ElCap Report 1/12/15 Special Dawn Wall Edition Day 17

Brought to you by “Adidas Outdoor”

By Tom Evans

Yo.. Today was catch-up day for Kevin.  A good effort would bring each team member’s high point to Wino Tower.  Since Tommy’s high point was already there, Kevin had to climb pitches 18, 19, 20.  The weather was kind of a problem.  The day was partly cloudy and, when the sun was out, it was really warm, but when clouds obscured the sun, it was quite chilly.  There is much talk around town, concerning summit day… when was the question?  Everyone has a different idea.  The media darling of rock climbing, Alex Honnold, said it will be Wednesday, mid day.  I think it will be a day later, perhaps two.  (EDITED LATER.. Honnold was right and I was wrong!)  In mid morning, the day after the summit day, there is to be a press conference, with the men, in the ElCap meadow.  Well…remember Captain Tom’s saying, “You never have it made, until you have it done.”  Climbing to start at 10am tomorrow morning!

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

 1)  I arrived in the meadow in mid morning and found that the media had arrived in force.  ABC, CBS, NBC, ABC Good Morning America, and countless newspapers have staked their claims in the ElCap meadow and passer-by’s venturing too close, were snagged for interviews.  Here I am being recorded, a couple of days ago, for ABC’s World News Tonight, by camera man Steve and sound man Kem.  Photo by Paul Souza.


























2)  A little past noon, camera man Brett Lowell, climbed away from camp and shortly thereafter, Kevin (on the left), and Tommy did the long climb up the rope to the start of the 18th.






























3)  Here is Kevin starting the 18th pitch.





























4)  Kevin seen here a bit higher climbing onto the flake jutting from the corner.  The corner is not climbed on the free route.






























5)  Kevin fell a bit higher and came back to the belay and got a heavier shirt as the temperature cooled considerably.





























The next several shots are of Kevin climbing the rest of pitch 18, rated 13c.























































































































10)  Kevin almost done with the pitch.  The lower part of Nevada Flake is seen on the left.





























It was getting late by the time Kevin started the 19th, which he wanted to combine with the 20th to get to Wino Tower where Tommy was belaying.

11)  On the 19th Kevin had to traverse over to the right side, below Wino Tower.






























12)  After some difficulties and repeated tries he finally made Wino Tower.  Here you see Bret, Kyle, Tommy, and Kevin, looking down at us.






























13)  We had another beautiful sunset to finish my day of shooting.



























So… when will all of this be over?  Do they pretty much have it made now?  Anyone’s guess and No!  It is a long 900ft to the top and while several pitches are not as difficult as those below, they still have to get them done without injury.  Tommy’s fingers are now tough as nylon, but Kevin’s are still on the mend and you never know what will happen over the next day or so.  Stay tuned and get the “real story” without all the media hype, from the only source you know and can trust.  The rest of the media are just here to feed on the story… I have been here for 20 years shooting climbers on ElCap and will be here long after the media trucks have packed up and driven to the next “big” story!

So that’s the way it is, for this Monday, the 12th day of January, 2015.

Capt. Tom… your man till the end!