Sep 6, 2005, 2:24 PM
Post #1 of 1
Registered: Jun 13, 2003
Okay, so I was a little slow getting this TR out.....Hey, I've been busy climbing! Our trip actually took place from 6/24 to 7/3/05.
We had been planning this trip for six months. I had the entire SuperTopos guidebook committed to memory. (A perfectly normal thing for a Yosemite virgin to do). We thought we had the perfect trip planned. The first five night we were to stay in Toulmne meadows. The remaining nights were booked in Crane flat's. .....or so we thought! We get the call two prior to the trip saying: I'm sorry the meadows is closed until long after you departure due to a way above normal winter. So after a bit of scrambling we managed to secure a campsite at Indian flats.
When we arrived at Indian flats our first thoughts were "what a dump". However, the place gre on us after we found out there were showers, a pool, and a restaurant and bar next door. The bar next door was its saving grace. We met this Crazy but good hearted waitress named Darla (with an R) who put us on the path to ruination each and every night. She poured us drinks and lit them on fire and called us pussies if we didn't drink them.
Now onto the climbing part: (This part of the TR was written by another person in our party, with graphic language commented out by skateman)
We started off climbing on the west side of Yosemite falls, in the Five Open Books area. This was a great place to do a few 3 pitch climbs and introduce everyone to climbing in the valley. Dave climbed with Heidi, Amy and Gerry and I climbed with Dan, Doug and Janine. We started off on Hanging Teeth (5.8). This was a great climb with beautiful views of Half Dome and the Glacier Point Apron. Probably the 2nd pitch is considered the crux pitch with a short (30-40ft) 5.8 chimney. This chimney succeeded in spitting out most of my crew, but
there was lots of lie backing to do as well!!! The 3rd and final pitch is where the climb I believe gets it's name. You lie back your way up to a steep corner with some large teeth like rocks looming over head, which you need to climb up and over to finish. Hanging teeth was skateman's favorite Yose climb from a pure climbing perspective.
Once we finished with that we climbed Commitment (5.9) It started out with a beautiful jam crack (80ft long); for the first 20ft or so it was really steep and then it eased up. The pitch ended with easier face climbing to the anchor. The 2nd pitch was some beautiful face climbing up to a long but, sweet lieback. The 3rd pitch, was the crux, with more great face climbing to an imposing roof. You had to traverse underneath this monster and pull around it into a long and steep lieback (sustained). We ended up hiking out in the dark, after rappelling the route. I was the only one with a head lamp so there was a slow light belay exit from the cliff. We climbed 6 pitches and missed out on pizza and beer at Curry!!! It was closed by the time we got to our car....Major bummer!!!!
Day 2 took us to the Reed's Pinnacle Area. We broke into 2 groups to attack Reed's Pinnacle Direct and the Regular Route. Dave climbed with Janine and Gerry and I climbed with Heidi and Amy. We tackled RPD. This was one bad ass mofo!!! The first 2 p where serious jam cracks, with the 2nd p being a great deal longer and more sustained!! I was proud to see that both my partners had to dog it on the 2nd p!!! I felt like I was just doing my job!!!!! However, the 3rd p traveled through a chimney tunnel, which at 5.8 was the scariest section of climbing I've done at that grade!! It was about 70ft long and if you slipped and fell you might get permanently wedged inside the tunnel, which became more narrow below you feet!!!! I managed to get through, but decided it was way too dangerous for everyone to climb though and the group decided to send Amy through to clean my gear...which she did in fantastic style!!!! We then finished the climb via a 5.9 crack to the top of the Pinnacle. It was a great 2nd day!!!
Day 3, Heidi, Doug and I climbed the Manure Pile classic Nutcracker a beautiful and popular 5.8. This climb is 5 p long with great and varied climbing. 3 of the 5 p are 5.8 crack and lieback climbing. One sweet crack goes 5.7, but the crux pitches are definitely p 1...a wild and sustained lieback that gets harder as you go and p 5 which includes a R rated mantelshelf problem...which didn't seem so bad!!!
Day 4, Dave climbed with Dan and Janine and I climbed with Doug and Gerry and we kicked ass on the Royal Arches!!! We climbed this amazing 15 pitch climb in great style and in good time!!! It can be done as easy as 5.7, but we did every hard variation on it and pushed the grade to 5.8. Perhaps the most memorable part of the climb comes way up on p 9, when you encounter the tarzan like pendulum swing (fixed rope with knots tied in it) to get across a 5.10 b friction slab!!! This was something else!!! Otherwise, it had everything you can
imagine, from crack to face to fire ants!!!!
Day 5, ALl of us did some fun single pitch climbs at the Church Bowl. Bishop's Terrace 5.8... a must do if you are in the valley and Church Bowl Tree a slippery 5.10 a crack!! This was kind of a rest day!!
Day 6, Dave climbed with Gerry and Amy and I climbed with Heidi....we took on the Higher Cathedral Spire, Regular Route 5.9. This might be one of my all time favorites!!! It can be done in 5 pitches, but we did all the hard variations and stood on top in only 4!!! Amazing crack and face climbing, with serious exposure and sustained climbing!!! The views of El Cap and the rest of the valley are to die for!!! In fact, someone said it is the highest free standing pillar in America!! Cool stuff!!
Day 7, I climbed with Heidi, Doug and Dan and we climbed West Crack on DAFF Dome 5.9. I scewed up and started on the wrong route, but was able to link back to the proper belay stance!! This was a serious bitch!! Dave cleaned the heinous 1st pitch, which was probably a 5.10 R traversing pitch, that I was able to link to the top of the 1st pitch of West Crack. Due to the poor pro and crazy traverse Dave followed and we dropped a rope down to the group to bring them up to us. After which, Dave said his goodbyes and we lowered him and Janine off!!! As you can imagine, this was a real pain. However, the rest of the climb was stellar, even though I experienced terrible rope drag on the 2nd p when my rope somehow was getting wedged below me, after I pulled over the initial overhang. The rest of the climb eased up and we were on top, rappelled off and were back to the car before dark!! This climb was the only m.p. climb we did in Tuolumne.
An assortment of other climbs were done as well (Grack, After six, etc...), but I feel as though I have rambled enough for now. I will try to link some pics to the TR at a later date. Our first trip to Yosemite was amazing! It's will be very diffacult to beat the combination of climbing, weather, and scenery that the Valley and high country have to offer.