Last August, I got to go to Temple Crag for the first time.
After having done the Harding Route on Conness and the Red Dihedral, I became enamored with doing the Sierra "Big 4". My girlfriend and climbing partner, Robin, had been to Temple Crag before and had climbed all of the classic routes except Dark Star. This route was a dragon we both needed to slay.
We waited in line at the ranger station in Bishop to get a permit only to find the trailhead was full. We balked and tried to come up with a plan B. Robin looked at me and suggested we try it in a day. I was frankly surprised she wanted to go that huge, and knew it would be a big deal for both of us. We were going to do a DSIADCTC (Dark Star in a day car to car!)
We slept in the back of my truck at the trailhead, woke up at 4:30 AM and slogged out the 7 mile approach.
I'll let the pictures the rest of the story!
Here, there is a gap in the photo records. We started climbing up the wrong dihedral. After two pitches it became evident we were in fact off route (I think on Planeria...). I figured we could traverse back over to Dark Star, which we were able to do with a lot of sketchy 5.10 climbing on loose rock. Needless to say, I have VERY happy to regain the actual line!
We actually did not end up turning on our headlamps for another couple of miles of walking. It was about 9:30 Pm when we got back to the car after a day of almost continual movement. We were pretty wrecked but drove back up to Bishop to sleep in the Pinyon Pines.
What a SPECTACULAR climb!