Rock Climbing --- 12/14/2015 - 1/31/2016 --- Seneca Rocks, TWall, Quartz Mountain, Joshua Tree, Red Rocks

Winter break road trip!

12/15
Climbing at Seneca Rocks with Erin and Sammy. We had big plans... Ecstasy, Triple S, Critter Crack... but rain and wind and cold had other ideas. We ended up going to the South Summit via Conn's West Direct. It was a perfect choice for the day.

12/18
Climbing at TWall with Amy. My 116th climbing destination worldwide :)

Cold and overcast. Not the best weather. We get on some classic climbs. Sanscrit, Dirt Bag, Finagle, and Puppy Ride. I learn that the ratings at TWall are stiff. And the ratings don't take the first move into account.

12/19
Much better weather. We meet up with Amy's friend Brian and climb Open Sesame, Peoples Express, Electric Rats, and Hidden Assets.

12/20
Climbing in short sleeves! Woooo!

Amy and I finally get on Passages which had been occupied every time we walked past it. And we use that anchor to TR Super Slide. Then we head west of the waterfall and climb Where Lizards Go To Die (which is amazing) and Open Casket (which is hands down one of the worst climbs I've ever done anywhere). We finish the day finding Brian and Sarah and getting a quick TR lap on the rope they have on Killer Diller.

12/23
Non-driving day at Quartz Mountain in Oklahoma. A fun granite dome poking out of the endless plains. I climb the classic route Snakes Head and shoot a timelapse (16x speed) of the ascent with my phone propped up in the van.

The climb is fun and the day is bluebird. I top it off with a shower in the state park campground.

12/26
Meeting Yamin, Erin, Jim, Jen and Lucy in Joshua Tree today. We plan to all arrive by 11am and get in a half day of climbing. We end up all being together around 7:30pm, so no climbing. Which is fine considering the 30mph winds with gusts to 60mph. Yea for driving the sprinter in that cross wind!

12/27
Cold weather convinces us to climb at lower elevation. We head to Corral Wall in Rattlesnake Canyon and climb Exfoliation Confrontation, Hang 'em High, Wild Wild West, and Party in the Dessert.

12/28
With promises of AM sun we head to the Split Rock area. By 11am Bird of Fire is long in the shade. Jim and I make the questionable decision to climb it anyhow. It is a really good climb. Extremely stiff for the grade. Jim leads it, then I pinkpoint the route on his gear. Highlight for me is the massive rope swing I make to snag a thrown nut tool when cleaning the route.

12/29
We meet up with Chris, Julia and Mindy. All of us head to Real Hidden Valley where we climb Ranger JB, Leaping Leaner and Grain Dance. We TR Grain Dance (my favorite climb of the day) because it has zero protection. A local tells us they are considering putting a bolt or two on the climb so people can lead it. A bolt. Or two.

We play quite a few rounds of Coup at night. Yamin steals my helicopter.

12/30
We all head to Lost Horse Wall. Below the four highlines we climb Thigh Master, Smooth as Silk, Anacram, and Cakewalk. Anacram is by far my favorite and a very heroic onsight for Jim. The slackliners give me hot tea atop the formation while I wait to take down our anchors. And we see the first of many coyotes in the evening.

12/31
Watanobe wall for Season Opener, Open Season, Wataneasy Route, Watanobe, and Elixir on Hot Tub Wall.

For New Year's Eve we all gather at Chris, Julia and Mindy's airbnb. A funky and cold ranch house. We stay up until midnight (in some time zone) eating too much food and playing many rounds of Bang. Yamin steals my helicopter. Again.

1/1
Happy 2016! We hike out to Siberia. Both pitches of Dos Chi Chis is the first lead for my new, tighter, TC Pros. We also climb Showers With Dad. Both climbs are stellar!

In the evening I drive to Vegas to pick up Andrew.

1/2
Andrew and I reach Intersection Rock in time to say goodbye to the rest of the crew. And collect their leftover food. This makes up for the stolen helicopters! We find Cathy, Calvin and Mike climbing nearby and arrange to camp with them for the next few days. We climb Southwest Passage. I booty a really nice purple Neutrino which has been dropped deep in a crack. A nut tool on the end of two slings fishes it out. We rappel as the sun sets.

