Author: Peter Adamson
Moved down to Camp 4 today. Our sitemates consist of two older hippy-type folks, and a father/daughter group. We just finished teaching them how to play cribbage.
After we finished the move, it was time for a reconnaissance mission. We headed up to the parking area at the longest tunnel on highway 20, looking for a climb known as seperate reality, given a grade of 5.12a. It is a 20 foot roof crack which goes from hands to fingers. We think we found the top of it, but we aren't sure.
Next, we went to a cliff known as Pat and Jack's pinnacle. It is characterized by large knobs sticking out of the cliff. First, Dad led a bolted 5.10b near the right of the cliff. I also led it. Dad then toproped it again to clean it, and to train.
We then moved one climb to the left. It was all trad. It started out in a 20 foot layback corner, then traversed underneath a roof, and finished up an easy corner to a tree. I'm not sure what the grade or name was, but I would give it 5.10a.
Luckily, we met some really nice French guys from France, who lent me some big gear, and some extra small gear for this climb.
Dad then followed the climb without any difficulty at all.
It was then time for some easier climbs. We moved 40 feet to the right, to a bolted 5.5. Both Dad and I led it.
Then along came some guys from SAR (search and rescue). We chatted with them for a while. One of them had broken his ankle 6 weeks earlier and was just starting to climb again.
Climbing time again, one route to the right. I led the first pitch, which was 5.8. I couldn't link the pitches since I didn't have enough draws. Dad cleaned the draws and I headed up onto the second, 5.10 pitch.
I was under the impression that the second pitch was entirely bolted, but as it turns out, you are supposed to place a piece between every bolt. Since I only had quickdraws with me, it meant I was in for some massive runouts.
I did get to the top clean, but only after scaring myself witless doing 5.10 mantles 15/20 feet above my last bolt.
Dad followed the pitch.
Then the intensity level was turned up a notch (not by choice). We decided to do a route named knucklehead, 5.10b.
The guidebook said that this climb was a little runout, and had spit off 5.12 climbers. However, I figured it would be fine. I was wrong.
The third bolt was placed 10 feet to the right of where the actual climbing went, with a hard move with huge pendulum potential into a ledge.
Once you got 5 feet above the third bolt, you had to pull an extremely hard mantle, with a ledge to hit if you blow it.
The climbing then becomes better protected until the end, where there is a 30 foot runout. It remains consistently hard. I will not get on this one again. Dad followed it.
To add insult to injury, this 5.10b is more like 5.11c.
Two climbs to the left of this climb are beautiful twin cracks, given 5.,10a, but more like 5.10d.
I ended up aiding and leapfrogging gear through parts, since I did not have the gear to safely free it. Next time I will take up a double rack (only one set of nuts). Dad followed and cleaned it, nearly getting the climb clean, only falling once at the crux.
The day was ended by going to the buffet at Curry Village. I ate too much and suffered for it dearly.
I ran into the guy that we met at Bishop's Terrace yesterday, this morning. He was headed off to do the East Buttress of El Cap. I will have to find him and see what he thought of it.
Sorry, no pictures from this day either, but here's a view of the valley.