ElCap Report 10/2/18

ElCap Report 10/2/18

By Tom Evans

Yo.. Great weather now… cooler with mostly sunny days and comfortable nights.  However, today is forecast to be the start of several days of rain, through Thursday.  Although we have had good action in the last several days, that will be changing very soon.  This report has shots over the past few days. Update:  It is now 8:30am and pouring rain... good luck out there!  I have just learned that the Para Climber made it off last night and that they are presently carrying her out via Tamarc flats trail. I also got down to ElCap around noon and saw Brett leading the pitch above the slab and he was in a dry area too.. looking good up there!

ElCap Report 9/28/18

ElCap Report 9/28/18

By Tom Evans

Yo… The weather is no longer on the warm side but has moved into the blazing hot region.  Most climbers have stayed away from the cliff or have tried and bailed from their chosen routes. Many climbers have volunteered to help clean up Yosemite via the Face Lift. However, the forecast is for cooler temps and possible rain early next week.  We could use some rain as Yosemite has become a dust bowl from all the logging and a long dry summer. The air still has some smoke at times as there are fires smoldering from the past few weeks.  Some hard core teams are still up there battling it out, seeking to realize their dream climbs.  Hey you lurkers... how about some donations to the site... I do this for your enjoyment and am getting hungry here! 

ElCap Report 9/25/2018

ElCap Report 9/25/18

By Tom Evans

Yo…The great weather continues to bless the fall season.  The cliff is far from packed but it is drawing the wall climbers to it.  The Nose is getting the lions share of the teams.  The Face Lift is on now and that may be the reason for a thinned wall population.  Tonight, the Face Lift is showing the Honnold film “Alone” and the turnout is expected to be epic.  The real work of the event will start tomorrow as the volunteers head out to pick up trash and junk strewn about the park.  Big events happen each evening this week… so if you are in the area be sure to come on by.

ElCap Report 9/22/18

ElCap Report 9/22/2018

By Tom Evans

Yo… Wake up Cubicle Pukes.. the ElCap Report is back!  The 5 days I have been here have been perfect for climbing, not a cloud in the sky! As to be expected, the big trades are getting most of the attention.  We do have some solo climbers up on the big lonesome, the solitude their objective.  Oli is done with NNL while Matt is just starting.  Stevie G is on a favorite … JTree was too hot so he came north.  On the upper east side Zodiac and the Straw are getting some traffic but the rest of the SE face lies empty all the way to the Nose.  Lots of action on Salathe and Freerider.  The Nose is getting a lot of action but has yet to get jammed up.  The Muir is becoming popular again with two teams on it at the moment, and another just off.  I am in site 1 of camp 4, look for the lime green rain fly with the lights.  I haven’t gotten around to do any scenic shots but hope to get away from EC in late afternoon.  I will try to get a report out each week or so but understand that I will not be writing or posting shots of every team, although I will be shooting everyone.

ElCap Report 5/16/18

ElCap Report 5/16/18

By Tom Evans

Yo... It seems like the Spring climbing season is in full swing now.

ElCap Report 10/26 to 31/17

ElCap Report 10/26 to 31/2017

By Tom Evans

Yo… The great fall weather held up to the end of the season. The hallmarks of the season were the huge rockfalls of late September, early October, and death and injury as you have read in previous ElCap Reports.  However, along with tragedy came the triumphs of climbers who fulfilled long held ambitions and dreams.  Lots of free climbs were attempted on ElCap as a wave of European climbers swarmed over the great rock.  We also got to watch some, rarely done, wall style climbs too. This is the last report of the fall season.  Remember to let me know who the climbers are in the shots, if they are not identified, so I can put their names with their shots.  I received word (11/15/17) that Keita Kurahami who worked the Nose this fall did make a free ascent!  Congratualtions! 

ElCap Report 10/18 to 10/25/2017

ElCap Report 10/19 to 10/25/2017

By Tom Evans

Yo…Unprecedented solid weather seems to be the trademark of this Falls climbing season.  It is too warm for some of the free climbing on ElCap, yet several teams are forging ahead.  Most popular is, of course, Freerider which has been plagued by drop-ins, bailers and fixed-line jumpers.  El Nino, El Corazon, and Golden Gate still have parties on them.  The big free climbing news is the finishing of Rob Miller and Roby Rudolf’s new route on the Muir Wall, just two days ago.  Big wall aid routes are going down in good order too.  Recently we have seen the NA, Aurora, Native Son, Mescalito, Wall of the Early Morning Light, Sunkist, Never Never Land, and Aquarian get climbed, to mention some of the notables.

