Trip Report
LOST in TIME (on 'the Edge of Time') - an offering at THE CITADEL
Sunday September 30, 2018 8:39am
Late-summer (or any season for that matter) has a way of sliding into your psyche and steering you towards an objective, a send that has been waiting... or an adventurous new exploration while the wind is still and the sun's warmth lingers.

There's so much to be seen on the eastside, and we revel in being total nerds of the storied names of the range, from early legends to the modern ones, as well as the ST'ers of California who have kept us inspired, and filled with (probably too much) beta.


I'll try to make this TR brief.

We planned the objective while visiting the Hulk at the end of August. a truly talented new friend Alex Satonik needed someone for a trip up Sunspot. I belayed him, and struggled my way up while following, having to do some heavy yanking and even stepping into slings a few times. I don't pretend to be able to climb 5.11, but my follower pack was heavy, and I was fully tortched by the higher pitches.

Credit: Yinzer

On the walk out down little-slide canyon, we got to talking about the many fun potential next objectives, in our beloved Sierra Nevada. Alex had already done nearly all the standard-classics (Literally the entire SUPERTOPO High Sierra book minus-Goode) and a few other things like the Evolution Traverse. The hype became legitimate when we brought up The Citadel, with it's stellar looking 'Edge of Time Arete'. We would plan for a 2-nighter.. driving on the hike-in and hike-out days, and sending on a full day, Saturday.

Things aligned and we were in the Bishop ranger-station parking lot, making final adjustments to the gear. Alex left behind some older, heavier small-cams. We were approached by a very kind, very helpful local from the Inyo County Sheriff's Search & Rescue... who recounted distant memories of Tahquitz, The Needles, & the high-sierra. He gave us some good veteran insights, and near the end of this send we would conclude that having an in-reach type device is a solid idea moving forward, especially with our ideas for winter objectives and ski-accessed goals this coming season : )
Credit: Yinzer

We humped our packs along the beautiful Bishop Pass trail, passing the stunning N arete of Goode, and zig-zagging our way up the rocky pass as picture-puzzle loomed beside us. The slew of deer carcases that tragically died in a rockslide or wet-slide right near the pass still lie grotesquely baked onto the rocks. We mourned their end.

The views into Dusty Basin were stellar. I had never been over the pass, and it was a treat to see the Palisades from the backside.
Credit: Yinzer

Our stoke was so high we barely noticed the mileage. We pushed to the pass in one go, and then rode the downhill from their to the next bench-edge fairly quickly.
Credit: Yinzer

When I saw the vertical-relief we were approaching, I started to get a sinking feeling in my stomach... We'd be going all the way 'down there?' ... We'd have to re-earn all of that gain on the way out, after sending?

Langille Peak was stunning. I kept thinking how it looked closer, and better... But the sun was scortching the south face so hard that I remembered, shade is preferable for long sends.
The beautiful granite-mass that is Langille Peak
The beautiful granite-mass that is Langille Peak
Credit: Yinzer

The Citadel came into view. Hard to distinguish, unassumingly sitting just in front of the more massive Devils Crag.
Credit: Yinzer

We crossed the Kings, and started working our way up 'the bushes'.
stunning shadow-play in the range of light
stunning shadow-play in the range of light
Credit: Yinzer

Our bivy was established. We surveyed the panoramic vistas on the warm summer night. The last-one, really- with our send-day saturday being the Autumnal Equinox.
Credit: Yinzer

The full moon was so bright it kept us up against best efforts to be asleep by 8pm. Eventually it passed in the sky- as did several satellites, and even a massive-broad & bright one that Alex thought was some sort of new transmitting-flat/wide satellite he had heard of. That or the IS.

 - - -

The morning's talus-trudge had us feeling like we were in a truly untouched wilderness. Alaska, we imagined... yet doubted the comparisons. The Citadel loomed overhead, yet its elegant and broad face seemed inviting
Credit: Yinzer

Credit: Yinzer

Credit: Yinzer

Credit: Yinzer

The rock was more beautiful than I expected. I was thinking it would be a dark-grey granite reminiscent of Temple Crag. But that was just the lichen seen from far away. The true colors of the Citadel were a beautiful pale-grey/pink... densely solid almost like a marble. Some of the most colorful and gem-like granite I had seen. Sections of water-run or deep grooves showed the glassy and bulbous nature of the dense and ancient granite.

