Tuesday, December 27, 2011

11.12.2011 Sleeping Beauty Mountain

It didn't take us too long to realize that Lake George was the place to go if we didn't want to have a long drive.  The drive here was an interesting one though.  I drove about 20 minutes past the trail head for New Buck and arrived at the huge parking lot for Sleeping Beauty.  Charles came along with us this time, and we all started walking down a narrow dirt road until we decided that it was a waste of time, so I turned around and walked back to my car, leaving my pack behind.  The road was only about a mile long, but I had to navigate my VW Passat around rocks, large pot holes, and a flooded section or the road.  It was much better than walking, especially when we saw other cars parked in the lot at the end of the road.  From there, the approach was only about 20 minutes, which we cut down even more on the way back by avoiding the main trail.  We heard gun shots on the way back to the car, so Cam put on his orange jacket so we hopefully wouldn't get confused with deer.
Cam and I walked back and forth along the wall trying to figure out where the routes in the guidebook were.
It was difficult to see anything from the base of the wall, so Cam decided to hike down a bit further to get a better view.
Here he is, looking up at the wall trying to pick out the good climbs.
The first route we attempted was Sizzle Me (5.6 G, 70').  Cam led the way, and I followed.
For some reason, my hands got very very cold part way up the route.  I could not feel the rock or even a carabiner.  What a great way to start the day.  I continued the climb like this, pausing periodically to try to warm up, which never seemed to work, until I reached the top and was lowered.  My hands were fine for the rest of the day so I have no idea why they were so cold then.

This is the Tang Corner (5.9 G, 80'), which was one of the satisfying climb of the day.  It was a great layback that ended up leading to a vertical crack for the finish.

 Here I am belaying Cam.
Charles decided to take a hike a bit further up the mountain and see what he could find...which ended up being the best views of the day.


Back to climbing, I believe that this is Cam leading Frack (5.8 G, 90'), which we ended up joining with Frick to make a "custom" route.
Here I am warming up a little bit before attempting the route in the following two pictures.  For some reason, I can't remember the name of this one. Oh well.

Sun Downer (5.7+ G, 50') was the last, and sketchiest, climb of the day.  Charles hiked to the top of this climb, where he planned to meet up with Cam when he reached the top.  I was belaying Cam when all of a sudden both him and Charles yell out "ROCK" and I move away from the route to a more protected area.  The rock, which ended up being around 90 lbs landed ~4 feet to my right, and broke to pieces after it collided with the hard ground.  Cam finished the route and I lowered him back to the ground, where Charles met us.  Now I had to climb the route, which we learned was full of big loose rocks, to retrieve the gear.  I was very careful to test all my feet and hand holds before loading them with my weight, and asked to be lowered after clearing all the gear.  We called it quits for the day, packed up, and hiked out.

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