1/3
Warmer weather. Finally! We head to Lost Horse Wall and climb Bird on a Wire, Dappled Mare, and The Swift. An excellent day! I booty a nut which is apparently made of gold. Or at least fool's gold. As we are leaving we see a group rigging a 500+ foot slackline across the entrance to the valley.

1/4
Overcast all day and threatening rain, but only a few drops actually fall. Andrew and I make the hike to Lenticular Dome where we climb Mental Physics, Dazed and Confused, and Unconscious Obscenity. Both Mental Physics and Dazed and Confused are fantastic climbs. Andrew leads all of Mental Physics in one pitch. Then we rappel Dazed and Confused so we can leave the rope on the very high first bolt. I lead Dazed and Confused without the risk of a 25' groundfall. Make wise choices!

1/5
Heavy fog and constant drizzle in the morning. A rest day after climbing nine days in a row??? No!!!!

We hiked the Skull Rock trail and the Arch Rock trail, then went to the visitor's center and walked around the Oasis of Mara. The rain stopped, so we went to Indian Cove to climb. As we arrived the rain started again. Definitely not a climbing day. The roads were partially flooded as we drove back to camp, and we cooked dinner in the pouring rain.

We play some rummey. I do not lose a helicopter.

1/6
Windy and clear in the morning. We took advantage of the dry weather to climb at Hot Tub. Got on Amanda, The Dharma Bums, Belly Button, and Elixir. By 2pm the rain started again as strong as ever.

1/7
I'm not entirely convinced that Joshua Tree is a desert. By definition, a desert gets less than 10" of rain per year. I think we have had that much in three days. Though now it is snow.

We head to lower elevation at Indian Cove. We climb Driving Limitations and the Direct South Face of Moosedog Tower.

The snow turns to hail.

1/8
John joins Andrew and I for the day. We hang around Hidden Valley and climb Double Cross, Loose Lady and Sail Away.

1/9
Off to Conan's Corridor where we climb Colorado Crack and toprope Spiderman. Then back to Ryan Campground where we are joined by Max and Ian for a photo shoot on the Headstone. We climb Southwest Corner and Cryptic. These very polished climbs become even slicker when it starts raining.

1/10
We finish our time in Joshua Tree by hiking up to the White Cliffs of Dover. There we climb Ace of Spades and Popular Mechanics. The climbs share so much of the start that I feel like I'm climbing Ace Mechanic. Or Popular Spades.

Then it starts raining. We leave Joshua Tree.

1/12
Hiked for 6.5 hours all over Pine Creek and Oak Creek canyons creating waypoints for trails that we often hike in the dark. Not that I deserve martyr points or anything.

Oh... did I mention that I'm in Red Rocks now?

1/13
Hiked another 4.5 hours collecting waypoints.

1/14
One month on the road. Time for a very well deserved trip to the Arizona Hot Springs. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Guidebooks! (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Guidebooks!    Ithaca -- 12/14/2015

Dinner with Erin and Sammy (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Dinner with Erin and Sammy    Seneca Rocks, WV -- 12/14/2015

Erin on Conn's West (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Erin on Conn's West    Seneca Rocks, WV -- 12/15/2015

Erin on Conn's West (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Erin on Conn's West    Seneca Rocks, WV -- 12/15/2015

Sammy warming her feet on Erin's back (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Sammy warming her feet on Erin's back    Seneca Rocks, WV -- 12/15/2015

Atop the south summit (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Atop the south summit    Seneca Rocks, WV -- 12/15/2015

Atop the south summit (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Atop the south summit    Seneca Rocks, WV -- 12/15/2015

Atop the south summit (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Atop the south summit    Seneca Rocks, WV -- 12/15/2015

Atop the south summit (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Atop the south summit    Seneca Rocks, WV -- 12/15/2015

Atop the south summit (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Atop the south summit    Seneca Rocks, WV -- 12/15/2015

