ElCap Report Farewell Tour 9/24/2023

ElCap Report Farewell Tour 9/24/2023

By Tom Evans

Yo.. We had a beautiful day here with some action on the Captain.  The facelift ended today and that should free up more climbers to get on ElCap.  The SE face is starting to see some action a new team fixed 3 while I was shooting. There is a solo on South Seas to Pacific Ocean route (SSPO). Also, the strong team of Hudon and Richards fixed on the Sea today.  Several teams are very soon to start on the SE face.  So stay tuned Cubicle Pukes or you will miss some big ascents, about to happen.

Today’s ElCap Report.. Written just for you.. Unique in all the World!


The next several shots are of Keiko and Clemmie on Sunkist.

1)  I am mostly shooting into the shade on this route as it comes into the light later in the morning and I am leaving by 2 or 3 in the afternoon.  This is low on the route, but high on the face.  Here they are passing the “Eyes of ElCap” early yesterday.


2) Later that morning the women reached the start of the smooth headwall.  Keiko is leading here.


3)  This morning they reached the start of the glorious “Headwall” which is the main reason to do the route.


4)  They did get into the sun after 11am and Clemmie is seen cleaning the belay in this shot.


5)  Way east on Aurora Ryan Rex and partner Blake Berghoff are well on their way up the route.  Here is a shot from yesterday as Blake lead onto the interesting rock above the huge overhangs guarding the lower part of the route. 


6)  Over on Magic Mushroom Paul Gagner and wife Sunny are seen about 7 pitches up on the lower slabby part of the route… it gets really steep higher on the route.


7)  I spotted a couple of climbers talking it over on the Salathe’s spectacular ElCap Spire.


8)  Today, NickEhman, in white,  and partner. Daniel VaVila blitzed up the first half of the Nose while I was shooting.  Here Nick is running a bold lead on the famous Boot Flake.


9)  After Nick did the King Swing and Daniel did the swing right behind him.  Nick gave him a helping tow line to Eagle Ledge.


10)   Early a couple of days ago this raspberry woman got my attention as she lead the Great Roof on the Nose.  She styled it! I could almost taste the raspberry!


11)  Later in the day Joe McDermott did the Roof in different lighting… it does make a difference in a shot.  Joe was belayed by partner Noah Grodinski.


12)  The mega legend Hans Florine made a 3 day ascent of the route with two friends.  This shot is the last pitch where the last man up had to do the strenuous jugging out in big air!


13)  Ryan Larocque is seen here at the end of the first pitch of South Seas to Pacific Ocean wall which he started to day as a solo. As it turned out he had a finger caught behind some gear and it was injured enough that he felt is best to bow out.


14)  This is what I call the “Red and Yellow team.” They have climbed well up the Nose but decided to not do the King Swing, taking a fixed line, left by others, directly over to the belay ledge… much to the displeasure of the meadow crew, thus earning the “new” title of “SHAME OF THE DAY” 



In other news:  The weather forecast is looking good and the line-up is filling with vehicles… this is the time to come on out to the Valley and get your glory on the last of the ElCap Reports!

Capt. Tom… out here at my office… just for you!