Sunday, 10 June 2012
Cal Cheak, Ver 2.0
Target #1 is a 20M 5.7 called 'It's been swell' As per my previous post, it really looks like we are the first people to climb here in a few years. Everything is super-overgrown. The moss is ankle deep, and there's a blackberry bush that could probably kill a man at the likely starting area of this climb.
The 'expert' is getting cold feet looking up that the first bolt. I don't really understand his hesitation, it looks like an easy stroll up the rock to get clipped in, but he's the one who has to lead it... He's off trying to find top access, while Heather and I are starting to move some branches and scrape some moss off the starting area. This is cool, simple as that.
We're at the cliff base, after scrambling over a massive field of scattered boulders. It's a beautiful summer day, and we're pondering the ascent of a gorgeous piece of granite. There's hummingbirds in the flowers, and these cute little rodent-guys jumping in and out of the rock, chirping in distress.
Mert gives up on his top anchor quest, and reluctantly decides to lead the climb. I get my lead-belay 'course' and away we go. Mert cautiously picks his way up the route, sets the anchor and returns safely to earth. Another briefing on how to clean a route, and it's my turn. To be honest, it was cool, but not super. Didn't really give me any tough moments, but it sure was cool to be so far up. The crag is located quite high, and once I got to the top the view was positively breathtaking.
Once we were down to the bottom, we debated our next climb. Mert didn't want to lead any more of the climbs on Monkey and Weasel that day, the high bolts and overgrown conditions made him nervous about the safety of the area. Fair enough, that's what experts are for. A couple more routes at Huckleberry Lane, and it was off to the cooler for some beer.
I could really get used to this...