Tuesday, May 24, 2011

SAT&SUN May 21&22 2011 Navigation Climbing

Saturday and Sunday
May 21&22, 2011
Navigation and Rappelling and Climbing

A termite swarm exiting a trail side blow down.  Besides termites these blow downs are also home to massive colonies of carpenter ants.  When there are sawed ends near the trail look just below and sometimes you will see three to six inch conical mounds of sawdust from where the Carpenter Ants  have dropped pieces of wood removed during tunnel making and if your really lucky you will be there at a time when the pile is in the process of being made.

On Saturday we did a lot of work with various elements of navigation.

The Mountain Laurel were just on the verge of exploding with blossoms.

It was a wonderful day with record crowds of around 2,500.

A vision quest lands in Rio.

It was an absolutely awesome 10++ Day.    The weather was supposed to be rainy all day and yet turned out pretty nice.    The threat of rain meant there were not many visitors on the mountain.   We were able to spend a lot of time practicing anchors, rappelling, and yes climbing in the warm air on sun kissed granite. 

There seemed to be a conspiracy to get a lot of shots of me on my camera.   Here is one of me just before dropping in on rappel.

That's Liz high on her return climb after having rappelled in.

Here is new ORMSer Don on rappel.    If my back of the envelope calculation is correct as one of his life's accomplishments he potentially has well in excess of 10 Hours of free fall time.
Here is a shot of me climbing and Chad belaying way up on the right.     I did the three quarters of this route that was very easy (for Old Rag) slab climbing.   None-the less it made me think and required some shifting  balance movements.   It felt like vertical dancing on sun warmed rock.   One of those days that leaves you understanding why some drop out to do nothing but climb for days, weeks, months, years, maybe even decades.   Gravity games.

This is a shot of Don climbing up.   I always love it when you can look up at the boundary of the blue sky and rock to see bright white clouds floating by.

We came across a King Snake on the way out from our day on the mountain

Here I am doing some outreach and providing some information to inbound hiker/campers that were new to the area.

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