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Author Topic: Desert Extacy   (long)  (Read 158 times)

tradmanclimbz

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Desert Extacy   (long)
« on: April 24, 2004, 02:27:29 PM »

 8) It's a rainy sunday and we are headded to Red rocks Nev. in 8 days so we must get in shape. I an buisily drilling holes for T nuts in a sheet of 3/4" plywood and Wild Woman is dusting off the old box of climbing holds that have been gathering dust for years in the shed. An hour later the under side of WW's basement stairs sports a new woodi and we are cranking. I am full of beans and going for it when i hear a sickenibg pop And pain shoots through my hand and up my arm. I am laying on the pads screaming obcenitys while all my dreams of big rt's out west are shattered in one moment of stupidity. I HATE GYM CLIMBING!! It is unnatural and causes injuries. I have told any who would listen this wisdom over the years and here I am a victim of not following my own advice. We seriously consider canceling the trip but after several days of intense Raiki we decide to go for it, climb mellow and do a bunch of hikeing & siteseeing.  April 12  10:00pm Vegas time the jet comes in for a smooth landing and we are on the shuttle to pick up the rental car. The ride is Brand spanking new w/2100 miles on it. The counter jocky from National has no idea what we have in mind for this beast ;D We cruise the strip takeing in all the lights and then head out to mile 13 campground. The drive  in sites seem all full so we lay a tarp down on a walkin site. the wind is honking about 30mph  It's really COLD  and the site is rocky as all hell so sleep is pretty scarce. We try to sleep in and shake the jetlag but the sun quickly starts to bake us out of our sleeping bags.   We find an freshly vacated driv in site with a nice sandy tent platform  for the same $10:00 a night as the rocky walkin site. Tent is up and a newlywed climbing bum with swager and a gear repair buisness  is fixing 3 of my cams for $5:00  a pop while we shop for supplys. Food, Fuel, cooler etc.  Finaly setteled in arround 2:00pm so we drive the loop and head in to pine creek caynon to climb DARK SHADOWS 5.8  We are 1.5 miles in when I realize taht my shoes are still in the car!! Yikes! i get to run the 3 miles to the car and back which takes me an hour over the rough terrain.  The desert is beautifull in spring with all the flowers and cactuses blooming. the Rt is Awsome, 4 pitches of pure bliss. the 3rd pitch is harder than i rember it but maby that's because i followed it last time ;D  Wild Woman loves the climbing. The left ring and middle fingers are copiously taped but it is mostly hand jams so I am climbing ok. WHAT A HUGE RELIEF!!  I CAN CLIMB!! all is not lost and the trip is happening!! Wed, 4-14  My ass, legs and feet are  so sore from yesterdays run that my hand dosen't even hurt. It is awsome T shirt and shorts weather. We head up First creek caynon  to another nice 4 pitch 5.8 LOTTA BALLS  the wind is still honking as i head up a cool flake , through a small roof and up another sweet flake to a hanging belay. WW gets the buisness pitch. A really cool runout face pitch were you climb FOREVER on 2 bolts up wild steep face on these really cool black varnished round chicken heads/balls . They are about the size of kids marbles. Nice section of corner and she brimgs me up. 2more pitches of  beautiful corners and easy runout face gains the top of the formation. several short raps and a scramble/downclimb and we are off. A threesom is just bailing from the belay before the runout. i guess the wind is too much for them:) Nice FREEZING COLD swim in perfect pool in mtn stream and the long realitivly flat hike back to the car.  Wed. 5:23am up early and we are off to Black Velvet caynon. the chevy Cavalire gets it's first real workout. the road is rocky and rough with one tricky dry wash  but WW handles it with ease. Stunningly beautifull hike in with large purple flowering bushes standing out against the red sandstone.  We get cliffed a few times as my memory from 18 years ago is a bit shaky but presently we find ourselfs at the base of PRINCE OF DARKNESS 10c  We have the rt, to ourselfs. there isa party on GOBBLER 10a and  several on EPPINEFERIN 5.9 but the prince is ours.  I lead the first easy pitch and then let WW have the rest. I am concerned that my hand wil crap out on me but vigerous tapeing and an old timers experience enable me to crimp and cheat my way through the toughest spots and at the top of the 1st 10b pitch i know I can do it. Wild woman on the other hand is haveing doubts as the second pitch is long and sustained. We have no topo so she assumes that all 6 are going to be that stiff. the guys Epicing on GOBBLER inform us that there is 10a and 2  5.9 coming up before the 10c pitch so she is all happy now and cruising. Crimp and Highstep for  760ft What a wild rt. I stop worrying about my tendons and get in a nice groove. I is nice being up here on nice fat stainless steel bolts. I rember the nasty 1/4" studs that were here in 86 and shudder. Our rule back hen was the leader got to rap first with the backup and the second had to clean the gear and pray :o The worst rap was off of Triasic sands 10+  the studds were flexers and there were no nuts holding the hangers on, just sport tape :o. Of course charlie got the crux pitch on that one so I got to bite the bullet. Anyways it's mostly brand new bolts now so we are styleing.  