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ivan

first ascent [TR] Tower Rock - FA - Rapunzel's Back in Rehab - C1 7/15/2015

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Might be the high point. We are over 600 feet up, but it appears to be less than half way.

 

Tower_Sept_high_point.jpg

 

Here's what looking down looked like Saturday when Bryan Schmidt was following me up the overhanging jug. Camera died (from fright? LOL) not long after. Ivan and time were both past and had moved on up already.

 

 

Bryan_Schmitz_jugging_in_space.jpg

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in your highpt pic bill the terrain obscures the first 2 pitches, which are 80 meters or so combined - i think we're actually past halfway

 

great pic of our boy - the last wildly overhanging pitch we fixed will yield an even wilder shot of a jugger i suspect, if'n you want to dare to hang yer ass way out in space to get it :)

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Trip: Tower Rock - FA - Rapunzel's Back in Rehab - C1

 

Date: 7/15/2015

 

Trip Report:

The Beast - don't be fooled, them thare are full-grown trees :)

DSC02611.JPG

Tower Rock, 2 hours from everywhere, appears oddly neglected - Brown Beckey's got the tiniest blurb of the single route up it done in 1982 (anyone know of a second ascent? i can't find anyone who's tried it) but no picture n' no topo - tim olson's oregon rock guide has some more detail than beckey, but still the vast monolith appears to have continued unloved

 

tower's just south of randle, an unladen swallow's flight from the cispus river - the face is gigantic,something like 1200 feet tall - the rock is basaltic, according to beckey, but like nothing i've seen - like over-baked brownies, it's composed of a hodge-podge of components - incredibly solid and compact, it's cross-hatched in all directions, crackless, and crumbles into bricks and blocks of all conceivable sizes - the tower looms over it's talus field, fiercely steep, it's upper-wall reminiscent of the right side of el cap, incredibly bulging and over-hanging

 

tower is composed of two giant faces seperated by a ledge/fault system that was the path taken by the first team to climb the face - currently, after 7 days of effort, our route climbs the lower wall - it'll be just as much work to finish the upper wall, if the rock quality holds

 

as it currently exists

DSC02616.JPG

yeah, there's a lot more to go, but as it stands, what's there is 600 feet tall and a great day-tripper's aid adventure already - i figure the worst that can come of telling folks about this now before it's complete is that some other sad fools can go do it for me :)

DSC02612.JPG

 

trip the first:

fuck, this happened so long off i wonder if my recollection's right at all - me n' bill n' ben in the late winter - a burr up their bespectacled asses about a mythical 10-pitch free route up a largely untouched tower - the plan to hike to the top then set a rap-line down the likely route - out of town on a friday night to the frightful fall of rain - ghetto camp before the gate in gales of damnable damp - the roar of frogs - the next morning the most sordid thang - endless hours uphill w/ drill n' bolts n' chains in the continuous cloud-fuck n' frenzied chilly breeze - near the summit gob-smacked to gain a blazed trail barely a mile from a seasonal road - the top a huge disappointment, it characterized by clouds and beaming rainbows and rock so rude they rarely accoladed the attribution - soon there after the weekend righteously concluded and me around for the sweet family on the sabbath

 

trip the second:

on the reconnaissance earlier, dejected at finding a kitty-litter summit, we'd paused after a tortuous overladen descent on the boulder field and pondered on future options - a man w/ an aid-climber's conscious could do a take on "infinite bliss" and find a bitching way up the crazy big blank face - it was sure to take a mort of mortal work, but bill n' geoff are true gentlemen all measured and solid for this kinda goofy shit - we banged up from p-town on a friday night and made camp up at the turn around on the forest road - stumble-fucking up the forest we arrived amazed and ready to ramble on - many mozzies n' deer flies this damned trip - pitch 1 went quickly between geoff and bill, the later bounding up free on low-angle stacked mossy talus to make an anchor atop tier 1 - me i got tier 2 - all bolts at first until i no longer feared the ledge, then lotza 2-hook moves in a row until reaching the top of the tier where i left a fixed hook to protect a low-angle romp to the second anchor - we retired to camp n' soggy fires n' fulsome screeching music - day 2 we jugged to the top of p2 and bill and geoff got up a ways before yielding to me, whereupon i drilled n' hooked to a high point we marked w/ red tat before descending and returning to our troubled and lonely little lives - i recollect getting a true n' glorious drunk on in the passenger seat n' slumbering back to vantucky :)

 

geoff putting up the first pitch on the scrubby, compact low-angle first tier

P6060034.JPG

the artist as a young asshole ascending the second steeper tier

P6060040.JPG

geoff workign on pitch 3, the first steps onto the very steep lower wall

P6060042.JPG

 

trip the third:

lovely ospreys n' robins round the lake - pete n' pam play camp hosts - camp weddings n' nightly fishing sheenaningans - muskrats n' pond-skimming swallows - bastard mozzies n' mean biting flies, mostly in obeisance for the first couple cold days, but growing in malevolence as the weather waxed towards wicked hot - the sweet ne face of Tower almost totally shade-soaked for the mid-morning riser - kids n' retirees n' rv's n' jumping trout n' tame dogs - the listless routines of an aimless life - awake w/ the sun - fresh shits n' dewy breakfasts - a short but grim uphill grind through steep forest w/ plentiful windfall, shirt soaked through by the time we hit the sunny talus field at the base but soon blessed w/ shade - warm juggy work to start and then to the serious business - fear frenzies despite being armed w/ all the wonderful war machines of modern man - a long time of terror n' toil - the day dispatched, we make a rapid descent, each time by a different winding way - beer n' stripping soaked clothes off at the mercifully close car - me auolde yosemite food bin rummaged through for a desperate dinner, usually of beer n' tobacco n' pringles n' whatever benevolent bill threw my way - an hour or so of bird-watching n' binge-reading on maggie thatcher's frigid teeming fucking bush - to sleep at the post-gloaming in a grand 6-man tent alone, racked out on a queen sized inflatable air mattress, wrapped in down and dozy drunkenness - the night passed moaning to sore muscles as i twist n' turn until the dawn drags me to my addled senses, then it all runs off the reel much as it reckoned the day before...

 

first several days of murmurings n' mumblings w/ just me n' bill (me a damn baby in comparison to my venerable and august elder - that baby weighing in at a mean 250 bare-nekkid pounds and a coward to boot of course) - bill a bastion of genteel sincerity that must sadly have bitch-left this world many generations ago - me strangely silent of song for days - my mind scrambled and saddened by the robust requirements of 6-weeks of family-left sorrows gone off in the valley - eventually songs to lift my times and shape my senses - "mining for gold" by the cowboy junkies running on an eternal loop in my mind - long after-shocks of "burn down the mission" caused by geoff for sure

 

after 3 days of toil we grow weary and call in the cavalry - the silverman boys gonna come down n' save us from our misery - we make a rest day out of walking the mountain side w/ them, then retiring to the big boulder to pound pbr's n' provide Adult Supervision - they lounge around camp afterwards, contemplating on crashing the redneck wedding well under-way - we smoke bales of weed n' cackle n' cough n' find high times are treasure enough in this wicked world - eventually all good things must get on the bus w/ gandhi though and they roll off into the night in the hms revenge, ready i hope to return for more

 

the last day done-off as surely as a band-aid - after a fearful arduous jug up the wild steep fixed lines ole bill baits the question ("good news or bad?" - which would you take?) - - dedication to a last day of determined work - 5 hours of bolting and hooking on endless steep traversing ground until i was gut-wrenched at what it was likely to take me to get get back to bill - epic amounts of gear left as i rapped into the void and quickly grew dependent on bill to reel me back in - the retreat then fully declared we rapped n' ruminated n' laid our plans like parchment paper, all of it ultimately putting us on sweet terra-firma w/ a fuck-load of gear to get off - surprised by bill's pronouncement of this day, i had no proper pack to cram all the crap into

 

eventually we ambled on down the way, me overloaded like a gypsy carnival-whore w/ rope-bags aplenty such that i swooned on multiple occasions as the straps cut into me wind-pipe and i passed yards off unyielding to gratuitous thoughts, my mind in a true and lovely gray place - the last night spent in part w/ militant california-paul, such as exemplar of that shakespearean clap-trap about sounding of fuck-all and negative fury, yet yielding nothing :)

 

our objective from the relative sanity of the rv park n' its teeming trout pond

DSC02631.JPG

white-boys jugging the first 2 tiers - at this angle the lower wall takes up most of the entire frame, but the upper wall's just as big n' steeper

P6070047.JPG

700 feet of ropes n' route-making machine

Tower7.jpg

just starting the second pitch

Tower5.jpg

bags of bolts n' drills n' bullshit - starting to install pitch 4

Tower6.jpg

geoff at the top of p4, kyle jugging up to the mid-pt anchor

DSC02617.JPG

 

closing thoughts: happy to share the discovery w/ the nw brethren - leave yer self-righteous bolting morals at home w/ yer bitches - the place went unloved for a reason :) - the only cracks evident are where awful rock-fall is just a geologic fart-in-a-stiff-wind away - if intending to push the route higher (what's there is plenty for a day-tripper), please let me or bill or geoff know so one of us can come along - perhaps a dozen separate lines could be pushed to the top in the same style, each likely to take weeks n' 1000$ to put in place :) - recon trip to the top found almost no real rock up there - at some point all lines must turn to awful kitty litter, but maybe it'll go anyhow?

 

topo as it currently stands - hope to see this fucker get taller in the fullness of insensible time :)

 

topo8.jpg

 

Gear Notes:

- up to 30+ draws if clipping all bolts

- 2 bathooks (talons can work, but they risk blowing out the drilled holes)

- ideally 2 70 meter ropes, but 2 60'S can work if careful

- cheater stick not bad idea, as many of the bolts were installed by a fear-fucked orangutan at his max reach

- lower off tat or quick-links/biners for follower at traversing parts

- helmets essential - much potential for rockfall of all sizes, especially if hauling or jugging - base area very dangerous in strong winds or if below climbers on first 2 approach pitches - upper pitches largely protected from natural rockfall (be careful up there :) )

 

Approach Notes:

Exit 68 off i5 - east on 12 to randle (about an hour) - right (south) turn at randle (follow signs for tower rock RV park) - quick left about a mile south of randle, then another turn right about 6 miles later - rt turn at tower rock RV park/cispus learning center signs - left onto logging road (75?76?) just a 100 yards before rt turn to tower rock forest service camp (or straight for another mile to the RV park) - forest road is closed at gate near main road during winter/early spring - about 1 1/2 mile up road (stay on main road at split a 1/2 mile up) there's a turn around (about .25 mile past a steep switchback) - from there you can continue in car but there's no turnaround - walk or drive 1/4 mile to road-end - at wierd stone-forest-altar begin hiking up steep forrested slope - about 45 minutes to base - occasional game and human trails, generally trending right and up - copious windfall in middle section of trail - steeper for last 1/3 of trail - idea is to skirt talus field on right and join base from tree at right edge of wall - 1st bolt is just 5 feet off ground near clump of trees about 50 feet above a huge lounge-like boulder that is a great/safe observation spot

 

descent:

currently rapping from top of p5 to top of p4 is extra-ordinarly hard - in the future ideally there'll be a rap line straight down through p5 - for now be prepared to leave a fixed line to get back to the top of p4 and for the first rapper to have to haul the second back over - descending from the top of p4 requires 2 70 meter ropes or a stop at the mid-pt anchor (no rings) - the rap overhangs but you just barely touch the wall at the mid-pt anchor - use terrain to help you rap in the right direction

 

9/5-6 - trip the fourth w/ geoff n' bryan - 3 days of school, the easy ones, dispatched and snap, whizz, bang it was friday afternoon and we were flying down the highway, heading north, clutching cans n' cackling at this wicked world we are so at home in - ominous omens, devil-eyed little girls glaring out of death-cold cars at us - road signs: "the time of the lord is here" - jesus, we'd best tread lightly

 

the tower rock rv park at dusk, the ride dispatched in minutes it seemed, fueled by high-octane what-have-you n' plebian pbr's - the park much as i left it, riddled w/ well-heeled red-necks n' pam n' pete n' a feller i'm pretty sure ain't named larry but will ever here-after be for me :)

 

got good n' whiskey-drunk w/ hood-river spirits sitting round the fire n' sorted n' packed n' planned for the day to come and soon enough it was upon us - up at 630 to grits n' coffee n' black tobacco

 

holy shit, plenty of weight to pull us down on the slow amble up-hill but within the hour we'd handled it and got to the glory - bryan, his first visit to the wall, had spoken in pure-drunken-honestness of the ease w/ which he'd dispatch it all, so for his sins we gave it to him - he gamboled up the first 2 pitches easy enough as geoff n' i smoked n' chuckled n' occasionally jugged

 

geoff did p3, a looooong way to go on bolts, much like leaning tower i suppose - i then did p4, so much fun now that i'm not fear-sweating it like on the first ascent, more than half-certain the huge roofs blocks would rain down on me once rattled by the roar of the drill

 

atop 4 the boys lost their motivation n' sense of adventure i reckon - it was late afternoon for sure, but i'm sure we could have completed p5 and put in our new rap line by dark, but it would have meant being late for a triumphant performance by the tower rockers band down at the rv park and of course cutting into precious drinking time, so with tears in my heart i consented to just fixing the first 4 pitches and coming back the next day

 

a surrealistic night for certain - dogs n' fishers n' baby gymnasts n' rv's of a thousand descriptions - not 1 but 2 bands, quite possibly the laziest ever, each managing to play perhaps a total of 30 minutes w/ at least 6 set-breaks thrown in to keep their buzzes on - a roaring fire n' light-flecked lake to seperate us from the heathen masses, which we nonetheless joined from time to time to see if any hotties under the age of 50 had arrived (they hadn't :( )

 

the hedonistic scene concluded with brutal finality when the heavens opened and the fuck-sky descended around eleven - a steady baptist downpour off and on from then till well after dawn

 

sunday morning a savage one, as they always are it seems - the dregs of the whiskey sitting sullenly upon my senses - the unceasing rain toasting all hopes for progress up the mist-wracked tower - in time the melancholia did end though, as all misery must, and we hoofed it back up to the wall to see if anything could be done - by then it was so late, the wall so streaming, the likelihood of yet another dousing so certain that it was w/ half a heart me n' bryan began jugging - i made it most of the way back up to the highpt, cursing n' crying on the last stretch, only to see bryan fighting the soaked ropes of the first pitch w/o much success - the signs were shit, so i surrendered to the inevitable yet again and settled for a few hours drink'n'n'smoke'n around the base, poking around to suss out future projects - bryan contrived to bring the party to a smashing conclusion by slipping and slicing a big fat bloody smile into the meat of his hand, a moment redolent w/ nostalgia for geoff n' i as we thought of nastia last year :)

 

in the end we said fuck it and resolved to return next weekend, with the pleasant reward of getting to walk back down the hill w/ fuck-all upon our backs :)

 

trip the sixth - bryan n' bill - a week after a sodden deluge we returned, 4 pitches fixed n'all the shit already up there - had a union social i was in charge of on friday afternoon so arrived at the rendezvous dangerously deranged - i soon fell into a deep n' stupendous stentorious snoring sleep but rallied somewhere along the way to get groceries - we rambled on through the growing dark and reached the rv park after a good bit of bullshitting, my soul made right and brightly glowing

 

whiskey and whoop-whooping ensued - demented dean our neighbor definitely added to the what-have-you - saturday morning arrived all too early and we roused ourselves from half-horrid hangovers and rallied on up the hill

 

jugged to the top of 4, the last 2 not so bad w/ the 1-jug, 1-gri technique - i lead the jaunt up p5, all the draws still hanging on it since july - pumped in some more bolts about the high-pt anchor as the boys made their way up - a bit of a clusterfuck really, but what big-wall is complete w/o one every 200 fucking feet or so? :)

