El Cap Report 10/14/08

ElCap Report 10/14/08

By Tom Evans

Yo.. Whoa, what a beautiful day here in the Ditch. The temperature was perfect as witnessed by the teams on the wall wearing light shirts most of the day. There is room on any route you want to climb. The normally full ones are very empty at the moment. Today's report is brought to you by Narek, aka Regan, who made it down from the Shield just in time to have breakfast in the Cafe and leave for home two hours later! He says his big mistake was not listening to advice form us locals not to haul his kit up the Free blast! So he paid the price by losing 3 days on that god forsaken slab. You know, I get a headache from being right all the time and I sure wish people would just listen for a change. Right, Jay and Jeanette? So chill the drinks, break out the chips, lock the door and settle down pukes, because I am not going through this again. I am throwing it down right now...

Today's Report is here and now...

Water Fall route: Alec and DanO are on this, seldom done route. They are pretty high up and are in what appears to be the good stuff. Off tomorrow?

Sketchy aiding on blocks in the corner of the Water Fall route.

Alec doing some slab aiding high on the route.

Zodiac: The top team, Gary and Nate have climbed pretty rapidly over the real meat of this classic line. They climbed from the top of the circle to Peanut ledge this afternoon and I assume will be off this evening.

Hauling and cleaning above the Mark of Zorro

Almost at the belay on zodiac

Cleaning the pitch to Peanut Ledge

Behind them the team of two, Bob and Ryan, did the BT this morning and when I left were working on the long center pitch of the WC. They are moving along pretty well and should do the route in the standard time.

Pitch to the White Circle

Climbing into the white circle

Starting the crux pitch in the White Circle

The last team, Gary and Eric climbed the 4th, 5th, 6th pitches while I was there and will most likely get the BT done today too. They are not the fastest but are displaying the tenacity and persistence that we like to see on the Cap.

Cleaning to the top of 4 on Zodiac

The Trip: Well there are two teams on this route and they merged for a time today on the 8th pitch. The colorful team of three let the team of Nate and, formerly famous, Emily pass but not after a huge tangle of bodies and ropes ensued. Eric and Emily jugged Eric’s fixed line to the top of 5. A task I would not sentence anyone to!! They are not carrying much kit and may just be doing it in a push. The light was fantastic today and I got some killer shots of them all.

Jugging out of the cluster on the Trip

Waiting to pass on the Trip

The log jam breaking up on the Trip.

Nate and Emily finally in front of the pack on the Trip

Nose: Roger and Eric (there are a hell of a lot of Eric's around here) climbed above camp 5 today and I missed them on the last pitch but assume they did get off the route. Lower down a team crossed the 3D traverse and I lost sight of them in the Grey rock. What is going on below Sickle I have no knowledge, nor do I wish to have.

Golden Gate: I did see a team of Norwegians working on the early pitches of this route with big bags in tow.

Salathe: I did see a team from yesterday head off the block later in the afternoon, probably making a dash for Long Ledge tomorrow.

Never Never Land: Lori's team bailed from Timbuktu this afternoon and were replaced by another team of 3 who were headed upward.

In other news: My climbing partner and good buddy Leo Burk left yesterday for his home in the Bay area. He is a great gentleman and a pleasure to climb with. I will miss him. The weather seems to be getting somewhat settled so it would be a good time for you, my readers, to get your butts out here and enjoy the fall weather.... winter is close behind you know. So that's the way it is for this the 14th day of October 2008.

So long.. ECP's