WW cranks the 10c on pitch 6 despite the huge bloodstain all over the belay and we breeze through the 5 raps to the ground. Another cold Mtn swim and we are off for a night on the town. Vegas is a trip but we tire of it quickly and crash back at camp 13. Rest day. We head up to st. george UT just below zion. Hot showers in a Golds Gym and fresh authentic mex food. Styling. Blm campsite and a day of Spurt climbing at Prophesy Wall. Verry cool place with 2 and 3 pitch spurt climbs. WW cranks a 10c pitch and i get a nice long 5.9 pitch on steep jugs. cool summit. the wind messes with the ropes pretty good on the rap so we figure the walk off the next one. WW cranks a nice 2 pitch 10b and we look for the walk off. Suddenly i hear a YELP and see WW up on top of a boulder screaming. Instantly i know its a rattler ;D  It is a big fat long Mojave Green about as thick as my wrist. Verry territorial, agressive and highly toxic according to the guide book. She jumpped into a cactuss when it buzzed her so she is pretty full of stickers. Also got a bunch of stickers in the climbing tights so they came off and the ensuing rappel was quite somthing to see.  She was pretty banged up from the cactus and a boulder so i had to administer immeadeat first aid. Another rest day is in order so we head deep on dirt roads  giveing the chevy another good test. Deep campsite on high desert plain about 5,000ft elevation. Wicked rainstorm and wind that flattened the tent many times durring the night. Dawn is fair and windy so the tent dries quickly. We keep headding south for Turroweep AZ. 64 miles of unmaintained dirt rd to the north rim of the Grand caynon (not the usual tourist spot) the last 15 or 20 miles are pretty rough but the rental car does just fine.  Better not get a flat out here as the tiny doughnut spare wont give us enough clearance to get back without doing serious dammage to the drive train. Awsom view and verry cool experience . Hammered on out of there and found more dirt rd's and free camping on the back scenic rt into zion. Mon 4-19 ZION Wow! pretty freaky place. Rember seeing god here back in the mid eightys. we have no big plans. just keep it simple and stay alive. I want to do the PUlPIT C2 5.9+ but the water is way fast, deep and cold. I make one attempt to  cross the river in my boxers while WW takes pictures and informs me that there is no way she is going in there. I give up and we go cragging on the cerebus wall. Steep and WIDE but pretty fun. Not sure what rt we did but know we didn't have wide enough gear for pitch 2. rapped and cranked up the first C1 pitch of TOUCHSTONE WALL.  Pretty fun. Out od time and energy so headded back to redrocks. It is late and we are tired after cooking dinner in the Zion Visitor parkinglot so we are an easy catch when we go by the glittering sign for the OASIS about half way between Zion and Vegas. $21.95 a night with large clean rooms. highly recomended. Showers were great but the casino took all our spare change ::) Tues 4.20 Our last day here. we drove most of the mornibg then pulled into White rock springs. Short on time but hike in to TUNNEL VISION 5.7 a cool rt with a spelunking pitch up high. I had done it in 96 so figured we could blast up it. There were 3 gumbies on the rt complete with packs (lots of chimnys) and lots of shouting so we headded for GROUP THERAPY 5.7  5 star rt  in my opinion though it didn't rate a star in the book?  A full pitch of nice huecoed face led to awsome wide cracks and huge chimnys and roofs followed by 5.5X faceclimbing and another burly decent gully complete with mountain sheep. 6 pitches of pure bliss! Pitched the tent back at camp13 and set the alarm for 3:30 Rip the tent down stuffit in the duffel and head home> Not bad for a trip that allmost got canceled ;D
« Last Edit: April 24, 2004, 02:37:03 PM by tradmanclimbz »
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sheclimbs

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Re: Desert Extacy   (long)
« Reply #1 on: June 18, 2004, 09:44:32 AM »

Hey that sounds like a blast. We should do it again.
(November?)

WW ;D
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Admin Al

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Re: Desert Extacy Ê (long)
« Reply #2 on: June 18, 2004, 07:33:16 PM »

my wifre & I spent 2 weeks there in '98. it was incredible. Dark Shadows is an amazing route in a spectacular location. Lotta Balls is fab and Frogland is incredible. our last day we did a climb that wasn't even in the book - the Great Red Book. absolutely great. I gotta get back there soon!

oh yeah... on the rest day you really gotta take the tour of the Hoover Dam. it's one of the best tourist things I've ever done.

Al
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tradmanclimbz

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Re: Desert Extacy Ê (long)
« Reply #3 on: June 27, 2004, 06:13:25 PM »

I hit lake mead for swimming and bouldering ib 86 on the way from zion (near death experience) to red rocks but didn't do the dam tour.
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