 

dem white fellers, despite my urgent exhortations, didn't snap at the sincere offer to lead the new pitch 6, so off i set, rather tired n' sore already, truth-be-told - the good thing about being a bit gored was the bolt-spacing stays generous

 

we'd set a 3 p.m. turnaround time as we needed to put in a whole new rap line, and i exceeded that by a wee-bit - was eager to end ascending after hitting supper steepness combined w/ loose n' hollow rock

 

bill led the raps down, putting in surprisingly only 2 stations - the 2nd one being damn near exactly 60 meters, ending after a huge stretch of overhang ontop of a terrifying shattered tower

 

saturday night a staid one by last week's standards - salami n' jalapeno bread - whiskey once again n' big batches of burgundy n' black n' green tobacco - moby dick goddammit - cave man tv, but bill checked out before it got really interesting - early to bed

 

sunday broke gloomy, mist-fuck all-about, brain aching n' bitchy - we humped it back up the hill n' broke out into the big open of the talus field even as the wisps of cloud cleared the tower - it was to be 3 serious long strenuous jugs, ones i'd like just as well to forget - bryan clocked'em for what they were n' whittled away the hours instead getting whiskey-drunk down in the boulders, dodging the fragments i flung off the cliff n' building up a bonfire

 

took a long time to regain the high-pt but after all that work it was insane to think of turning around, so bill being disinterested once again i took on the leading end - the bit of bad rock reached around the angle then returned to berserker attitude - the line i wanted turned out to terrifying to contemplate - a 50 square feet panel all hollow and horrid, rooflets w/ cluster-munitions abounding - the solution was a dead-horizontal traverse to a sweet ledge, but stil a few feet below the summit of the lower-wall

 

bill to the top, a god-send for his shivering ass no doubt - it was the lord's day so we hadn't that much time to fuck-around, so he did a little recon, put in a bolt, then returned - we sorted out the shit best left behind n' bolted for the ground

 

back down i discovered some of the sad fragments of geoff's torque wrench which had precipitated itself down from 600 feet up after it foolishly believed it could fly - we sat round the fire for a bit n' bashed back down the hill, rounded up the camp shit, paid pete his blood-shekels n' then blasted back home through the growing gravid sky

10/24 - round 7

 

geoff n' i gallump on up the grand highway in the fading light of friday, galled by the recent demands of this gawdamn world - a big bonfire on the side of the forest road - it was to be a 1-day trip, so there was no sense in standing on ceremony - just a simple howl-at-the-moon affair which happened soon enough upon arrival and ambled on amiably until a hint after mid-night

 

dawn on saturday - destiny called so i shuffled off to have a shit and returned to the sight of my lawyer wretching into the bushes - The Great Spit - like a true hound-dog though he shook it off n' went back to binging on bad-berries

 

a quick walk up the hill, though the leaf-fucked forest floor makes it more sporting in places now - a deep gray diffracting through the grim sky as i gazed up to see how the fixed lines had fared over the past month - they seemed fine enough and so we set to it

 

a touch of rain followed to re-inforce the fuck-you nature of the big-wall, but that gave an excuse to sip beer n' listen to car-talk, a most unlikely touch of normality that couldn't help but conquer all fears - then it was the endless jugging n' hauling up extra rope n' whatnot

 

to the highpoint near noon, geoff grown gaunt n' red-faced but i was in rare-spirits, risen so far above bullshit i can't help but care about when it chokes me at every breathe

 

the plan was to move it on up to the big ledge, which in time i did make, ducking and dodging and working to find sections of rock good enough to take a bolt - a lot of case-cheese in this section - the rock under the hammer sounds like a hobo through a half-bottle

 

the great ledge was rather a little disappointing - cool environment for sure - the summit so close now you could talk w/ a person there should they appear and have no instinct of self-preservation to lean out over the edge - perhaps only 2 more full rope-lengths to go? the whole area like a vast tilted hanging ampitheatre, my voice and hammer strokes singing back at me from close in - no good place to set up a camp or even really sit though, despite its grand dimensions - maybe up higher?

 

so many possible directions to go from here - to re-establish a plum line rap-station to the top of p5 will require a separate mission to set up and will be off-course to the upper-wall - will likely want to establish a fixed line to it i suspect - left 14 bolts, a pair of chain anchors and my hammer to encourage my return

 

had originally hoped to pull all the fixed lines and clean the scene up for the winter but the long and fast-fading light cleared that thought away swiftly - i figure the face gets no sunlight and my static lines are damned relics already, so why let them quietly die on my garage floor? besides, there's always the off-chance of a november visit before the road closes, though with short days and the long jug, it's hard to get more than a couple hrs of exploration in before prudence demands descent

 

home w/ time for wine n' women n' fine discourse - i sink swiftly into the Big Blackness, waking near dawn to delicious soreness in every muscle associated w/ jugging or top-step tensioning

 

nearer...nearer...dice.

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Way to get it banged out in marginal weather!!! I missed it. The consolation was it was low 70s in Red Rocks and we only got rained on one day. (turned into a waterfall on Johnny Vegas after driving straight out after landing and grabbing a rental car)

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Trip: Tower Rock - FA - Rapunzel's Back in Rehab - C1

 

Date: 7/15/2015

 

Trip Report:

The Beast - don't be fooled, them thare are full-grown trees :)

DSC02611.JPG

Tower Rock, 2 hours from everywhere, appears oddly neglected - Brown Beckey's got the tiniest blurb of the single route up it done in 1982 (anyone know of a second ascent? i can't find anyone who's tried it) but no picture n' no topo - tim olson's oregon rock guide has some more detail than beckey, but still the vast monolith appears to have continued unloved

 

tower's just south of randle, an unladen swallow's flight from the cispus river - the face is gigantic,something like 1200 feet tall - the rock is basaltic, according to beckey, but like nothing i've seen - like over-baked brownies, it's composed of a hodge-podge of components - incredibly solid and compact, it's cross-hatched in all directions, crackless, and crumbles into bricks and blocks of all conceivable sizes - the tower looms over it's talus field, fiercely steep, it's upper-wall reminiscent of the right side of el cap, incredibly bulging and over-hanging

 

tower is composed of two giant faces seperated by a ledge/fault system that was the path taken by the first team to climb the face - currently, after 7 days of effort, our route climbs the lower wall - it'll be just as much work to finish the upper wall, if the rock quality holds

 

as it currently exists

DSC02616.JPG

yeah, there's a lot more to go, but as it stands, what's there is 600 feet tall and a great day-tripper's aid adventure already - i figure the worst that can come of telling folks about this now before it's complete is that some other sad fools can go do it for me :)

DSC02612.JPG

 

trip the first:

fuck, this happened so long off i wonder if my recollection's right at all - me n' bill n' ben in the late winter - a burr up their bespectacled asses about a mythical 10-pitch free route up a largely untouched tower - the plan to hike to the top then set a rap-line down the likely route - out of town on a friday night to the frightful fall of rain - ghetto camp before the gate in gales of damnable damp - the roar of frogs - the next morning the most sordid thang - endless hours uphill w/ drill n' bolts n' chains in the continuous cloud-fuck n' frenzied chilly breeze - near the summit gob-smacked to gain a blazed trail barely a mile from a seasonal road - the top a huge disappointment, it characterized by clouds and beaming rainbows and rock so rude they rarely accoladed the attribution - soon there after the weekend righteously concluded and me around for the sweet family on the sabbath

 

trip the second:

on the reconnaissance earlier, dejected at finding a kitty-litter summit, we'd paused after a tortuous overladen descent on the boulder field and pondered on future options - a man w/ an aid-climber's conscious could do a take on "infinite bliss" and find a bitching way up the crazy big blank face - it was sure to take a mort of mortal work, but bill n' geoff are true gentlemen all measured and solid for this kinda goofy shit - we banged up from p-town on a friday night and made camp up at the turn around on the forest road - stumble-fucking up the forest we arrived amazed and ready to ramble on - many mozzies n' deer flies this damned trip - pitch 1 went quickly between geoff and bill, the later bounding up free on low-angle stacked mossy talus to make an anchor atop tier 1 - me i got tier 2 - all bolts at first until i no longer feared the ledge, then lotza 2-hook moves in a row until reaching the top of the tier where i left a fixed hook to protect a low-angle romp to the second anchor - we retired to camp n' soggy fires n' fulsome screeching music - day 2 we jugged to the top of p2 and bill and geoff got up a ways before yielding to me, whereupon i drilled n' hooked to a high point we marked w/ red tat before descending and returning to our troubled and lonely little lives - i recollect getting a true n' glorious drunk on in the passenger seat n' slumbering back to vantucky :)

 

geoff putting up the first pitch on the scrubby, compact low-angle first tier

P6060034.JPG

the artist as a young asshole ascending the second steeper tier

P6060040.JPG

geoff workign on pitch 3, the first steps onto the very steep lower wall

P6060042.JPG

 

trip the third:

lovely ospreys n' robins round the lake - pete n' pam play camp hosts - camp weddings n' nightly fishing sheenaningans - muskrats n' pond-skimming swallows - bastard mozzies n' mean biting flies, mostly in obeisance for the first couple cold days, but growing in malevolence as the weather waxed towards wicked hot - the sweet ne face of Tower almost totally shade-soaked for the mid-morning riser - kids n' retirees n' rv's n' jumping trout n' tame dogs - the listless routines of an aimless life - awake w/ the sun - fresh shits n' dewy breakfasts - a short but grim uphill grind through steep forest w/ plentiful windfall, shirt soaked through by the time we hit the sunny talus field at the base but soon blessed w/ shade - warm juggy work to start and then to the serious business - fear frenzies despite being armed w/ all the wonderful war machines of modern man - a long time of terror n' toil - the day dispatched, we make a rapid descent, each time by a different winding way - beer n' stripping soaked clothes off at the mercifully close car - me auolde yosemite food bin rummaged through for a desperate dinner, usually of beer n' tobacco n' pringles n' whatever benevolent bill threw my way - an hour or so of bird-watching n' binge-reading on maggie thatcher's frigid teeming fucking bush - to sleep at the post-gloaming in a grand 6-man tent alone, racked out on a queen sized inflatable air mattress, wrapped in down and dozy drunkenness - the night passed moaning to sore muscles as i twist n' turn until the dawn drags me to my addled senses, then it all runs off the reel much as it reckoned the day before...

 

first several days of murmurings n' mumblings w/ just me n' bill (me a damn baby in comparison to my venerable and august elder - that baby weighing in at a mean 250 bare-nekkid pounds and a coward to boot of course) - bill a bastion of genteel sincerity that must sadly have bitch-left this world many generations ago - me strangely silent of song for days - my mind scrambled and saddened by the robust requirements of 6-weeks of family-left sorrows gone off in the valley - eventually songs to lift my times and shape my senses - "mining for gold" by the cowboy junkies running on an eternal loop in my mind - long after-shocks of "burn down the mission" caused by geoff for sure

 

after 3 days of toil we grow weary and call in the cavalry - the silverman boys gonna come down n' save us from our misery - we make a rest day out of walking the mountain side w/ them, then retiring to the big boulder to pound pbr's n' provide Adult Supervision - they lounge around camp afterwards, contemplating on crashing the redneck wedding well under-way - we smoke bales of weed n' cackle n' cough n' find high times are treasure enough in this wicked world - eventually all good things must get on the bus w/ gandhi though and they roll off into the night in the hms revenge, ready i hope to return for more

 

the last day done-off as surely as a band-aid - after a fearful arduous jug up the wild steep fixed lines ole bill baits the question ("good news or bad?" - which would you take?) - - dedication to a last day of determined work - 5 hours of bolting and hooking on endless steep traversing ground until i was gut-wrenched at what it was likely to take me to get get back to bill - epic amounts of gear left as i rapped into the void and quickly grew dependent on bill to reel me back in - the retreat then fully declared we rapped n' ruminated n' laid our plans like parchment paper, all of it ultimately putting us on sweet terra-firma w/ a fuck-load of gear to get off - surprised by bill's pronouncement of this day, i had no proper pack to cram all the crap into

 

eventually we ambled on down the way, me overloaded like a gypsy carnival-whore w/ rope-bags aplenty such that i swooned on multiple occasions as the straps cut into me wind-pipe and i passed yards off unyielding to gratuitous thoughts, my mind in a true and lovely gray place - the last night spent in part w/ militant california-paul, such as exemplar of that shakespearean clap-trap about sounding of fuck-all and negative fury, yet yielding nothing :)

 

our objective from the relative sanity of the rv park n' its teeming trout pond

DSC02631.JPG

white-boys jugging the first 2 tiers - at this angle the lower wall takes up most of the entire frame, but the upper wall's just as big n' steeper

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700 feet of ropes n' route-making machine

Tower7.jpg

just starting the second pitch

Tower5.jpg

bags of bolts n' drills n' bullshit - starting to install pitch 4

Tower6.jpg

geoff at the top of p4, kyle jugging up to the mid-pt anchor

DSC02617.JPG

 

closing thoughts: happy to share the discovery w/ the nw brethren - leave yer self-righteous bolting morals at home w/ yer bitches - the place went unloved for a reason :) - the only cracks evident are where awful rock-fall is just a geologic fart-in-a-stiff-wind away - if intending to push the route higher (what's there is plenty for a day-tripper), please let me or bill or geoff know so one of us can come along - perhaps a dozen separate lines could be pushed to the top in the same style, each likely to take weeks n' 1000$ to put in place :) - recon trip to the top found almost no real rock up there - at some point all lines must turn to awful kitty litter, but maybe it'll go anyhow?

 

topo as it currently stands - hope to see this fucker get taller in the fullness of insensible time :)

 

topo8.jpg

 

Gear Notes:

- up to 30+ draws if clipping all bolts

- 2 bathooks (talons can work, but they risk blowing out the drilled holes)

- ideally 2 70 meter ropes, but 2 60'S can work if careful

- cheater stick not bad idea, as many of the bolts were installed by a fear-fucked orangutan at his max reach

- lower off tat or quick-links/biners for follower at traversing parts

- helmets essential - much potential for rockfall of all sizes, especially if hauling or jugging - base area very dangerous in strong winds or if below climbers on first 2 approach pitches - upper pitches largely protected from natural rockfall (be careful up there :) )

 

Approach Notes:

Exit 68 off i5 - east on 12 to randle (about an hour) - right (south) turn at randle (follow signs for tower rock RV park) - quick left about a mile south of randle, then another turn right about 6 miles later - rt turn at tower rock RV park/cispus learning center signs - left onto logging road (75?76?) just a 100 yards before rt turn to tower rock forest service camp (or straight for another mile to the RV park) - forest road is closed at gate near main road during winter/early spring - about 1 1/2 mile up road (stay on main road at split a 1/2 mile up) there's a turn around (about .25 mile past a steep switchback) - from there you can continue in car but there's no turnaround - walk or drive 1/4 mile to road-end - at wierd stone-forest-altar begin hiking up steep forrested slope - about 45 minutes to base - occasional game and human trails, generally trending right and up - copious windfall in middle section of trail - steeper for last 1/3 of trail - idea is to skirt talus field on right and join base from tree at right edge of wall - 1st bolt is just 5 feet off ground near clump of trees about 50 feet above a huge lounge-like boulder that is a great/safe observation spot

 

descent:

currently rapping from top of p5 to top of p4 is extra-ordinarly hard - in the future ideally there'll be a rap line straight down through p5 - for now be prepared to leave a fixed line to get back to the top of p4 and for the first rapper to have to haul the second back over - descending from the top of p4 requires 2 70 meter ropes or a stop at the mid-pt anchor (no rings) - the rap overhangs but you just barely touch the wall at the mid-pt anchor - use terrain to help you rap in the right direction

 

9/5-6 - trip the fourth w/ geoff n' bryan - 3 days of school, the easy ones, dispatched and snap, whizz, bang it was friday afternoon and we were flying down the highway, heading north, clutching cans n' cackling at this wicked world we are so at home in - ominous omens, devil-eyed little girls glaring out of death-cold cars at us - road signs: "the time of the lord is here" - jesus, we'd best tread lightly