Credit: Yinzer

We headed towards some roofs, and zig-zagged back and forth across the dihedral. The routefinding was fairly straightforward, if you were expecting the occasional 'traverses' and following the pitch guidelines reasonably.

Credit: Yinzer

Credit: Yinzer

Pitch after pitch, the line seemed to go on longer than we thought. Tons of variety, beautiful positioning, and shade all day made for a superb experience. after passing the final 'crux' roof, the last scary traverse, and a stiff lieback/hand crack- we reached the 'money' pitch (which wasn't that money, but made it easy to tell you were still on-route)

Credit: Yinzer

Reaching the ridge, we scampered along as a sliver of orange light remained on the distant palisades, and taller peaks to the east. The panoramic views were massive. multiple deep river gorges spiraling out from below us.

Credit: Yinzer

Credit: Yinzer

Credit: Yinzer

Credit: Yinzer

We had been living, thriving, moving- on the edge of time. What seemed like a few hours turned out to be 12. what seemed like summer-light, turned into that of fall all around us. We were lost in eternal climbing bliss, balanced on a weighty hunk of granite on an even bigger sphere that was reaching a noticeably peaceful solstice equilibrium.

We missed the descent by one-gully (I think) and that tacked on a good amount of time to our descent. We ended up making several raps over big roofs, contouring down and left endlessly until finally hitting the 'class 2' talus slope. I think when Alex saw the downclimbing past the summit, it seemed illogical- though for other parties, that may be the best way. Finish up a bit earlier than us, and you'll have more time to make better decisions and have better light. Live and you learn.

I'll wrap this up by saying, It was a bitter-sweet send. I did let down my wife, by not fully having the trip OK'ed by her before I departed.. and that added a tinge of failure, or at least internal turmoil to the experience. It reaffirmed to me why us climbers appreciate the style, as much as the objective. I only want to do things in good form (by her) from here on out. She by no means holds me back. She is always looking out for me. She's gone up Tahquitz a few times, Cathedral peak, and made a pass at the Whitney Buttress. I think she might dig ski touring by the time we (God willing) have children and they get older. She's a trooper, my everything, and the citadel for my religion of love.

We especially want to pray for the soul and family of Ben Horne, who perished doing what he loved in South America, climbing 'Pulcaraju', along with his partner Gil Weiss. We wish their souls eternal bliss in the heavens, and their families a feeling of closeness to these stellar beings and infinite souls.

Ben's PullHarder writeup is the link we kept coming back to for psyche, and motivation for the route. It can be read here: https://www.pullharder.org/trip-reports/2012/06/14/almost-out-of-time-on-the-citadels-edge-of-time-arete

Bless up ST'ers. Love thy family. Send thy routes. <3



-Yinzer

PS - here are some GoPro snippets

https://vimeo.com/292503338/c6d1e52e69

  Trip Report Views: 1,727
Yinzer
About the Author
Yinzer is a trad climber from Los Angeles, CA.

Comments
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ec

climber
ca
  Sep 30, 2018 - 09:05am PT
Thx for that!

 ec
FRUMY

Trad climber
Bishop,CA
  Sep 30, 2018 - 09:28am PT
TFPU
donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
  Sep 30, 2018 - 09:41am PT
Thanks...looks like a fun route. Regarding following with a heavy pack...when doing one day climbs “Black Canyon Rules” should apply...leader and follower both carry everything they need. A 1.5 liter hydration pack and a few bars should make the climb fine for both.
kingtut

climber
Jingus Newroutaineer
  Sep 30, 2018 - 09:46am PT
TFPU. Love those views from the summit ridge in the vid.
i-b-goB

Social climber
Nutty
  Sep 30, 2018 - 10:28am PT
Way Cool!




Good info, look for Day 1, ( past half way down web page )...

CALIFORNIA: JOHN MUIR TRAIL- SOUTH LAKE (BISHOP PASS TRAILHEAD) TO LECONTE CANYON- DAY 1
https://ajoyfulprocession.wordpress.com/tag/kings-canyon/

Edit: Not mine!
Yinzer

Trad climber
Los Angeles, CA
Author's Reply  Sep 30, 2018 - 10:59am PT
Mr. Donini ! Thanks for the insight. I am hoping to attend your BIAFO trek one day and bring my wife !!! I have used the strategy before of a follower-pack, but both parties have their approach-shoes & downs (or stuffed rain-layer) clipped to themselves.

