Thursday, September 8, 2011

8000 ft Crag

On Saturday August 27th as we were dieing of heat in the 110 degree temperatures in Redlands, I was also dieing to go climbing. It was obviously way to hot to climb at our normal quick Saturday climbing spot, the Riverside Quary, and I didn't want to go all the way to Holcomb Valley, so we decided to check out a small crag on the way up to Big Bear called 8000 ft Crag. As you may have guessed the crag sits at an elevation of 8000 ft and it also faces north so we figured that it would be a good place to get out of the heat. The crag is also just 50 feet off the highway which made my wife happy since she isn't all that fond of hiking with kids and gear.

I called my friend Bennett to see if he and his wife wanted to join us on our excursion, he said that his baby was being crazy, so his wife didn't want to come, but he would. He also told me that he had climbed at 8000 ft crag once before and didn't think it was all that great, so we might want to climb somewhere else. Since I'd never been there I told him that I wanted to at least check it out, then if it wasn't great, we could certainly go somewhere else.

As we headed up highway 38, it started to rain on us and we got a little worried, but luckely, we just hit the edge of the rain storm and quickly left it behind. The only problem was that it looked like the main storm was positioned directly over some of our other options if we didn't want to climb at 8000' crag, so we were kind of stuck climbing there at that point.

Luckely, 8000' crag turned out to be all right. Bennett had only climbed routes on the right hand side previously, so we decided to try the left hand side to see if they were any better. We started on the furthest left route, a 5.8 called Blurry. I wasn't worried about getting the onsight on a 5.8, so I let Bennett take the lead. He got the onsight easily, and I followed up with a flash. My wife then TR'd the route. The route was kind of dirty and not all that great, but at least we were out climbing.

After Blurry, I decided to try the route that caught my eye when we first arrived. The route looked fairly easy at the bottom, but the last three bolts followed a steep arete that looked really cool. I jumped on the route and it was as good as it looked. The climb was much cleaner than the previous route, and the upper section was amazing with big moves between great holds on the overhanging arete. Unfortunately I blew the onsight and fell off halfway up the arete, but the route was still a blast. After I got down I looked it up in the guidebook and found out it was a 5.10b called Out of Sight. It's sad how weak I am, falling off of overhanging 5.10s, but I guess that's just life with little kids. Bennett and Amy both TR'd the route then we moved onto the next one.

The last route we climbed was a 5.10a called Community Service. I lead this route onsight then Amy and Bennett followed on TR. This route was kind of a one move wonder between the first and second bolts, then was just extremely easy for the rest of the way over mouse crap covered ledges to the very poorly placed anchors. Not a highly recommended route, but as I already said, at least we were out climbing.

After that we cleaned up and headed back down the mountain, relieved that Bennett didn't get a ticket since he forgot to bring his Adventure Pass.

Sorry about the lack of photos in this post, but we forgot the camera.

1 comment:

  1. It's kind of sad that the times I really like the climbing you only ever think it is "ok" - what does that say about me?