 

the tower rock rv park at dusk, the ride dispatched in minutes it seemed, fueled by high-octane what-have-you n' plebian pbr's - the park much as i left it, riddled w/ well-heeled red-necks n' pam n' pete n' a feller i'm pretty sure ain't named larry but will ever here-after be for me :)

 

got good n' whiskey-drunk w/ hood-river spirits sitting round the fire n' sorted n' packed n' planned for the day to come and soon enough it was upon us - up at 630 to grits n' coffee n' black tobacco

 

holy shit, plenty of weight to pull us down on the slow amble up-hill but within the hour we'd handled it and got to the glory - bryan, his first visit to the wall, had spoken in pure-drunken-honestness of the ease w/ which he'd dispatch it all, so for his sins we gave it to him - he gamboled up the first 2 pitches easy enough as geoff n' i smoked n' chuckled n' occasionally jugged

 

geoff did p3, a looooong way to go on bolts, much like leaning tower i suppose - i then did p4, so much fun now that i'm not fear-sweating it like on the first ascent, more than half-certain the huge roofs blocks would rain down on me once rattled by the roar of the drill

 

atop 4 the boys lost their motivation n' sense of adventure i reckon - it was late afternoon for sure, but i'm sure we could have completed p5 and put in our new rap line by dark, but it would have meant being late for a triumphant performance by the tower rockers band down at the rv park and of course cutting into precious drinking time, so with tears in my heart i consented to just fixing the first 4 pitches and coming back the next day

 

a surrealistic night for certain - dogs n' fishers n' baby gymnasts n' rv's of a thousand descriptions - not 1 but 2 bands, quite possibly the laziest ever, each managing to play perhaps a total of 30 minutes w/ at least 6 set-breaks thrown in to keep their buzzes on - a roaring fire n' light-flecked lake to seperate us from the heathen masses, which we nonetheless joined from time to time to see if any hotties under the age of 50 had arrived (they hadn't :( )

 

the hedonistic scene concluded with brutal finality when the heavens opened and the fuck-sky descended around eleven - a steady baptist downpour off and on from then till well after dawn

 

sunday morning a savage one, as they always are it seems - the dregs of the whiskey sitting sullenly upon my senses - the unceasing rain toasting all hopes for progress up the mist-wracked tower - in time the melancholia did end though, as all misery must, and we hoofed it back up to the wall to see if anything could be done - by then it was so late, the wall so streaming, the likelihood of yet another dousing so certain that it was w/ half a heart me n' bryan began jugging - i made it most of the way back up to the highpt, cursing n' crying on the last stretch, only to see bryan fighting the soaked ropes of the first pitch w/o much success - the signs were shit, so i surrendered to the inevitable yet again and settled for a few hours drink'n'n'smoke'n around the base, poking around to suss out future projects - bryan contrived to bring the party to a smashing conclusion by slipping and slicing a big fat bloody smile into the meat of his hand, a moment redolent w/ nostalgia for geoff n' i as we thought of nastia last year :)

 

in the end we said fuck it and resolved to return next weekend, with the pleasant reward of getting to walk back down the hill w/ fuck-all upon our backs :)

 

trip the sixth - bryan n' bill - a week after a sodden deluge we returned, 4 pitches fixed n'all the shit already up there - had a union social i was in charge of on friday afternoon so arrived at the rendezvous dangerously deranged - i soon fell into a deep n' stupendous stentorious snoring sleep but rallied somewhere along the way to get groceries - we rambled on through the growing dark and reached the rv park after a good bit of bullshitting, my soul made right and brightly glowing

 

whiskey and whoop-whooping ensued - demented dean our neighbor definitely added to the what-have-you - saturday morning arrived all too early and we roused ourselves from half-horrid hangovers and rallied on up the hill

 

jugged to the top of 4, the last 2 not so bad w/ the 1-jug, 1-gri technique - i lead the jaunt up p5, all the draws still hanging on it since july - pumped in some more bolts about the high-pt anchor as the boys made their way up - a bit of a clusterfuck really, but what big-wall is complete w/o one every 200 fucking feet or so? :)

 

dem white fellers, despite my urgent exhortations, didn't snap at the sincere offer to lead the new pitch 6, so off i set, rather tired n' sore already, truth-be-told - the good thing about being a bit gored was the bolt-spacing stays generous

 

we'd set a 3 p.m. turnaround time as we needed to put in a whole new rap line, and i exceeded that by a wee-bit - was eager to end ascending after hitting supper steepness combined w/ loose n' hollow rock

 

bill led the raps down, putting in surprisingly only 2 stations - the 2nd one being damn near exactly 60 meters, ending after a huge stretch of overhang ontop of a terrifying shattered tower

 

saturday night a staid one by last week's standards - salami n' jalapeno bread - whiskey once again n' big batches of burgundy n' black n' green tobacco - moby dick goddammit - cave man tv, but bill checked out before it got really interesting - early to bed

 

sunday broke gloomy, mist-fuck all-about, brain aching n' bitchy - we humped it back up the hill n' broke out into the big open of the talus field even as the wisps of cloud cleared the tower - it was to be 3 serious long strenuous jugs, ones i'd like just as well to forget - bryan clocked'em for what they were n' whittled away the hours instead getting whiskey-drunk down in the boulders, dodging the fragments i flung off the cliff n' building up a bonfire

 

took a long time to regain the high-pt but after all that work it was insane to think of turning around, so bill being disinterested once again i took on the leading end - the bit of bad rock reached around the angle then returned to berserker attitude - the line i wanted turned out to terrifying to contemplate - a 50 square feet panel all hollow and horrid, rooflets w/ cluster-munitions abounding - the solution was a dead-horizontal traverse to a sweet ledge, but stil a few feet below the summit of the lower-wall

 

bill to the top, a god-send for his shivering ass no doubt - it was the lord's day so we hadn't that much time to fuck-around, so he did a little recon, put in a bolt, then returned - we sorted out the shit best left behind n' bolted for the ground

 

back down i discovered some of the sad fragments of geoff's torque wrench which had precipitated itself down from 600 feet up after it foolishly believed it could fly - we sat round the fire for a bit n' bashed back down the hill, rounded up the camp shit, paid pete his blood-shekels n' then blasted back home through the growing gravid sky

 

10/24 - round 7

 

geoff n' i gallump on up the grand highway in the fading light of friday, galled by the recent demands of this gawdamn world - a big bonfire on the side of the forest road - it was to be a 1-day trip, so there was no sense in standing on ceremony - just a simple howl-at-the-moon affair which happened soon enough upon arrival and ambled on amiably until a hint after mid-night

 

dawn on saturday - destiny called so i shuffled off to have a shit and returned to the sight of my lawyer wretching into the bushes - The Great Spit - like a true hound-dog though he shook it off n' went back to binging on bad-berries

 

a quick walk up the hill, though the leaf-fucked forest floor makes it more sporting in places now - a deep gray diffracting through the grim sky as i gazed up to see how the fixed lines had fared over the past month - they seemed fine enough and so we set to it

 

a touch of rain followed to re-inforce the fuck-you nature of the big-wall, but that gave an excuse to sip beer n' listen to car-talk, a most unlikely touch of normality that couldn't help but conquer all fears - then it was the endless jugging n' hauling up extra rope n' whatnot

 

to the highpoint near noon, geoff grown gaunt n' red-faced but i was in rare-spirits, risen so far above bullshit i can't help but care about when it chokes me at every breathe

 

the plan was to move it on up to the big ledge, which in time i did make, ducking and dodging and working to find sections of rock good enough to take a bolt - a lot of case-cheese in this section - the rock under the hammer sounds like a hobo through a half-bottle

 

the great ledge was rather a little disappointing - cool environment for sure - the summit so close now you could talk w/ a person there should they appear and have no instinct of self-preservation to lean out over the edge - perhaps only 2 more full rope-lengths to go? the whole area like a vast tilted hanging ampitheatre, my voice and hammer strokes singing back at me from close in - no good place to set up a camp or even really sit though, despite its grand dimensions - maybe up higher?

 

so many possible directions to go from here - to re-establish a plum line rap-station to the top of p5 will require a separate mission to set up and will be off-course to the upper-wall - will likely want to establish a fixed line to it i suspect - left 14 bolts, a pair of chain anchors and my hammer to encourage my return

 

had originally hoped to pull all the fixed lines and clean the scene up for the winter but the long and fast-fading light cleared that thought away swiftly - i figure the face gets no sunlight and my static lines are damned relics already, so why let them quietly die on my garage floor? besides, there's always the off-chance of a november visit before the road closes, though with short days and the long jug, it's hard to get more than a couple hrs of exploration in before prudence demands descent

 

home w/ time for wine n' women n' fine discourse - i sink swiftly into the Big Blackness, waking near dawn to delicious soreness in every muscle associated w/ jugging or top-step tensioning

 

nearer...nearer...dice.

5/13/16 - round 8

 

spring - the earth reborn - time to return to see how them fixed ropes fared after months of tempests tortured them

 

big bill once again the big guy in charge - he fetched me from my humble abode on a thursday afternoon and we headed north

 

our plan was to try to drop in from the top and return to the highpoint

 

old men rise w/ the birdies and gawddamn it, though i was playing hooky from work, somehow i'm awake an hour earlier than normal? jesus, is this what lies in store for us all? :)

 

exciting times ensued as we sought to figure out how to finagle together passable roads to get close enough to hump a horrid bit of bullshit to the promised land- impromptu road-construction, tree clearing and many dead ends ensued and hours went by before we got it all sorted out, only to find the road near burley mountain, still miles away, choked w/ impassable snow

 

giving up on doing anything terribly productive, we settled for hiking the road to see if we could at least drive it after it melted out and locate the suspected trailhead - a couple hours of downhill slogging n' forest surfing returned us to the tower top, which looked every bit as uninviting for trying to rap down as it did the first time :noway:

 

not terribly excited at the prospect of trying to go over the edge, i settled for sucking down a couple beers and contemplating just hucking meself off the top like the forking free-basers - that done w/, we slowly crawled back up the long hill to the automovat, n' reversed our wending way back down to the cispus's quiet side, where we stared at the face w/ some high-powered optics

 

the sight of the ropes still in passable shape and the blue bolt-bearing bag glowing like a goddamn beacon high up the wall brought back the fight in me, and though the weather forecast didn't support a bottom-up attempt on the morrow, fukit, why not at least go up and climb as much of the route as we could and inspect the fixed lines from top-down?

 

grey and storm-threatening on saturday - we found the approach road blocked by a giant tree just a hundred yards or so from the start of the trail and slowly stumble-fucked our way up the hill, the path as short and savage and uncertain as ever

 

i'd never gotten to do p1 before and enjoyed it - bill did p2 and, despite regretting your friend and humble retard's spacing of the bolts, made it go quickly enough - he even threw in a completly cock-eyed and unnecessary dangerous run out at the top :)

 

sadly, his ever-suffering shoulder bearings blew out along the way, and big bill begged off continuing up - i figured i hadn't really brought enough beer anyway and the weather was clearly going to get ugly soon - we slid on back down, bill following on a hare-brained shoe-string of a tag-line

 

did some lounging on the party boulder, pondering on where the upper route should wander to - hiked up to look at the fixed lines up close - thought them in surprisingly good shape, but i'm still a bit skert at the prospect of tangling with them soon :)

 

gonna take a mort more work to make it go, and maybe the goddamn summit just won't be in the cards...

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... and maybe the goddamn summit just won't be in the cards...

 

Time to shop for a used Kompressor on Craigslist :fahq:

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LOL! That and steroid shots. Last time I went to the doctor she says (this is me paraphrasing) "2 words...2 words for the graduate...STEROID SHOTS". POP, right in the shoulder joints.

 

and I'm all like

[video:youtube]

 

Seriously, the hike up, just like last time we did it, revealed that the last 40 feet topout looks like it might be loose block death wish heaven. I think we can do it though....we'll see about that of course. The doctors might not have enough steroids for my weak ass shoulders:-)

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... and maybe the goddamn summit just won't be in the cards...

 

Time to shop for a used Kompressor on Craigslist :fahq:

naw, the work of putting in bolts ain't the issue, it's the rock quality - at the base it's like a 17 1/2 year old crack whore, at the top more like a 73 n' 3/4 year old one :)

 

the top seems to be safer to jump off of then to climb up onto :P

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... and maybe the goddamn summit just won't be in the cards...

 

Time to shop for a used Kompressor on Craigslist :fahq:

naw, the work of putting in bolts ain't the issue, it's the rock quality - at the base it's like a 17 1/2 year old crack whore, at the top more like a 73 n' 3/4 year old one :)

 

the top seems to be safer to jump off of then to climb up onto :P

 

Hot glue that shite! Then drill pockets and paint "6b Puta Sucia" at the bottom. Euro stylez

 

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Excellent idea! Any good sources for 55 gallon batches of the hot glue Rad? We will need @ 30 - 40 of the 55 gallon drums:-)

 

Jim Neiland...bad ass FA of the only route on the tower (excluding the 600' pending pissant version we are trying to get going of course), has been in touch. Says

"It was just a lot of loose rock that you had to dig through before you found usable holds. The diagonal ramp area high on the face had a lot of loose blocks laying about but was easy climbing and quickly passed. I think with some serious cleaning a number of good routes are possible."

 

Agree with that last part. Anyway, the pup and I went up to look see last Monday. He was concerned that we might have to race folks to the base so as to not get sniped off the route....HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. GOOD LORD.

 

We'd had that very thing happen at Smith hiking Misery Ridge to Monkey Face once. We actually sprinted up and over in a race. After I'd grabbed the lagging pups backpack of course and tossed it on top of mine. Now he's in better shape and carrying the bigger pack. Cha cha cha changes, Bowie sang. Indeed.

 

I'd tried to explain that we may be the 5th party up there...like, ever. But the term, 5th ever, seemed inconceivable to the pup. Natch, we were all alone save a couple of buzzards who may have been thinking that we were to be jugging the fixed ropes left up all winter. Nope. None would be so dumb....cough. Soon we were at the base having discourse and combat with the resident deer flies and I gave the pup the first pitch. He gets it done in an hour, pausing mid pitch a long time in disbelief that any shit head would leave his aiders and free off into the wild hummocks with no pro in sight. I tried to explain that had been the part of the 1st pitch I'd led, carrying a drill and a bunch of other crap he didn't have, but he was having none of that bullshit. After the usual parental browbeatdown the lad finally steps off and gets no more than 10 feet out of the bolt (as it looked from below e-with the usual foreshortening) and states yelling back, "ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME, THIS HUMMOCK IS STARTING TO SLIDE" No amount of "I already kicked off the real loose shit, just go for it there must be a bolt up there someplace within 20 more feet" seemed to assuage his fears. Finally he sacked up and sent. The mumbled exclamation "Ok, that wasn't so bad" was followed with the "ROPE FIXED" comment I was waiting for.

 

It took me a miserable 1:05 and significant cackling from the belayer to get me up the second pitch. I don't give a rip who laughs at me or calls me names next go round, next trip up I'm taking a stick clip and passing those hook moves. At several points I'm staring...staring...staring...looking for a hidden hook move...or hole. Nope. Not there. Not there. More staring...staring...staring feeling blindly around with my fingers, feeling feeling...repeat, then do some more. nope. Nope. NOPE! Grr##DCCSX! nope. Nope. NOPE! nope. Nope. NOPE THERE ARE NO HOLES OR HOOK MOVES HERE AT ALL! Did that a couple times and was all but stuck. Like 5 min stuck. But having fun too! I mean, this is real good shit. Real good. Great climbing, scary but safe still challenging and fun. I can see the bolt up 8 feet, but no way to get there. Pissing me off. Once I dug a hummock out and got a great hook placement on a rock. The entire block peeled off on the bounce test. Fer christs sake, that's my only son right below me 80 feet. F%%%^^&&K. And this pitch has been done at least several times before if not more, Ivan lead it FA and made giant spaces, and he let me lead it earlier this year when I was out with him.

