Saturday, August 7, 2010

Butch Makes Lemonade (2)

So there I was after my second day of climbing, wandering around the campground, looking for partners. My very limited set of options-- 5.8-- was used up. I now needed to step up, or rope up, and since I am WAY too much of a wuss to step up and solo some 5.9, I went a-partner hunting.

Now you gotta love Applebee Campground. You thought that the hottest people in the world were in porn films, or perhaps on America's Next Top Model, or maybe in Napoleon's new SUV, or perhaps lounging about the Gossip Girl set? NOOO! The hottest people in the world are at Applebee Campground, and when the daytime highs are 25 Celsius (that's "freakin' hawt" for you Yankees) what you get is people stripping down to the essentials: clothes that reveal bellies and forearms, and a chance to rock the coolest possible headwear. Ladies and gents alike stood around, sat around, even strummed around-- one guy and his girlfriend, who were not climbers, had hauled in a guitar, some comfy chairs and a mean stock of vodka, and sat while their buddies climbed, wailing away, even pulling some major rock-star moves one evening when dry lightning and Twi-hard clouds brooded.

There were so many sexy people around that Butch, your humble narrator, couldn't keep it in his pants. Especially when his spraying Coloradan-- Sprayradan-- neighbours were joined by more Coloradan buddies, this newest batch of whom upped the spray ante by spraying about not mere All-Along-The-Watchtower-esque 5.12-, but 5.13b! ooooh! They turned the spray into a downpour when one of them told me that "yeah, it was a couple of Germans who did it, so it might be easier than 5.13b." Pretty good, but not anywhere near as good as


(posted on the V.O.C. bulletin board after a certain climber, well known to the now-14 followers of this blog, returned from their first trip to the Valley)


After my chat with the Sprayradans, I ambled down to the Smoking Spaniards. En route, I passed the miniature tent which contained the California Girl and her husky boyfriend. I had been dutifully eavesdropping outside their tent every night, waiting, penis in hand (the Sprayradan truck in the Porcupine Lot had had a massive one drawn on it), for their sex sounds, which turn me on ever so much, but none were forthcoming. (I later found out that this was because I had forgotten to remove my earplugs before creeping around camp, which also accounted for the odd breathing sound i constantly heard the next two days of climbing, and how my partner-to-be would resort to sign language and thrown rocks to get me to haul the rope up.) The husky Yankee lay about, reading George Orwell. I said to him "weapons of mass destruction" and he said "yup" and I left it at that. The girl was nowhere in sight.

The Spaniards were gone, off to do the Becky-Chouinard, having left behind only the older guy's sick girlfriend, who complained about la grippe and her dolor de cabeza, and in true Spanish style threw cigarettes and whiskey at the virus. The Koreans were eyei9ng their new route-- now four pitches long-- with an array of binoculars, while one of them fried Spam. I then finally hit the jackpot-- I met one Nelson from Nelson, BC, and we had soon hatched plans for doing the Super Direct on Snowpatch.

OK now Butch will S.T.F.U. for a bit and show you some pictures.

This is Nelson leading P2 (5.10c?) of Super Direct. It was somewhat (I) cleaned it. I spent about two hours seconding this pitch, and when I was done, an enormous shit-stain of moss, dirt and rocks spewed onto the glacier below the route, much like my computer screen drips with my saliva when I spray about my routes.

This is the route base when we finished. MMM...but seriously, now the AWESOME P2 is clean

Here Nelson follows P5. Awesome position and very easy chimney/stembox climbing.

This is Nelson ont he scary (but cool) P6, which has a hair-raising traverse, amazing position, clean know, all of the good stuff you expect of the Bugaboos (except there was no beer stashed on top).

Here, Hardman Nelson follows me on the final pitch, an epic of weird moves, traverses and end-of-route surprises.

Well anyway, we had a super day up there on Super direct-- if you are in the Bugs, and there aren't enough smoking Spaniards or Sprayoradans in camp to entertain you, and you don't want to do Sunshine Cracks AGAIN, do this route. If only because Peter Croft (and me) have climbed it, so you can be like him (and me).

Back at camp, the young lady Spaniard continued to cough and smoke away. The Koreans were now 6 pitches off the deck, tink tink tink, and as I lay me down to wait for my espresso pot, I closed my eyes for a nap, and the Yankee Girl in the mini tent ambled over and said "I hear you're massively badass, plus I was checking out your rack earlier and you're totally hot, so would you like to hook up tonight-- I'll do anything you like [at which pooint I imagined having her go to the food locker and dig my sugar out of my dry bag]-- and go climbing with me tomorrow?" I then woke from my afternoon nap, but did in fact find the Yankke Girl there. She launched into a tirade about her lazy-assed partner, asked me if I had plans, and I told her sorry, since I was, like Elizabeth Bennet would have said, "firmly engaged," at which point her face fell.

The Sprayoradans returned from their day-- "just some twelve-minus, we were tired"-- and then began spraying about tomorrow's big day, where they were sure to onsight the 13- (err, they mean, 12+) and show the Germans what was up with grades.

The Ground Crew guitar player had created a song. We sat about and chatted awhile, and discussed music. I, being the old fart in the group, said that I was amazed at how much good music was out there, and what a huge variety there was, and how many artists were selling themselves via the Internet. The guitar player, Dustin, said, "yeah, and a lot of them are really creative!"

"Like who?"

"Nickleback. Pushing the aesthetic limits."

"Yeah. First, the singer was blond, with wavy hair. Second album, even blonder!"


"Third album...even blonder, a-a-and he STRAIGHTENED it!"

"Yeah man. THAT is innovation."

On my final day, Nelson and I went to do West Side Story, which was pretty cool...except opposite us, on PAddle Spray Direct, were yet MORE Sprayoradans, who went on and on about what a bummer it was that they were climbing only Paddle Spray, and not The Power of Lard (5.14R, WI7+, M13, A5+, V13, VI). We enjoyed our day, and watched the leading Sprayoradan grunt nd heave through the crux of Paddle Spray. "That," said Nelson, "should have looked easier" and we both laughed. The hardest thing of course was the rappels: since McCrowd Arete shares raps with WSS and Paddle Spray, it was a veritable international village of rap techniques and knots and waits.

Back at camp, I soaked up the view, brewed more coffee, fantasised about the Becky, said goodbye to the Yankee Girl, the SPaniard Girl, the Sprayoradans, and went to bed, hoping that Lisbeth Salander would finally corral the bad guys.

And now it is time to head BACK to the Bugs...I am hoping that over the next four days I will at least get to check out some more international accents and cooking styles.


  1. this blog is the greatest show of Spray i have ever seen by our climbing journalist B1tch, not Butch.

    "i would have done all along the watchtower. If i had BALLS".

    there ya go B1tch, more writing material for you.

  2. Me too. Er, I mean, neither...I am currently indulging in an orgy of anti-depressant and beta-blocker gobbling, hoping that I will eventually work up the sack to try the Watchtower, which, frankly, scares me shitless.

  3. Man I think we're beating around the butch, er... bush, with this whole "Anonymous" thing. Couldn't sound any more Anonymike if he tried.

    Blog's hilarious buddy. That "penis in hand" line had me in stiches.

  4. Anonymike is so cute! And funny. I hope he posts more here.