|Submitted by Tom Evans on Thu, 10/04/2012 - 02:18|
ElCap Report 10/03/12
By Tom Evans
Yo… Improving weather is starting to bring teams up to the Captain.
Tomorrow is supposed to be really nice with cool breezes and warm sunlight. Maybe Fall is finally coming to Yosemite. Lots of action at the Bridge and on the Cap today.
Today’s ElCap Report…written just for you…unique in all the world!
Zodiac: Alice Ng we see you up there …. and you are winning the hearts and minds of the Bridge Crew and Tourons alike. Alice climbed the long center pitch of the Circle as the afternoon drew on. She’s not fast, but for a rookie, is moving along well enough. For selfish reasons, I hope she doesn’t decide to do the Nipple pitch before tomorrow. Many climbers know her from camping in nearby sites.
Alice in the middle of the Great Circle.
Alice at the belay where the Nipple pitch begins.
Lower down a team of three, well dressed climbers, came up from the 2nd pitch and were at the start of the Black Tower by the time I left.
Starting the bolt ladder pitch on Zodiac.
Lost in America: Mark Hudon and Max Jones after fixing one yesterday, hauled kit and blasted after a leisurely breakfast. They were on the 4th as I departed.
Max and Mark at the top of the fixed line, ready to blast.
Max cleaning after Mark hauled kit to the top of the 2nd.
The Trip: The Ella and Andy show continued to make good progress, up the center of the route, today. Paul and Aldo were fixing pitches at a good pace today and the team just might be back on schedule by tomorrow morning.
Ella, leaving home for higher environs this morning.
Later in the day Ella displayed the horizontal jugging technique that only the body of a thirteen year old can tolerate!
Reticent: Ben and Dave did stay on LLL last night and were out climbing by the time I arrived. Dave was on the sharp as the first block was his. He climbed three difficult pitches in a style that made the Crew think… “Ha, that doesn’t look so bad”. The were off on the 4th by the time I departed, making good time by short fixing, with the second hauling.
Dave making the 1st pitch look easy…love the hat/helmet Dave!!
Nose: The route only had two parties on it yesterday but today swarms of NIAD’s and bag boys were spotted all over the route. One NIAD team passed through Nick and Caroline at Camp 4 and were soon rapidly out of site.
NIAD's climbing into Camp 4.
NIAD leader turning the Great Roof, up close and personal... is he smiling??
NIAD team polishing off the Pancake Flake.
Scott Stowe and Greg Clark topped out this afternoon after a total of three days on the route. Hard work gained Scott another summit and I’m sure Greg appreciated his trip up the King of ElCap’s climbs.
Greg on the last few feet to the top this afternoon.
Shield: A team was spotted taking the left turn at the Muir/3D junction this afternoon. I was gone but suspect they will bivy just below the Roof Pitch. Who are those guys?!
I glanced out west but nothing caught my eye. Hopefully the Freerider/Salathe crowd will get on their ponies and ride soon.
Blast from the Past: Sadly, this was the last time I saw Erika Kutcher, a wonderful and enchanting woman, who was much loved by the climbing community, here in Yosemite. She died in an avalanche in the Himalayas’ in 2005, I think. Let's not forget about our friends who have died. They live on in our memories and stories.
In other news: Really a good time at the Bridge with recent ascenders of the Cap hanging out, talking shit, and feasting on various treats they brought along. The Tourons were as thick as ticks on a dogs ear, and many stayed around to see all the teams I could find for them in the scope. Andy’s Ella was a popular subject as was Alice. I seem to be wearing down a bit after every day on the job since the 10 of Sept. So I may take a day off soon to regroup.
The dust up about tossing bags seems to have been resolved on Supertopo. There is general agreement not to do such things again. Lose the anger and let's be glad it didn't go further. Thanks to those who's posts were rational and helped resolve the situation.
So that’s the way it is, for this Wednesday, the 3rd day of October, 2012.