to quit, we discussed our situation and decided to set up the ledge instead of continuing in the dark. Our goal was to make it five pitches, to The Bat Cave… but we started late and sometimes it takes a day to get into synch with wall life. Just more excuses.

Dreams flooded in again, I’m usually quite the hallucidreamer and flying is usually what I crave. It’s a slippery slope, though. If you practice it too much you can get insomnia. Portaledge life can be cramped, shoulders bent inwards for hours, silver fish, bad smells, dirt and debris. The night wasn’t too bad, I snuggled with my Kait and hoped for a better day tomorrow.

It’s always kind of a crux to get off the portaledge for Kait and I. We can wake up at 7am and not begin climbing until 11am, just not sure where the time goes. I’ve planned our ascents together to progress in her learning curve. At first I would bring PLENTY of beer because I knew it would take her awhile to figure things out. We went low on provisions the last few routes, but there’s nothing like a morning beer on El Capitan… maybe that’s were the time goes?

Heading up the roof - Photo: Tom Evans
Heading up the roof - Photo: Tom Evans
Credit: Tom Evans

The drips flowing through the cracks were both invigorating and annoying. It was shockingly cold and refreshing, at the same time. I mostly tried to stay out of it as we made our way up to the big roof where the T-Trip goes down and Aurora continues upwards. The climbing wasn’t bad, finding plenty of A1 cracks for thin cams to fit in, just had to do some fiddling to make them stick. I found myself really focusing on leaving Kait with the easiest possible way to clean the gear, since she had a rough day, the day before.

One of progressions in the team is, short-fixing. I introduced it to her a few wall’s back and she’s picking up the concept well. I looked at the chicken scratches on the topo and decided I needed to make a natural anchor, half way up the slanted roof. I figured I would probably make it with the 70m rope, but felt like the rope drag and communication issues out weighed continuing. It always feels a bit odd putting all your eggs in one basket, meaning one crack. The biggest cam being a ¾”, but the crack was solid.

Heading into the "Bat Cave"
Heading into the "Bat Cave"
Credit: Kait Barber

Cleaning the 5th
Cleaning the 5th
Credit: ElCapPirate

Cleaning the "Bat Cave"
Cleaning the "Bat Cave"
Credit: ElCapPirate

We continued up the next pitch, The Bat Cave… which was a pleasantly wild surprise. Suddenly I didn’t even feel like I was on El Cap as I free climbed, feet out, butt scumming and hand jamming out a narrow passage. This is one of the amazing things about El Capitan, I thought. You can climb it so many times and often find a completely new experience. I relished in the bombay squeeze.

Kait coming out of the bombay chimney
Kait coming out of the bombay chimney
Credit: ElCapPirate

Kait had a bear of a time getting through the tight place and cleaning the gear. Several times she contemplated leaving gear but each time she endured the suffering and got the job done. I suggested she take her helmet off so she could squeeze through some of the madness, which helped a lot.

That night we bivied underneath a clean roof on an overhanging section of the wall. The corners of the ledge didn’t touch the wall and we rocked, swinging quite a bit, even after shimming one of the corners with an old wall coat.

Pitch 6, exiting the cave
Pitch 6, exiting the cave
Credit: Kait Barber

Day two, and only on pitch 5. Kait was feeling much better. Moral was improving and we were committed. I launched around the corner and out from under the roof. It was the first sun I had in 2 days, it felt nice, warm. The cracks we bivied under produced a wind tunnel. And once again we had trouble getting moving and out of our sleeping bags… it was nearly 1pm.

In the Bat Cave
In the Bat Cave
Credit: ElCapPirate

Just before the wide section on the 6th pitch I looked underneath a crack full of swift sh#t and BAAAM. Right in the eye… my good one. I tried every trick in the book, top lid over bottom, bottom over top. I even stuck my grubby finger in there to try and clean it out. Stung like hell and couldn’t see sh#t, but I continued anyway.

Again, I tried to think of the easiest possible clean as I climbed and placed pieces. I threw a finger sized cam in, called for the large arsenal and continued; very strenuous but without incident.

Kait cleaning the 6th pitch
Kait cleaning the 6th pitch
Credit: ElCapPirate

Kait had a hard time cleaning the pitch, it was awkward and pretty much kicked her ass. I coached her through the misery as I drank the last couple of beers. Day 3, out of beer and only six pitches up. Classic! Kait called her boss and warned him that we might get stuck on the mountain and not make it back to work on Thursday.

