Matt and Joanne’s Page

May 25, 2007

ICS Smith Rock Weekend II

Filed under: Climbing — joannestamplis @ 9:36 pm

Last weekend was the last ICS field session. We are finally done with this class. Typically AR students will be expected to help out leading climbs for ICS students. Since both Matt and I are students in both ICS and AR, we were allowed to be the coordinators assisting with climbs for the weekend. Once again, we brought our RV and took 9 people total in the RV.

While we were climbing, Yogi will be waiting for us to come back, staring out the window all day long.

It’s really weird to be a coordinator actually. At first I felt a tremendous burden because now I am responsible for the students that I’m bringing along on my climb. Normally when Matt and I are climbing, we usually have 100% trust in each other’s capability such that we won’t have to worry at all. However, it’s very different when I have to climb with people I never climbed with before. I got the hang of it toward the middle of the day once I got used to the idea of being a leader.

On Saturday, my first lead was a 2 pitch climb, Peking 5.8 that tops out the same place as Moscow. The 1st pitch is the hardest section because you have to climb a steep, thin hand crack for 20 ft before the climb gets a little easier. I’d never done the 2nd pitch before (neither had Matt) so it was my first adventurous climb where I had to do route finding myself. Luckily it was a pretty obvious dihedral that you follow. Since I’m climbing with 2 other students, we were pretty slow and it took us 4 hrs to get back to the base of the climb.

This is me, getting ready to climb Peking.

My next climb of the day is Sky Ridge 5.8. In my opinion, this is a scary climb mostly because you won’t get any real solid placements until you reach the 1st bolt which is about 40 ft up. Before this bolt, you’ll be climbing on bad rock, on an exposed ridge line, looking at a steep drop off both your right and left. Even once you get to the bolt, each of the bolts are far apart from each other and the whole time I’m just so worried of pulling out any rocks in my hand. The 2nd pitch is a short hand traverse and that ends at the same place as Wherever You May Roam. I was in a rush for time because we were supposed to be done by 5pm on Saturday. Luckily 2 other climbers that came up from Sky Chimney happened to be there and we ended up with 3 ropes that we could use to set up all the rappel in a quick manner. Well, it was 7pm by the time we got back to the RV. Thank God we were not in a super rush of time because we were camping at Skull Hollow that day.

1st pitch on Sky Ridge.

Since I was pretty tired from Saturday’s climb, I decided to do something easier on Sunday. We decided to climb Cinnamon Slab to the top and then climb Spiderman after that. However, when we get to the base of Cinnamon Slab, there was already another group starting on it. I decided to wait for the climb and set up an easy climb, Easy Reader 5.6 so both my partners can climb while waiting. Once the other groups got up to the 2nd pitch, we got to start on the climb. This is definitely a much much easier climb than the ones I did on Saturday and I think both my partners were having fun climbing it. We got done early around 1.30pm and I get to go back to the RV and played with Yogi while waiting for the rest of the group to come back.

There’s actually a few details I left out in my story such as someone dropped his belay device and lost it, someone dropped my #2 cam and a fiasco happened when people returned to the RV super late but I don’t have to go into detail about that. All in all, it was a great weekend because everybody has tons of fun and climbed safely.


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