Saturday, September 18, 2010

Calabogie, take two

I headed back out to Calabogie today for some more climbing. I'm still getting use to the face climbing on gear aspect of Calabogie. For the most part gear goes in shallow horizontal cracks where I'm use to deep vertical finger/hand cracks. On the faces I ended up using my #00 through #2 C3s quite a few times because nothing else would fit. I found using all this small gear in conjunction with the unknowns of onsight climbing mentally taxing.

In the top photo a climber is on "Cool but Concerned" and on the bottom is a climb that I lead that is not in the guidebook. I'm not sure who did it in the past but there is a set of new anchors at the top.

For my last climb of the day I jumped on "Phasers on Kill" which is a 5.7 vertical crack into some face climbing on horizontals which leads to a roof. At the roof you enter a chimney on the right and climb to the anchors. The climb is around 25 meters in height. Everything was going fine until below the chimney where I did not have any useful sized pro left to put in the last horizontal crack. I made the mistake of using my two #1 C4s too early in the hand crack and nothing I had would protect the moves into the chimney. I felt stupid. I should have know better then to place two cams of the same size when I may have been able to use a large nut instead.

"Ok, a #.75 might do it", I thought. Unfortunately that cam, my last piece, was already a foot below me and two feet to the side. Besides being a little annoyed at this, I was beginning to feel pressed by the weather. The day's blue sky was gone and the winds had picked up. Also, despite being in a good position I had been standing there way too long fooling with gear; I needed to move.

Up? Down? Nope, I traversed left under the roof as it looked like I could get some gear in. The roof ended about 5 meters to the left and I knew there was another set of anchors just up from the end. I managed to place a #0.4 C4 in a shallow horizontal after digging the dirt out of it with a nut-tool and then a couple meters later a solid #2 and #00 C3. I was pretty happy to clip the anchors.

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