ElCap Report 10.21.17 New Nose Record

ElCap Report 10/21/17 New Nose Record

By Tom Evans

Yo… It was a cold and dark morning in Camp 4 and I didn’t really want get up… but Brad Gobright and Jim Reynolds seemed to be on the cusp of finally sending the Nose, in record time.  This was to be their 11th run up the route and since their last run had broken the 2:30 barrier I figured this just might be their day… so I went to the café around 6:30, gagged down a greasy breakfast, and headed down to the meadow.  I arrived to find that …the story continues below…

ElCap Report 10/12 to 10/18/17

ElCap Report 10/12 to 10/18/17

By Tom Evans

Yo… Great weather, albeit on the warm side, prevails here in Yosemite.  Unfortunately, so does the smoke from the Empire fire, up behind Glacier Point.  So, most of the day shooting is a waste of time as the shots come out very strange looking until the smoke drifts off later in the afternoon.  The roads are a total mess too with paving going on in the camp 4 area and other projects making for lots of waiting in lines.  I had considered leaving this week but some friends are here and we are having a good time in spite of the distractions.  We had a big rockfall off the first half of the 5th pitch on ZM, so that route will have to be reestablished there.  The big rockfall area continues to dribble a rock or two now and then but nothing substantial.  

ElCap Report 10/5 to 10/11/17

ElCap Report 10/5 to 10/11/2017

By Tom Evans

Yo… The great weather continues to bless this fall climbing season.  However, we have a lot of smoke in the valley most days and that tends to put a yellow cast on my photographs.  Due to recent events on ElCap I have fallen behind in the regular weekly reports… so I am trying to catch up.

Today’s ElCap Report..written just for you..unique in all the world!

ElCap Report 10/11/17 Special Edition Texas Flake Rescue

ElCap Report 10/11/17 Special Rescue Edition Texas Flake

By Tom Evans

Yo.. The day started as many do these days..the valley was full of smoke and I was not able to get any useful shots until late morning when the smoke drifted off to the east.  Just past noon a friend came out and we chatted while I was doing my usual morning shooting.  At about 12:30 a man quickly approached and asked if we had seen the big fall off the Boot Flake.  I hadn’t seen it happen as I was conversing with friends at that moment.  He described the fall to me.  The climber had fallen from near the top of the Boot and the story continues below…

ElCap Report 10/5/17

ElCap Report 10/5/17

By Tom Evans

Yo.. Splendid weather now dominates the climbing season.  Warm days and cool nights are making for perfect climbing conditions.  You need to come on out and get on the great rock as it doesn’t get better than it is now.  The big trades are getting a lot of attention but some interesting climbing is going down on the not so popular, but deserving routes.  This report covers the climbing from 9/27 to 10/5/2017.

ElCap Report 10/2/17

ElCap Report 10/2/17

By Tom Evans

Yo.. this report will cover climbs up to the 27th of Sept 2017.  The weather has been solid for some time now but the Big Three are not crowded at all…so this is your time to get going on the route you have always wanted to do.  The news media coverage of the big rockfalls has pretty much gone away now and things are sort of back to normal for everyone but the people involved, of course. 

ElCap Report Rockfall Rescue Edition 9.27.17

ElCap Report Rockfall Edition 9/27/17

By Tom Evans

Yo…The weather has been really nice for the past few days and big wall climbers are back in force.  Today was one of those perfect days that everyone had a nice comment about while hanging in the meadow.  However nice the weather was, the rest of the day was ruined by a huge rockfall that came thundering down the SE face of ElCap, just right of the Waterfall route.  The rockfall struck at 1:51pm with a loud cracking sound and then billows of dust rose from the base of the rock.  Fortunately, there was a strong west wind blowing the dust rapidly to the east, so we were able to see the cliff right away. 

About half an hour before the fall, three people were seen walking among the remains of the last rockfall, from two years ago.  We watchers immediately scanned the base in hopes of seeing three people fleeing the area.  Unfortunately, I was only to see a woman, helped by someone, slowly moving to the west.  Immediately after the fall many people called in to report the rockfall and the possibility that there were people struck by it.  YOSAR quickly arrived on scene, with all their resources, to evaluate the situation and help in any way possible.  The shots below will tell the story, but not in the detail that would do justice to all those responsible for the rescue effort.  Many people, you will never know about, made important contributions to the rescue.  YOSAR continues to amaze with their efficiency and outright courage...dedicated professionals willing to risk their lives to save others... proud!

