ElCap Report 10/11/09

ElCap Report 10/11/09
By Tom Evans
Yo… The weather, my God the Weather!  Still totally sweet.  Today was a slow one on the bridge and the wall.  Seems the teams have delayed starting until after the big storm, forecast to begin late tomorrow.  Some teams are taking these good days to fix and haul to the routes they are interested in.  Good plan!  The teams presently on the face are getting up high and heading off.  There are a couple of parties who will have to face the wrath of the weather in the coming days as there is no way they can get off in time.

Today’s Report is brought to you in the memory of David Waggoner, the inventor of the fabulous “Aliens”, who passed away today.  He contributed greatly to clean climbing here in the Valley and elsewhere.  While his production methods lead to much frustration in the climbing community, we could never get enough of this gear! 
Today’s ElCap Report… written just for you… unique in all the world!

Zodiac:  Karl and Kevin have slowed down a bit now and will probably spend the night on Peanut Ledge and get off tomorrow. 

The team below, according to our “real” climbing ranger, Jesse, is not make up of climbing rangers but a local SAR guy, Jacob and Montana Neil.  So that means all the fun slander I have done the past several reports is, in reality, not true… damn I hate it when I have to retract the good stuff!  I went back and corrected the mistakes.
Read the disclaimer…. Anyway, these guys are getting it done but have slowed and just might get caught high up by the storm.
Ninja team member and bags on Zodiac.  See why black sucks?!!
























Jacob and Neil, hauling and cleaning to the top of the White Circle.


























Trip:  The Koreans finished with the Bolt ladders in the afternoon and completed the climb at 7pm.  Congratulations men!
Lower down Regan, the Polish solo climber, is moving along at a steady pace but will not make it before the storm hits.  He is a tough bird and will be just fine.
Regan returning to the belay on the Trip.
























Lower down Althea, a woman who soloed Zodiac last year, is fixing on the Trip and will most likely wait the storm out before blasting on the route.

Nose:  The lower part of the route is empty.  The two yellow shirts, Humberto and Leo, climbed slowly through the Grey Bands this afternoon and had not gotten on the GR by the time I left at 3.  They could get caught in the storm high on the face if they don’t step on the gas soon. 
The Vanessa, Wes, Big Swiss, Turi, team were headed into Camp 5 and may push to C6 if they know about the approaching storm.
High above the team with the white haul bag and one yellow shirt topped out this afternoon.

The Muir:  Nicki climbed to the start of the last pitch late yesterday and turned around and came back to the belay!  Today he lead the Direct finish put up by the Polish solo climber, Jacek Czyz  who put up a route on the left wall of the dihedral that is really difficult and has not seen a second ascent.  It looked like a great way to finish the route… straight up over the summit cap.  Good on you Nicki!!  We need a detailed topo of the finish.
Nicki atop the direct finish on the Muir.



























Lower down the Muir team of Jack and Kevin bailed from Mammoth, citing the approaching storm as the reason.  Those first 10 pitches are not the quality of a big wall route and those who do them are usually very negative about the experience.

Salathe;  There were several parties on Salathe/Freerider and all are most likely getting off tomorrow.  There were a couple of local pukes taking kit up to the Alcove for most of the day.
Action on the Headwall this afternoon.

























Dihedral:  I didn’t get out west this afternoon so I don’t know if the team from yesterday fixed and came down for the storm or are staying up there.  I will check tomorrow for sure.

Feature of the Day:  (yesterday’s was The Flake on the Dihedral Wall)

























In other news:  The bridge was quiet today and will be more so in the future as the EC Shuttle has its last day tomorrow.  We are getting ready for the early season storm and are hoping for a spell of good weather afterward.  Some are saying the Season is going to be over… the leaves haven’t even turned!!  I’m staying on no matter what is going on with the Captain!!
Hell I may even have some vacation time!
So that’s the way it is for this the 11th day of October, 2009.
Later Tom

Direct finish by Jacek

Jacek... we miss you here in the Valley... it has been too long... I have heard from other polish climbers, including Regan, that you were injured at work and are probably out of the sport now.  sorry for that ... but you will always be remembered by the great climbing you did and the colorful outfits that made my photos so much better!!
Thanks for posting up and reading the ElCap Report
warmest regards Tom

Direct finish on the Muir

was put up as the finish of the Quo Vadis, Nov 2002 by Jacek Czyz.
Thanks Tom for all your wonderful reports, fell me closer to the Valley and Big Stone


til next time...

hi Tom, thanks for the updates on Kevin and Jack! Maybe someday I will wear a brightly colored shirt and make my way up this wall that seems so inconceivable to me today and wave at you from way up high!


Prod Sez!

Thanks Tom, and good luck to any climbers having to weather a storm.



Although we did bail because of the storm, lets not forgot that the reason we could not go on is because of our unrivaled snails pace. And, yes, the bottom 10 pitches blows goats, but we had fun anyway. Moby Dick is a great way to start off the climb. Maybe do that, then rap and then jug to mammoth. Thanks for the water and good times at the Bridge.


miss you guys

signed: Lambone

wait, Niki's married???

Okie Dokie

Hey Tom...
Seems Brandon and Jason bailed from El Cap with the pending storm bearing down rather than risk getting caught upstairs in it. They will be on Washington Column tomorrow (Monday) and get some good climbing in before the mess comes in. They still hope to catch you at the bridge while they are out there. Take care.

Reed and Stark

If you see these guys, tell them Chad say's Climb Hard and I'll see you at the river. Thanks Tom

Yaba Daba

Right on, Tom.
I dunno, I thought storms were mostly pretty cool, with good kit & some liquor.
Especially short ones.....Ah, well.

Thanks Tom! You are the best

Thanks Tom! You are the best :)

The Princess of the El Cap Bridge