We only did two pitches, I made our nest in The American Zone while Kait finished cleaning the 7th pitch. That night’s bivy seemed like we were swaying in the breeze, from our experience from the night before, almost like we were feeling seasick.

Credit: ElCapPirate

Lower out
Lower out
Credit: ElCapPirate

Every morning we watched the progression of the few teams that were on the wall. Kate and Eric were making steady headway; I had a swollen eye from the contamination of dried bird crap, should have had some eye wear on. I squinted as I climbed the ramps of the Red Tower. The small mound of scratches on the topo had me guessing, again. I figured I needed to be on top of this system… I was looking forward to checking out the supertopo, just to compare the beta.

Credit: ElCapPirate

HOist THE Jolly ROger!
HOist THE Jolly ROger!
Credit: ElCapPirate

A soloist on the T-Trip was doing well and seemed very happy to be in wall mode. He had a three day start on us but figured we would pass him at the upper pitches, where Aurora junction’s with The Trip. A few shouts from The Nose, El Cap Tower every once in a while. But, not much other action on The Big Stone. Pretty quiet. The route’s quality really improved up on the headwall, above the looseness of the black diorite, clean rock, overhangs and fun cracks.

Cleaning
Cleaning
Credit: ElCapPirate

Day 4, everything was going great. We were most likely the first party going up these cracks and I was testing the fixed heads accordingly. The problem with fixed gear is it get’s rusty, the cables can take an extreme daisy test, but while hanging from the rotting wire, the tension will slowly break. Also, freeze thaw during the winter will loosen the medal blob and will cause it not to adhere to the rock, causing failure. Excuses, excuses…

Beak caught me on a 40 footer, head blew and was airborne... zipped th...
Beak caught me on a 40 footer, head blew and was airborne... zipped the screamer
Credit: ElCapPirate

WHIIIP! Ahhh, the thrill of falling without warning; there’s nothing like it. Two fixed heads blew, I was caught by a small beak, tipped out with an activated Yates Screamer… I just HAD to take a photo. I put two beaks in, five total hammer placements thus far, not bad. We put four pitches behind us and it felt good to move across the rock, efficiently. We set up camp on top of pitch eleven.

Pitch 11, near the Finger of Fate - Photo: Tom Evans
Pitch 11, near the Finger of Fate - Photo: Tom Evans
Credit: Tom Evans

“Happy Birthday”, I told Kait first thing in the morning. Time to climb, let’s get off this thing. One of my b-day presents to Kait was big wall gloves. Is that like giving a vacuum to your wife, as a gift? Our goal was to top out and hike down in the morning, I told Kait that I was 100% possible but you never know what life is going to throw at you. We will do our best and the cards will fall where they will.

Happy Birthday!!!
Happy Birthday!!!
Credit: ElCapPirate

Cuddl'n on the ledge
Cuddl'n on the ledge
Credit: ElCapPirate

Day five… By this time, my best friend and I were in complete wall mode. Nothing could faze us, our communication was down to a science; Lines fixed, ready to haul… tagging gear.

It was her special day, her Birthday. I was proud to be her man, to be together, a team, to be where we were in this exact moment in time.

These were the “Money Pitches” for the FA team. The goods! What makes big wall climbers tick. I imagined what it would be like to forge new territory and knew it was a completely different game when Peter Mayfield and Greg Chiled first put it up in 1981.

WHIIIPPP!!! Another fixed head blew, without warning. Our groove was on. Kait was cleaning like a fiend. The soloist on The Trip started singing a song about a “junction” as he passed where we were to intersect the route.

The wind was blasting, it didn’t seem like a good idea to try and pass; our ropes would do a gnarly tangle with each other. 3pm, I extracted the portaledge and we spent the rest of the afternoon of Kait’s B-Day, snuggling, relaxing and observing Brant, the soloist on The Trip, who happened to be a monkey I had met before.

We pulled out our weapons, shot at each other… but only came out with some photos. We slept for eleven hours straight, although I flew a few hours in the night… or was that insomnia?

Birthday hang - Photo: Brant
Birthday hang - Photo: Brant
Credit: Brant Didden

Leading pitch 10 - Photo: Brant
Leading pitch 10 - Photo: Brant
Credit: Brant Didden

I facebooked Brant later, that if I was a TRUE pirate… he wouldn’t have had a summit beer left. See, he lowered his bags out and they were right next to our ledge. Yeah, I’m just having fun, I would never rogue a man’s beer… I left the camera and gloves, didn’t I?

