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spikeddem


Apr 8, 2011, 1:20 PM

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Re: [spikeddem] Spikeddem goes west
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The next day (4/6) was rather uneventful. Although Lee found some people to climb with, I was feeling too sunburned and just generally fatigued from the sun and climbing and hiking of the day before. I did nothing. I suppose that's not entirely true. I moved my tent. I read. I sat. Enjoyed being in a nice quiet little tent.

Although I didn't think much of it at the time, I also noticed a bit of sand creep in. Didn't think much of it, and decided that I must have brought it in on my own. Oops, no big deal. After cleaning it up, I made some dinner and headed off for dreams of the cracks to be climbed the following day.

Although the weather was supposed to be pretty iffy (indeed, it had driven many others out of camp and the creek in general), upon opening my eyes I was greeted by the morning sun shining into my tent. Lee and I stopped off at the parking lot for Donnelly Canyon. As we arrived, we saw that Generic Crack was taken by the only other car in the parking lot. We continued down to Binou's Crack, an enjoyable 5.9 corner crack consisting of stemming fingers to a wide section near the top. I led it on-sight without much trouble, and we kept heading further down the trail.

We arrived to find a group just finishing up on Elephant Man. This 80' 5.10- vaired crack system reminded me of climbs like those at The Dairy Queen Wall at Joshua Tree. Another on-sight to add to my back with Elephant Man. I was beginning to find myself leading routes more and more quickly as I was finding my groove. Following this route, I led a nearby classic called Chocolate Corner. This is a thin hands crack in a right-facing corner. With my size hands, this route definitely felt more 5.9+, and I most definitely found myself doing a couple ring locks to pull through some tighter spots. On-sighted this, but it felt right on par with Elephant Man. I probably enjoyed Elephant Man more.


Generic Crack, right above the climbers racking up.

We then hiked down to Generic Crack, 5.10-, and found it deserted. I climbed it first, made it through the lower crux, and only had to pound through the dreamy golden camalot sized crack for the next 80 feet. After pulling through about 15 feet or so, I noticed I only had an ill-sized friend (about a half size too small) and three blue (#3) camalots left on my rack. I looked ahead, trying to spot any variations in the next twenty feet that might allow me to place my small friend or my larger-sized camalots. Nothing. I hungout out my handjam for as long as I could bare. Weighing my different options: Running it out and hoping for a #3 placement within 15 or so feet, down climbing to a #2 camalot and bumping it up the crack for God-Knows-How-Far, and lowering off. I decided to go with the safe play, and lowered off. After I lowered off, Lee led up the climb and finished it out; his comfort level allowed him to space out the gear at a much larger interval, and he also squeezed in a #3 camalot near where I had wasted a #2. As Lee rappelled, I looked in the book for the gear recommendation. In addition to the smaller pieces I had brought, it suggests eight number #2s, of which I had only brought five (which was all that Lee and I have), and an optional #3. Shucks. A big disappointment, since I really wanted to tick off another on-sight, but, hey, live and learn, right?

We then TR'd a short tips crack/face climb. This was the variation of The Naked and the Dead. A fingery, crimpy, balancy bottom leads to easy climbing up top. The bottom even made me feel like I was back at Barn Bluff in MN, climbing two number grades easier on an inverted version of the classic Perfect Crimb.

Following this, Lee eyed up a route called Fuel-Injected Hard Body, but decided to leave it for another day. Expect to see a bit about Lee getting on this in the coming weeks.

After this wonderful day of leading while using many of the techniques I'd learned while top-roping the previous day, I came back to my campsite to find this:



My new sand-filled tent.

Apparently, the wind blowing through campground throughout the night had blown sand under the rain-fly and through the mesh, leaving it right inside my tent. After cleaning out the sand, I took a blanket and some extra 3' slings and covered the mesh on the East side of my tent. Despite high winds only a bit of sand found its way in during the night, and the tent stayed much cleaner.


(This post was edited by spikeddem on Apr 8, 2011, 1:54 PM)
Attachments: sand.jpg (98.7 KB)
  sand2.jpg (81.0 KB)



Edit Log:
Post edited by spikeddem () on Apr 8, 2011, 1:54 PM


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