 

If this keeps up it might be cleaned off some day. It's looking a lot better down low as the rap line hits the route, up high, not so much yet. This is P2.

 

Bill_high_up_on_P2_of_Tower_June_2016.jpg

 

Anyway, trying to get in shape again and got a small chunk back. I knew that because although I was burnt out and tired, I didn't have much shoulder pain. (!!!!!!!!) The hike out we met Bob and Kylie, the locals motorcycling on the FS road. Chainsawing the road a tad. Our offer to help (3 times) refused. Great folks.

 

Time to get back to putting up more route now as soon as the big guy is ready. The drill is charged...

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indeed, soon as i return from the winds, it will be time for chuckles n' upchucking from fear, fearless leader :)

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Crikyeys, the Winds? You're going to be in excellent shape. Crap. I'm still down, lets get it done. The job awaits....

 

 

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Trip: Tower Rock - FA - Rapunzel's Back in Rehab - C1

 

Date: 7/15/2015

 

Trip Report:

The Beast - don't be fooled, them thare are full-grown trees :)

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Tower Rock, 2 hours from everywhere, appears oddly neglected - Brown Beckey's got the tiniest blurb of the single route up it done in 1982 (anyone know of a second ascent? i can't find anyone who's tried it) but no picture n' no topo - tim olson's oregon rock guide has some more detail than beckey, but still the vast monolith appears to have continued unloved

 

tower's just south of randle, an unladen swallow's flight from the cispus river - the face is gigantic,something like 1200 feet tall - the rock is basaltic, according to beckey, but like nothing i've seen - like over-baked brownies, it's composed of a hodge-podge of components - incredibly solid and compact, it's cross-hatched in all directions, crackless, and crumbles into bricks and blocks of all conceivable sizes - the tower looms over it's talus field, fiercely steep, it's upper-wall reminiscent of the right side of el cap, incredibly bulging and over-hanging

 

tower is composed of two giant faces seperated by a ledge/fault system that was the path taken by the first team to climb the face - currently, after 7 days of effort, our route climbs the lower wall - it'll be just as much work to finish the upper wall, if the rock quality holds

 

as it currently exists

DSC02616.JPG

yeah, there's a lot more to go, but as it stands, what's there is 600 feet tall and a great day-tripper's aid adventure already - i figure the worst that can come of telling folks about this now before it's complete is that some other sad fools can go do it for me :)

DSC02612.JPG

 

trip the first:

fuck, this happened so long off i wonder if my recollection's right at all - me n' bill n' ben in the late winter - a burr up their bespectacled asses about a mythical 10-pitch free route up a largely untouched tower - the plan to hike to the top then set a rap-line down the likely route - out of town on a friday night to the frightful fall of rain - ghetto camp before the gate in gales of damnable damp - the roar of frogs - the next morning the most sordid thang - endless hours uphill w/ drill n' bolts n' chains in the continuous cloud-fuck n' frenzied chilly breeze - near the summit gob-smacked to gain a blazed trail barely a mile from a seasonal road - the top a huge disappointment, it characterized by clouds and beaming rainbows and rock so rude they rarely accoladed the attribution - soon there after the weekend righteously concluded and me around for the sweet family on the sabbath

 

trip the second:

on the reconnaissance earlier, dejected at finding a kitty-litter summit, we'd paused after a tortuous overladen descent on the boulder field and pondered on future options - a man w/ an aid-climber's conscious could do a take on "infinite bliss" and find a bitching way up the crazy big blank face - it was sure to take a mort of mortal work, but bill n' geoff are true gentlemen all measured and solid for this kinda goofy shit - we banged up from p-town on a friday night and made camp up at the turn around on the forest road - stumble-fucking up the forest we arrived amazed and ready to ramble on - many mozzies n' deer flies this damned trip - pitch 1 went quickly between geoff and bill, the later bounding up free on low-angle stacked mossy talus to make an anchor atop tier 1 - me i got tier 2 - all bolts at first until i no longer feared the ledge, then lotza 2-hook moves in a row until reaching the top of the tier where i left a fixed hook to protect a low-angle romp to the second anchor - we retired to camp n' soggy fires n' fulsome screeching music - day 2 we jugged to the top of p2 and bill and geoff got up a ways before yielding to me, whereupon i drilled n' hooked to a high point we marked w/ red tat before descending and returning to our troubled and lonely little lives - i recollect getting a true n' glorious drunk on in the passenger seat n' slumbering back to vantucky :)

 

geoff putting up the first pitch on the scrubby, compact low-angle first tier

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the artist as a young asshole ascending the second steeper tier

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geoff workign on pitch 3, the first steps onto the very steep lower wall

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trip the third:

lovely ospreys n' robins round the lake - pete n' pam play camp hosts - camp weddings n' nightly fishing sheenaningans - muskrats n' pond-skimming swallows - bastard mozzies n' mean biting flies, mostly in obeisance for the first couple cold days, but growing in malevolence as the weather waxed towards wicked hot - the sweet ne face of Tower almost totally shade-soaked for the mid-morning riser - kids n' retirees n' rv's n' jumping trout n' tame dogs - the listless routines of an aimless life - awake w/ the sun - fresh shits n' dewy breakfasts - a short but grim uphill grind through steep forest w/ plentiful windfall, shirt soaked through by the time we hit the sunny talus field at the base but soon blessed w/ shade - warm juggy work to start and then to the serious business - fear frenzies despite being armed w/ all the wonderful war machines of modern man - a long time of terror n' toil - the day dispatched, we make a rapid descent, each time by a different winding way - beer n' stripping soaked clothes off at the mercifully close car - me auolde yosemite food bin rummaged through for a desperate dinner, usually of beer n' tobacco n' pringles n' whatever benevolent bill threw my way - an hour or so of bird-watching n' binge-reading on maggie thatcher's frigid teeming fucking bush - to sleep at the post-gloaming in a grand 6-man tent alone, racked out on a queen sized inflatable air mattress, wrapped in down and dozy drunkenness - the night passed moaning to sore muscles as i twist n' turn until the dawn drags me to my addled senses, then it all runs off the reel much as it reckoned the day before...

 

first several days of murmurings n' mumblings w/ just me n' bill (me a damn baby in comparison to my venerable and august elder - that baby weighing in at a mean 250 bare-nekkid pounds and a coward to boot of course) - bill a bastion of genteel sincerity that must sadly have bitch-left this world many generations ago - me strangely silent of song for days - my mind scrambled and saddened by the robust requirements of 6-weeks of family-left sorrows gone off in the valley - eventually songs to lift my times and shape my senses - "mining for gold" by the cowboy junkies running on an eternal loop in my mind - long after-shocks of "burn down the mission" caused by geoff for sure

 

after 3 days of toil we grow weary and call in the cavalry - the silverman boys gonna come down n' save us from our misery - we make a rest day out of walking the mountain side w/ them, then retiring to the big boulder to pound pbr's n' provide Adult Supervision - they lounge around camp afterwards, contemplating on crashing the redneck wedding well under-way - we smoke bales of weed n' cackle n' cough n' find high times are treasure enough in this wicked world - eventually all good things must get on the bus w/ gandhi though and they roll off into the night in the hms revenge, ready i hope to return for more

 

the last day done-off as surely as a band-aid - after a fearful arduous jug up the wild steep fixed lines ole bill baits the question ("good news or bad?" - which would you take?) - - dedication to a last day of determined work - 5 hours of bolting and hooking on endless steep traversing ground until i was gut-wrenched at what it was likely to take me to get get back to bill - epic amounts of gear left as i rapped into the void and quickly grew dependent on bill to reel me back in - the retreat then fully declared we rapped n' ruminated n' laid our plans like parchment paper, all of it ultimately putting us on sweet terra-firma w/ a fuck-load of gear to get off - surprised by bill's pronouncement of this day, i had no proper pack to cram all the crap into

 

eventually we ambled on down the way, me overloaded like a gypsy carnival-whore w/ rope-bags aplenty such that i swooned on multiple occasions as the straps cut into me wind-pipe and i passed yards off unyielding to gratuitous thoughts, my mind in a true and lovely gray place - the last night spent in part w/ militant california-paul, such as exemplar of that shakespearean clap-trap about sounding of fuck-all and negative fury, yet yielding nothing :)

 

our objective from the relative sanity of the rv park n' its teeming trout pond

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white-boys jugging the first 2 tiers - at this angle the lower wall takes up most of the entire frame, but the upper wall's just as big n' steeper

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700 feet of ropes n' route-making machine

Tower7.jpg

just starting the second pitch

Tower5.jpg

bags of bolts n' drills n' bullshit - starting to install pitch 4

Tower6.jpg

geoff at the top of p4, kyle jugging up to the mid-pt anchor

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closing thoughts: happy to share the discovery w/ the nw brethren - leave yer self-righteous bolting morals at home w/ yer bitches - the place went unloved for a reason :) - the only cracks evident are where awful rock-fall is just a geologic fart-in-a-stiff-wind away - if intending to push the route higher (what's there is plenty for a day-tripper), please let me or bill or geoff know so one of us can come along - perhaps a dozen separate lines could be pushed to the top in the same style, each likely to take weeks n' 1000$ to put in place :) - recon trip to the top found almost no real rock up there - at some point all lines must turn to awful kitty litter, but maybe it'll go anyhow?

 

topo as it currently stands - hope to see this fucker get taller in the fullness of insensible time :)

 

topo8.jpg

 

Gear Notes:

- up to 30+ draws if clipping all bolts

- 2 bathooks (talons can work, but they risk blowing out the drilled holes)

- ideally 2 70 meter ropes, but 2 60'S can work if careful

- cheater stick not bad idea, as many of the bolts were installed by a fear-fucked orangutan at his max reach

- lower off tat or quick-links/biners for follower at traversing parts

- helmets essential - much potential for rockfall of all sizes, especially if hauling or jugging - base area very dangerous in strong winds or if below climbers on first 2 approach pitches - upper pitches largely protected from natural rockfall (be careful up there :) )

 

Approach Notes:

Exit 68 off i5 - east on 12 to randle (about an hour) - right (south) turn at randle (follow signs for tower rock RV park) - quick left about a mile south of randle, then another turn right about 6 miles later - rt turn at tower rock RV park/cispus learning center signs - left onto logging road (75?76?) just a 100 yards before rt turn to tower rock forest service camp (or straight for another mile to the RV park) - forest road is closed at gate near main road during winter/early spring - about 1 1/2 mile up road (stay on main road at split a 1/2 mile up) there's a turn around (about .25 mile past a steep switchback) - from there you can continue in car but there's no turnaround - walk or drive 1/4 mile to road-end - at wierd stone-forest-altar begin hiking up steep forrested slope - about 45 minutes to base - occasional game and human trails, generally trending right and up - copious windfall in middle section of trail - steeper for last 1/3 of trail - idea is to skirt talus field on right and join base from tree at right edge of wall - 1st bolt is just 5 feet off ground near clump of trees about 50 feet above a huge lounge-like boulder that is a great/safe observation spot

 

descent:

currently rapping from top of p5 to top of p4 is extra-ordinarly hard - in the future ideally there'll be a rap line straight down through p5 - for now be prepared to leave a fixed line to get back to the top of p4 and for the first rapper to have to haul the second back over - descending from the top of p4 requires 2 70 meter ropes or a stop at the mid-pt anchor (no rings) - the rap overhangs but you just barely touch the wall at the mid-pt anchor - use terrain to help you rap in the right direction

 

9/5-6 - trip the fourth w/ geoff n' bryan - 3 days of school, the easy ones, dispatched and snap, whizz, bang it was friday afternoon and we were flying down the highway, heading north, clutching cans n' cackling at this wicked world we are so at home in - ominous omens, devil-eyed little girls glaring out of death-cold cars at us - road signs: "the time of the lord is here" - jesus, we'd best tread lightly

 

the tower rock rv park at dusk, the ride dispatched in minutes it seemed, fueled by high-octane what-have-you n' plebian pbr's - the park much as i left it, riddled w/ well-heeled red-necks n' pam n' pete n' a feller i'm pretty sure ain't named larry but will ever here-after be for me :)

 

got good n' whiskey-drunk w/ hood-river spirits sitting round the fire n' sorted n' packed n' planned for the day to come and soon enough it was upon us - up at 630 to grits n' coffee n' black tobacco

 

holy shit, plenty of weight to pull us down on the slow amble up-hill but within the hour we'd handled it and got to the glory - bryan, his first visit to the wall, had spoken in pure-drunken-honestness of the ease w/ which he'd dispatch it all, so for his sins we gave it to him - he gamboled up the first 2 pitches easy enough as geoff n' i smoked n' chuckled n' occasionally jugged

 

geoff did p3, a looooong way to go on bolts, much like leaning tower i suppose - i then did p4, so much fun now that i'm not fear-sweating it like on the first ascent, more than half-certain the huge roofs blocks would rain down on me once rattled by the roar of the drill

 

atop 4 the boys lost their motivation n' sense of adventure i reckon - it was late afternoon for sure, but i'm sure we could have completed p5 and put in our new rap line by dark, but it would have meant being late for a triumphant performance by the tower rockers band down at the rv park and of course cutting into precious drinking time, so with tears in my heart i consented to just fixing the first 4 pitches and coming back the next day

 

a surrealistic night for certain - dogs n' fishers n' baby gymnasts n' rv's of a thousand descriptions - not 1 but 2 bands, quite possibly the laziest ever, each managing to play perhaps a total of 30 minutes w/ at least 6 set-breaks thrown in to keep their buzzes on - a roaring fire n' light-flecked lake to seperate us from the heathen masses, which we nonetheless joined from time to time to see if any hotties under the age of 50 had arrived (they hadn't :( )

 

the hedonistic scene concluded with brutal finality when the heavens opened and the fuck-sky descended around eleven - a steady baptist downpour off and on from then till well after dawn

 

sunday morning a savage one, as they always are it seems - the dregs of the whiskey sitting sullenly upon my senses - the unceasing rain toasting all hopes for progress up the mist-wracked tower - in time the melancholia did end though, as all misery must, and we hoofed it back up to the wall to see if anything could be done - by then it was so late, the wall so streaming, the likelihood of yet another dousing so certain that it was w/ half a heart me n' bryan began jugging - i made it most of the way back up to the highpt, cursing n' crying on the last stretch, only to see bryan fighting the soaked ropes of the first pitch w/o much success - the signs were shit, so i surrendered to the inevitable yet again and settled for a few hours drink'n'n'smoke'n around the base, poking around to suss out future projects - bryan contrived to bring the party to a smashing conclusion by slipping and slicing a big fat bloody smile into the meat of his hand, a moment redolent w/ nostalgia for geoff n' i as we thought of nastia last year :)

 

in the end we said fuck it and resolved to return next weekend, with the pleasant reward of getting to walk back down the hill w/ fuck-all upon our backs :)

 

trip the sixth - bryan n' bill - a week after a sodden deluge we returned, 4 pitches fixed n'all the shit already up there - had a union social i was in charge of on friday afternoon so arrived at the rendezvous dangerously deranged - i soon fell into a deep n' stupendous stentorious snoring sleep but rallied somewhere along the way to get groceries - we rambled on through the growing dark and reached the rv park after a good bit of bullshitting, my soul made right and brightly glowing

 

whiskey and whoop-whooping ensued - demented dean our neighbor definitely added to the what-have-you - saturday morning arrived all too early and we roused ourselves from half-horrid hangovers and rallied on up the hill

 

jugged to the top of 4, the last 2 not so bad w/ the 1-jug, 1-gri technique - i lead the jaunt up p5, all the draws still hanging on it since july - pumped in some more bolts about the high-pt anchor as the boys made their way up - a bit of a clusterfuck really, but what big-wall is complete w/o one every 200 fucking feet or so? :)

