Friday, September 17, 2010

Anja climbs Snake Hike - Sept 6, 2010

Adam and Yumi planned to climb half dome as part of the wedding festivities. Adam and his Dad, along with climber wedding guests, would do the 8-pitch Snake Dike (5.7 R) and Yumi and Adam's brother Dan would meet the climbers at the top via the cable route. Ken wasn't feeling well and opted to stay at camp. I really wanted to do the climb, and Adam's friends Dana and Matt also wanted to do the climb but didn't want to lead, which worked out perfectly! We left the car at 6am and the hike in took about 3.5-4 hours. Adam and his Dad went first, and we enjoyed a short break from the hike. Note: the photos in this post are from

The first pitch was one of the harder pitches (5.7), but I was pretty groggy and a bit over confident. After placing gear on the right side of the roof (as Adam had), I continued along the thin seam even though the route description said there was no gear, which of course meant no holds! After traversing to the far end of the roof, my foot slipped. It was my first trad fall, and I went for a pretty good ride. Fortunately, it was pretty mellow and may even have helped my lead head for the rest of the climb. I kept thinking, "well, I already fell once, and it wasn't so bad...". It also woke me up!

We started climbing at around 11am, and didn't reach the top until about 7pm, which was about twice as long as the 3-4 hour super topo estimate! I like to think we were taking care to do the climb with style. We were also climbing as a party of three, and we simul-climbed rather than soloed the last few hundred feet (dubbed "3rd class slabs forever"). I also wasn't the best at route-finding (normally Ken's job), so when the dike ran out I was bit slow on the detective work.

By the end of the day, after navigating through the forever slabs, I had learned a lot about picking up rock trails. Earlier on the climb, I also learned that even though the route description says "5.2 friction", that doesn't mean one should head straight up the blank wall for 50-80 feet (especially when obvious pro can be found on the right). Down climbing slab can be hard.

Overall it was a great climb! We all had a blast and would do it again! Though maybe not the next day...

Ken hanging in camp with Cat, Greg, Dave, baby, Bill (daddy), and Leslie (mommy).

1 comment:

JuliaG said...

Very cool. The slab does go on forever, no? And I insisted on keeping a rope on for much longer than Ryan wanted!! I could just see my tired legs tripping and then rolling and rolling and rolling forever down those slabs. Agh.