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Everything posted by ClimbingCowboy

  1. Trip: Mississippi Palisades / Savanna IL - Sentinel and Brother Buttress Date: 5/3/2009 Trip Report: Only the second awesome weekend to hit northern Illinois this year. Found a horde of us from the Chicago Mountaineers clamoring-n-climbing the limestone to be found here. Must keep this short (much like the routes) but for any other wayward soul that may stumble upon this, will want to know of the addition of anchor bolts on Difficult Crack. And just for grins and giggles, who the heck has climbed Bee Wall? Gear Notes: TR with 20 - 30ft webbing for backup. Approach Notes: Just minutes from the truck.
  2. Ahhhh. I miss climbing with Ivan. I was just telling the story recently of when we were topping out on Beacon Rock in the dark and why headlamps are a good thing. Maybe the wall rat kits in the Windy City are being taught "up-rope". I'll check that out with my friend who is instructing them based on the syllabus the college is providing. I appreciate the great input this has generated. I'll continue to use monosyllables, mostly. If I haven't climbed with someone before, I will continue to cover the agreed upon signals, both verbal and non-verbal. The group I now climb with is used to setting top-ropes at Devils Lake. Being 2 1/2 hours or so from Chicago, it's the logical place to go. A sport or trad fix requires road-triping 6-8 hours either to Jackson Falls or the Red River Gorge. Newer and some not so newer climbers aren't exposed to the different environment/situation that I experienced in Portland. There-in lies the teaching opportunity.
  3. So you're leading a sport/trad route. You've clipped your 'biner in the bolt or pro and now ready to place the rope in the 'biner. The belayer or leader is new to this in that they always top-rope, so verbal communication is used because the new person is unaware that some extra rope is to be needed. Does the leader say, "Rope", "Slack", or "Clipping"? The "Mountaineers" 6th ed defines the command rope to be used when tossing the coil over the side. It doesn't say to use it for slack. I say slack. I think it unwise for my belayer to wonder, for any length of time, if they need to look for a rope being dropped from above or if I need slack to clip the rope. However, some gym-taught/college course people here in Chicago are being taught to say rope and it seems they aren't seeing the logic I just described above. Am I missing a change in the climbing communication universe here? As an aside, when I climb with anyone new, I cover the terms that are going to be used on a climb. Once I'm comfortable with someone, then this becomes less of an issue.
  4. Oh Boy OH BOy Ivan. I should have been clearer. It was about PRESENTS and shiny things. That Britney Spears/Madonna and Miss USA/Miss Teen USA thing, (though hot), way of thinking is not good and Jesse Jackson and Donald Trump will have to have a chat with you.
  5. Sounds like the wifes are going to make out great again this Christmas and then some! Great TR guys! Back to ice-fishing....
  6. Thanks also G-Timmy!!!! With a crappy day outside, presents left to buy'n'wrap, coffee cup empty....Just what I needed. Always meant to make it to that part of the world when I lived in Stumptown. Try a trip on the John Day out of Twinkenham sometime if you really want to get away. It's about another hour from Smith.
  7. A day hiking over to Koala rock and doing Round River and then doing the Cave Route or South Buttress Rte (depending on collective skill levels and experience) makes for an enjoyable day with great views.
  8. ...Just a side note on Steins Pillar a few may not know about. According to Gale Ontko's "Over the Ochocos" series, the Shoshoni's regarded the pillar the spot where their people began and the whole Ochoco region as their Garden of Eden. I don't think that, as climbers, we'll have to contend with the religious aspects like Devil's Tower.
  9. Great Post! I would never would do or did this one with say, Ivan, but only as an intro to climbing with females who are leaning more towards Gorge hiking, Horse Thief Butte, and the Hood River Brewery.