Del Cross, most of the route (the cool climbing) was steep enough and the belays not-plush-enough that I was afraid to take out my phone. I think I'll get some sort of wrist-strap case in the future so I can snap a few images without stressing. On that guillotine flake, I did experience that bit of a foot/knee jam as well ! & it could've gone even deeper. stuck feet are one of the things I always worry about, and seem to sneak up on you.


Thanks King Tut, that was my favorite part too : ) & i-b-Gob, those images are gorgeous... thanks for sharing here.
Nick Danger

Ice climber
Arvada, CO
  Oct 1, 2018 - 10:45am PT
Yinzer for the win! A most excellent TR. You are living the dream, lad, and it sounds like you have your priorities straight.

All the best to you, your partners, and your family.
cheers
clode

Trad climber
portland, or
  Oct 1, 2018 - 10:54am PT
Great TR & photos. But I think you mean "autumnal equinox", rather than "fall solstice".
Jeremy Ross

Gym climber
  Oct 1, 2018 - 10:57am PT
Thanks! Now I want to do it even more!


Yinzer

Trad climber
Los Angeles, CA
Author's Reply  Oct 1, 2018 - 07:53pm PT
Clode, thank you for that correction. It was the Autumnal Equinox, Sept 22nd 2018

Nick- I feel the dream ending, and the sun rising as my wife becomes more ready for us to have kids. Hopefully I'll still be sending 5.8 by the time they are teenagers : )

Jeremy, It's a worthwhile route. Excited to go back for the other long route, the ridge, or even just a no-gear scramble on Devil's crag eventually.
limpingcrab

Trad climber
the middle of CA
  Oct 1, 2018 - 08:28pm PT
Right on, that thing is still on the list, looks like a blast!

My InReach definitely puts my wife’s mind at ease, as long as she knows that no news is good news so she doesn’t panic if the batteries die or something. A smart investment for a husband and possible father of little ones :)
Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
  Oct 1, 2018 - 10:41pm PT
Nice TR. Probably barely missed you guys, was there about a week ago and got to see the Citadel from fairly close while climbing Winchell and Langille, beautiful wall. Well done!

For the follower pack...what works very well for my friends and I is to bring a 10$ pack from Ross or Wal-Mart and haul it on hard pitches with 6mm tagline. Fairly nice to not climb 5.10 and harder pitches with extra weight. On most of my trips I try to bring a light pair of 5 finger shoes used for descent only to decrease the weighting the pack. Along with a liter to liter and a half of water, snacks and a windjacket/headlamp/toilet paper :) you can even cut down on weight by not bringing a nalgene and using a Powerade bottle.
le_bruce

climber
Oakland, CA
  Oct 2, 2018 - 11:43am PT
So good! Thank you for sharing. What a deep dive into beautiful country that is. Memories you'll hold for a lifetime.

Nick- I feel the dream ending, and the sun rising as my wife becomes more ready for us to have kids. Hopefully I'll still be sending 5.8 by the time they are teenagers : )

Nah the dream never ends. I definitely climb less these days, but... ah f it you'll see once you have kids. Chin up, brother, all good things to come.

Thanks again for sharing.
climblight

Mountain climber
Northern NV
  Oct 2, 2018 - 12:35pm PT
Excellant. We got run run off that route after 2 pitches due to storms. 2008?
Ezra Ellis

Trad climber
North wet, and Da souf
  Oct 3, 2018 - 05:06pm PT
Really beautiful climb,
Thank you
i-b-goB

Social climber
Nutty
  Oct 3, 2018 - 07:21pm PT

“The Citadel &#40;bottom&#41; and Devils Crags &#40;top&#41; as seen f...
“The Citadel (bottom) and Devils Crags (top) as seen from the summit of Mt Gilbert”
Credit: Richard Shore Jul 29, 2017
https://www.mountainproject.com/area/105842790/the-citadel

Credit: Richard Shore Aug 20, 2016
https://www.mountainproject.com/route/105842793/edge-of-time-arete
skywalker1

Trad climber
co
  Nov 13, 2018 - 05:17pm PT
bump.
NutAgain!

Trad climber
South Pasadena, CA
  Nov 15, 2018 - 11:15am PT
Edge of Time has been on my radar for a while... way back in there!

And holy goB, is that S-shaped arete on Devil's Crag this route?
https://www.mountainproject.com/route/107050895/northwest-arete


That just shot up high on my priority list.
Splater

climber
Grey Matter
  Nov 15, 2018 - 12:01pm PT
Nutagain,
the route on mtnproject says it is on the NW
and the arête on the pic mostly faces east.
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