The next morning we got up early, 6:30am… but didn’t start climbing until 10am, go figure. A party was heading up the Zodiac, they seemed dialed. In a day, I predicted to Kait. Many pirate and monkey calls came from the team, but I was still skeptical. Imposters? Perhaps?

I figured it was someone I knew and just started calling them “The Boys”. Come to find out it was a friend Alfrey.

The scratches on the worn out, crinkled topo that I pulled out of my pocket suggested that I could make it to the ledge, before the 16th, slab pitch, to the rim. I had my doubts but tried it anyway… came up short. We were running a 75m from Bluewater and figured with the extra rope I would make it. I got to the last cresent crack, pulled up all the rope… looked at it, figured it would do the job. I clove hitched the carabiner in front of me, it was attached to a good ½” cam. I rope soloed the rest, just so I could see what I had to work with. By this time I was wishing I had a Supertopo... I barely made it to the anchors without any rope to spare.

Tired, but happy to be on top
Tired, but happy to be on top
Credit: ElCapPirate

I hauled the bags while Kait cleaned. I climbed the last pitch. Both ropes got stuck in a small horned flake while climbing past the first tree. I ended up having to fix ropes, rapping down and getting it out of the pinch.

Summit photo!
Summit photo!
Credit: ElCapPirate

We were finally on the top. We took our obligatory summit photo and got ready for the descent. I told Kait to pack what she thought was the max she could carry. I stuffed the rest in a grade 7 haul bag and made our way to the parking lot. Where the adventure really ends. We were sore but satisfied with what we had accomplished.



  Trip Report Views: 4,435
ElCapPirate
About the Author
Ammon McNeely, aka The El Cap Pirate is a big wall climber from California. He has the most speed records on El Capitan, 23 records, 13 of those being First One Day Ascents. He loves climbing big walls but also does a fair amount of trad climbing. Not only does he love sailing the granite seas, he enjoys BASE jumping and flying wingsuits. One of his many goals is to climb Great Trango in Pakistan and wingsuit off the summit.

Comments
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Comment on this Trip Report
KitKat

Trad climber
Strawberry
  Jul 4, 2012 - 03:29am PT
You guys are a POWER couple! Happy birthday Kait!
Fluoride

Trad climber
West Los Angeles, CA/Joshua Tree
  Jul 4, 2012 - 04:14am PT
Awesome TR Ammon. What a great birthday present for Kait!
wayne w

Trad climber
the nw
  Jul 4, 2012 - 04:41am PT
Great trip report Ammon! A memorable birthday for Kait on a great route!
Prod

Trad climber
  Jul 4, 2012 - 08:18am PT
Sweet!

Prod.
go-B

climber
  Jul 4, 2012 - 09:07am PT
That's one present she won't wanna take back!
Happy Birthday Kait!
couchmaster

climber
  Jul 4, 2012 - 09:30am PT
Awesome TR, thanks for sharing it, and the great photos too! What a world class memorable birthday!
Cragman

Trad climber
June Lake, California....via the Damascus Road
  Jul 4, 2012 - 09:51am PT
Great report!!!

And a belated Happy Bday to miss Kait!!!!!!!!!

Cheers,
DR
Roxy

Trad climber
CA Central Coast
  Jul 4, 2012 - 10:48am PT
so awesome, what a birthday!
Steve Grossman

Trad climber
Seattle, WA
  Jul 4, 2012 - 10:55am PT
Grand outing you two!

Thanks for sharing it with us!

Belated Happy Birthday Kait!
Don Paul

Big Wall climber
Aurora Colorado
  Jul 4, 2012 - 11:00am PT
I cant believe the birdbeak worked.
Mark Hudon

Trad climber
Hood River, OR
  Jul 4, 2012 - 11:34am PT
Excellent, Ammon! It sure does seem to me that this is what wall climbing is all about.

We have to talk to I.C. Chang about those butts in the cracks, eh?

It was great meeting you and Kait and Kait's Mom,

Cheers!
Maysho

climber
Soda Springs, CA
  Jul 4, 2012 - 11:41am PT
Great job Ammon and Kait! Glad to hear that Aurora still delivers on the quality and adventure scale...

All the best,

Peter
The Larry

climber
Moab, UT
  Jul 4, 2012 - 12:01pm PT
Yarrrrr!!!!
E

Ice climber
mogollon rim
  Jul 4, 2012 - 12:50pm PT
Nice one you guys. Was really great to talk to you ammon.

cheers my friend
E
Nohea

Trad climber
Living Outside the Statist Quo
  Jul 4, 2012 - 01:53pm PT
Real nice adventure, what a beautiful place to spend a few days!