 

dem white fellers, despite my urgent exhortations, didn't snap at the sincere offer to lead the new pitch 6, so off i set, rather tired n' sore already, truth-be-told - the good thing about being a bit gored was the bolt-spacing stays generous

 

we'd set a 3 p.m. turnaround time as we needed to put in a whole new rap line, and i exceeded that by a wee-bit - was eager to end ascending after hitting supper steepness combined w/ loose n' hollow rock

 

bill led the raps down, putting in surprisingly only 2 stations - the 2nd one being damn near exactly 60 meters, ending after a huge stretch of overhang ontop of a terrifying shattered tower

 

saturday night a staid one by last week's standards - salami n' jalapeno bread - whiskey once again n' big batches of burgundy n' black n' green tobacco - moby dick goddammit - cave man tv, but bill checked out before it got really interesting - early to bed

 

sunday broke gloomy, mist-fuck all-about, brain aching n' bitchy - we humped it back up the hill n' broke out into the big open of the talus field even as the wisps of cloud cleared the tower - it was to be 3 serious long strenuous jugs, ones i'd like just as well to forget - bryan clocked'em for what they were n' whittled away the hours instead getting whiskey-drunk down in the boulders, dodging the fragments i flung off the cliff n' building up a bonfire

 

took a long time to regain the high-pt but after all that work it was insane to think of turning around, so bill being disinterested once again i took on the leading end - the bit of bad rock reached around the angle then returned to berserker attitude - the line i wanted turned out to terrifying to contemplate - a 50 square feet panel all hollow and horrid, rooflets w/ cluster-munitions abounding - the solution was a dead-horizontal traverse to a sweet ledge, but stil a few feet below the summit of the lower-wall

 

bill to the top, a god-send for his shivering ass no doubt - it was the lord's day so we hadn't that much time to fuck-around, so he did a little recon, put in a bolt, then returned - we sorted out the shit best left behind n' bolted for the ground

 

back down i discovered some of the sad fragments of geoff's torque wrench which had precipitated itself down from 600 feet up after it foolishly believed it could fly - we sat round the fire for a bit n' bashed back down the hill, rounded up the camp shit, paid pete his blood-shekels n' then blasted back home through the growing gravid sky

 

10/24 - round 7

 

geoff n' i gallump on up the grand highway in the fading light of friday, galled by the recent demands of this gawdamn world - a big bonfire on the side of the forest road - it was to be a 1-day trip, so there was no sense in standing on ceremony - just a simple howl-at-the-moon affair which happened soon enough upon arrival and ambled on amiably until a hint after mid-night

 

dawn on saturday - destiny called so i shuffled off to have a shit and returned to the sight of my lawyer wretching into the bushes - The Great Spit - like a true hound-dog though he shook it off n' went back to binging on bad-berries

 

a quick walk up the hill, though the leaf-fucked forest floor makes it more sporting in places now - a deep gray diffracting through the grim sky as i gazed up to see how the fixed lines had fared over the past month - they seemed fine enough and so we set to it

 

a touch of rain followed to re-inforce the fuck-you nature of the big-wall, but that gave an excuse to sip beer n' listen to car-talk, a most unlikely touch of normality that couldn't help but conquer all fears - then it was the endless jugging n' hauling up extra rope n' whatnot

 

to the highpoint near noon, geoff grown gaunt n' red-faced but i was in rare-spirits, risen so far above bullshit i can't help but care about when it chokes me at every breathe

 

the plan was to move it on up to the big ledge, which in time i did make, ducking and dodging and working to find sections of rock good enough to take a bolt - a lot of case-cheese in this section - the rock under the hammer sounds like a hobo through a half-bottle

 

the great ledge was rather a little disappointing - cool environment for sure - the summit so close now you could talk w/ a person there should they appear and have no instinct of self-preservation to lean out over the edge - perhaps only 2 more full rope-lengths to go? the whole area like a vast tilted hanging ampitheatre, my voice and hammer strokes singing back at me from close in - no good place to set up a camp or even really sit though, despite its grand dimensions - maybe up higher?

 

so many possible directions to go from here - to re-establish a plum line rap-station to the top of p5 will require a separate mission to set up and will be off-course to the upper-wall - will likely want to establish a fixed line to it i suspect - left 14 bolts, a pair of chain anchors and my hammer to encourage my return

 

had originally hoped to pull all the fixed lines and clean the scene up for the winter but the long and fast-fading light cleared that thought away swiftly - i figure the face gets no sunlight and my static lines are damned relics already, so why let them quietly die on my garage floor? besides, there's always the off-chance of a november visit before the road closes, though with short days and the long jug, it's hard to get more than a couple hrs of exploration in before prudence demands descent

 

home w/ time for wine n' women n' fine discourse - i sink swiftly into the Big Blackness, waking near dawn to delicious soreness in every muscle associated w/ jugging or top-step tensioning

 

nearer...nearer...dice.

 

5/13/16 - round 8

 

spring - the earth reborn - time to return to see how them fixed ropes fared after months of tempests tortured them

 

big bill once again the big guy in charge - he fetched me from my humble abode on a thursday afternoon and we headed north

 

our plan was to try to drop in from the top and return to the highpoint

 

old men rise w/ the birdies and gawddamn it, though i was playing hooky from work, somehow i'm awake an hour earlier than normal? jesus, is this what lies in store for us all? :)

 

exciting times ensued as we sought to figure out how to finagle together passable roads to get close enough to hump a horrid bit of bullshit to the promised land- impromptu road-construction, tree clearing and many dead ends ensued and hours went by before we got it all sorted out, only to find the road near burley mountain, still miles away, choked w/ impassable snow

 

giving up on doing anything terribly productive, we settled for hiking the road to see if we could at least drive it after it melted out and locate the suspected trailhead - a couple hours of downhill slogging n' forest surfing returned us to the tower top, which looked every bit as uninviting for trying to rap down as it did the first time :noway:

 

not terribly excited at the prospect of trying to go over the edge, i settled for sucking down a couple beers and contemplating just hucking meself off the top like the forking free-basers - that done w/, we slowly crawled back up the long hill to the automovat, n' reversed our wending way back down to the cispus's quiet side, where we stared at the face w/ some high-powered optics

 

the sight of the ropes still in passable shape and the blue bolt-bearing bag glowing like a goddamn beacon high up the wall brought back the fight in me, and though the weather forecast didn't support a bottom-up attempt on the morrow, fukit, why not at least go up and climb as much of the route as we could and inspect the fixed lines from top-down?

 

grey and storm-threatening on saturday - we found the approach road blocked by a giant tree just a hundred yards or so from the start of the trail and slowly stumble-fucked our way up the hill, the path as short and savage and uncertain as ever

 

i'd never gotten to do p1 before and enjoyed it - bill did p2 and, despite regretting your friend and humble retard's spacing of the bolts, made it go quickly enough - he even threw in a completly cock-eyed and unnecessary dangerous run out at the top :)

 

sadly, his ever-suffering shoulder bearings blew out along the way, and big bill begged off continuing up - i figured i hadn't really brought enough beer anyway and the weather was clearly going to get ugly soon - we slid on back down, bill following on a hare-brained shoe-string of a tag-line

 

did some lounging on the party boulder, pondering on where the upper route should wander to - hiked up to look at the fixed lines up close - thought them in surprisingly good shape, but i'm still a bit skert at the prospect of tangling with them soon :)

 

gonna take a mort more work to make it go, and maybe the goddamn summit just won't be in the cards...

8/22-24 - trip #9

 

mid-summer doldrums done set in - big trips south n' east n' even north all spent n' its me on the couch doubting my own existence at 2 in the fucking morning

 

but the tower project is something to keep the head out of the oven for, so on a thursday evening bill fetched me in his big blue new ride i'm calling lucille until he latches upon a better moniker for the the motherfucker

 

we rattled off the miles north and reached the forest road after dark - reckoning on decent weather friday we bedded down under the open sky only to be rudely awoken after midnight by the beginnings of a mighty rain that kept on coming the whole day to come - fortunately lucille is commodious enough and we went on to spend most of the next 24 hrs in there alternatively napping n' reading n' listening to howard stern on the satellite

 

saturday dawned gray, nonetheless we did the super-shuffle-stumble down the trail - this was the first time we could drive to the burley mtn trailhead and it proved easy enough in a high-clearance ride - better yet, we found a doable shortcut, which gets you from the hardtop to the trailhead in a little over 5 miles, providing you don't get yerself kilt by driving off the absurdly steep hillside or kamikaze it into the crater-sized ravines running through the middle of the track

 

its so damned murderous to try to jug n' haul up 600 feet of overhanging fixed lines that we figured from here on out we should just drop in from the top and finish the fucker off that way - my first great fear was we wouldn't find anything anchor worth on the summit to get started, but after a number of hijinx that got sorted out and a day later we'd put in the final pitch (which i hope will be #13 as all rehab programs need one) :)

 

amazing views on the wall near the summit - holy shit, this thing is gonna go! 1000 feet of accessible, insane big walling n' all you need is a buncha draws and a couple hooks :rawk:

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Thanks again Ivan! Its gonna go Boyz! Sooner or later. It's damned near all I can think about and I'm heading to Toulemne Meadows in a day or 2.

 

TOW...ER

 

TOW...ER!!

 

TOW...ER !!!

 

TOW...ER!! !!!

 

THIS IS GOING TO BE SUCH A KICK ASS ROUTE WHEN WE GET IT DONE!!!!!!!!!!

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Ivan doesn't even have a smart phone. The first naked ascent awaits for you Oly. UP PERISCOPE!

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Trip: Tower Rock - FA - Rapunzel's Back in Rehab - C1

 

Date: 7/15/2015

 

Trip Report: The Beast - don't be fooled, them thare are full-grown trees :)DSC02611.JPG Tower Rock, 2 hours from everywhere, appears oddly neglected - Brown Beckey's got the tiniest blurb of the single route up it done in 1982 (anyone know of a second ascent? i can't find anyone who's tried it) but no picture n' no topo - tim olson's oregon rock guide has some more detail than beckey, but still the vast monolith appears to have continued unloved

 

tower's just south of randle, an unladen swallow's flight from the cispus river - the face is gigantic,something like 1200 feet tall - the rock is basaltic, according to beckey, but like nothing i've seen - like over-baked brownies, it's composed of a hodge-podge of components - incredibly solid and compact, it's cross-hatched in all directions, crackless, and crumbles into bricks and blocks of all conceivable sizes - the tower looms over it's talus field, fiercely steep, it's upper-wall reminiscent of the right side of el cap, incredibly bulging and over-hanging

 

tower is composed of two giant faces seperated by a ledge/fault system that was the path taken by the first team to climb the face - currently, after 7 days of effort, our route climbs the lower wall - it'll be just as much work to finish the upper wall, if the rock quality holds

 

as it currently exists DSC02616.JPG yeah, there's a lot more to go, but as it stands, what's there is 600 feet tall and a great day-tripper's aid adventure already - i figure the worst that can come of telling folks about this now before it's complete is that some other sad fools can go do it for me :)DSC02612.JPG

 

trip the first: fuck, this happened so long off i wonder if my recollection's right at all - me n' bill n' ben in the late winter - a burr up their bespectacled asses about a mythical 10-pitch free route up a largely untouched tower - the plan to hike to the top then set a rap-line down the likely route - out of town on a friday night to the frightful fall of rain - ghetto camp before the gate in gales of damnable damp - the roar of frogs - the next morning the most sordid thang - endless hours uphill w/ drill n' bolts n' chains in the continuous cloud-fuck n' frenzied chilly breeze - near the summit gob-smacked to gain a blazed trail barely a mile from a seasonal road - the top a huge disappointment, it characterized by clouds and beaming rainbows and rock so rude they rarely accoladed the attribution - soon there after the weekend righteously concluded and me around for the sweet family on the sabbath

 

trip the second: on the reconnaissance earlier, dejected at finding a kitty-litter summit, we'd paused after a tortuous overladen descent on the boulder field and pondered on future options - a man w/ an aid-climber's conscious could do a take on "infinite bliss" and find a bitching way up the crazy big blank face - it was sure to take a mort of mortal work, but bill n' geoff are true gentlemen all measured and solid for this kinda goofy shit - we banged up from p-town on a friday night and made camp up at the turn around on the forest road - stumble-fucking up the forest we arrived amazed and ready to ramble on - many mozzies n' deer flies this damned trip - pitch 1 went quickly between geoff and bill, the later bounding up free on low-angle stacked mossy talus to make an anchor atop tier 1 - me i got tier 2 - all bolts at first until i no longer feared the ledge, then lotza 2-hook moves in a row until reaching the top of the tier where i left a fixed hook to protect a low-angle romp to the second anchor - we retired to camp n' soggy fires n' fulsome screeching music - day 2 we jugged to the top of p2 and bill and geoff got up a ways before yielding to me, whereupon i drilled n' hooked to a high point we marked w/ red tat before descending and returning to our troubled and lonely little lives - i recollect getting a true n' glorious drunk on in the passenger seat n' slumbering back to vantucky :)

 

geoff putting up the first pitch on the scrubby, compact low-angle first tier P6060034.JPG the artist as a young asshole ascending the second steeper tier P6060040.JPG geoff workign on pitch 3, the first steps onto the very steep lower wall P6060042.JPG

 

trip the third: lovely ospreys n' robins round the lake - pete n' pam play camp hosts - camp weddings n' nightly fishing sheenaningans - muskrats n' pond-skimming swallows - bastard mozzies n' mean biting flies, mostly in obeisance for the first couple cold days, but growing in malevolence as the weather waxed towards wicked hot - the sweet ne face of Tower almost totally shade-soaked for the mid-morning riser - kids n' retirees n' rv's n' jumping trout n' tame dogs - the listless routines of an aimless life - awake w/ the sun - fresh shits n' dewy breakfasts - a short but grim uphill grind through steep forest w/ plentiful windfall, shirt soaked through by the time we hit the sunny talus field at the base but soon blessed w/ shade - warm juggy work to start and then to the serious business - fear frenzies despite being armed w/ all the wonderful war machines of modern man - a long time of terror n' toil - the day dispatched, we make a rapid descent, each time by a different winding way - beer n' stripping soaked clothes off at the mercifully close car - me auolde yosemite food bin rummaged through for a desperate dinner, usually of beer n' tobacco n' pringles n' whatever benevolent bill threw my way - an hour or so of bird-watching n' binge-reading on maggie thatcher's frigid teeming fucking bush - to sleep at the post-gloaming in a grand 6-man tent alone, racked out on a queen sized inflatable air mattress, wrapped in down and dozy drunkenness - the night passed moaning to sore muscles as i twist n' turn until the dawn drags me to my addled senses, then it all runs off the reel much as it reckoned the day before...

