ElCap Report 6/11/09

ElCap Report 6/11/09
By Tom Evans
Yo… Another very nice day for climbing on the Cap.  A bit windy but the right temps for free climbing on the big stone.  We still have supposed wall climbers sitting in the café waiting for the weather to have a 0% rain forecast… get over it Pukes!  Routes are being climbed every day now no matter what the chance of rain.  No more of these lame excuses dudes… WTF.. you invested hundreds of dollars in that Gortex rain gear and you lug it up the Cap just in case… so go climbing!!  Actually there are a lot of climbers on the wall now so I guess I shouldn’t complain… still it bugs me to see climbers sitting around bemoaning the weather when it is really perfect!!  If it was a normal June I guess they would be sitting around bitching about the heat!

Today’s report is brought to you by Major Phil Packer who came by the bridge to chat a bit before going out in the meadow for a BBC interview.
The lads at the bridge, especially the Korean contingent, gave him a hardy round of applause when he stopped by.  He actually loved the climbing and living on the wall.  He had not felt such comradeship with a team of men since his experiences in the war. Well I'll tell you what... at times it is very much like a war up there!!  Best of wishes to you Phil!!
Today’s report… read it and weep you Cubicle Pukes far from the Ditch…

Zodiac:  The two man team in the lead was climbing the Black Tower as I arrived and climbing the pitch to the Nipple as I departed.
Below, the team that fixed yesterday climbed from 2 to 6 and were going higher as I left.  I did see a team start on the direct fart.

Lost in America:  The last of the Korean teams, from the Team Extreme Riding climbing school, is still on this route, slowly dealing with the various difficulties.  Handsome Mike, who climbed it with Big Wall Kate, writes that it is a hard route and nothing to take for granted.  Two more days?
1))  Difficult cleaning high on Lost in America, SE Face of ElCap.

























VA:  Pete and Leo are sticking to the schedule of being careful to climb as slowly as possible.  But early in the afternoon Pete had a radio conversation with Brenda and said the plan has changed and they needed to top out tomorrow… that’s about 6 more pitches… I was going to take bets but old Pete can’t be trusted not to just blitz to the top… we will see…

Trip:  Roger and Alex are moving along smartly and climbed from the start of the 8th to catch Pete and Leo just before the bolt ladders.. They may top out tonight… maybe they will leave a rope for the slower party!
2)  Roger lowering out the bags early in the morning on the Trip’s 8th pitch.
























Nose:  I went out west before going to the Bridge today and spotted a team high in the upper dihedrals, above C6.  Lower down there were a couple parties, one with 3 or 4 in it… all were dragging along and were miles from Dolt by 4 pm when I departed.  It doesn’t look very promising for these folks.

Albatross:  Ian and Pierre are on the headwall now and were making steady if not rapid progress as the day moved along.  It looks steep up there and cold too… they have all their clothing on.
3)  Ian climbing to the Tan Band that cuts across the upper SW Face.




























El Corrazon:  Conrad and Alex were working on the fantastic splitter just left of the Shield Roof today.  Alex moved smartly along, seemingly with little effort, right up until he took a 30 footer off the pitch.  He went down to the start and soon had it done with out any falls.  Conrad looked cold and Alex seemed quite warm as he was leading.
4)  Alex Honnold taking a shaking to get the blood back in the hands.

























3D/Muir approach pitches:  I saw several teams heading up to the Shield, Muir junction this morning in the early shade.  I think one is going to the Shield, Ryan and Bob, and the other, a 3 man Korean team is going for the 3D.

Salathe:  I saw two teams moving right up the route to ECS in the Afternoon.  One was decked out in red shirts and the other sported some orange… yeah… that’s what I’m talking about.
5)  Climbing above the Ear on the original Salathe route.

























Blast from the Past:
6)  Tom Evans climbing his first wall route, South face of the Column in May 1969.


























In other news:  The weather is still cool and more like early May than mid June.  Take advantage of it while you can.  The bears are on the prowl all over the bridge area and the base of the Captain, so don’t keep food any place where they have even the slightest chance of getting it… they will get it!!  Not much else to report at the moment… I will be going away for a few days next week so get ready for some blank days without the Report!  Maybe you can get together in support groups to get through the difficult time!
So that’s the way it is for this the 11th day of June 2009.
Later Tom

Lovin' It

The only reason to check into the cubicle everyday is your daily reports Tom. I am lovin' it. Being able to follow Major Packer and all the others is great.





Jeez, your questions are HARD.
I AM from Arkansas, after all.
Supe rad pics, Tom.....Love the swirls of color on Ian, on the Albatross.
Dig it!

Hi Doug!

The Two-man team!!!

I believe the "two man team" is Dan Mydans, a science teacher and a Colorado Mountain School climbing instructor and his friend John, also an experienced climber. They just texted Dan's girlfriend and THEY MADE IT TO THE TOP TODAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Get some good shots of them today or tomorrow!!!!
Awesome job guys!!!
Love ya Dan!

That's the best thing about climbing...the cameraderie as

the Koreans and other bridge rats applaud Major Phil Packer as he arrives at the bridge. That's first class! Make sure you chase those cubicle pukes out of the cafeteria Tom. At least they have the chance to go climbing while I'm stuck here in Ottawa. Awesome shots and stories as usual....and best of all I beat Skully to the punch! He must be out getting groceries or still trying to figure out that math question. mine is 8 + 1=? , but my kids helped me out so here we go.