Well, it was another Saturday, and we wanted to get out climbing, but we weren’t really feeling anything in the Ogden area so we decided to head up to Salt Lake to do something in Big Cottonwood. The last time we had hit up Big Cottonwood we had climbed at the Salt Lake slips area and Amy had really enjoyed it there, so we decided to go do some of the other routes there.
We got there and found it to be fairly uncrowded for a Saturday morning at an area with lots of easy routes just two minutes from the road. Now Amy hasn’t done much leading since having Austin, so I figured we needed to start easy so that she could do a bit of leading to get back into the game. We started on a 5.7 called Thieving Magpie. This was a pretty fun route and it was very easy, so it was a good one for Amy to Lead, I ran up the route and hung the draws for her, then Danny took a turn trying it on TR, and Finally Amy lead it and got the redpoint.
Danny TRing Thieving Magpie
Next we just moved one route to the left and got on a 5.8 called Entre Nous. I lead this route and got the onsight, but it seemed like it might give Amy some trouble on lead, so I recommended that she try it on TR first. That was probably a good idea because the crux was quite slickery, and it took her a few tries to get it on TR. She decided that she didn’t want to lead that one, so we moved on to the next route.
The Italian Arete is probably the most aesthetic looking route on the main wall of Salt Lake Slips, so we decided to give it a go. The route was fun but ended up being much easier than it looked (it’s only 5.6, but I hadn’t looked at the book and for some reason had it as 5.9 in my head). Like the first route, both Amy and I took turns leading it.
I wanted to try something a bit harder at this point, so we decided to head around the corner by the stream where there are a couple of nice overhanging routes to give them a go. First up, we decided to hop on a 5.10c called Salem’s Lot. This route was pretty much awesome (other than being too short), it is very overhung, but the holds are all just big jugs, so it makes for some nice easy climbing. I ran up the route getting the onsight, then Danny wanted to swing, so we hauled him up the route, then Amy TR’d it and cleaned the anchors.
Danny Hanging out on Salem's Lot
Amy was pretty much fried after that route since she isn’t used to doing anything overhung, but I wanted to jump on something else, so there was one route that was open, a 5.10b called Goth Girls. This route was okay, but it was just too inconsistent to really be great. It started out with a hard move or two right at the first bolt, then it was just a scramble up the next couple of bolts, the crux was then encountered at the third bolt where the wall was extremely polished, and the only thing for your hands was a painful finger crack without any feet. After a move or two like that once again it turned into just a scramble until the final roof which was just pulling through on big bat guano covered jugs. It certainly wasn’t my favorite route, but at least it was something else to climb. I got the onsight, then we packed up and headed home.