 

first several days of murmurings n' mumblings w/ just me n' bill (me a damn baby in comparison to my venerable and august elder - that baby weighing in at a mean 250 bare-nekkid pounds and a coward to boot of course) - bill a bastion of genteel sincerity that must sadly have bitch-left this world many generations ago - me strangely silent of song for days - my mind scrambled and saddened by the robust requirements of 6-weeks of family-left sorrows gone off in the valley - eventually songs to lift my times and shape my senses - "mining for gold" by the cowboy junkies running on an eternal loop in my mind - long after-shocks of "burn down the mission" caused by geoff for sure

 

after 3 days of toil we grow weary and call in the cavalry - the silverman boys gonna come down n' save us from our misery - we make a rest day out of walking the mountain side w/ them, then retiring to the big boulder to pound pbr's n' provide Adult Supervision - they lounge around camp afterwards, contemplating on crashing the redneck wedding well under-way - we smoke bales of weed n' cackle n' cough n' find high times are treasure enough in this wicked world - eventually all good things must get on the bus w/ gandhi though and they roll off into the night in the hms revenge, ready i hope to return for more

 

the last day done-off as surely as a band-aid - after a fearful arduous jug up the wild steep fixed lines ole bill baits the question ("good news or bad?" - which would you take?) - - dedication to a last day of determined work - 5 hours of bolting and hooking on endless steep traversing ground until i was gut-wrenched at what it was likely to take me to get get back to bill - epic amounts of gear left as i rapped into the void and quickly grew dependent on bill to reel me back in - the retreat then fully declared we rapped n' ruminated n' laid our plans like parchment paper, all of it ultimately putting us on sweet terra-firma w/ a fuck-load of gear to get off - surprised by bill's pronouncement of this day, i had no proper pack to cram all the crap into

 

eventually we ambled on down the way, me overloaded like a gypsy carnival-whore w/ rope-bags aplenty such that i swooned on multiple occasions as the straps cut into me wind-pipe and i passed yards off unyielding to gratuitous thoughts, my mind in a true and lovely gray place - the last night spent in part w/ militant california-paul, such as exemplar of that shakespearean clap-trap about sounding of fuck-all and negative fury, yet yielding nothing :)

 

our objective from the relative sanity of the rv park n' its teeming trout pond DSC02631.JPG white-boys jugging the first 2 tiers - at this angle the lower wall takes up most of the entire frame, but the upper wall's just as big n' steeper P6070047.JPG 700 feet of ropes n' route-making machine Tower7.jpg just starting the second pitch Tower5.jpg bags of bolts n' drills n' bullshit - starting to install pitch 4 Tower6.jpg geoff at the top of p4, kyle jugging up to the mid-pt anchor DSC02617.JPG

 

closing thoughts: happy to share the discovery w/ the nw brethren - leave yer self-righteous bolting morals at home w/ yer bitches - the place went unloved for a reason :) - the only cracks evident are where awful rock-fall is just a geologic fart-in-a-stiff-wind away - if intending to push the route higher (what's there is plenty for a day-tripper), please let me or bill or geoff know so one of us can come along - perhaps a dozen separate lines could be pushed to the top in the same style, each likely to take weeks n' 1000$ to put in place :) - recon trip to the top found almost no real rock up there - at some point all lines must turn to awful kitty litter, but maybe it'll go anyhow?

 

topo as it currently stands - hope to see this fucker get taller in the fullness of insensible time :)

 

topo8.jpg

 

Gear Notes: - up to 30+ draws if clipping all bolts - 2 bathooks (talons can work, but they risk blowing out the drilled holes) - ideally 2 70 meter ropes, but 2 60'S can work if careful - cheater stick not bad idea, as many of the bolts were installed by a fear-fucked orangutan at his max reach - lower off tat or quick-links/biners for follower at traversing parts - helmets essential - much potential for rockfall of all sizes, especially if hauling or jugging - base area very dangerous in strong winds or if below climbers on first 2 approach pitches - upper pitches largely protected from natural rockfall (be careful up there :) )

 

Approach Notes: Exit 68 off i5 - east on 12 to randle (about an hour) - right (south) turn at randle (follow signs for tower rock RV park) - quick left about a mile south of randle, then another turn right about 6 miles later - rt turn at tower rock RV park/cispus learning center signs - left onto logging road (75?76?) just a 100 yards before rt turn to tower rock forest service camp (or straight for another mile to the RV park) - forest road is closed at gate near main road during winter/early spring - about 1 1/2 mile up road (stay on main road at split a 1/2 mile up) there's a turn around (about .25 mile past a steep switchback) - from there you can continue in car but there's no turnaround - walk or drive 1/4 mile to road-end - at wierd stone-forest-altar begin hiking up steep forrested slope - about 45 minutes to base - occasional game and human trails, generally trending right and up - copious windfall in middle section of trail - steeper for last 1/3 of trail - idea is to skirt talus field on right and join base from tree at right edge of wall - 1st bolt is just 5 feet off ground near clump of trees about 50 feet above a huge lounge-like boulder that is a great/safe observation spot

 

descent: currently rapping from top of p5 to top of p4 is extra-ordinarly hard - in the future ideally there'll be a rap line straight down through p5 - for now be prepared to leave a fixed line to get back to the top of p4 and for the first rapper to have to haul the second back over - descending from the top of p4 requires 2 70 meter ropes or a stop at the mid-pt anchor (no rings) - the rap overhangs but you just barely touch the wall at the mid-pt anchor - use terrain to help you rap in the right direction

 

9/5-6 - trip the fourth w/ geoff n' bryan - 3 days of school, the easy ones, dispatched and snap, whizz, bang it was friday afternoon and we were flying down the highway, heading north, clutching cans n' cackling at this wicked world we are so at home in - ominous omens, devil-eyed little girls glaring out of death-cold cars at us - road signs: "the time of the lord is here" - jesus, we'd best tread lightly

 

the tower rock rv park at dusk, the ride dispatched in minutes it seemed, fueled by high-octane what-have-you n' plebian pbr's - the park much as i left it, riddled w/ well-heeled red-necks n' pam n' pete n' a feller i'm pretty sure ain't named larry but will ever here-after be for me :)

 

got good n' whiskey-drunk w/ hood-river spirits sitting round the fire n' sorted n' packed n' planned for the day to come and soon enough it was upon us - up at 630 to grits n' coffee n' black tobacco

 

holy shit, plenty of weight to pull us down on the slow amble up-hill but within the hour we'd handled it and got to the glory - bryan, his first visit to the wall, had spoken in pure-drunken-honestness of the ease w/ which he'd dispatch it all, so for his sins we gave it to him - he gamboled up the first 2 pitches easy enough as geoff n' i smoked n' chuckled n' occasionally jugged

 

geoff did p3, a looooong way to go on bolts, much like leaning tower i suppose - i then did p4, so much fun now that i'm not fear-sweating it like on the first ascent, more than half-certain the huge roofs blocks would rain down on me once rattled by the roar of the drill

 

atop 4 the boys lost their motivation n' sense of adventure i reckon - it was late afternoon for sure, but i'm sure we could have completed p5 and put in our new rap line by dark, but it would have meant being late for a triumphant performance by the tower rockers band down at the rv park and of course cutting into precious drinking time, so with tears in my heart i consented to just fixing the first 4 pitches and coming back the next day

 

a surrealistic night for certain - dogs n' fishers n' baby gymnasts n' rv's of a thousand descriptions - not 1 but 2 bands, quite possibly the laziest ever, each managing to play perhaps a total of 30 minutes w/ at least 6 set-breaks thrown in to keep their buzzes on - a roaring fire n' light-flecked lake to seperate us from the heathen masses, which we nonetheless joined from time to time to see if any hotties under the age of 50 had arrived (they hadn't :( )

 

the hedonistic scene concluded with brutal finality when the heavens opened and the fuck-sky descended around eleven - a steady baptist downpour off and on from then till well after dawn

 

sunday morning a savage one, as they always are it seems - the dregs of the whiskey sitting sullenly upon my senses - the unceasing rain toasting all hopes for progress up the mist-wracked tower - in time the melancholia did end though, as all misery must, and we hoofed it back up to the wall to see if anything could be done - by then it was so late, the wall so streaming, the likelihood of yet another dousing so certain that it was w/ half a heart me n' bryan began jugging - i made it most of the way back up to the highpt, cursing n' crying on the last stretch, only to see bryan fighting the soaked ropes of the first pitch w/o much success - the signs were shit, so i surrendered to the inevitable yet again and settled for a few hours drink'n'n'smoke'n around the base, poking around to suss out future projects - bryan contrived to bring the party to a smashing conclusion by slipping and slicing a big fat bloody smile into the meat of his hand, a moment redolent w/ nostalgia for geoff n' i as we thought of nastia last year :)

 

in the end we said fuck it and resolved to return next weekend, with the pleasant reward of getting to walk back down the hill w/ fuck-all upon our backs :)

 

trip the sixth - bryan n' bill - a week after a sodden deluge we returned, 4 pitches fixed n'all the shit already up there - had a union social i was in charge of on friday afternoon so arrived at the rendezvous dangerously deranged - i soon fell into a deep n' stupendous stentorious snoring sleep but rallied somewhere along the way to get groceries - we rambled on through the growing dark and reached the rv park after a good bit of bullshitting, my soul made right and brightly glowing

 

whiskey and whoop-whooping ensued - demented dean our neighbor definitely added to the what-have-you - saturday morning arrived all too early and we roused ourselves from half-horrid hangovers and rallied on up the hill

 

jugged to the top of 4, the last 2 not so bad w/ the 1-jug, 1-gri technique - i lead the jaunt up p5, all the draws still hanging on it since july - pumped in some more bolts about the high-pt anchor as the boys made their way up - a bit of a clusterfuck really, but what big-wall is complete w/o one every 200 fucking feet or so? :)

 

dem white fellers, despite my urgent exhortations, didn't snap at the sincere offer to lead the new pitch 6, so off i set, rather tired n' sore already, truth-be-told - the good thing about being a bit gored was the bolt-spacing stays generous

 

we'd set a 3 p.m. turnaround time as we needed to put in a whole new rap line, and i exceeded that by a wee-bit - was eager to end ascending after hitting supper steepness combined w/ loose n' hollow rock

 

bill led the raps down, putting in surprisingly only 2 stations - the 2nd one being damn near exactly 60 meters, ending after a huge stretch of overhang ontop of a terrifying shattered tower

 

saturday night a staid one by last week's standards - salami n' jalapeno bread - whiskey once again n' big batches of burgundy n' black n' green tobacco - moby dick goddammit - cave man tv, but bill checked out before it got really interesting - early to bed

 

sunday broke gloomy, mist-fuck all-about, brain aching n' bitchy - we humped it back up the hill n' broke out into the big open of the talus field even as the wisps of cloud cleared the tower - it was to be 3 serious long strenuous jugs, ones i'd like just as well to forget - bryan clocked'em for what they were n' whittled away the hours instead getting whiskey-drunk down in the boulders, dodging the fragments i flung off the cliff n' building up a bonfire

 

took a long time to regain the high-pt but after all that work it was insane to think of turning around, so bill being disinterested once again i took on the leading end - the bit of bad rock reached around the angle then returned to berserker attitude - the line i wanted turned out to terrifying to contemplate - a 50 square feet panel all hollow and horrid, rooflets w/ cluster-munitions abounding - the solution was a dead-horizontal traverse to a sweet ledge, but stil a few feet below the summit of the lower-wall

 

bill to the top, a god-send for his shivering ass no doubt - it was the lord's day so we hadn't that much time to fuck-around, so he did a little recon, put in a bolt, then returned - we sorted out the shit best left behind n' bolted for the ground

 

back down i discovered some of the sad fragments of geoff's torque wrench which had precipitated itself down from 600 feet up after it foolishly believed it could fly - we sat round the fire for a bit n' bashed back down the hill, rounded up the camp shit, paid pete his blood-shekels n' then blasted back home through the growing gravid sky

 

10/24 - round 7

 

geoff n' i gallump on up the grand highway in the fading light of friday, galled by the recent demands of this gawdamn world - a big bonfire on the side of the forest road - it was to be a 1-day trip, so there was no sense in standing on ceremony - just a simple howl-at-the-moon affair which happened soon enough upon arrival and ambled on amiably until a hint after mid-night

 

dawn on saturday - destiny called so i shuffled off to have a shit and returned to the sight of my lawyer wretching into the bushes - The Great Spit - like a true hound-dog though he shook it off n' went back to binging on bad-berries

 

a quick walk up the hill, though the leaf-fucked forest floor makes it more sporting in places now - a deep gray diffracting through the grim sky as i gazed up to see how the fixed lines had fared over the past month - they seemed fine enough and so we set to it

 

a touch of rain followed to re-inforce the fuck-you nature of the big-wall, but that gave an excuse to sip beer n' listen to car-talk, a most unlikely touch of normality that couldn't help but conquer all fears - then it was the endless jugging n' hauling up extra rope n' whatnot

 

to the highpoint near noon, geoff grown gaunt n' red-faced but i was in rare-spirits, risen so far above bullshit i can't help but care about when it chokes me at every breathe

 

the plan was to move it on up to the big ledge, which in time i did make, ducking and dodging and working to find sections of rock good enough to take a bolt - a lot of case-cheese in this section - the rock under the hammer sounds like a hobo through a half-bottle

 

the great ledge was rather a little disappointing - cool environment for sure - the summit so close now you could talk w/ a person there should they appear and have no instinct of self-preservation to lean out over the edge - perhaps only 2 more full rope-lengths to go? the whole area like a vast tilted hanging ampitheatre, my voice and hammer strokes singing back at me from close in - no good place to set up a camp or even really sit though, despite its grand dimensions - maybe up higher?

 

so many possible directions to go from here - to re-establish a plum line rap-station to the top of p5 will require a separate mission to set up and will be off-course to the upper-wall - will likely want to establish a fixed line to it i suspect - left 14 bolts, a pair of chain anchors and my hammer to encourage my return

 

had originally hoped to pull all the fixed lines and clean the scene up for the winter but the long and fast-fading light cleared that thought away swiftly - i figure the face gets no sunlight and my static lines are damned relics already, so why let them quietly die on my garage floor? besides, there's always the off-chance of a november visit before the road closes, though with short days and the long jug, it's hard to get more than a couple hrs of exploration in before prudence demands descent

 

home w/ time for wine n' women n' fine discourse - i sink swiftly into the Big Blackness, waking near dawn to delicious soreness in every muscle associated w/ jugging or top-step tensioning

 

nearer...nearer...dice.

 

5/13/16 - round 8

 

spring - the earth reborn - time to return to see how them fixed ropes fared after months of tempests tortured them

 

big bill once again the big guy in charge - he fetched me from my humble abode on a thursday afternoon and we headed north

 

our plan was to try to drop in from the top and return to the highpoint

 

old men rise w/ the birdies and gawddamn it, though i was playing hooky from work, somehow i'm awake an hour earlier than normal? jesus, is this what lies in store for us all? :)

 

exciting times ensued as we sought to figure out how to finagle together passable roads to get close enough to hump a horrid bit of bullshit to the promised land- impromptu road-construction, tree clearing and many dead ends ensued and hours went by before we got it all sorted out, only to find the road near burley mountain, still miles away, choked w/ impassable snow

 

giving up on doing anything terribly productive, we settled for hiking the road to see if we could at least drive it after it melted out and locate the suspected trailhead - a couple hours of downhill slogging n' forest surfing returned us to the tower top, which looked every bit as uninviting for trying to rap down as it did the first time :noway:

 

not terribly excited at the prospect of trying to go over the edge, i settled for sucking down a couple beers and contemplating just hucking meself off the top like the forking free-basers - that done w/, we slowly crawled back up the long hill to the automovat, n' reversed our wending way back down to the cispus's quiet side, where we stared at the face w/ some high-powered optics

 

the sight of the ropes still in passable shape and the blue bolt-bearing bag glowing like a goddamn beacon high up the wall brought back the fight in me, and though the weather forecast didn't support a bottom-up attempt on the morrow, fukit, why not at least go up and climb as much of the route as we could and inspect the fixed lines from top-down?

 

grey and storm-threatening on saturday - we found the approach road blocked by a giant tree just a hundred yards or so from the start of the trail and slowly stumble-fucked our way up the hill, the path as short and savage and uncertain as ever

 

i'd never gotten to do p1 before and enjoyed it - bill did p2 and, despite regretting your friend and humble retard's spacing of the bolts, made it go quickly enough - he even threw in a completly cock-eyed and unnecessary dangerous run out at the top :)

 

sadly, his ever-suffering shoulder bearings blew out along the way, and big bill begged off continuing up - i figured i hadn't really brought enough beer anyway and the weather was clearly going to get ugly soon - we slid on back down, bill following on a hare-brained shoe-string of a tag-line

 

did some lounging on the party boulder, pondering on where the upper route should wander to - hiked up to look at the fixed lines up close - thought them in surprisingly good shape, but i'm still a bit skert at the prospect of tangling with them soon :)

 

gonna take a mort more work to make it go, and maybe the goddamn summit just won't be in the cards...

