This year I have been strangely compelled to work on my weaknesses and seek out the obscure and ignored. So keeping with these themes, I went to Indian Creek with Joe Mills and spent the weekend getting schooled by splitters and wandering along the base of neglected walls.
The first day, we went to the 2nd Meat wall. After warming up on a nice 5.10, Joe suggested that we jump on a stunning 12- called Camping Under the Influence.
|10+ warm up. Anyone know the name?|
|Camping Under the Influence|
|Me in my old man, anti-skin cancer outfit|
Perplexed, he tried a number of permutations to the problem, until he gave up and aided the pitch. Apparently, Indian Creek was offering Joe an education too. I am sure he took some notes. With the sun low on the horizon and my legs numb from hanging for over an hour, we packed up, and headed back to camp.
|Joe and Boone enjoying a moment.|
The next day, we trudged up to the Disappointment Cliff to try a 13- finger crack called Winner Takes All.
|Winner Takes All|
Joe onsighted it with minimal issues and I found myself hanging on the rope, crippled with pain.
It was Indian Creek whispering climbing lessons to me again. It said, "tape up." So I did, and it felt much better.
With his confidence high, Joe wanted to try a 13+ ring lock crack called Hong Kong Fuey. So we slowly wandered left of Winner Takes All and eventually found it. What a beauty!
Unfortunately, we didn't have enough gear, so we headed back the other direction to find a 12+ called the Angry Inch. Eventually, we found a nice looking line with anchors so Joe headed up.
|Not the Angry Inch.|
Completely humbled, we skied down the loose, dusty slope and enjoyed all the strange rock formations and animal tracks in the damp river bed that led back to the car.
|Sunset at camp.|
|Found these tracks at camp.|
As I was jamming up this climb, Indian Creek told me to forget about learning and just enjoy the movement and scenery. At the top, I silently promised to return for another lesson when my skin grew back.