It was a bright and sunny Thursday, in the land of lollipop flowers and milk chocolate rivers that never end... or so I was dreaming when the tire guy fired his inflator cannon. As my body jerked awake like a fish out of water and my forehead made abrupt contact with the greasy driveshaft of the truck I was working on before nodding off, I became painfully aware of the difference between living the american reality and dreaming of the american ideal. Time to climb something!
After slogging through the rest of my day working (let's call it that...) I grabbed the dog and a PBR and headed up to Washoe Boulders for some non-bouldering kind of fun and games.
I looked here; but there were no lower anchors.
I thought about here; but my truck can't swim.
So I decided to aid my way up this:
Now, I don't have one of those mattress thingy's, and lots of this volcanic peanut brittle isn't amenable to ground-level anchors without a Bosch and some 5-piece rawls, so I improvised with a 5-piece clusterf&%k instead. That's 4 mediocre hexes marginally placed, one small bomber nut behind a potentially loose block, and the smallest wedge in my Camp set to hold the BHK master point in place, you know, so the hexes don't fall out.
Now the crack itself goes clean, but I need all the practice I can get aiding. Catching the aiders in everything except my feet. Need a spare hand to get my foot in a loop. First marginal piece in eight feet up, which is like, half the route... Don't even think of falling on it! Took more time to build the anchor (there's a website or a thread for that kind of cluster) than it did to aid the whole 25 feet of aidable crack. It's clear that I'm slow and angsty, which made my head hurt. Or was it the bump from the truck earlier? I digress. I progressed. Upward ho!
At last, I reach the end of aid and hit the easy top-out-in-too-loose-for-rock-climbing-work-boots. Yay me!
Rap down, clean, pull rope, and celebrate a marginal climb with a marginally warm marginal beerish beverage.
All in all, a much better way to spend a three hour tour than watching youtube vids of people who can ACTUALLY climb, and drink real beer. Weather permitting (and kids, job, wife and wallet) I think I'll try it again some time. Maybe even on something as tall as 50 feet.