Atop the south summit (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Atop the south summit    Seneca Rocks, WV -- 12/15/2015

Moby Dick and Seneca Rocks (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Moby Dick and Seneca Rocks    Seneca Rocks, WV -- 12/15/2015

This is how I get wifi in the van at McDonalds (Category:  Rock Climbing)

This is how I get wifi in the van at McDonalds    Elkins, WV -- 12/16/2015

:) (Category:  Rock Climbing)

:)    Slade, KY -- 12/17/2015

Stella! (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Stella!    Slade, KY -- 12/17/2015

Stella and Amy (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Stella and Amy    Slade, KY -- 12/17/2015

Pretty sure this is the cheapest diesel I've ever bought. (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Pretty sure this is the cheapest diesel I've ever bought.    Chattanooga, TN -- 12/17/2015

Sanscrit (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Sanscrit    TWall -- 12/18/2015

Amy on Finagle (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Amy on Finagle    TWall -- 12/18/2015

Amy on Finagle (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Amy on Finagle    TWall -- 12/18/2015

Brian on Peoples Express (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Brian on Peoples Express    TWall -- 12/19/2015

Amy on Peoples Express (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Amy on Peoples Express    TWall -- 12/19/2015

Amy on Peoples Express (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Amy on Peoples Express    TWall -- 12/19/2015

Amy on Peoples Express (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Amy on Peoples Express    TWall -- 12/19/2015

Brian on Electric Rats (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Brian on Electric Rats    TWall -- 12/19/2015

Sourdome! (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Sourdome!    TWall -- 12/20/2015

Short sleeves! So warm! (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Short sleeves! So warm!    TWall -- 12/20/2015

Amy on Passages (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Amy on Passages    TWall -- 12/20/2015

Amy on Passages (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Amy on Passages    TWall -- 12/20/2015

Amy (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Amy    TWall -- 12/20/2015

Amy on Where Lizards Go To Die (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Amy on Where Lizards Go To Die    TWall -- 12/20/2015

Amy on Where Lizards Go To Die (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Amy on Where Lizards Go To Die    TWall -- 12/20/2015

Amy on Open Casket (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Amy on Open Casket    TWall -- 12/20/2015

Amy on Open Casket (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Amy on Open Casket    TWall -- 12/20/2015

Amy on Open Casket (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Amy on Open Casket    TWall -- 12/20/2015

Me cleaning Open Casket. (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Me cleaning Open Casket. Don't brush away all the spider webs. They might be the only thing holding this choss pile together!    TWall -- 12/20/2015

The tree hugger in me doesn't want dead dinos (and 10% corn) to be this cheap. (Category:  Rock Climbing)

The tree hugger in me doesn't want dead dinos (and 10% corn) to be this cheap. But the dirtbag climber in me is thrilled.    Oklahoma City, OK -- 12/22/2015

Quartz Mountain (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Quartz Mountain    Quartz Mountain, OK -- 12/23/2015

You don't get much perspective from these photos, but it is about (Category:  Rock Climbing)

You don't get much perspective from these photos, but it is about 300' tall.    Quartz Mountain, OK -- 12/23/2015

It really does rise up out of the plains. (Category:  Rock Climbing)

It really does rise up out of the plains.    Quartz Mountain, OK -- 12/23/2015

Snakes Head climbs the cobra-like formation on the west side of the mountain. (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Snakes Head climbs the cobra-like formation on the west side of the mountain. It finishes with a jump across the gap from the top of the cobra to the boulder just to the right.    Quartz Mountain, OK -- 12/23/2015

Them Duke boys is a might far from Georgia. (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Them Duke boys is a might far from Georgia.    Oklahoma -- 12/23/2015

Erin leading Exfoliation Confrontation (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Erin leading Exfoliation Confrontation    Joshua Tree -- 12/27/2015

Jen and Lucy (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Jen and Lucy    Joshua Tree -- 12/27/2015

Jim leading Wild Wild West (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Jim leading Wild Wild West    Joshua Tree -- 12/27/2015

New TC Pros (Category:  Rock Climbing)

