ElCap Report 10/17/12

ElCap Report 10/17/12

By Tom Evans

Yo… Seems like the, “no shirts allowed”, rule is gaining popularity on the Captain these days.  It is beautiful at the Bridge but a bit warm on the cliff.  Still the teams come to climb the great rock.  The team of Dave Allfrey and Alex Honnold did get the record time on Lunar Eclipse yesterday, as predicted.  The old record was around 17 hours and they crushed that one down to a very stiff 11:22...low hanging fruit indeed! 

No big news on the cliff today, but for a lot of climbers it was a great day.  Those are “my folks”, the unknown climbers who come out and give it their best shot and come away with wonderful memories of a great climb.  No one is going to put their picture on the cover of any magazines or pay them to give shows.  Here on the report, they get a few fleeting moments of fame, and some shots to hang on the wall at home.  Sometimes I wonder where they get the desire and energy to come out, often off the couch, and grind out day after day on a big route…just for their own satisfaction.  So, today’s Report is dedicated to all those unknown climbers, who come out here at great expense and effort, to chase a nearly impossible dream.  Good for you!!

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

Shortest Straw:  Matt Lambert moved up into the Circle today and seems to be going along at his own pace.

1) Matt crossing some of the wonderful white dikes that cross the diorite here on ElCap.





























ZM:  Ryan and Alex are short fixing their way right up the route.  They were climbing out of the Circle when I departed.

Native Son:  Marek continues to move along at his consistent pace and needs to pick it up a bit as the weather is warm and he only packed 8 gallons of water.  He is nearing the Equator, half way up the route.

2)  Marek, on point here.  I think the topo says “follow the holes to the right”.





























Mescalito:  Still one of the most popular routes on the rock at the moment, but by dark will be down to a single team.  The team of Tommy and Kevin were last seen at the start of the Molar traverse this afternoon.  This shot was taken earlier in the day.

3)  Houston!  We have a problem!





























4)  Higher up the teams of Max/Pete  and Oli/Paul played tag until the very end.  This shot finds them at the last and next to last pitches this afternoon.






























Coming up fast and perhaps catching Oli/Paul were the Belgians, Sanne and Stanley.  Fast climbers these.   Should be off this evening no matter what.

New Dawn:  Linc and Brandon did the traverse to WEML this morning and were headed to Wino Tower as I departed this afternoon.

5)  Linc cleaning gear in this shot from out west.  Texas Flake is in the left side of the view.






























Nose:  Today was NIAD day!  I think there were 4 NIAD’s on the route and all made a good pace.  There were a couple of wall style teams from yesterday.

6)  This shot is of Bria, the woman in the mixed party from ECT yesterday.





























7)  NIAD’s on the Great Roof this afternoon.





























8)  NIAD team short fixed to the small triangular ledge that seems to catch too many falls from the rest of the pitch above.





























Muir:  High up I saw Neil jugging off Chicken Head ledge this morning and figure the UK team just might be off tonight… or they could work the last few pitches if provisions warrant.



9)  Lower down I did see Doug and Luke hauling kit to the top of the 10th pitch this afternoon.  Must have been a lot of fun the heat of the afternoon!





























10)  Salathe:  A couple of, wall style, teams climbed off from Long Ledge this morning.  In the middle of the route a team attempting some free climbing climbed to Sois le Toit this afternoon.  This shot is of the approach to that ledge.






























Dihedral Wall:  The crew is putting the pitches behind them, and were into the nice free corners, leading to the Black Cave, when I left.  I wish I could have seen more of their climbing, but I only have a few minutes out west in the afternoons.  Off tomorrow.

NNL:  Cam and Jim have moved along well on this route and will be at Thanks Giving ledge tomorrow, early. 

11)  Cleaning high up in a beautiful corner this morning.






























12)  West Buttress:  Stevie G. continues to move up this Kor/ Roper route, the 4th done on the Rock.  He is in some interesting and colorful rock.





























Fear:  I did see a team low on the route this afternoon. 

Scenic shots of the Day.

13)  Down by the river at Valley View.






















































In other news:  Not much other news these days as ElCap is getting most of the attention.  Mikey Schaffer’s new route, Father Time, years in the making, went free yesterday.  A proud route that is not for the casual climber…you need to be a pro or perhaps a very good “life style” climber.

On a personal note…my daughter-in-law, Andrea, is undergoing a serious surgery starting tomorrow and I am wishing that wonderful mother and wife all the best!  All positive thoughts coming your way Andrea!

So that’s the way it is, for this Wednesday, the 17th day of October, 2012.


Shortest Straw Solo

Looking good Lambone! Badass solo. Love the scenic shots Tom. Makes me feel like I'm there.

Tom, Another day passes with

Another day passes with some great photos to validate it.
Wishing the Best for Andrea. The prayer flags are flowing in the wind.


Thanks Tom!

For the always great Report. Love the colors in the West Buttress shot.

Thoughts and prayers for Andrea, sorry to hear she has surgery and I hope all will be well - positive vibes going her way!

Have a great week,


Tom, I'm glad you are keeping


I'm glad you are keeping tabs on the Squamillians clawing their way up the Muir. Even if you're still sore at the lack of posts at ST, I just came home from 17 hours worth of bending some tile setters to my will in order to make a sched. Your pics tonight were just the thing to keep perspective on what we work for.

Jim Brennan

Thanks Tom!

Sweet shots Tom! Sending Andrea my best. She will be in my thoughts as will you!

The Princess of the El Cap Bridge