Theresa and I had had a running joke for several days with our roomate Nick. We said we were headed up to do Mindahoonee Wall, a two-star 5.11a up near the top of Yosemite Falls. He said it was going to take us six hours to get there, we would never find the route, it would be choss and we should just go do a known, quality route. “Where's the adventure in that?” we asked. So joking that we would be back in three days, we set off yesterday in search of adventure and boy did we find it.
I had a lot of beta from my housemate, Bob, but I was still nervous about embarking on such a difficult lead without having had the opportunity to explore it before-hand. Moratorium is only 4 pitches, but at 10d, 10d, 11b, 5.9, the terrain is quite intimidating. I led the second 10d, a pitch with … Read more
43K version It rained on Wednesday, forcing hordes of climbers to abandon their climbing attempts and seek shelter from the weather. What that meant for us, is an opportunity to get a jump start on a popular 'big wall' route in the Valley. Normally the South Face is teeming with wall climbers, planning to spend … Read more
Tom is always teaching me things. When we first moved to California, Tom taught me that 10-15 pitches of climbing is more than do-able in a day. Having previously taken more than 10 hours to do only 3 pitches, this easy comfort with moving quickly over the rock was something that I hadn't really imagined before. He has undertaken a prolonged crusade to make me more comfortable hopping and dancing across steep boulder-fields and slippery scree slopes, maneuvers that would previously have had me crawling on all fours in tears. This winter he taught me to ski the trees in VT. It's always the same program, “Try this. Be safe. The worst-case scenario isn't that bad. You can do it.” and I learn, slowly, from his example.
This has been a strange year for snow. When we moved in, at the beginning of April, Hans said that having snow on the porch was highly unusual for that time of year. Now, it's May, and the snow is still falling. It's incredible – incredibly beautiful, and incredibly frustrating. This was not the view that we expected for the beginning of April in Yosemite Still, we're getting out some.
Well, well, it has been a long time. There’s so much to write about, that I hardly know where to begin. Tom and I spent December through March driving across the US, visiting family and friends. It was a great trip, and we had a great time visiting everyone, however the theme of our vacation so far certainly seems to be ‘driving’. We were definitely road-weary by the time April rolled around and we moved into our new place in Yosemite.
Back in the US, and back online, I guess, although since I continue to depend on other people’s generosity for email/internet access it might be a bit sporadic.
We took several days making the roughly 1000 km (about 600 mile) journey from Rainbow Beach to Cairns. Most of the Rest Stops along the highway allow you to stay overnight, so that was an easy way to travel.
After Bribie Island, we stopped for a few days in Rainbow Beach. Rainbow Beach is a small town, right on a long stretch of beautiful sand beach. There's a sad story on a plaque about how the beach got its name. A friendly rainbow was struck down and killed saving a beautiful maiden from her abusive husband, and led to the many colors of sand on the beach. We took several morning walks along the beach, and played some in the waves.
We got here safely enough. And spent the first night near Bribie Island, mostly just recuperating from our frantic preparations to leave and the traveling itself.