Aloha Brother!

CWB
Holdplease2

Big Wall climber
Yosemite area
  Jul 4, 2012 - 02:52pm PT
Congratulations, Team! It was great sharing the right side with you while you were climbing, and it was fun to have a visitor hugging up the lines, a pirate jumping the ship while cleaning up that mess of a swing. Folks who didn't even know what a core shot was were bragging that the girls they brought up "didn't know enough to be scared." wow.

Aurora was no easy leading and no easy cleaning, that's for sure. Looking forward to future trip reports.

Kate
ElCapPirate

Big Wall climber
Ogden, Utah
Author's Reply  Jul 4, 2012 - 03:09pm PT

Congrats on both you, Kate and Eric, as well. Looks like a cool line and on my list. Great seeing you and even better watching you getting after it. PROUD!

Kate and Eric on Tempest
Kate and Eric on Tempest
Credit: ElCapPirate
Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
  Jul 4, 2012 - 03:15pm PT
Great TR. The monkeys are sendin!

roy

Social climber
NZ -> SB,CA -> Zurich
  Jul 4, 2012 - 03:58pm PT
Great TR and a great trip. Cheers, Roy
Thorgon

Big Wall climber
Sedro Woolley, WA
  Jul 4, 2012 - 07:04pm PT
Sweet jaunt up the Cap, Arrgghh!!

"a Beak held your 40' whipper", love that quote!!

Cheers,
Thor
S.Leeper

Social climber
somewhere that doesnt have anything over 90'
  Jul 4, 2012 - 07:31pm PT
What a great adventure!
Thanks for letting us in on it and Happy Birthday Kait!
mucci

Trad climber
The pitch of Bagalaar above you
  Jul 4, 2012 - 07:52pm PT
Awesome Ammon and Kait!


Nice to have your stories and pics on the big board.

Cheers!
westhegimp

Social climber
granada hills
  Jul 4, 2012 - 08:20pm PT
Happy Birthday

Congratulations on your ascent.

Great TR!

Thanks for the cool pics.

Wes
Coach77

Gym climber
Sierra Nevada, CA
  Jul 4, 2012 - 10:00pm PT
Great story and pics as usual McNeely!
Gagner

climber
Boulder
  Jul 4, 2012 - 10:14pm PT
SWEEEEEEET....!!!!

Woot.

Oh, and happy B-Day!!

Paul
Tami

Social climber
Canada
  Jul 4, 2012 - 10:54pm PT
Fabbbbbulusssss TR
elcap-pics

Big Wall climber
Crestline CA
  Jul 5, 2012 - 11:41am PT
Nice stuff Bro, Really enjoyed seeing you guys again... sorry I missed you coming down. See you again in the Fall!!
sullly

Gym climber
  Jul 5, 2012 - 11:46am PT
Really nice. What a cute couple.
10b4me

climber
  Jul 5, 2012 - 12:14pm PT
What a great b'day present
GhoulweJ

Trad climber
El Dorado Hills, CA
  Jul 5, 2012 - 01:04pm PT
AWESOME!
Thanks for sharing.
Happy birthday Kait
Brian in SLC

Social climber
Salt Lake City, UT
  Jul 5, 2012 - 01:36pm PT
Great TR!!
labrat

Trad climber
Auburn, CA
  Jul 5, 2012 - 03:35pm PT
Nice! Thanks for the cool report. Happy Belated B day!

"Korean cigarette butts stuffed in the cracks gave it away at the belays"

I would be so pissed about coming across trash. Thanks for cleaning it up!

Erik
climbski2

Mountain climber
Anchorage AK, Reno NV
  Jul 5, 2012 - 04:25pm PT
Happy B-Day! So very cool to get TRs like this on ST. We are privileged to have you share this with us! Must be why I haven't bought a climbing Mag in years.
Ian Gill

Big Wall climber
Redding, CA
  Jul 5, 2012 - 11:05pm PT

Sweet Send! Great TR and Happy B-day Kait.

A girlfriend who wants to climb a wall to celebrate her birthday!

Does NOT get much better than that, mateys!
Ezra Ellis

Trad climber
North wet, and Da souf
  Jul 5, 2012 - 11:32pm PT
Looks like an awesome birthday,
Thanks Ammon!
Its All Good

Big Wall climber
Paris, France
  Jul 6, 2012 - 03:19am PT
Thanks Ammon, great TR
Myles Moser

climber
Lone Pine, Ca
  Jul 6, 2012 - 12:17pm PT
Ammon I dig Your style!!!

