Monday, June 29, 2009

Day 7-- They had me standing on the Green Line

We got up early cooked for Stovo and Kim. Stovo has this small dog named Nuggett, who brings out what is either his inner gay man or his inner kindergarten teacher. The dog can high-five, nestle in a lap, sneeze etc at will. No Blicker.

We blasted up toward the Green line. Well, "blast" is probably not a good word since I had to learn how to haul. 3 in 1is easy but slow; straight through is hard but way faster. At the bottom of the dihedral pitch, I got on lead and worked up to the highest bolt. At this point, it was tense: you have to belly-flop onto a grassy ledge, without knocking rocks onto Dilly. I did it, and there I was, laying on my belly, all the crap still hanging over the edge, trying not to disturb anything. A whole lot of shifting and grunting later, I started to drill the anchor. I was crammed into the cave-like ledge, and twisted myself into a Gumbie, reaching up and around over my head with the drill. When the bolts were done, my arm was spaghetti. I brought Dylan up and then it was time to head out.

The Green Line is a horizontal band of what feels like sandstone. It is softer and flakier than granite. You have granite above, then this layer, then granite below. The sandstone erodes faster than the granite, so the ledge is a kind of mini-cave. I drilled the first few bolts about 7 feet aparts. It felt excessive, but I was scared shitless. I had no idea how solid the rock under the grass under our feet was, and a fall during the first bit of the traverse would mean a pendulum into the dihedral (read: many broken bones). And drilling was hard. You have to drill the granite above you, there are no holds on the granite, and so you stand up, push UP under the roof of the ledge with your left hand so you jam your body in, then you reach up over your head with your right hand and drill. Imagine holding a 25 pound cat-- twisting and yowling-- over your head, for 5 minutes, and if you drop it, it WILL tear a serious hole in you. That's what drilling this was like.

After six more bolts, I was fried and our batteries were dead. So we fixed, and Dylan descended into the dihedral to scrub, while I started removing munge from the Green Line. The procedure: you reach down to the bottom of the grass on the ledge lip, you peel up, and you throw the whole thing off. We got about 20 meters cleaned up enough to see that it will be easy (5.4) traversing. Likely it will take one more bolt around a small bulge, then we can walk on the much wider right side to the tree at the base of the diagonal corner.

Meanwhile, Dylan got all but ten feet of the dihedral scrubbed. We were feeling pretty good-- next day will see us to the diagonal, the Green line is mostly clean, the dihedral is done, and we left the gardening tools on the Green Line, so less hauling next time. We are hoping to get out on Wednesday.


  1. Sweet. At this pace you useless fuckers may be almost finished by the time I roll in ready to send during the summer of 2010. And remember, if you ruin my beautiful, nearly new static line by trundling shit on it all sweaty summer then, well, fuck you too.


  2. I can't wait to take stolz on a wall and see him try to haul a pig that weighs 30x as much as Stovo's dog!

  3. Jones, your Patagonia organic static line (whose colour is Smoke Tibetan Karmic Sunset) has been kept in prsitine condition, kind of like your hands these past few months. other than Dilly doing some wild pendulum acrobatics off it, it has remained un-bombed.