I started my break in Squamish where we climbed to the top of the Cheif via Deidre to Butt Light. I wrote about that in my last post. I came home, hung out with Sue for a few days then went to Leavenworth with Vitaly and Christine. We each led Angel, though only Vitaly got it clean. I first saw Angel in 1978. I can’t remember if I ever got it clean. It was less polished, and I was stronger then…so maybe.
Next I led Damnation Crack cleanly. That thing is burly and requires a lot of different climbing skills from handjams to off hands to pure chimney. Vitaly led The Nose, and I got some great photos. The next day we climbed Bale Kramer. I led the crux pitch with one hang. I need to stay calmer low down so I have power at the finger lock crux. Vitaly led pitches 1,2 and 4. I think pitch 4 is the hardest. The face climbing up there is very thin.
I was home for a week with Sue, then I left for Smith with Chad, who I had met a few weeks earlier on Squamish Chief. We climbed Wherever I may Roam Friday, then did some of the usual warm up routes like Phone Call, Outsiders, Fridays Jinx, Spiderman, etc. My favorite route was the second pitch of Pack Animal. It’s vertical and bulging in places so the climbing is never boring.
Neither of us was consistently getting in the zone. I couldn’t figure out why I wasn’t feeling stronger. We’ve been doing a lot of stuff with the house, so perhaps that had me worn down. But the climbing was fun as usual. There was a lot of smoke in the air from all the fires.
On the way back it started raining at Mount Hood and it hasn’t stopped. I will be back at work Monday. I could go climbing this weekend…but I’d rather paint. Perhaps it will dry out.