Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Back to the Tieton

Melanie McMahon on Lava Sundae, 5.10a, Dream Wall
The mountains keep pulling at my gut, but the lowland rock climbing has been really good over the last few weeks.  With questionable weather threatening many of the usual climbing destinations from Idaho to BC, a bunch of us "settled" on some of our old stomping grounds in the Tieton Valley.  We found perfect weather, sublime light and a big 'ole party complete with a posse from Portland and a bunch of tree climbing.

Friday evening, Kristin and I rolled into the valley with enough time for a few pitches at the Bend.  We warmed up on Cruel Harvest, 5.9; Hallowed Ground, 5.9; and Salmon Song, 5.10a - all fun crack climbs.  At the end of the day, we enjoyed a cold beer and watched the evening sun light up the Bend before dipping below the hills.

The Bend in evening light
Saturday, we went back to the Bend for a couple of objectives.  The tick list included:

People, Places and Things, 5.8
Mutiny in Manila, 5.10a - Really cool finger crack up high on the wall
Cruel Harvest, 5.9 - Kristin styled this on lead
Cherry Bomb, 5.10a - Cool sport climb up a bear hug pillar
Winds of Change, 5.10d - This was the route I really had my eyes on for the weekend, taking a direct line up the tallest section of the North Wall.  A short, stout crux climbs through about 15 ft of finger crack right at the top.  It's a really great route, and I was psyched to get the onsite.   I took another lap on a TR it was so good.

Here are some shots from the day:

Kristin sending Cherry Bomb
Winds of Change with the stellar finger crack crux looming at the top

Unknown climbers on Peace, Love and Rope, 5.9
Sunday we went down to the Dream Wall to soak up some sun and clip some bolts.

Ring of Fire, 5.10a - Stellar, steep and long route on good rock.
Spanky, 5.10c - Cool route with a weird crux, challenging for the vertically challenged, but fun
In the Flow, 5.10c - Really good sequential moves on a steep cruxy headwall
Lava Sundae, 5.10a - Fun route I climbed on a TR to shoot some photos - also really cool with a positive finger crack, thin hands section at the crux
Nothing Else Matters, 5.11a - Super fun jug haul out of a cave and over a big roof into 5.10 face climbing to the anchors - highly recommended and a cool position up high.

Some more shots:

Descending to the Dream Wall
Jaime stoked to clip some bolts!

Mel making it look easy on Lava Sundae
Doug hamming it up on In the Flow

Mel on Nothing Else Matters

The deproach in afternoon light
That night, the kids got a little crazy.

The sun going down

The girls

Kristin decided she needed to climb this tree - in her socks - in the dark

Our friend Josh followed and topped out!
And finally, Monday came 'round, and we were feeling a little run down for some reason.  We went to the Chunkyard, a newish crag close to Moon Rocks.  After checking out some of the fun sport routes, we finally packed it up and headed back to Portland with sore toes, bloody knuckles and big smiles.  Tieton rocks. 

Jaime enjoying Salvaged, 5.10a

No comments:

Post a Comment