Kate way to put up with him and have the drive!
Happy B-day as well

Michael Nicholson

Big Wall climber
Thousand Oaks
  Jul 6, 2012 - 02:28pm PT
Great Work! I saw you guys racking at the bridge as I was headed for the Column..Glad to see you two send!
Chris McNamara

SuperTopo staff member
  Jul 6, 2012 - 03:05pm PT
SuperSweet TR Ammon! many thanks for sharing here on the Taco. At this pace, you will climb every square inch of the captain in another few years!
Gal

Trad climber
going big air to fakie
  Jul 8, 2012 - 12:12am PT
Thanks you two, fantastic!
StahlBro

Trad climber
San Diego, CA
  Jul 8, 2012 - 12:22am PT
What a treat! Thanks you guys. Happy B-day Kait.
hoipolloi

climber
A friends backyard with the neighbors wifi
  Jul 9, 2012 - 09:45pm PT
One of my b-day presents to Kait was big wall gloves. Is that like giving a vacuum to your wife, as a gift?


Classic Ammon, I did that same thing with my girl, a big wall harness and gloves. "So, you'll go up El Cap now?" I asked...



Great TR.


-Allfrey
10b4me

climber
  Mar 12, 2014 - 04:28pm PT
bump
roy

Social climber
NZ -> SB,CA -> Zurich
  Mar 12, 2014 - 04:54pm PT
Great trip - it's nice to revisit the older TRs from time to time.
Cheers, Roy
Brokedownclimber

Trad climber
Douglas, WY
  Mar 12, 2014 - 05:09pm PT
Now THAT was a Trip Report!
SCseagoat

Trad climber
Santa Cruz
  Mar 12, 2014 - 08:06pm PT
Yes^^^^^^. So glad to see this report....I miss many of the summer reports so I was glad to see it resurface!

Susan

TomCochrane

Trad climber
Santa Cruz Mountains and Monterey Bay
  Mar 12, 2014 - 08:57pm PT
Very nice!
NutAgain!

Trad climber
South Pasadena, CA
  Apr 25, 2014 - 05:34pm PT
Badass and sweet all rolled into one! The full package :)
j-tree

Big Wall climber
Typewriters and Ledges
  Sep 4, 2014 - 11:57am PT
great report, loved reading it again. bump
Johnny K.

climber
  Sep 4, 2014 - 12:26pm PT
Serious.
Sierra Ledge Rat

Mountain climber
Old and Broken Down in Appalachia
  Sep 4, 2014 - 12:26pm PT
Big smile
Thanks!
j-tree

Big Wall climber
Typewriters and Ledges
  Sep 4, 2014 - 02:31pm PT
Probably the best things I've gotten from bigwall climbing are those moments where you look at your partner and can literally see them gathering their strength and gutting through something that every ounce of them is telling them they can't do. Nothing in the nature surrounding us is as beautiful as seeing your partner triumph over their demons. I feel like Ammon really gets that across when he writes about Kait's learning curve on the walls with him.

This is probably why climbing is a required litmus test I have early on for prospective significant others.
Kalimon

Social climber
Ridgway, CO
  Sep 4, 2014 - 05:54pm PT
Nice write up El Pirata!
Dirka

Trad climber
Hustle City
  Sep 4, 2014 - 08:24pm PT
Bday bump!
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El Capitan - Aurora A4 5.7 - Yosemite Valley, California USA. Click to Enlarge
Aurora climbs just left of Tangerine Trip
Photo: Chris McNamara
Other Routes on El Capitan
El Capitan - The Nose 5.14a or 5.9 C2 - Yosemite Valley, California USA. Click for details.
The Nose, 5.14a or 5.9 C2
El Capitan
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The Nose—the best rock climb in the world!
El Capitan - Zodiac A2 5.7 - Yosemite Valley, California USA. Click for details.
Zodiac, A2 5.7
El Capitan
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1800' of fantastic climbing.
El Capitan - Salathe Wall 5.13b or 5.9 C2 - Yosemite Valley, California USA. Click for details.
Salathe Wall, 5.13b or 5.9 C2
El Capitan
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The Salathé Wall ascends the most natural line up El Cap.
El Capitan - Lurking Fear C2F 5.7 - Yosemite Valley, California USA. Click for details.
Lurking Fear, C2F 5.7
El Capitan
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Lurking Fear is route number 1.
El Capitan - East Buttress 5.10b - Yosemite Valley, California USA. Click for details.
East Buttress, 5.10b
El Capitan
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East Buttress with top of The Nose on left.
More routes on El Capitan