 

8/22-24 - trip #9

 

mid-summer doldrums done set in - big trips south n' east n' even north all spent n' its me on the couch doubting my own existence at 2 in the fucking morning

 

but the tower project is something to keep the head out of the oven for, so on a thursday evening bill fetched me in his big blue new ride i'm calling lucille until he latches upon a better moniker for the the motherfucker

 

we rattled off the miles north and reached the forest road after dark - reckoning on decent weather friday we bedded down under the open sky only to be rudely awoken after midnight by the beginnings of a mighty rain that kept on coming the whole day to come - fortunately lucille is commodious enough and we went on to spend most of the next 24 hrs in there alternatively napping n' reading n' listening to howard stern on the satellite

 

saturday dawned gray, nonetheless we did the super-shuffle-stumble down the trail - this was the first time we could drive to the burley mtn trailhead and it proved easy enough in a high-clearance ride - better yet, we found a doable shortcut, which gets you from the hardtop to the trailhead in a little over 5 miles, providing you don't get yerself kilt by driving off the absurdly steep hillside or kamikaze it into the crater-sized ravines running through the middle of the track

 

its so damned murderous to try to jug n' haul up 600 feet of overhanging fixed lines that we figured from here on out we should just drop in from the top and finish the fucker off that way - my first great fear was we wouldn't find anything anchor worth on the summit to get started, but after a number of hijinx that got sorted out and a day later we'd put in the final pitch (which i hope will be #13 as all rehab programs need one) :)

 

amazing views on the wall near the summit - holy shit, this thing is gonna go! 1000 feet of accessible, insane big walling n' all you need is a buncha draws and a couple hooks :rawk:

8/18-20 - trip the tenth - a little more than a year into this lithographic yawp, geoff n' i trundled north with a wagonful of liquor that woulda made winston churchill smile - Big Heat coming on the bottom lands, so to the hills made a sorta sense, even if it was just to hump loads of shit all over the place n' sweat like homos in hot-dog eating contests

 

a fine trip really - wrote a great big old piece on it actually with lovely alliteration and meaningful metaphors but then the cc.com overlords took it all away in a mouse fart n' nearly put me off my meds - sigh...writing, especially senseless writing about one's self, really is a practical lesson in buddhism, no? had to decide to retrench w/ something only a little short of a haiku...

 

the long n' short of it was we spent a day recovering most of the fixed lines that had been swinging in the breeze for the past 4 seasons, then humped it up the short, punished road and spent 2 days putting in more pitches - had a grand time guzzling beers n' waxing philosophic n' sucking straight out of the rapidly dwindling keg of crazy life

 

reckon only 3 more work days n' we'll be ready to check out of rehab :)

 

the only way out of rehab

 

Optimized-20160820_102059.jpg

 

fine views through them thare padded walls

 

Optimized-20160819_085432.jpg

 

putting the finishing touches on the pitch - boulder fields only a 1000 feet down there :)

 

Optimized-20160819_132523.jpg

 

holy shit, why didn't bill and i realize we could spent that long rainy day in his car in here instead?!?

 

burley-mountain-sunrise.jpg

 

songs from the trip i'll have a hard time getting out of my head for a while:

 

"it's been rough and rocky traveling but i'm finally standing upright with my feet on the ground - after taking several readings i'm surprised to find my mind is fairly sound" [video:youtube]

 

"twisted angel, cast out of some strange heaven, sent down here to pull me out of my shell - you show up on my doorstep, honey dripping from your mouth, like some slack jaw Jezebel" [video:youtube]

 

"bright lights, put me in a trance, but it ain't house music that makes me want to dance"

[video:youtube]

 

 

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Trip: Tower Rock - FA - Rapunzel's Back in Rehab - C1

 

Date: 7/15/2015

 

Trip Report: The Beast - don't be fooled, them thare are full-grown trees :)DSC02611.JPG Tower Rock, 2 hours from everywhere, appears oddly neglected - Brown Beckey's got the tiniest blurb of the single route up it done in 1982 (anyone know of a second ascent? i can't find anyone who's tried it) but no picture n' no topo - tim olson's oregon rock guide has some more detail than beckey, but still the vast monolith appears to have continued unloved

 

tower's just south of randle, an unladen swallow's flight from the cispus river - the face is gigantic,something like 1200 feet tall - the rock is basaltic, according to beckey, but like nothing i've seen - like over-baked brownies, it's composed of a hodge-podge of components - incredibly solid and compact, it's cross-hatched in all directions, crackless, and crumbles into bricks and blocks of all conceivable sizes - the tower looms over it's talus field, fiercely steep, it's upper-wall reminiscent of the right side of el cap, incredibly bulging and over-hanging

 

tower is composed of two giant faces seperated by a ledge/fault system that was the path taken by the first team to climb the face - currently, after 7 days of effort, our route climbs the lower wall - it'll be just as much work to finish the upper wall, if the rock quality holds

 

as it currently exists DSC02616.JPG yeah, there's a lot more to go, but as it stands, what's there is 600 feet tall and a great day-tripper's aid adventure already - i figure the worst that can come of telling folks about this now before it's complete is that some other sad fools can go do it for me :)DSC02612.JPG

 

trip the first: fuck, this happened so long off i wonder if my recollection's right at all - me n' bill n' ben in the late winter - a burr up their bespectacled asses about a mythical 10-pitch free route up a largely untouched tower - the plan to hike to the top then set a rap-line down the likely route - out of town on a friday night to the frightful fall of rain - ghetto camp before the gate in gales of damnable damp - the roar of frogs - the next morning the most sordid thang - endless hours uphill w/ drill n' bolts n' chains in the continuous cloud-fuck n' frenzied chilly breeze - near the summit gob-smacked to gain a blazed trail barely a mile from a seasonal road - the top a huge disappointment, it characterized by clouds and beaming rainbows and rock so rude they rarely accoladed the attribution - soon there after the weekend righteously concluded and me around for the sweet family on the sabbath

 

trip the second: on the reconnaissance earlier, dejected at finding a kitty-litter summit, we'd paused after a tortuous overladen descent on the boulder field and pondered on future options - a man w/ an aid-climber's conscious could do a take on "infinite bliss" and find a bitching way up the crazy big blank face - it was sure to take a mort of mortal work, but bill n' geoff are true gentlemen all measured and solid for this kinda goofy shit - we banged up from p-town on a friday night and made camp up at the turn around on the forest road - stumble-fucking up the forest we arrived amazed and ready to ramble on - many mozzies n' deer flies this damned trip - pitch 1 went quickly between geoff and bill, the later bounding up free on low-angle stacked mossy talus to make an anchor atop tier 1 - me i got tier 2 - all bolts at first until i no longer feared the ledge, then lotza 2-hook moves in a row until reaching the top of the tier where i left a fixed hook to protect a low-angle romp to the second anchor - we retired to camp n' soggy fires n' fulsome screeching music - day 2 we jugged to the top of p2 and bill and geoff got up a ways before yielding to me, whereupon i drilled n' hooked to a high point we marked w/ red tat before descending and returning to our troubled and lonely little lives - i recollect getting a true n' glorious drunk on in the passenger seat n' slumbering back to vantucky :)

 

geoff putting up the first pitch on the scrubby, compact low-angle first tier P6060034.JPG

 

the artist as a young asshole ascending the second steeper tier P6060040.JPG

 

geoff workign on pitch 3, the first steps onto the very steep lower wall P6060042.JPG

 

trip the third: lovely ospreys n' robins round the lake - pete n' pam play camp hosts - camp weddings n' nightly fishing sheenaningans - muskrats n' pond-skimming swallows - bastard mozzies n' mean biting flies, mostly in obeisance for the first couple cold days, but growing in malevolence as the weather waxed towards wicked hot - the sweet ne face of Tower almost totally shade-soaked for the mid-morning riser - kids n' retirees n' rv's n' jumping trout n' tame dogs - the listless routines of an aimless life - awake w/ the sun - fresh shits n' dewy breakfasts - a short but grim uphill grind through steep forest w/ plentiful windfall, shirt soaked through by the time we hit the sunny talus field at the base but soon blessed w/ shade - warm juggy work to start and then to the serious business - fear frenzies despite being armed w/ all the wonderful war machines of modern man - a long time of terror n' toil - the day dispatched, we make a rapid descent, each time by a different winding way - beer n' stripping soaked clothes off at the mercifully close car - me auolde yosemite food bin rummaged through for a desperate dinner, usually of beer n' tobacco n' pringles n' whatever benevolent bill threw my way - an hour or so of bird-watching n' binge-reading on maggie thatcher's frigid teeming fucking bush - to sleep at the post-gloaming in a grand 6-man tent alone, racked out on a queen sized inflatable air mattress, wrapped in down and dozy drunkenness - the night passed moaning to sore muscles as i twist n' turn until the dawn drags me to my addled senses, then it all runs off the reel much as it reckoned the day before...

 

first several days of murmurings n' mumblings w/ just me n' bill (me a damn baby in comparison to my venerable and august elder - that baby weighing in at a mean 250 bare-nekkid pounds and a coward to boot of course) - bill a bastion of genteel sincerity that must sadly have bitch-left this world many generations ago - me strangely silent of song for days - my mind scrambled and saddened by the robust requirements of 6-weeks of family-left sorrows gone off in the valley - eventually songs to lift my times and shape my senses - "mining for gold" by the cowboy junkies running on an eternal loop in my mind - long after-shocks of "burn down the mission" caused by geoff for sure

 

after 3 days of toil we grow weary and call in the cavalry - the silverman boys gonna come down n' save us from our misery - we make a rest day out of walking the mountain side w/ them, then retiring to the big boulder to pound pbr's n' provide Adult Supervision - they lounge around camp afterwards, contemplating on crashing the redneck wedding well under-way - we smoke bales of weed n' cackle n' cough n' find high times are treasure enough in this wicked world - eventually all good things must get on the bus w/ gandhi though and they roll off into the night in the hms revenge, ready i hope to return for more

 

the last day done-off as surely as a band-aid - after a fearful arduous jug up the wild steep fixed lines ole bill baits the question ("good news or bad?" - which would you take?) - - dedication to a last day of determined work - 5 hours of bolting and hooking on endless steep traversing ground until i was gut-wrenched at what it was likely to take me to get get back to bill - epic amounts of gear left as i rapped into the void and quickly grew dependent on bill to reel me back in - the retreat then fully declared we rapped n' ruminated n' laid our plans like parchment paper, all of it ultimately putting us on sweet terra-firma w/ a fuck-load of gear to get off - surprised by bill's pronouncement of this day, i had no proper pack to cram all the crap into

 

eventually we ambled on down the way, me overloaded like a gypsy carnival-whore w/ rope-bags aplenty such that i swooned on multiple occasions as the straps cut into me wind-pipe and i passed yards off unyielding to gratuitous thoughts, my mind in a true and lovely gray place - the last night spent in part w/ militant california-paul, such as exemplar of that shakespearean clap-trap about sounding of fuck-all and negative fury, yet yielding nothing :)

 

our objective from the relative sanity of the rv park n' its teeming trout pond DSC02631.JPG white-boys jugging the first 2 tiers - at this angle the lower wall takes up most of the entire frame, but the upper wall's just as big n' steeper P6070047.JPG 700 feet of ropes n' route-making machine Tower7.jpg just starting the second pitch Tower5.jpg bags of bolts n' drills n' bullshit - starting to install pitch 4 Tower6.jpg geoff at the top of p4, kyle jugging up to the mid-pt anchor DSC02617.JPG

 

closing thoughts: happy to share the discovery w/ the nw brethren - leave yer self-righteous bolting morals at home w/ yer bitches - the place went unloved for a reason :) - the only cracks evident are where awful rock-fall is just a geologic fart-in-a-stiff-wind away - if intending to push the route higher (what's there is plenty for a day-tripper), please let me or bill or geoff know so one of us can come along - perhaps a dozen separate lines could be pushed to the top in the same style, each likely to take weeks n' 1000$ to put in place :) - recon trip to the top found almost no real rock up there - at some point all lines must turn to awful kitty litter, but maybe it'll go anyhow?

 

topo as it currently stands - hope to see this fucker get taller in the fullness of insensible time :)

 

topo8.jpg

 

Gear Notes: - up to 30+ draws if clipping all bolts - 2 bathooks (talons can work, but they risk blowing out the drilled holes) - ideally 2 70 meter ropes, but 2 60'S can work if careful - cheater stick not bad idea, as many of the bolts were installed by a fear-fucked orangutan at his max reach - lower off tat or quick-links/biners for follower at traversing parts - helmets essential - much potential for rockfall of all sizes, especially if hauling or jugging - base area very dangerous in strong winds or if below climbers on first 2 approach pitches - upper pitches largely protected from natural rockfall (be careful up there :) )

 

Approach Notes: Exit 68 off i5 - east on 12 to randle (about an hour) - right (south) turn at randle (follow signs for tower rock RV park) - quick left about a mile south of randle, then another turn right about 6 miles later - rt turn at tower rock RV park/cispus learning center signs - left onto logging road (75?76?) just a 100 yards before rt turn to tower rock forest service camp (or straight for another mile to the RV park) - forest road is closed at gate near main road during winter/early spring - about 1 1/2 mile up road (stay on main road at split a 1/2 mile up) there's a turn around (about .25 mile past a steep switchback) - from there you can continue in car but there's no turnaround - walk or drive 1/4 mile to road-end - at wierd stone-forest-altar begin hiking up steep forrested slope - about 45 minutes to base - occasional game and human trails, generally trending right and up - copious windfall in middle section of trail - steeper for last 1/3 of trail - idea is to skirt talus field on right and join base from tree at right edge of wall - 1st bolt is just 5 feet off ground near clump of trees about 50 feet above a huge lounge-like boulder that is a great/safe observation spot

 

descent: currently rapping from top of p5 to top of p4 is extra-ordinarly hard - in the future ideally there'll be a rap line straight down through p5 - for now be prepared to leave a fixed line to get back to the top of p4 and for the first rapper to have to haul the second back over - descending from the top of p4 requires 2 70 meter ropes or a stop at the mid-pt anchor (no rings) - the rap overhangs but you just barely touch the wall at the mid-pt anchor - use terrain to help you rap in the right direction

 

9/5-6 - trip the fourth w/ geoff n' bryan - 3 days of school, the easy ones, dispatched and snap, whizz, bang it was friday afternoon and we were flying down the highway, heading north, clutching cans n' cackling at this wicked world we are so at home in - ominous omens, devil-eyed little girls glaring out of death-cold cars at us - road signs: "the time of the lord is here" - jesus, we'd best tread lightly

 

the tower rock rv park at dusk, the ride dispatched in minutes it seemed, fueled by high-octane what-have-you n' plebian pbr's - the park much as i left it, riddled w/ well-heeled red-necks n' pam n' pete n' a feller i'm pretty sure ain't named larry but will ever here-after be for me :)

 

got good n' whiskey-drunk w/ hood-river spirits sitting round the fire n' sorted n' packed n' planned for the day to come and soon enough it was upon us - up at 630 to grits n' coffee n' black tobacco

 

holy shit, plenty of weight to pull us down on the slow amble up-hill but within the hour we'd handled it and got to the glory - bryan, his first visit to the wall, had spoken in pure-drunken-honestness of the ease w/ which he'd dispatch it all, so for his sins we gave it to him - he gamboled up the first 2 pitches easy enough as geoff n' i smoked n' chuckled n' occasionally jugged

 

geoff did p3, a looooong way to go on bolts, much like leaning tower i suppose - i then did p4, so much fun now that i'm not fear-sweating it like on the first ascent, more than half-certain the huge roofs blocks would rain down on me once rattled by the roar of the drill

