City of Rocks and Grays Peak

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We get our rock shoes on.

Note: click images to see a larger version in a new window

Note: Until Hannah double checks, all route names are based on my memory and therefore theoretical.

Brian was coming to visit, and had never been to the City of Rocks (aka "The City"). Well, we'll have to fix that. My friend Tom, whom I have known for over 40 years, lives nearby.

Brian landed at about 5, and we were off, chasing John and Tamara, who had gotten a slight head start. We got to Tom and Hannah's place just before dark, and John and Tamara already had their trailer set up.

The next morning we did the 10 minute walk over to Castle Rock.

Trailhead

Hannah put us onto a couple great climbs, all side-by-side. Here's John leading Little Time (5.6): big smile (click to see bigger version).

Just to his right, Brian led Big Time (5.7).

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And Tom, momentarily out of retirement, working out the moves on the first pitch of Castle Keep (5.8). Trailhead
John has moved onto the route Tom was climbing, only is now farther up the wall. Trailhead
Tamara having a go. She is on some very thin friction moves. Trailhead
But getting up it. Trailhead
Tamara getting high. Trailhead
The next day Hannah took us Cub Scouts over to the City. We climbed what looks like a smaller pinnacle, left of center, "Theatre of Shadows" (5.6). The pinnacle may be smaller, but it was four pitches. Trailhead
Observing our toes. Trailhead
Tamara starting up pitch 2. Trailhead

We had a bit of miscommunication, so as a result Tamara got to do her first real rappel off a pretty stout overhang. Impressive!

That evening John and Tamara had to head home.

John's trip report

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The next day, Hannah set about trying to find something for me to fall off of.

Nope, I got up that one.

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This one, too, on Tiny Town ? (5.10a). Although it took me two tries to get started.

On pretty much all the harder stuff, Hannah was our leader. She also watched over all us old goofy guys, which we needed.

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After a few pitches, we went for a really gorgeous hike.

That night it rained off and on.

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After last night's rain, it was sort of damp. So today we started off by doing an easier 4-pitch climb at Castle Rock. Trailhead
The sun was trying to come out. Trailhead
Time to head down. Trailhead

After that little bit of sun, the rock was much drier. So Hannah pulled out all the stops and put the rope up on this gem, Shock and Awe (5.10a).

This one finally did me in. I had to call it quits just below where Brian is in the photo because my hands had become non-functional. With that, Hannah had finally reached her goal, so Brian and I loaded up and drove to Hailey to visit my daughter and family.

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The next morning, we wanted to climb something. But we had to get Brian to the airport on time. And I was only guessing at conditions. The perfect solution seemed to be Grays Peak: short drive, not technical (due to the snow), high summit, great views. There's a bunch of the major Pioneer summits. Trailhead
Nearing the top of Grays. Trailhead

Summit.

We buzzed back to Boise, caused a little trouble, and then I put Brian on the plane. Another great trip. Thanks to John and Tamara for adding to the fun. And thanks to Tom and Hannah for putting us up (as well as putting up with us).

And Thanks to Mariel and Jason for sharing home and family.

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