New TC Pros    Joshua Tree -- 12/28/2015

Dick Pic (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Dick Pic    Joshua Tree -- 12/28/2015

Lucy (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Lucy    Joshua Tree -- 12/28/2015

Lucy (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Lucy    Joshua Tree -- 12/28/2015

Joshua Tree (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Joshua Tree    Joshua Tree -- 12/28/2015

One of several highlines (Category:  Rock Climbing)

One of several highlines    Joshua Tree -- 12/28/2015

Lucy studying the guidebook (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Lucy studying the guidebook    Joshua Tree -- 12/29/2015

Jim atop some sketchy thing that we decided not to climb (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Jim atop some sketchy thing that we decided not to climb    Joshua Tree -- 12/29/2015

Jen (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Jen    Joshua Tree -- 12/30/2015

Highlines (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Highlines    Joshua Tree -- 12/30/2015

Erin leading Amanda (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Erin leading Amanda    Joshua Tree -- 12/31/2015

Erin leading Amanda (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Erin leading Amanda    Joshua Tree -- 12/31/2015

Yamin and Erin at New Year's Eve (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Yamin and Erin at New Year's Eve    Joshua Tree -- 12/31/2015

Erin, Jim and me at New Year's Eve (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Erin, Jim and me at New Year's Eve    Joshua Tree -- 12/31/2015

Yamin, Jim, Lucy, Chris, Jen, Mindy, Julia and Erin's feet at New Year's Eve (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Yamin, Jim, Lucy, Chris, Jen, Mindy, Julia and Erin's feet at New Year's Eve    Joshua Tree -- 12/31/2015

Celebrating the New Year. Mindy, Julia, Chris, Erin, Yamin, me with Jim, Lucy and Jen in the front row. (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Celebrating the New Year. Mindy, Julia, Chris, Erin, Yamin, me with Jim, Lucy and Jen in the front row.    Joshua Tree -- 12/31/2015

Hiking out to Siberia (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Hiking out to Siberia    Joshua Tree -- 1/1/2016

Jim on Yasmine Bleeth (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Jim on Yasmine Bleeth    Joshua Tree -- 1/1/2016

Chris on Dos Chi Chis (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Chris on Dos Chi Chis    Joshua Tree -- 1/1/2016

Erin atop Showers With Dad (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Erin atop Showers With Dad    Joshua Tree -- 1/1/2016

Wonderland of Rocks (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Wonderland of Rocks    Joshua Tree -- 1/1/2016

Chris atop Dos Chi Chis (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Chris atop Dos Chi Chis    Joshua Tree -- 1/1/2016

Yamin on Showers With Dad (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Yamin on Showers With Dad    Joshua Tree -- 1/1/2016

Julia on Dos Chi Chis (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Julia on Dos Chi Chis    Joshua Tree -- 1/1/2016

Julia on Dos Chi Chis (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Julia on Dos Chi Chis    Joshua Tree -- 1/1/2016

Me on Southwest Passage (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Me on Southwest Passage    Joshua Tree -- 1/2/2016

Andrew on Southwest Passage (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Andrew on Southwest Passage    Joshua Tree -- 1/2/2016

The booty neutrino I fished out of a deep crack in Intersection Rock (Category:  Rock Climbing)

The booty neutrino I fished out of a deep crack in Intersection Rock    Joshua Tree -- 1/2/2016

Andrew atop Intersection Rock (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Andrew atop Intersection Rock    Joshua Tree -- 1/2/2016

Andrew atop Intersection Rock (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Andrew atop Intersection Rock    Joshua Tree -- 1/2/2016

Calvin atop Intersection Rock (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Calvin atop Intersection Rock    Joshua Tree -- 1/2/2016

Sunset (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Sunset    Joshua Tree -- 1/2/2016

Sunset (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Sunset    Joshua Tree -- 1/2/2016

Sunset (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Sunset    Joshua Tree -- 1/2/2016

Sunset (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Sunset    Joshua Tree -- 1/2/2016

Coyote (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Coyote    Joshua Tree -- 1/3/2016