 

atop 4 the boys lost their motivation n' sense of adventure i reckon - it was late afternoon for sure, but i'm sure we could have completed p5 and put in our new rap line by dark, but it would have meant being late for a triumphant performance by the tower rockers band down at the rv park and of course cutting into precious drinking time, so with tears in my heart i consented to just fixing the first 4 pitches and coming back the next day

 

a surrealistic night for certain - dogs n' fishers n' baby gymnasts n' rv's of a thousand descriptions - not 1 but 2 bands, quite possibly the laziest ever, each managing to play perhaps a total of 30 minutes w/ at least 6 set-breaks thrown in to keep their buzzes on - a roaring fire n' light-flecked lake to seperate us from the heathen masses, which we nonetheless joined from time to time to see if any hotties under the age of 50 had arrived (they hadn't :( )

 

the hedonistic scene concluded with brutal finality when the heavens opened and the fuck-sky descended around eleven - a steady baptist downpour off and on from then till well after dawn

 

sunday morning a savage one, as they always are it seems - the dregs of the whiskey sitting sullenly upon my senses - the unceasing rain toasting all hopes for progress up the mist-wracked tower - in time the melancholia did end though, as all misery must, and we hoofed it back up to the wall to see if anything could be done - by then it was so late, the wall so streaming, the likelihood of yet another dousing so certain that it was w/ half a heart me n' bryan began jugging - i made it most of the way back up to the highpt, cursing n' crying on the last stretch, only to see bryan fighting the soaked ropes of the first pitch w/o much success - the signs were shit, so i surrendered to the inevitable yet again and settled for a few hours drink'n'n'smoke'n around the base, poking around to suss out future projects - bryan contrived to bring the party to a smashing conclusion by slipping and slicing a big fat bloody smile into the meat of his hand, a moment redolent w/ nostalgia for geoff n' i as we thought of nastia last year :)

 

in the end we said fuck it and resolved to return next weekend, with the pleasant reward of getting to walk back down the hill w/ fuck-all upon our backs :)

 

trip the sixth - bryan n' bill - a week after a sodden deluge we returned, 4 pitches fixed n'all the shit already up there - had a union social i was in charge of on friday afternoon so arrived at the rendezvous dangerously deranged - i soon fell into a deep n' stupendous stentorious snoring sleep but rallied somewhere along the way to get groceries - we rambled on through the growing dark and reached the rv park after a good bit of bullshitting, my soul made right and brightly glowing

 

whiskey and whoop-whooping ensued - demented dean our neighbor definitely added to the what-have-you - saturday morning arrived all too early and we roused ourselves from half-horrid hangovers and rallied on up the hill

 

jugged to the top of 4, the last 2 not so bad w/ the 1-jug, 1-gri technique - i lead the jaunt up p5, all the draws still hanging on it since july - pumped in some more bolts about the high-pt anchor as the boys made their way up - a bit of a clusterfuck really, but what big-wall is complete w/o one every 200 fucking feet or so? :)

 

dem white fellers, despite my urgent exhortations, didn't snap at the sincere offer to lead the new pitch 6, so off i set, rather tired n' sore already, truth-be-told - the good thing about being a bit gored was the bolt-spacing stays generous

 

we'd set a 3 p.m. turnaround time as we needed to put in a whole new rap line, and i exceeded that by a wee-bit - was eager to end ascending after hitting supper steepness combined w/ loose n' hollow rock

 

bill led the raps down, putting in surprisingly only 2 stations - the 2nd one being damn near exactly 60 meters, ending after a huge stretch of overhang ontop of a terrifying shattered tower

 

saturday night a staid one by last week's standards - salami n' jalapeno bread - whiskey once again n' big batches of burgundy n' black n' green tobacco - moby dick goddammit - cave man tv, but bill checked out before it got really interesting - early to bed

 

sunday broke gloomy, mist-fuck all-about, brain aching n' bitchy - we humped it back up the hill n' broke out into the big open of the talus field even as the wisps of cloud cleared the tower - it was to be 3 serious long strenuous jugs, ones i'd like just as well to forget - bryan clocked'em for what they were n' whittled away the hours instead getting whiskey-drunk down in the boulders, dodging the fragments i flung off the cliff n' building up a bonfire

 

took a long time to regain the high-pt but after all that work it was insane to think of turning around, so bill being disinterested once again i took on the leading end - the bit of bad rock reached around the angle then returned to berserker attitude - the line i wanted turned out to terrifying to contemplate - a 50 square feet panel all hollow and horrid, rooflets w/ cluster-munitions abounding - the solution was a dead-horizontal traverse to a sweet ledge, but stil a few feet below the summit of the lower-wall

 

bill to the top, a god-send for his shivering ass no doubt - it was the lord's day so we hadn't that much time to fuck-around, so he did a little recon, put in a bolt, then returned - we sorted out the shit best left behind n' bolted for the ground

 

back down i discovered some of the sad fragments of geoff's torque wrench which had precipitated itself down from 600 feet up after it foolishly believed it could fly - we sat round the fire for a bit n' bashed back down the hill, rounded up the camp shit, paid pete his blood-shekels n' then blasted back home through the growing gravid sky

 

10/24 - round 7

 

geoff n' i gallump on up the grand highway in the fading light of friday, galled by the recent demands of this gawdamn world - a big bonfire on the side of the forest road - it was to be a 1-day trip, so there was no sense in standing on ceremony - just a simple howl-at-the-moon affair which happened soon enough upon arrival and ambled on amiably until a hint after mid-night

 

dawn on saturday - destiny called so i shuffled off to have a shit and returned to the sight of my lawyer wretching into the bushes - The Great Spit - like a true hound-dog though he shook it off n' went back to binging on bad-berries

 

a quick walk up the hill, though the leaf-fucked forest floor makes it more sporting in places now - a deep gray diffracting through the grim sky as i gazed up to see how the fixed lines had fared over the past month - they seemed fine enough and so we set to it

 

a touch of rain followed to re-inforce the fuck-you nature of the big-wall, but that gave an excuse to sip beer n' listen to car-talk, a most unlikely touch of normality that couldn't help but conquer all fears - then it was the endless jugging n' hauling up extra rope n' whatnot

 

to the highpoint near noon, geoff grown gaunt n' red-faced but i was in rare-spirits, risen so far above bullshit i can't help but care about when it chokes me at every breathe

 

the plan was to move it on up to the big ledge, which in time i did make, ducking and dodging and working to find sections of rock good enough to take a bolt - a lot of case-cheese in this section - the rock under the hammer sounds like a hobo through a half-bottle

 

the great ledge was rather a little disappointing - cool environment for sure - the summit so close now you could talk w/ a person there should they appear and have no instinct of self-preservation to lean out over the edge - perhaps only 2 more full rope-lengths to go? the whole area like a vast tilted hanging ampitheatre, my voice and hammer strokes singing back at me from close in - no good place to set up a camp or even really sit though, despite its grand dimensions - maybe up higher?

 

so many possible directions to go from here - to re-establish a plum line rap-station to the top of p5 will require a separate mission to set up and will be off-course to the upper-wall - will likely want to establish a fixed line to it i suspect - left 14 bolts, a pair of chain anchors and my hammer to encourage my return

 

had originally hoped to pull all the fixed lines and clean the scene up for the winter but the long and fast-fading light cleared that thought away swiftly - i figure the face gets no sunlight and my static lines are damned relics already, so why let them quietly die on my garage floor? besides, there's always the off-chance of a november visit before the road closes, though with short days and the long jug, it's hard to get more than a couple hrs of exploration in before prudence demands descent

 

home w/ time for wine n' women n' fine discourse - i sink swiftly into the Big Blackness, waking near dawn to delicious soreness in every muscle associated w/ jugging or top-step tensioning

 

nearer...nearer...dice.

 

5/13/16 - round 8

 

spring - the earth reborn - time to return to see how them fixed ropes fared after months of tempests tortured them

 

big bill once again the big guy in charge - he fetched me from my humble abode on a thursday afternoon and we headed north

 

our plan was to try to drop in from the top and return to the highpoint

 

old men rise w/ the birdies and gawddamn it, though i was playing hooky from work, somehow i'm awake an hour earlier than normal? jesus, is this what lies in store for us all? :)

 

exciting times ensued as we sought to figure out how to finagle together passable roads to get close enough to hump a horrid bit of bullshit to the promised land- impromptu road-construction, tree clearing and many dead ends ensued and hours went by before we got it all sorted out, only to find the road near burley mountain, still miles away, choked w/ impassable snow

 

giving up on doing anything terribly productive, we settled for hiking the road to see if we could at least drive it after it melted out and locate the suspected trailhead - a couple hours of downhill slogging n' forest surfing returned us to the tower top, which looked every bit as uninviting for trying to rap down as it did the first time :noway:

 

not terribly excited at the prospect of trying to go over the edge, i settled for sucking down a couple beers and contemplating just hucking meself off the top like the forking free-basers - that done w/, we slowly crawled back up the long hill to the automovat, n' reversed our wending way back down to the cispus's quiet side, where we stared at the face w/ some high-powered optics

 

the sight of the ropes still in passable shape and the blue bolt-bearing bag glowing like a goddamn beacon high up the wall brought back the fight in me, and though the weather forecast didn't support a bottom-up attempt on the morrow, fukit, why not at least go up and climb as much of the route as we could and inspect the fixed lines from top-down?

 

grey and storm-threatening on saturday - we found the approach road blocked by a giant tree just a hundred yards or so from the start of the trail and slowly stumble-fucked our way up the hill, the path as short and savage and uncertain as ever

 

i'd never gotten to do p1 before and enjoyed it - bill did p2 and, despite regretting your friend and humble retard's spacing of the bolts, made it go quickly enough - he even threw in a completly cock-eyed and unnecessary dangerous run out at the top :)

 

sadly, his ever-suffering shoulder bearings blew out along the way, and big bill begged off continuing up - i figured i hadn't really brought enough beer anyway and the weather was clearly going to get ugly soon - we slid on back down, bill following on a hare-brained shoe-string of a tag-line

 

did some lounging on the party boulder, pondering on where the upper route should wander to - hiked up to look at the fixed lines up close - thought them in surprisingly good shape, but i'm still a bit skert at the prospect of tangling with them soon :)

 

gonna take a mort more work to make it go, and maybe the goddamn summit just won't be in the cards...

 

8/22-24 - trip #9

 

mid-summer doldrums done set in - big trips south n' east n' even north all spent n' its me on the couch doubting my own existence at 2 in the fucking morning

 

but the tower project is something to keep the head out of the oven for, so on a thursday evening bill fetched me in his big blue new ride i'm calling lucille until he latches upon a better moniker for the the motherfucker

 

we rattled off the miles north and reached the forest road after dark - reckoning on decent weather friday we bedded down under the open sky only to be rudely awoken after midnight by the beginnings of a mighty rain that kept on coming the whole day to come - fortunately lucille is commodious enough and we went on to spend most of the next 24 hrs in there alternatively napping n' reading n' listening to howard stern on the satellite

 

saturday dawned gray, nonetheless we did the super-shuffle-stumble down the trail - this was the first time we could drive to the burley mtn trailhead and it proved easy enough in a high-clearance ride - better yet, we found a doable shortcut, which gets you from the hardtop to the trailhead in a little over 5 miles, providing you don't get yerself kilt by driving off the absurdly steep hillside or kamikaze it into the crater-sized ravines running through the middle of the track

 

its so damned murderous to try to jug n' haul up 600 feet of overhanging fixed lines that we figured from here on out we should just drop in from the top and finish the fucker off that way - my first great fear was we wouldn't find anything anchor worth on the summit to get started, but after a number of hijinx that got sorted out and a day later we'd put in the final pitch (which i hope will be #13 as all rehab programs need one) :)

 

amazing views on the wall near the summit - holy shit, this thing is gonna go! 1000 feet of accessible, insane big walling n' all you need is a buncha draws and a couple hooks :rawk:

 

8/18-20 - trip the tenth - a little more than a year into this lithographic yawp, geoff n' i trundled north with a wagonful of liquor that woulda made winston churchill smile - Big Heat coming on the bottom lands, so to the hills made a sorta sense, even if it was just to hump loads of shit all over the place n' sweat like homos in hot-dog eating contests

 

a fine trip really - wrote a great big old piece on it actually with lovely alliteration and meaningful metaphors but then the cc.com overlords took it all away in a mouse fart n' nearly put me off my meds - sigh...writing, especially senseless writing about one's self, really is a practical lesson in buddhism, no? had to decide to retrench w/ something only a little short of a haiku...

 

the long n' short of it was we spent a day recovering most of the fixed lines that had been swinging in the breeze for the past 4 seasons, then humped it up the short, punished road and spent 2 days putting in more pitches - had a grand time guzzling beers n' waxing philosophic n' sucking straight out of the rapidly dwindling keg of crazy life

 

reckon only 3 more work days n' we'll be ready to check out of rehab :)

 

the only way out of rehab

 

Optimized-20160820_102059.jpg

 

fine views through them thare padded walls

 

Optimized-20160819_085432.jpg

 

putting the finishing touches on the pitch - boulder fields only a 1000 feet down there :)

 

Optimized-20160819_132523.jpg

 

holy shit, why didn't bill and i realize we could spent that long rainy day in his car in here instead?!?

 

burley-mountain-sunrise.jpg

 

songs from the trip i'll have a hard time getting out of my head for a while:

 

"it's been rough and rocky traveling but i'm finally standing upright with my feet on the ground - after taking several readings i'm surprised to find my mind is fairly sound" [video:youtube]

 

"twisted angel, cast out of some strange heaven, sent down here to pull me out of my shell - you show up on my doorstep, honey dripping from your mouth, like some slack jaw Jezebel" [video:youtube]

 

"bright lights, put me in a trance, but it ain't house music that makes me want to dance"

[video:youtube]

 

9/3-4 - hop #11 -thought this might be the trip we finally got the fucker done, but it turns out one more ride on the merry-go-death-round is in order

 

headed up on a rainy, dismal friday night - smooth sailing and an easy passage well lubricated with burgundy n' the baleful observations of a hopped-up howard stern

 

once again amazed to arrive at the lookout on a friday night, this one a memorial day weekend to boot, without a soul in the joint - nobody there saturday night neither - holy shit it's the goddess decadence dressed up as a demesne - as the frigid wind wailed outside and the cloud murk crept by it was sure that summer was spent and fall was fey upon us all, but inside the firebox glowed a gaudy orange and the good humor of easy life laid upon the walls

 

had a bit of a lazy saturday morning as it was maybe 40 degrees and bitter breezy outside with visibility measured in meters - lounged n' coffeed n' read some shelby foote

 

eventually we resigned ourselves to a rare auold rough up and rambled down the road and stumbled down the steep hillside - threw ourselves over the cliff-edge and then put in a new pitch on super-steep and sometimes friable rock with wild exposure

 

img_20160903_122507_1_.jpg

 

our duty done for the day, retraced our steps and had another capital evening in the cabin as once again the weather closed in

 

sunday dawned a bit better than the day before so we got an earlier start - put in another pitch and finally got to a spot where we could clearly see all that's left to do - one more steep pitch of 60 meters, than a ledgy pitch of 25 meters or so and the fucking thing is finite :)

 

excellent diversion on a dark and dismal night

 

85579a.jpg

 

and of course no descent down that doomed road is complete without belting out at least one willie-tune :)

 

[video:youtube]

 

Edited by ivan

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i'd hope to have a raging big party to commemorate the first complete ascent - 2 or 3 teams of 2 would be sick as we could set up a car shuttle and rock the lookout the fuck out :)

 

that said, it ain't done yet - maybe one more weekend trip and it'll be ready

 

 

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Damn, good work! One of these days I'll get out there!

I've got a buddy that is super interested in checking the place and route out!! If you want more company next time let me know and I'll see if he is free!

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if the route's complete after this weekend ya'll should come w/ 2 weekends later and be part of the first ascent :)

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