Friday, July 03, 2009

Reggae and Tagger with Mark Oveson

Mark and I hit Eldo again to get in some more training for Mark. The goal is to get him back to solid 5.8 climbing so that he is comfortable to try the East Face of Mt. Alice.

We started on Calypso and I led the first pitch up to the anchors. Mark followed, but not in the trivial manner he used to climb this pitch. He paused at a couple of tricky sections. I then zipped up the very familiar Reggae (5.8). Mark followed easily up to the crux section and, after taking a moment to figure out how to start it, did great.

Mark then led clear to the summit of the Wind Tower and I followed. We downclimbed off the usual descent and back to the base of Tagger. I led this pitch and set up a toprope for Mark. Mark expected it to go rather well, remembering it as more technical than burly, but hand strength still comes in handy here and Mark was stymied by the first hard move. He tried a few different things before coming off. He climbed back and up and still couldn't do it.

By now I have already switched into my Exum Ridge scrambling shoes, but I clipped into the rope and climbed the entire pitch again in these shoes (on toprope now, of course). The crux in these shoes was indeed the first move where good edging skills are handy.

Mark gave the move another try, but was done for the morning. We had met at 5:30 a.m. and it was just before 8 a.m. as we headed out.

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