  10. The tree adds charecter to the route and the shade is nice. My primary objective should be to use gear and the rock as an anchor - when possible. The SE route gets inexperienced and/or lazy leaders. An experienced leader should know better. I say the leader because its obvious they are responsible for for setting a safe anchor. That can be attributed to a number of factors (time, weather, experience). Joseph has posted two ideas that will help in spreading the word:1)rapelling from the nearby anchor and 2)a notice on the board. 'Course none of that will work if a person is against the tree or reading the board. In reading Joseph's posts from 2004, in 2004, my first impressions are currently unchanged - favorable. There seemed to be an initial (clique) I was concerned about. But in remembering that nothing had really been done at Beacon in the late 90's and into this century, that what the group was doing made sense, and a work-party call had been sent out. What a lively debate this has been. Drink more beer and bond. Now that I live in Chicago and climb at Devils Lake and the Palisades (both state parks in Wisconsin and Illinois (and also the closest being 2 hours away)); it's all trad!
  11. Here's the link to the TSA. Print it out and take it with you in case you have to educate any screeeners. When I flew 1 1/2 years ago from PDX to Chicago and back, I had all of my gear in carry-on. I did leave the nut tool at home (I was climbing Illinois dolomite after all). No problems were experienced - even with slings. You'll see that ice ax's have to be checked in. Safe to say crampons, wrenches, and nut tools should be too. Have a great trip!
  12. A great TR, Ivan! You bring inspiration to this prairie flat-lander.
  13. I don't think Ivan can afford to loose anymore bodyfat. He's outside the median size of the population. Time for "Ivan-style" equipment and routes. God knows I've had to listen to him bitch (for good reason)about routes made for 5'8" climbers.
  14. I learned a long time ago (f***'d up once) that if I was to start thinking long-term about a gal, she'd come with an appreciation of Bill and Opus and ask me if I practiced Steve Dallas's method of dating.... Turns out we both think Bloom County was better than Outland. We're still up in the air on OPUS. Not sure how long the development is going to take. If we hadn't been ardent fans before, the current strip would be dry. What it's been six months now? The drawings and colors are great though!
  15. I second that as a great TR. Well done. Sorry to hear that you didn't make the top due to weather. Had the same thing happen to me a few years ago. However, it was still a great climb.
  16. Yeah...things are different here. May have to start following organized sports like d'Bears and Cubs. Fortunetly, there's a place within an hours drive called the Missippi Palisades. A land of glacier and water sculpted dolomite spires...with a toad-in-residence-in-a-pocket, and many species of poisonous snakes (these mostly stay in the warmer, southern part of the state. A black one that inhabits the top of a climb is quite friendly and will greet you on a sunny, most important ledge, where you have to place hands and feet right next to him. Word is he likes climbers). The purple andesite of Devil's Lake (Mid-West Climbing Mecca) has been enjoyable.
  17. A PDX Pub Crawl on tuesday is a great introduction to Beervana. Leave Fat Tire with the same crowd that drinks PBR and clear-colored malted beverages. Myself, since I've relocated to Northern Illinois (NOT CHICAGO), I've had to switch to swill and/or drive 25 miles for McTarnahan's.
  18. Whew! All these people wanting to climb next week and all I've got in my future is a limestone quarry wall in Illinois with my name on it (quality time with 2 wee-gals actually). Alas, I recommend Ivan as a great partner.
  19. Whew! All these people wanting to climb next week and all I've got in my future is a limestone quarry wall in Illinois with my name on it (quality time with 2 wee-gals actually). Alas, I recommend Ivan as a great partner.
  20. Is this the same cat that pee'd on your pack?
  21. I saw it as a stupid Friday Night Movie on NBC back in '76. Made this then Chicagoland youngster think that Cailfornians were slow'n' stupid when it came to danger. It's a good thing they handed the world's fifth largest economy to a muscleman. The hive on the Giant's Staircase at Broughton's has been properly eliminated - in case you're taking the kids out. Bummer about the dad/son. Good to hear they survived.
  22. Partner needs a ride back to Portland saturday nite. Anyone coming back to Puddleville? I've got room for one more - coming over sat AM staying until sun PM. I'm in Milwaukie....
  23. Good to hear-n-see everyone had fun (makes working sooo much more enjoyable).
  24. Just goes to show that Paul Bunyan was a climber too!
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