Saturday, May 9, 2015

Last Week at Sweetwater

It's raining this weekend, statewide, so we won't be getting outside.  But last weekend Mike and Kaiya spent a day with us at Sweetwater.  Mike first got in touch through Instagram, and two days later we were climbing together, telling jokes, and talking about mutual friends.  It was a fun day, and I'm looking forward to getting out with them again.

Mike making a quick ascent of "Norwegian Wood" V6.
Ashley also climbed "Norwegian Wood."  And that's news because she tried it on many occasions over the last few years.  Heat, wind, fatigue, or fear had always gotten in the way.  But last weekend she committed, topped out and had so much fun that she climbed it one more time.

Mike asked about rattlesnakes, and I let him know that there really weren't many rattlesnakes at Sweetwater.  In about thirty trips, I'd only seen one.  Then Matt heard one rattle right beside the warm up wall.  Sometimes it seems like the universe enjoys to proving me wrong.

We were lucky that it warned us, because I never would have seen it.
 For the rest of the day we were paranoid, and kept the dogs leashed. With such cool weather, it's likely that we'll make another trip out there this season, but we'll be careful and leave the dogs at home next time.

Mike made the first ascent of a project out there, and named it "Snake Charmer" V7/8.
Small underclings and sidepulls lead to an easier top out.  I've done all the moves.  But catching a key left hold just the right way from the bottom, and then being able to make a powerful but tenuous move off of it, didn't quite happen for me.

My fingers were tired before we even got to the project up the hill.
Luckily this steep patina slab is more about balance, and powerful high steps, than pulling hard.  Before the session ended, I put together "Sea of Green" V5, and Ashley got the second ascent just before a thunderstorm ended our session.

It's been raining a lot since then.  So I'm stuck inside, catching up on work, making sure that I'll be ready if conditions are climbable next week. Soon Wyoming will be a sea of green, and I'll have a lot of time to enjoy it.

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