ElCap Report 10/14/21

ElCap Report 10/14/2021

By Tom Evans

Yo..  The Weather has been a little strange and that has affected climbing teams in different ways.  As you read on the previous report, we recently had a night of high winds combined with cold temperatures.  The woman’s team on the Straw kept going with apparently little trouble, while the men’s team on the Sea bailed because they lacked cold weather gear and suffered from the cold.  Piton Pete’s team were quite alarmed at the conditions and were fearful it would be very difficult to retreat as they felt the conditions hampered rope management.  Pete’s team bailed because his partner Kurt had serious back problems along with intestinal issues that incapacitated him.  The Green Bag team just kept rolling along, putting the pitches behind them.  This is the Fall season and the weather is uncertain some of the time… so any team should be prepared for anything from heat to freezing temperatures.  Don’t go on the Cap without a full kit.  Several people have died up there from the cold.  Climbers tend to see Yosemite as just “Fun in the Sun!”  The price for making that mistake can be your life!

Today’s ElCap Report… written just for you... unique in all the world!

1)  Zodiac:  This team started yesterday later in the day and are now higher on the route.  The first two pitches are seen here.































2)  This Zodiac team made good progress reaching the start of the Black Tower pitch Yesterday afternoon.  This morning the team sent a leader up the Tower pitch and later bailed from the end of that pitch.































3)  Shortest Straw:  Lower on the route a team of two fixed the a few and are now actively moving up the route.  This team is composed Horacio Gratton, and Milo.






























4)  Here Horacio is leading the team passing the bolt and thin crack pitch.






























5)  By the end of yesterday they had done the 5th pitch and were headed toward the long pitch that meets up with Zodiac.































6)  Shortest Straw, woman’s team:  Maria and Kristen are putting on a clinic up there.  Several comments are floating around … “Those women are kicking the men’s teams asses up there!”  “Who are those women?”  They climbed into the GWC on the 12th and set up camp at the start of the Sawblade Flake.  Here is the long view of the GWC.  Maria has come down with a head cold and Kristen has taken over the leading for the moment.































7)  By evening they were settled in at the belay, at the base of the Sawblade.





























8)  On the 13th Kristen led the Sawblade pitch without much problem.






























9)  Disorderly conduct:  Neil and Keiko are moving smartly along high on the route.  Afternoon found them bivied at the base of a sweet crack leading to the bypass of the Harding Roof.






























10)  Yesterday they climbed the crack to the roof in excellent weather and will most likely be off late on the 14th I estimate.































11)  Nose:  The Green Bag Team of Lucia and Andrew put in a long day on the 12,th climbing all the way from ECT to Camp 6 to bivy.  They have proven to be a strong team who are up and going earlier than most of the other teams and climb well into late evening.  Here they are at 5pm starting the Great Roof, which they sent in good order.






























12)  Sugar Maple leaves.































Blasts from the Past!

13)  Upper Yosemite Falls:  This is a night shot I took years ago on slide film that I converted to digital.































14)  Moon Day on the Nose from a few years ago.































15)  Dawn Wall 2015:  Kevin Jorgeson on his 11th try of the 15th pitch which he sent.  It proved to be the lynchpin of the entire climb.































16)  Tommy Caldwell on his 2nd attempt on the 15th pitch several days before Kevin.  He sent it on the second try!































Thanks to Michelle Look who photoshopped the various photographers ropes out of the shots of the Dawn Wall… She is very proficient at this kind of work and does the best work you will see.  I use her exclusively for this kind of work. You should too!


In other news:

The Nose is starting to see some action but many bailers still infest the route… Downward bound!

Nothing west of the Nose seems to be getting attention… hello?  The SW face is open to climbing you know! 

The doesn’t appear to be anyone attempting to free climb anything on EC.  The Euro’s have in recent years been at the tip of the spear in such endeavors and their absence is sorely missed by all of us!

So that’s the way it is at the of the 13th day of October, 2021. I will post this in the morning.

Capt. Tom hanging with the crew in the ECM!


Prepare for the Worst, Hope for the Best

Not bringing severe weather gear up the Big Stone is asking for trouble in any season.
I had a partner who told of how his team nearly died due to Hypothermia from being in bad bivy from a 'surprise' summer cold front and subsequent all night rain.
As I always say : ' Stack the cards in your favor. All the way, Every time ! '

Thanks Tom for bringing us the updates this fall !

Free climbers.

I believe there is a team on El Corazon at the moment and there was a teams working on Golden Gate on 10/14.

From Tom... thanks for the info... I think the GG crew are "drop-ins" and I don't shoot them.  I will look harder on ElCroazon! Thanks!

Turns out that Brette Harrington is working the route with partner Elliot Bernhagen, and I have been shooting them the past couple of days. Thanks!