ElCap Report 10/10/09

ElCap Report 10/10/09
By Tom Evans
Yo… the weather continues to tame the wild beasts.  Yesterday a ring-tailed cat had the misfortune of getting into a transformer and blew out the power for an hour last night and knocked off the internet until today sometime.  There is a pretty certain early season storm coming late tomorrow night and it may last several days.  I suggest fixing in this good weather the next two days but not going on the wall until the weather sorts itself out.  Lots going on here so without further blah, blah, blah…
Today’s ElCap Report… written just for you… unique in all the world!

Zodiac:  Karl lead the Nipple pitch today and the one after it and may just be off tomorrow.  He and Kevin are moving along smoothly.
Karl turning the Nipple on Zodiac.






















The Mark of Zorro, taken from way out west.
























Below, the SAR team of Jacob and Montana Neil are moving along fine and were doing the BT when I got there.  They were established in the WC as I left.
All the other parties from yesterday were just day trippers and have vanished without a trace.

The Trip:  The Gray team climbed off this afternoon and I suppose, returned the Confederate uniforms they were wearing to the museum from whence they came.
The Korean team caught up with Regan at the top of the 11th pitch today and will somehow pass I think.  They were all jammed into the belay without an inch to spare.  I did talk to the Korean team leader, whose family name sounds like the letter U.  I have no Korean vocabulary at all and his English was good enough to make sense to me.  He knew of the Extreme Riders Team from the spring.  A fine gentleman, he seemed to enjoy the scene at the bridge.
Korean team waving to the Bridge Crew.

























Little Biscuit is off the Trip.  Andrew Barnes, report to the Bridge!

Mescalito:  Yosemite big gun, Tommy Caldwell, made an appearance on Mescalito this afternoon to work on some free climbing with his Dad on the bag.  Ben and Dave bailed off ND to Tribal and reported watching him free the second pitch at 5.12 something.  They said he made it looked like 5.6!
He was too low to see but should be in view soon.

Nose:  I saw a team of two high in the upper dihedral this afternoon heading for the top.  Lower down a team of two worked their way up through the GB’s and past the GR in the afternoon.  On ECT the team of Vanessa, Wes, and the Big Swiss, Turi, moved up to Texas Flake and on to the KS which was done in a strange but successful style.  They moved off into the GB’s later in the afternoon.  Behind them a team of two guys, Humberto and Leo, representing for Mexico, in sporty yellow shirts moved up from Dolt were not far behind them.  They were headed to the KS when I left… a long way from C4 and miles from C5.
The Stovelegs were as desolate as a nuclear impact zone after the carnage the Captain rained upon the hapless teams there yesterday.
The Fins, none the worse for wear, were down today after the strong NIAD I reported yesterday.
Heavy traffic around the Boot flake.


























Turning the Great Roof in late afternoon, Nose Route.





















Muir:  Nicki and Allisyn dusted off the big dihedral this morning and by afternoon were headed to the top.  Nice job newly weds!
Nicki and Allisyn almost done on the Muir.




















Lower down I spotted Jack and Kevin on the lower Muir, right next to the hauling route up to Heart.  It is so discouraging to be climbing on a route and be just a few feet from fixed lines to the ground, with other teams actively hauling bags past you!  They were on the 7th or 8th pitch I think.
Distractions on the lower Muir.


























Salathe:  The route is crawling with so many people it is impossible to keep track of all of them.  Several teams were above the Block in the afternoon and made a line up the Headwall.  Between the alcove and the block a few more teams were seen.  I did see Big Hands Greg and partner Steve charge up the route looking to do a SIAD.  I last saw them climbing toward the Roof from Sous le toit where they passed a team.
Greg waiting to pass around Sous le Toit ledge.

























Dihedral Wall:  I went out west to shoot some and noticed a team of two at the belay atop the 5th pitch.  Nice to see the old classic get some attention!  Who are these guys?

Feature of the Day:  (the last one was an easy one… ElCap Spire, ES)























In other news:  Nice for most of the day here at the bridge, until around two when an unruly mob of “older women” was disgorged from the Shuttle bus and demanded the full attention of both Jerry and I.  Overly assertive Gray Power!  Scary shit!
When I got to the bridge this morning Jerry had a package for me that he swears he didn’t pay for … an astronomy chair that is quickly adjustable for ez looking through my camera.  It will save me the sore back and kidneys!  Whoever donated it, you have my thanks!!
The trees are turning… the weather is stellar… approaching storm or not… come on out.
So that’s the way it is for this the 10th day of October, 2009.
Bye now,

The Big Swiss

Man, wish I wasnt so busy last week. I missed this TR. Artur is friends with my good friend Rene from Switzerland. I havent met him yet but he is/was climbing with my rack. Cheers Artur! Congrats!

the Big Swede

Hi Tom

thanks for Your interesting reports. It was nice to meet You at El Cap Bridge and talking with You. Thanks a lot also for giving me back the lost rack of my team. My team was Vanessa, Wes and me the "Big Swede". By the way "the big Swede" is a "Small Swiss" - I am Turi from Switzerland :-). Wes, a Citadel graduate, is interested in discussing military colleges of the South with you!


Arkansas kids

I talked to them yesterday and they said they were going to wait until the storm was past.  I told them to get off their asses and at least fix the first 4 on the Nose and haul their bags to Sickle so they would be set to go when the weather did clear.  I think I saw them on the third pitch early this afternoon.

Arkansas boys - Reed and Stark3

can't find them. Have you got any film on them? Stark2

Arkansas Boys

Ready to see Reed and Stark!!!! Where are those guys?


to the person who posted above clearing that up. I was beginning to worry.

"Jacob" on the Zodiac is on

"Jacob" on the Zodiac is on YOSAR...he may not appreciate being called a ranger...especially when this could lead to him being confused with a ranger named "Jake", who isn't nearly as handsome.

hey tom...

what happened to Anna on the trip? did you make 10 bucks?


thanks for the update on Kevin and Jack! appreciate it!


feature of the day

that's the flake pitch (12) on dihedral wall, a cool pith on a great route!
many thanks for the great reports Tom!!