ElCap Report 10/24/11

ElCap Report 10/24/11
By Tom Evans

Yo.. Nice today with some high clouds thickening by afternoon.  No precip forecast for the next week.  Climbers are starting up again, to take advantage of the weather for one last time this season.  The Fall colors are fading fast with the exception of the maples that line the North and South Side Drives.  Those are looking really nice.  The big Oaks are dull now and the Dogwoods are not much this year either.  So come on out to see the climbing, if nothing else.  

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

Prophet:  I was wrong about the lines, coming down from the top, being removed yesterday.  However I didn’t see Will or Sonnie on the route today.

Zodiac:  A mixed team from Montana climbed the first two today.  In a change of pace, the man was better dressed than the woman!  Yeah!!
1)  Leader doing the Zodiac Squat on the second pitch.




























Another mixed team, British living in BC, also started today, but after the folks from Montana.

ZM:  Seems Alex had a little mishap yesterday, while fixing, and is having second thoughts about the climb.  We will see…

Pacific Ocean Wall:  The original route has a team of three climbers, Nate, Nick, and Noah, from the great state of Montana.  They are fixing for blast off tomorrow.
2)  Fixing on the PO.




























Tempest:  Alik Berg continues to smoothly glide up the route, doing 2 pitches a day thus far.  Is it difficult up there?  You would never know just by watching him climb…he makes it all look easy!
3)  Alik leading off on the pitch sandwiched between Mescalito on the left and South Seas on the right.




























4)  Alik pounding in one for the for the good old days!






























New Dawn:  Paul and Tom climbed from LLL past ECT today.  They most likely will fix to the traverse late this afternoon.
5)  Yeah, I think you are right…ElCap Tower is up there.




























6)  Tom leading higher on the right side of ECT.




























Nose:  It was a strange feeling to arrive at the Bridge this morning and not see Solo Dan, on the rock.  Guess he made it off last evening.  The drama ends… but wait … the East Ledges descent lurks!    I really admire the tenacity and determination that got him up the rock, regardless of the circumstances.  And solo climbing is, after all, an individual experience whose value is determined by the person doing it.  While it is easy to watch from the Bridge, what he did was certainly not easy and I feel certain he gained a lot from his efforts.
So I say…good for you Dan, you used everything within your power to get up the climb and in the end, prevailed.  Now get a shower, a big meal, and a good nights sleep!!
High on the route I just caught a momentary glimpse of the three man team heading for Camp 6 this morning.
Lower down the two man team, of John and Scott, climbed from Camp 4 past Camp 5 and out of view by mid afternoon.

7)  Finishing Pancake Flake.






























Lower down I spotted a NIAD team, rapidly climbing the route.  Looks like they did it in two blocks with a guy, I think, named Tim, and a local who needs no introduction, Sean Leary.  Jim lead to Camp 4 and Sean afterward.  It was certainly a pleasure to watch such proficient climbers.
8)  The team high in the Stovelegs.






























9)  Crossing Dolt Tower, NIAD style.


























10)  Sean cruising above Dolt.





























11)  Tim at Muscle Beach, ElCap style!






























Salathe:  The team from yesterday climbed above the Spire today and were last seen around the Block.
12)  Starting the second pitch above the Spire.



























13)  Have you ever noticed him?  The ElCap surfer, with his long flowing hair and beard, riding above Camp 5?



























In other news: The King has been thinly populated of late and rumors abound that a swarm of climbers is about to make a rush at the route.  Well, that might not bode well for the possible Nose record attempt on Thursday.  We can count on a 50% bail rate so maybe things will work out after all.
Like ElCap, Camp 4 is sparsely populated these days, as indicated this morning when I saw no one in line at the kiosk, when I went to the Café for breakfast.
Rescue off the Leaning Tower today.  First reported as a broken leg it turned out to be a sprained knee and the team was able to walk down to the parking lot, where the injured climber was attended to.  Big Jake lives to climb  another day!
So that’s the way it is, for this Monday, the 24th day of October, 2011.
Later Dude.


Your pics seem to have even more contrast and definition than usual. Was it the lighting or did you do something different?
Anyway, beautiful pics and tales as always
Fall lighting rules!!!  Tom

El Capitan is a mysterious woman

Good luck to the team on the Pacific Ocean Route!

Thank you Tom for all of your wonderful reports.

Any idea who the coveted "climber of the season" award will go to yet?

How much longer are you going to be shooting from the bridge?

Thank you El Capitan for being such an inspiration!

Cheers and Beers form the El Cap Teddy Bear!

-J Dub