10 October 2010

Summer Adventuring

This summer hasn't been all about weekend trips away to epic places like Smith Rock.  There have been plenty of hiking and after-work climbing trips as well.

I want to go on the record as saying I am so thankful to climbing because it has enabled me to meet a fantastic group of people who all love life and are actively living it.  This summer I have met many new friends who I hope will continue to put up with me for years to come.  In fact, there are so many of us who love to climb together these days that we have named ourselves "The Group".  Very original, I know.

During the peak of the summer, The Group took many after work trips out to the Exits, which mainly consist of Exit 32 and Exit 38, which are 32 and 38 miles from Seattle respectively.  We also hit up Index, where you have to be a pretty wicked awesome climber to even make it up a 5.9.  If you can climb an "Index 9", you can climb a 9 anywhere!  Finally, there's Marymoore Crag, which is an outdoor cement park.  It's not great climbing, but it is a great place to take new people to practice safety techniques.  It also happens to be where I did my first climbing, so the towering cement blocks have a special place in my heart.

Occasionally, I will also hike.  Here are shots from Mt. Pilchuck way back on June 12.
 Don't ask me to identify any of these mountains....I just don't know
 Razor Edged Ridge
 Glissading Tracks on the way down
 Looking West.  There's an ocean out past those mountains!
Me and Guthrie, View from the Top (a sweaty view)
 We slid most of the way down on our butts :-)

Here are shots from epic climbing at Index.  Most of the climbs are Trad, so I'm pretty lucky to have some really great "rope guns" (people who lead so the rest of us can top rope) in the group who will put up some sick climbs for me to play on.

Allen topping out
 Looking across to Mt. Index
 Me and Jere hanging from a pretty standard belay station.  Actually this is a "roomy" belay station.  Sometimes it's near impossible to get two people at one set of chains!
 Flaking out
 The walls at Index are GIANT.  This is me on "Japanese Gardens. 
 Rock Bite
 Losing fingertips on tough rock is pretty common

This is Gritscone Wall at Exit 38.  This is "Flexy" Hexar putting up an 11a on lead.  I like how the sun behind him makes it look like he was sent directly from the heaven's to send this beast.

On another day, we headed out to the World War Walls off of Exit 32.  I really liked the climbing here.  

What?  Don't look at me weird just because I'm eating pita bread and nutella!
Duffy leading the 10c to start.  I really love this shot.  The wall looks so massive, and Duffy's just all relaxed.  Thanks Rope Gun!

My mom came to visit a few weeks ago, and The Group headed back out to Exit 38.  In all, we had 14 adults and 4 kids!  Pretty crazy turnout!

Here's Nicole showing her Awesome on an overhangy 10b!  Nice moves!
 This is a "heel hook".  More like a calf hook. 
Finally, here are some shots from Marymoore Crag.  This is another 'sent from above' picture, this time with little Mason, aged 4. 
 Here's New Brad.  He joined our group after he and I met running.  He's a natural climber, even on cement walls.
 Sarah sending the spire
 While we were climbing, a photographer was taking pictures, and somehow I ended up as his "model".  His name is Patrick Bennett and he is working on a project related to the Washington Scenic Byways new book.  There's a possibility I could be published in the newest edition!  Here are some of Patrick's best shots:

Thanks for checking out my blog!  More to come soon!

1 comment:

Kate said...

Good retrospective on your summer climbing!