|Submitted by Tom Evans on Wed, 09/29/2010 - 02:31|
ElCap Report 9/28/10
By Tom Evans
Yo… Warm and warmer was the story of the climbing on ElCap today. A couple of teams came down due to lack of water. Some are bailing and some are postponing a couple of days. A couple of climbers parked in “my spot” at the Bridge today so I was unable to have the ask a climber program. That meant that I could still shoot but move around to other places. As a result I got over 40 shots to pick from that are in the “best of the day” folder. Actually, there were not many routes being climbed today but the Nose was pretty packed and I got some sweet stuff off it.
Today’s ElCap Report… written just for you….unique in all the world!
Zodiac: I heard from two of my most reliable spies that a team did the route in a push last night… they were gone by morning! Who were those guys?
Also on the route was the legendary Steve Gerberding, making a solo run at it over the next few days. Unfortunately, I can’t get him to wear anything but that damned white shirt he always wears. Hey, I even threatened him with physical harm… I out-weigh the man by 40 pounds… but…. he is twice my height and in far better shape than I have ever been… so, I let him off the hook… this time… but next time… well, maybe I won’t be so nice!
Stevie G and that damned white shirt, on Zodiac's 4th pitch.
ZM: The bags are at the start of the 3rd pitch and the lads have retired to the deck until the weather cools off a bit.
NA Wall: A Spanish team is fixed to the top of 4 and were not to be seen today. Dave Lane and T2 were seen coming down from the 7 pitch today, pulling lines, but left their kit at the top of 4 to come down for more water, as they drank have their entire supply yesterday. They too will be taking a couple of days on the deck hoping for cooler conditions. They reported that the route was awash in shit as a previous team was not the least bit concerned about sanitation… jerks…
Dave Lane heading down for some much needed water and a couple of days respite from the heat.
Trip: A solo and another team are fixed on the early pitches of the route but were no where to be seen today.
Mescalito: The South African climber bailed from the middle of the Seagull pitch this morning. I assume his water supply was far from adequate to do the route. He took his kit down.
Andrew departing the Seagull pitch.
New Dawn to Tribal? The two lads who blasted yesterday, Ryan and Kevin, Colorado climbers, climbed to ECT in the mid afternoon after a night on Lay Lady Ledge. These guys look pretty good..
Strong climbing in the heat of the day got this team to ECT by early afternoon.
Nose: The Nose was busy today… if fact it had more climbers on it than are on all the other routes on ElCap combined. I saw a couple teams top out this morning, I assume from yesterday. The YOSAR woman’s team of Althea and Libby got up early and were on the route before sun up. They are trying for a NIAD of around 15 hours. They climbed strongly all day and were at the changing corners when I left around 3pm.
Althea shaking out while doing the Pancake Flake free.
Althea at the Changing Corners high on the Nose.
Lower down a couple of teams climbed from Sickle to ECT this afternoon including, Super Guide, Scott Stowe and partner Steve. A team was right behind them and the ND team, mentioned above, soon joined the crowd at the Tower.
Scott Stowe, getting crazy off Dolt Tower!
A team that climbed up and onto the first Muir pitch above the Gray Bands thought better of it and traversed the rest of the way to Camp 4 and got in line at the Great Roof. There appeared to be a nice breeze up there, so maybe the heat wasn’t so bad.
Climbing Texas Flake on the Nose.
Tug of War on the Great Roof!
Albatross: I did see Pete climbing leisurely above Chickenhead ledge in the early afternoon. Off tomorrow.
Salathe: I first noticed a three man Belgian team of, Koen, Ben and Nathian (?), I couldn’t read the cursive note they left me, at Hollow Flake this morning. They climbed to the top of the Ear by the time I departed. The guy in the yellow shirt had an interesting jugging technique as seen below.
Laid back jugging on the Salathe Ear.
Also on the route was the Australian woman climber, Mayan Gobat, on a mission, over the next several days, to climb the route free. By the Monster variation, I assume, as even the top dogs in the sport seem to be too frightened to do the pitch above the Ear, even though it is part of the original Salathe route. She climbed quite smoothly to the Hollow Flake and was even hauling kid to the pitch below the Ear as her partner came up cleaning. She looks pretty solid and could well send it, depending on the heat and how well the, infamous, Headwall goes for her.
Mayan, getting in there close on the Hollow Flake, Salathe route.
In other news: A few of the leaves along the North and South Side drives are starting to get some color. I went to Crane Flat this afternoon and noticed some Dogwoods starting to change too. We sure could use some rain as the place is all dusty and dirty and could use a good cleaning. I will keep you posted…. I have several cds of shots to send out but have not had the time to send them … so if you are waiting for yours…. you will have to wait a little longer….
So that’s the way it is, on ElCap, for this Tuesday, the 28th day of September, 2010.