El Cap Report 06/24/07

ElCap Report 6/24/07

By Tom Evans

Yo... Another beautiful day, almost fall like here in the Valley. So just as fast as it came the weekend is but a memory and you are once again stuck in your world wondering what the really lucky folks are into... well I can tell you all about it. It started with breakfast in the cafe today when Timmy O'Neill showed up with his brother Tom and some of the other monkeys arrived, like Biscuit and Sar Stud, Lance and Aaron, Sar Greg and yours truly. Timmy is always a riot, one of the funniest guys off the cuff you will ever meet. We were rocking the place laughing at his antics... so that was the start. Later I cruised down to the bridge and hung out watching the guys and gals on the Big Stone under the clear blue sky. The start of a another great day here and you are there starting to stress about the coming week that you have to face while we face just another of many great days to come... see ... we are the few, the lucky, the unemployed! Remember, if you're not wasted then your life is!! Anyway, on the dark side of our Day, Epic Ed didn’t show and we were all hanging on, lusting on the thought of his cooking up dead animals on the grill he is bringing. ED WHERE ARE YOU? PEOPLES LIVES ARE DEPENDING ON YOU!! Anyway, straight from Dolt Tower, where Nanook and Chuck Pratt bailed from their nose attempt yesterday comes today’s report of success and failure, happiness and dread, clarity and stupor, the hall of fame and the walk of shame... So throw down hard and kick it back fast... you had better hang on tight... here it comes, the direct route from the bridge to you... Today’s ElCap Report.


Zodiac: The route is presently a province of Korea, ruled by the three guys who are on the route today... the only suitors. I picked them up as they finished the bolt ladder and went onto the infamous black tower pitch... their leader took a cautions approach and was on the pitch a long time... but he moved along and was near the end when I saw him last. Martina and Peter of a recent ascent of the route stopped by and watched the men climbing on it... giving a placement by placement account of their recent climb.. they are leaving soon and are already talking of returning to do another route on the Cap.

The Ranch: Brenda, Pete's far better half, wandered by talking on the radio to him, so I got to have a report directly from the master while the better part of his team was on the sharp end doing another great lead, one of many she has put in on this route.... Pete said they were having to shout because the radio batteries are about over after 10 days or so but that he figured they were about done with the Route anyway and were going onto the Sea soon. Hell I would have been screaming at him after 10 minutes, radios or not!! I did notice over the last few days that they seem to be rope soloing the pitches because they were all over the rock and it seems impossible that the rope drag wouldn’t stop them dead in their slings.. so when Pete said there were doing just that... it made sense as they are both excellent, proven, solo climbers.. they seem to be making better time these last few days... guess it comes with less supplies to haul. Anyway Pete says they will finish on the Sea...

Mescalito: There is a set of bags at the top of pitch 4 and I guess we will see the owners sometime soon?

 Nose: Two NIAD guys who were dressed in white shirts (ugh!) were smoking up the route when I picked them up on Texas Flake going to the boot... they went from there to the great roof in a little less than an hour!! Long run-outs and fast change-overs kept their speed up. Saw them above camp 5 when I left around 3:30. The two guys who were behind Nanook and Chuck yesterday were doing the Texas flake when I spotted them late in the morning ... but they later rapped down to El Cap Tower and pulled the line to the top of Texas... they were hanging out at ElCap tower when I left... My friends Kyle, and Klaus, managed to get a jump on the 3 Korean climbers just above Sickle ledge and moved smartly into the stovelegs at the head of a mob of climbers below.. they entered the Legs pretty low but managed to make it work... they were a pitch below dolt when I left and will most likely stay there tonight. Both have minimal to no wall experience but are hanging in there ... have always said that tenacity and determination will take a climber a long way up on ElCap... or a long way down! The 3 Koreans were slowly moving into the stovelegs with a team of 3 other climbers behind them... the lower part of the nose is pretty clustered... stay off of it for a few days..

Jolly Rodger: did talk with Eric and Mike yesterday on their way over to the route to freshen up their supplies to get back on the route after a week away from the valley. Will try to get down to see them for you...

Aquarian/Never Never Land... talked to the guys who I have consistently missed seeing on these two routes and they did them in fine style, the last one in a push... they earlier did the shield, which I did shoot. Nice work lads.. how about not wearing the camo next time!!?

Lurking Fear: Old guy, Eugene Yore and a woman friend came back from doing this route and I chatted with them earlier today... they had already cleaned up and looked great... took the obligatory pic of them on the bridge... said they had a great climb... nice work!!!

In other news... piles of climbers came by today and far out-numbered the Tourons for a change. Mike Graham and son Ian showed up late in the afternoon and hung out for a time watching the climbers on the Cap and talking about THE DAYS. Mike is in for a few days and spent some time with Werner and is taking in the Kauk show tonight at the village. Ivo regaled us with some skydiving and big wave stories...the man has done it all... Hans drifted through with his daughter heading for the beach... Leo Burk hung out watching the climbers and the crew from back east that has the 3200ft rope hanging off the dawn wall... we watched the first of many people go down the line and questioned their sanity... imagine this crew questioning anyone’s sanity!!? Anyway Aaron, Lance, Timmy, and many others who's names always evade me had a very pleasant afternoon of chillin at the bridge... ED, ED... SAVE US... HELP!! Anyway, the van was packed and I left the junk for the others to deal with for a change. The weather was really fine today and we all commented about it being fall-like instead of summer-like. I will be leaving in a week and am already a little blue about it... but not to worry... I miss my sweet hearts... the two 1966 GTO's that await me at home! My child substitutes! So you have a nice evening and keep those thoughts positive and just maybe... you will get fired and you can come hang here with us!!

So that's the way it is, today, June 24th 2007...another day shot to hell....

Later Tom Evans