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|Submitted by Tom Evans on Wed, 10/03/2012 - 02:04|
ElCap Report 10/02/12
By Tom Evans
Yo… Another hot, sunny day here in the Valley. Seems like some people took my advice and decided to postpone their climb for a day or so. Several teams wisely bailed in the heat. But the weather is due for a change in just a couple of days, so get ready!
Today’s ElCap Report….written just for you…unique in all the world!
Zodiac: Alice Ng is back on the route after a night at the base recovering from her baking yesterday. She jugged her lines and was leading the Black Tower pitch when I arrived this morning. It was a nice lead in some stout heat. Fortunately, the bailers from yesterday left 2.5 gallons of water at the top of the pitch for her.
Alice leading the Black Tower pitch this morning.
Cleaning the pitch in the afternoon.
The Korean solo climber bailed from the top of the 4th this morning.
Trip: The Ella and Andy show continues to motor up the route in first gear. Paul and Aldo are fixing pitches right and left but the logistics are not quite worked out yet, so there are periods when nothing much is being done. That said, Ella is ripping up the fixed lines, actually faster than her old man, who is huffing and puffing pretty hard these days. Lots of free jugging too! They now have a “flexible” plan!
Camera man, Den Pritchard, earning his place on the team, as shown by his air time on the rope.
Andy is last to come up and from the top of the 4th did a huge swing out past the bags… no lower out line Andy?
Ella jugging the 7th pitch in the afternoon heat, shot from out west.
I guess the two guys, who climbed through Andy’s crew yesterday, topped out, as I saw no trace of them today on the route.
New Dawn: I thought Tom and Ken topped out late yesterday, but that was not the case. They finished the route early this afternoon.
Tom doing the last few moves to the end of the route.
Reticent: Ah yes… some interesting climbing ahead. Ben Doyle and Dave Allfrey blasted right from the deck, this morning, in old school style (no fixing pitches) and came into view through the trees in the afternoon, just as the shade came on. LLL tonight and on the route tomorrow. They will make a speedy ascent as they are short fixing and have a lot of experience on the Cap. It will be the most difficult route any climbing ranger has ever done. Photos tomorrow.
Nose: Scott Deputy and Everett Phillips made a run to Texas Flake to prepare for Scott’s try at a solo NIAD, later in the week.
The boys out playing in the heat.
Higher up half of the teams on the lower part of the route yesterday, were gone by this morning. That left Scott Stowe and Greg Clark, Nick Rosen and Caroline to represent up there.
Stowe, the wily old guide, dug deep into his bag of tricks and pulled away from Nick and Caroline as the day progressed. It looked hot, but both teams kept on the move. Camp 5 for Scott and Greg, Camp 4 for Nick and Caroline tonight.
Scott doing the King Swing … so dialed! To the right, Nick is climbing the Boot.
Nick had some difficulties figuring out where to go when he was at bat on the swing. But after a short time figured it out and got a big cheer from the Bridge crew and crowds of Tourons watching. Nice Nick!
Later I saw him leading to the Grey Bands, passing that weird block that will some day just lob off the route. I wouldn’t put gear under that thing for the world!
Salathe: I spotted a team, in the deep shade of morning, traversing under the Roof. Didn’t see them again.
Blast from the Past: If you are a long time reader you have seen this one before.
My first beer, 1945!
In other news: Not much other news at this time. We did get a long distance pack of Cobras from Craig, in France. He climbed the Nose and Zodiac in a short span last year and was so phyched! Thanks Craig!!
So that’s the way it is, for this Tuesday, the 2nd day of October, 2012.