ElCap Report 9/23/17

ElCap Report 9/23/17

By Tom Evans

Yo.. I have been here three days thus far and we have had rain, hail, sleet, snow, and wind…with a couple nice mornings and afternoons thrown in, but not together.  The extended forecast looks promising.  The bad weather has not kept climbers off the wall, unless they were low enough to rap to the deck when the weather came in strong.  The Nose has been pretty loaded but has slacked off a bit with the cold weather.  Some interesting routes are being climbed at the moment, so I will keep you posted.  I haven’t been here long enough to get any scenic shots so this report will be just climbing shots.  If see yourself or anyone in these shots that you know please let me know, in the comments section below, so I can add them in the appropriate shots.  Thanks!

ElCap Report 6/30/17

ElCap Report 6/30/17

By Tom Evans

Yo… This is the last Report for the Spring 2017 ElCap climbing season.  I would like to thank all those who have supported the Report with their donations this season.  If you have not yet gotten the shots I took of your ElCap climb then be sure to send me an email (use the contact button on this page) telling me what climb, when, colors of shirts and bags.  When you get your shots you can use the Donate Button, on this page, to make a donation to the site if you wish.  Many thanks!

This has been a strange season with all the varied weather, crazy road conditions, massive amounts of water raging through the Valley, rockfall closing roads and such.  There was not a lot of crowding on the Cap, as the population of wall climbers was down this Spring, most likely due to the heavy winter snows isolating the Valley until the Tioga Pass opened in late June.  We did have some “firsts”, including the first nude ascent of the Nose, done in a snappy 12 hours, and the first free solo of ElCap via Freerider, done in an awesome 3:49.

ElCap Report 6/13/17

ElCap Report 6/13/17

By Tom Evans

Yo… Strange weather has dominated the last week or so. Storms and cold have kept the Captain pretty empty, but a change in the weather is in progress and teams are heading back up on the great rock.  The hoopla has died down about the free solo of Freerider by Alex Honnold and he is off to Alaska for some serious mountaineering.

ElCap Report 6/3/17 SPECIAL EDITION HONNOLD FREE SOLO OF ELCAP

ElCap Report 6/3/17 SPECIAL EDITION HONNOLD SOLOS ELCAP

By Tom Evans

Yo.. My day started at 4am when I got up, and left my camp at the Ranch, to shoot one of the greatest climbs in Yosemite climbing history.  By 5:30am my assistant and good friend, Skot Richards, and I were setting up at the far end of the ElCap Meadow to shoot the climb.  The weather was absolutely perfect for the event, cloudy with cool temps.  For me the clouds were such a blessing… no shadows, no glare, no air turbulence and no passersby’s asking to look through the camera!  Alex started around 5:30am and I could see him by the 4th pitch.  The shots you will be seeing here are cropped to afford a closer view of his climb of Freerider, and were chosen from the 350 or so I took during the climb.

ElCap Report 5/31/17

ElCap Report 5/31/17

By Tom Evans

Yo.. The horror show of Memorial Weekend has passed and calm has returned to the Valley of Light.  Considering the time of year and the present weather conditions, the Captain is relatively empty.  The Big Three are still the major draws.  A few parties are climbing on some of the more interesting routes, as reflected in some of the photos below.  The Merced River continues to be right at the top of its banks and we get overflow in the ElCap meadow daily.  Wake up Cubicle Pukes!!  The season is now… the place is El Capitan… so where are you today?  You know where you should be!

ElCap Report 5/25/17

ElCap Report 5/25/17

By Tom Evans

Yo.. Great weather is the prime motivator these days.  The traffic is at best discouraging and at worst static.  The season has taken off with the big three still in high demand but other interesting routes are going on too.  In the past my reports have been highly organized which take some time to arrange… so now it will be more random.  I keep reading that the ElCap Report is back... no... I only do a report once a week now, unless something special happends... before I did reports every day... every day...every day was just too much for me to do anymore so I have stopped the daily reports.  Expect one a week about climbing on ElCap.  Thanks for your support!  If you see yourself in any of the shots below make a comment showing the shot number and who you are and how your climb went.  Contact me to get the shots I took of your team.

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