Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Moving Forward

I wanted to write another blog post to update those who may check here but do not follow me elsewhere. Due to storage space constrictions and concerns about maintaining the photo quality on this blog I've decided to post all my future trip reports here: Cascade Climbers

Since my last post at the beginning of this year my foot has indeed recovered and I have started doing more. In March, on a break from graduate school Edward and I "accidentally" climbed the Gerber-Sink on the North Face of Dragontail Peak with a direct mixed finish (2000 ft WI3 M5). You can find that TR here.

After finishing the majority of school in June I headed to Washington. I stopped in the Tieton cragging area for the first time, soloed the South Ridge on Ingalls Peak (4P 5.4), climbed Clean Break on Juno Tower at Washington Pass with my friend Ryan (15P 5.10c), and climbed the classic Outer Space on Snow Creek Wall (7P 5.9).

I headed back to Washington merely a week later and arrived in Leavenworth with enough daylight left to solo both the historic Midway and Midway Direct on Castle Rock (both 3P ~5.6). I then went to Index for the first time before heading back to Washington Pass with friends and climbing the West Face on North Early Winters Spire (7P 5.11-) and the Northwest Face on Liberty Bell (6P 5.9). Here is a TR of my various Washington Pass climbs in June... link!

In July I finished graduate school and spent some time practicing my aid and crack climbing. After a couple weeks of weddings I headed back to Washington for a slightly longer trip. I soloed the  Beckey route on Liberty Bell and the South Arete on South Early Winters Spire, and then scrapped my initial plans due to fires and opted to go into the Picket Range. In the Pickets I climbed the West Ridges on West McMillan Spire and Inspiration Peak (3rd and 5.7 respectively). Read the TR here.

After the Pickets I headed back to Washington Pass to meet my friend Nick. In two days we climbed the two classic East Face Routes on the Liberty Bell Group: the Direct East Buttress on South Early Winters Spire (9P 5.11-) and Liberty Crack (12P 5.10 C2) my first "wall" climb. See the TR here.

After returning to Bend and heading south to see family for a week I was planning to stay home and focus on cragging locally for the fall but my friend Brian coerced me (without much difficulty) into a quick trip to the Sierra. In three days we climbed the Red Dihedral on the Incredible Hulk (12P 5.10), the Regular Route on Fairview Dome (11P 5.9), and the Third Pillar of Dana (6P 5.10). See that TR here.

All in all it's been a really good year so far, especially considering the injury and grad school. I have been climbing better than ever and I'm excited by how many routes I've also done at Smith that I've wanted to do for a while.

I plan to focus on local projects, especially some of the harder (for me) traditional and multi-pitch climbs at Smith, Trout and Cougar this fall. As things get colder I am excited to get back on Hood and other local mountains... I have many projects. In January I plan to start a training cycle (per the House Johnston book) and hopefully get some alpine routes and ice cragging trips in. Next summer I will have money and time... not sure where I will go or what I will do, but I want to go big. Anything is possible.