El Cap Report 06/14/08

ElCap Report 6/14/08

By Tom Evans

Yo! Another nice day here in the Yosemite Valley. The Touron population is kind of down at the moment. The Bridge was pretty quiet today. Some climbers came and went and few stayed a long time save Amanda, Lee’s fiancé. She stayed until the bitter end, way after I left around 2pm. I have a show at the lodge tonight so this will be brief. Today’s report is brought to you by the guys out west, battling it out in the blinding sun and heat, far from the cool breezes and shade of the rats nest here at the bridge. Today’s Report.

Zodiac: I came down to my spot across from the MPB and got some nice shots of the action on this great route. Lee and Ben gave it a shot again this morning before the sun got on them but it was to no avail. The Nipple pitch turned them away, and it seemed to me that they were never really close to getting it as 3 different sections wouldn’t let them pass. They climbed to the top of the pitch later and will probably climb off tomorrow some time.

Cossey brothers feeling the heat on Zodiac

Lower down Emily and Pat were hauling into the Circle when I arrived. After a time Emily lead off on the long corner pitch. She took a whipper from about half height when it appeared she pulled off a flake she was hooking on. 20 to 25 feet I would guess. But the spunky chic yarded right up on it again and went right on by the place she fell from. With the “modern” belaying practices you can plunge a long way as the belayer works off a grigri and it is typical to have a lot of slack out in the system. So although it looked like she had a piece nearby she fell a lot further than twice the distance above the piece. It was a clean fall and she didn’t seem to be hurt at all, mentally or physically. Higher on the pitch she went airborne again. Nice stuff E!!! Anyway she finished the lead and hauled. I left about the time Pat was finishing cleaning it.

Emily about to take the plunge on Zodiac

Emily regrouping after the fall on Zodiac

Emily skirting past the nasty broken flakes on Zodiac

Tangerine Trip: Two guys suddenly appeared on the 5th pitch this morning quite unexpectedly and were short fixing and hauling while the leader was out. They are pretty fast and may be doing a push. I haven’t talked to them before as they were among the worst dressed groups. But they are sending!!

Triple Direct. I assume these guys were the ones I talked to earlier about doing the Muir Wall. I went out West to check on them late in the afternoon and saw no one on the Muir but these guys on Pancake Flake around 4:30 and I didn’t see them climbing up the Nose. They seemed to be making good time on the flake and will easily be in Camp 5 by dusk.

Climbers on Pancake Flake late in the afternoon, Triple Direct

Dihedral Wall: I got an email from these guys a while back and forgot about it as I frequently do these days with all I have to remember. I did see them haul and clean to the start of the Black Dihedral. They looked warm and the glare was wicked over there too. I will be sure to see them tomorrow late in the day.

Salathe: I saw the party of 4, who someone said is really a party of 5, climb off the Block to Sois le Toit ledge early in the afternoon. When I went out west to check on the Dihedral guys I saw this team leading to the Roof pitch. They had guys strung out all along the lines to the roof. They are really making good time for such a large group. Hayden said he talked to them yesterday during his and JT’s climb of Free Rider, minus the monster crack. I can’t imagine that they will make long ledge tonight but you never know.

Party of 5 please, Salathe Wall

In other news: Nice and slow at the rats nest today. The usual suspects hung out consuming large quantities of cheap brews. Matt is resting this week and it is a good thing as he looks like a skid row boozer. KFC and DT were off doing some Sherpa work up to Little Yosemite Valley this afternoon. All in all it is pretty slow. Ottawa Doug did hang in the café for breakfast today and is moving food up the trail to his route NDtoTR. He will blast soon. Seemed like the heat went up a bit today and down on the West side it was looking real hot. I could see the first 4 of LF and it was empty.

So that is the way it is on this the 14th day of June 2008.

Stay cool… ECP’s