Trip Report
Valley Day Trippin' mini trax solo
Friday January 18, 2013 2:39pm
This isn't a tour de force of trip reports, but I had a fun day in the Valley the other day so I though I would share.

With one week left of winter break and most of my friends / climbing partners back in school I was riding solo and contemplating what to do with my free time. The surf was flat so that was out. I had solo aid climbed Guadalupe rock too many times in the last week...so what to do... go to the Valley of course! The weather showed warming in the forecast so five and dime it was!

Sometimes the solo drive to the Valley is really peaceful (once I'm out of the city)
Credit: briham89
Sheep
Sheep
Credit: briham89
The roads were in far better shape than a week ago. Still really slippery on the Valley floor though.
Credit: briham89

I arrived at the Reed's parking lot at around 10am. I met "surfer Bob" there and we shot the sh#t for awhile before I headed down to five and dime.

I fixed a line on Mockery 5.8 to warmup on. It was a pretty fun face climb that was quite different from most climbs in Yosemite. Make sure you stay on route because there are some dinner plate jugs ready to break off. The crux for me ended up being a mantle move to the anchor. Overall, it was a fun route and I would go back and lead it. BTW there is a second anchor installed next to it, so I was able to do some relatively easy scrambling to get to it and then move over to the Mockery anchor, instead of having to rap from a tree first.
Mockery 5.8, Five and Dime
Mockery 5.8, Five and Dime
Credit: briham89

Three guys showed up and they said they were going to setup on Keystone corner, so I decided to fix a line above Five and Dime. Oh boy is that climb sweet!!!
Copper Penny on the left and Five and Dime on the right
Copper Penny on the left and Five and Dime on the right
Credit: briham89

It was my first time climbing it, and it was a perfect climb for a solo winter day. It was t-shirt climbing weather and I was able to do a few laps on it with my micro trax setup. The crux on it is pretty damn hard. Looks like it might be tight hands for some, but it went fingers, to rattly fingers, to shitty tight hands for me. I was able to hang for a bit and figure out some beta for my feet which helped out a lot. It ends with a great hand crack that widens to about a #3 size at the end. The funny thing was, the crux pumped me out so much that the sinker hands felt hard at the end haha.

The 3 guys I met there lived in the Valley and were really nice people. They let me take a ride up their rope on Copper Penny (which was awesome and I got clean!) and I let them use my rope for a few laps on Five and Dime. I took some shots of them which I said I would post here.

Credit: briham89
Credit: briham89

After Five and Dime I quickly went over to Fern Spring to fill up my water bottles and then it was off to Arch Rock before the sun went down. The guys I had climbed with earlier said there were some fixed lines in good shape over there, so I was stoked to sneak in another climb before dark. I ran up the talus field, and saw a fixed line on English Breakfast Crack. Score! I pulled my gear out of my pack and was set to start climbing. The 5.9 finger crack start is probably one of the more beautiful lines I've climbed IMO.

English Breakfast Crack. So pretty...and then so burly haha
English Breakfast Crack. So pretty...and then so burly haha
Credit: briham89

I was laughing my way up the finger crack and then got into the OW and chimney section. I had cruised the 5.10a OW earlier so I thought this 5.9 OW would be a cruise. WRONG!!! I didn't realize how tired I was before I got into, but man I was grunting my way up this thing. I guess I have less practice in "tilting" OW than straight ones, so I had to improvise some new techniques. With every move up my technique got a little better, but my strength was diminishing. At the end of the short chimney section after the OW, there is a rattly overhanging finger crack and then another chimney (did I mention this climb is awesome). By the time I got to the anchor it was starting to get dark and I was pretty spent from the wide section, so I decided to rap instead of doing the second pitch in the dark (I'll be back). I kind of f*#ked up though.... In my rush to get on the climb before the sun went down, I fixed the lower end of the rope to a tree so it would feed well through my jumar and micro traxion, instead of just weighting the rope....well I didn't leave myself enough slack. I couldn't get the rope into my belay device to rap...shit did I seriously do that?! I contemplate what to do and then came up with a plan. I brought a couple extra sling just in case (good thing) so I made a prusik with one and attached it to the anchor and to the rope above me. I weighted the rope with my jumar and moved the prusik up every time I did this. Eventually I pulled all the stretch out of the upper section of rope and it gave me just enough slack to get into my belay device....woohoo self rescue!! hahaha.