Atop Lost Horse Canyon (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Atop Lost Horse Canyon    Joshua Tree -- 1/3/2016

Climbing in Lost Horse Canyon (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Climbing in Lost Horse Canyon    Joshua Tree -- 1/3/2016

Andrew on Dappled Mare (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Andrew on Dappled Mare    Joshua Tree -- 1/3/2016

Andrew on Dappled Mare (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Andrew on Dappled Mare    Joshua Tree -- 1/3/2016

Andrew on Dappled Mare (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Andrew on Dappled Mare    Joshua Tree -- 1/3/2016

Calvin, Andrew, Cathy and me (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Calvin, Andrew, Cathy and me    Joshua Tree -- 1/4/2016

Arch Rock (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Arch Rock    Joshua Tree -- 1/5/2016

Me and other me at Arch Rock (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Me and other me at Arch Rock    Joshua Tree -- 1/5/2016

Snow in the mountains (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Snow in the mountains    Joshua Tree -- 1/7/2016

Andrew on Moosedog Tower (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Andrew on Moosedog Tower    Joshua Tree -- 1/7/2016

Hail (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Hail    Joshua Tree -- 1/7/2016

Climbers on Loose Lady (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Climbers on Loose Lady    Joshua Tree -- 1/8/2016

The slot canyon leading to Conan's Corridor (Category:  Rock Climbing)

The slot canyon leading to Conan's Corridor    Joshua Tree -- 1/9/2016

Andrew at the top of Spiderman (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Andrew at the top of Spiderman    Joshua Tree -- 1/9/2016

Ian coming up the Southwest Corner (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Ian coming up the Southwest Corner    Joshua Tree -- 1/9/2016

Ian coming up the Southwest Corner (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Ian coming up the Southwest Corner    Joshua Tree -- 1/9/2016

Ian coming up the Southwest Corner (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Ian coming up the Southwest Corner    Joshua Tree -- 1/9/2016

Ian coming up the Southwest Corner (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Ian coming up the Southwest Corner    Joshua Tree -- 1/9/2016

Andrew coming up the Southwest Corner (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Andrew coming up the Southwest Corner    Joshua Tree -- 1/9/2016

Andrew coming up the Southwest Corner (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Andrew coming up the Southwest Corner    Joshua Tree -- 1/9/2016

Andrew coming up the Southwest Corner (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Andrew coming up the Southwest Corner    Joshua Tree -- 1/9/2016

Burros (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Burros    Red Rocks -- 1/12/2016

What is it about Red Rocks that I keep finding hats? (Category:  Rock Climbing)

What is it about Red Rocks that I keep finding hats?    Red Rocks -- 1/12/2016

I'm done posting pictures of gas prices now. (Category:  Rock Climbing)

I'm done posting pictures of gas prices now.    Oklahoma -- 1/16/2016

Low single digit temperatures is all I can deal with in van life. (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Screaming Barfies While Driving

Low single digit temperatures is all I can deal with in van life. To Moby's credit, it did start pretty easily after sitting all night at temperatures around 0F. And sleeping is pretty comfortable with a properly rated sleeping bag. But all my water freezes. And the van never reaches normal operating temperature -- even at highway speeds -- so the cabin heater is quite anemic.    Illinois -- 1/17/2016

Winnie (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Winnie    Indianapolis, IN -- 1/19/2016

Me leading Southwest Corner on the Headstone (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Me leading Southwest Corner on the Headstone (Max's Photo)    Joshua Tree -- 1/9/2016

Me leading Southwest Corner on the Headstone (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Me leading Southwest Corner on the Headstone (Max's Photo)    Joshua Tree -- 1/9/2016

Andrew leading Ace of Spades (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Andrew leading Ace of Spades (Max's Photo)    Joshua Tree -- 1/10/2016

Me leading Ace Mechanic (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Me leading Ace Mechanic (Max's Photo)    Joshua Tree -- 1/10/2016

Me leading Ace Mechanic (Category:  Rock Climbing)

Me leading Ace Mechanic (Max's Photo)    Joshua Tree -- 1/10/2016