Thursday, August 26, 2010

Prime Rib

Jokingly, Tiff and I would like to rename this route Loose Rib.  Located on the sweeping Goat Wall just NW of Mazama, Prime Rib climbs, hikes, climbs, hikes, climbs 11 pitches of moderate sport climbing on slabby metamorphic rock to top of its namesake rib like feature.   Though we found the climbing nothing to write home about, the views were outstanding, and the weather couldn't have been more perfect.  Though temps climaxed in the upper 80's, there was a refreshing and palliating breeze keeping us cool most of the day.  Flippy flops: I would definitely recommend bringing something to slip on the feet aside from rock boots for the many mini-hikes that this ascent requires.  Both of our toes were hamburger at days end; and I can't remember the last time it felt Sooooooo good to have my hiking shoes back on.  Here are some shots to remember Loose Rib.


One of the many mini-hikes!  

Tiffany is a rappelling machine.   Though she hadn't done this in over a year she just made it look easy!

This self portrait was inspired by my feet which at this point were in a state of self denial.

Serene views of the Methow from Prime Rib.  And below are some shots from an afternoon climbing at the Fire Wall.  It was nice to sport climb on steeper rock after a two week hiatus.  After finishing the Wide World of Fitness at Little Si I just couldn't care less about trying hard.  But, after two weeks of relative reprieve I was ready for some fitness climbing.  After warming up on a short 11, I gave an onsight go at Urban Refugee 12.d.  It climbs just to the left of The 8th Rule and tackles steep 11ish climbing to a midway break, and then finishes on crimpy face peppered with the occasional water pocket.  After hanging out for 40 minutes I came off at the last hard move.  Shortly thereafter I picked up the shattered pieces of my broken heart and finished it next go.  It was much easier after some recon. 

Lastly, I gave an attempt at the blue steak project with heads up Firestarter (12c) before arcing up a majestic blue water streak.  It was only headed up to 'check out' the moves...  unfortunately, I made a huge deadpoint to a left hand pinch...crossed right hand, foot slipped, and the right hold just blasted its way into my middle finger. 

  Done!  On the positive side, it was only superficial.  But, with a huge gaper it will be another week before I'm climbing again.  This picture doesn't quite do it justice.  My finger was a virtual fire hydrant of blood.   

Tiff obviously enjoying her newfound time off.  Ahh, the life of leisure.

Our friend Gordy Skoog showing his garden whose boss!  The gumption, the tenacity, the raw determination!  Not exactly sure what he is doing here.  But, it looked intense.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Adios Seattle!

As of Saturday afternoon, we (my wife Tiffany and myself) are fully launched on our roadtrip!  And so year long odyssey through North America begins.  After finishing the last of our errands around seatown, which seemed to go on forever, we rolled into Newhalem and did a little climbing to stretch the limbs; nothing too vigorous.  Temps were perfect!  Later that evening we found some space to park at the free campground near Diablo.

Morning found a few familiar faces.  Drew Isaac and Johnny had spent the week out exploring the Newhalem bouldering.  

This tram is located in the town of Diablo and once quite actively lifted hordes of people up the mountain to be then ferried to the Diablo dam.  Not sure when Seattle City Light stopped using this transport for their Hydroelectric tours.  But, we thought it quite impressive nonetheless.  We hiked up the trail instead.

Both of us had never been to the Diablo Dam.  It is huge!  And moreover, a testimony to the brawn and engineering prowess of the early 20th century.  Although I mostly frown upon such assaults to the natural environment, I couldn't help but marvel at this colossus.

Here is the obligatory liberty bell shot.  Though the light was flat and harsh, I couldn't help but meander out to the overlook at Washington Pass and take a snap of one iconic rock.

Soon thereafter, we wandered  (2 miles) to Cutthroat lake, and relished in the small alpine cirque that flanks the NE aspect of Cutthroat Mountain.  We caught a bunch of...well, Cutthroats!  They were all too small to keep unfortunately.   Later that evening we pulled into our friend Gordy Skoog's place in Mazama.  This place is beautiful!!  It had been over a year since we had been in the Methow Valley; and I had forgotten just how lovely it is.  We enjoyed very much catching up with him.