On the way back I celebrated with a bowl from Panda Express. Gotta love MSG! (It stands for mega super good right?)
Credit: briham89


Winter day trips are always hard to motivate for, but I'm glad I got out there and had some fun!


  Trip Report Views: 995
briham89
About the Author
briham89 is a big wall and trad climber from San Jose, ca.

Comments
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Mungeclimber

Trad climber
Nothing creative to say
  Jan 18, 2013 - 02:48pm PT
nice, was wondering what the crack corner was. Never tried EBC.
briham89

Big Wall climber
santa cruz, ca
Author's Reply  Jan 18, 2013 - 02:50pm PT
The wide section is burly. I need to get back and do the second pitch, but man that first pitch is classic!!
Norwegian

Trad climber
dancin on the tip of god's middle finger
  Jan 18, 2013 - 02:51pm PT
i enjoyed your time
exploiting the wiley climate
that's befallen our's sierra range.
Dirka

Trad climber
Hustle City
  Jan 18, 2013 - 03:03pm PT
sounds like a great day. and then PANDA BOWEL!
JEleazarian

Trad climber
Fresno CA
  Jan 18, 2013 - 03:08pm PT
Looks and reads like an excellent day. Thanks for the TR.

John
RyanD

climber
Squamish
  Jan 18, 2013 - 03:24pm PT
Good day man, thanks for sharing. Way to get after it on your own!
kaholatingtong

Trad climber
Nevada City
  Jan 18, 2013 - 05:09pm PT
nice, way to get after it, regardless.
Ezra Ellis

Trad climber
North wet, and Da souf
  Jan 18, 2013 - 09:23pm PT
Nice bri, thanks for sharing!
murcy

Gym climber
sanfrancisco
  Jan 18, 2013 - 09:42pm PT
Sweet. Thanks for that.
Captain...or Skully

climber
in the oil patch...Fricken Bakken, that's where
  Jan 19, 2013 - 12:15am PT
Right on, man. I've been solo TRing around here because all these folks think it's "too cold" or some such. You have a better venue.
I can dig it. TFPU.
karodrinker

Trad climber
San Jose, CA
  Jan 19, 2013 - 12:22am PT
Love that Five and Dime, what a beauty, and so easy to get to the anchor (a bunch of bushes). Copper Penny too, fun climb for an offwidth.
briham89

Big Wall climber
santa cruz, ca
Author's Reply  Jan 22, 2013 - 01:36pm PT
I've been solo TRing around here because all these folks think it's "too cold" or some such

Nice Skully. It's been "climbing weather" this January IMO. I almost went for another day trip today, but I was too beat from surfing yesterday...oh well. Still missing the Valley already
Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
  Jan 22, 2013 - 01:40pm PT
Nice post. I also like those climbs in five and dime area!
micronut

Trad climber
Fresno/Clovis, ca
  Jan 22, 2013 - 02:14pm PT
Beauty. Nice work on the self rescue and the orange chikin' bowl. You like sample? Careful. Tempacher hot!
10b4me

climber
  Jan 22, 2013 - 02:17pm PT
nice. thanks for posting a climbing thread
Dapper Dan

Trad climber
Menlo Park
  Jan 22, 2013 - 02:19pm PT
Cool TR , you should do 'Inner Reaches' at five and dime , it's good .
briham89

Big Wall climber
santa cruz, ca
Author's Reply  Jan 22, 2013 - 07:38pm PT
You like sample? Careful. Tempacher hot!

BAHAHAHAHAHAHA

I'll have to check that out Dan
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