Squamish, June 24-26
I’ve been doing a lot in the mountains so my last weekend cragging trip was the annual Women Climbers Northwest Squamish trip. Paulina wrote an excellent trip report on the WCN site, so you should go read that. Especially if you are a woman in the Northwest looking for other women to climb with. This report is just a quick and dirty (and the ever-present tick list).
Friday was a the short and wet day (I like to allow 3 days for a Squamish weekend, since during the ‘dry’ season (July through September) it rains an average of 30% of the time). Most of us went for the ever popular rainy day activity of hiking the Chief trail, but this time a few of us switched it up and went to go poke Cobra Crack (yes, it looks hard, and is steep enough that we could have a picnic in the dry spot under it) instead of going to the top. The rain did stop and we did some roadside cragging at Burgers and Fries. The quick-drying rock at Squish almost makes up for the rain.
- Burgers and Fries, Movin on Over, 5.9 trad (lead)
- Burgers and Fries, Wise Crack, 5.7 trad (TR)
- Burgers and Fries, Burgers and Fries, 5.7 trad (lead) I had a little slab problem at the end of this (standing there forever, making a move, downclimbing, standing there forever some more, etc…)
- Burgers and Fries, Peaches and Cream, 5.10b trad (TR)
The weather forecast was not amazing for Saturday, but we got in a full day of cragging at Neat and Cool. There were a few guided groups, including one guide herding 20 kids (it may have been more like 6 but they were running around and looked bigger) but we were mostly going for different routes (and one large group was just sitting there looking at gear placements), so hopefully we didn’t get in each other’s way. I guess the weather was too “bad” for everyone else.
- Neat and Cool, Corner Crack, 5.7 trad (lead)
- Neat and Cool, Flying Circus, 5.10a trad (lead)
- Neat and Cool, Neat and Cool, 5.10a trad (lead 2x, TR 1x) on first attempt, fell, popped a marginal TCU, fell on the one below it, and crashed into a bush. Much better after McKinley gave me the gear beta (use the good crack not the crappy one). fuuun route
- Neat and Cool, Layback Flake, 5.9R trad (TR)
On the last day, I got to introduce Paulina and Leah to the tree pitches. The tree pitches are two pitches of full on tree, dirt, and root climbing (oh, and the occasional short, wet hand crack) that are currently the standard approach to Baseline Ledge, where the classics Calculus, South Arête, Vector, and St Vitus start. I, personally, like this sort of thing and think it is part of the Squamish experience, but I guess most people (possibly including Leah and Paulina), do not. There is a recently cleaned 5.9 no-trees start so this may fall out of favor soon. Fortunately Leah and Paulina enjoyed the three 5.9 crux pitches (before I introduced them to the “classic” Broadway Ledge descent).
- St Vitus Dance, 5.9 6p (lead)